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Progressive Web Apps (PWA) vs. Native Apps: Key Differences

Progressive Web Apps (PWA) vs. Native Apps | Photo

No one can argue that the number of people who surf the global network via mobile phones and other gadgets dramatically prevails over those who do it via laptops and computers. Therefore, businesses can’t ignore new technologies that are designed to simplify the process of users’ interaction with their websites.

Previously, the functionality or the interface of resources could encounter various problems or inconsistencies when displayed on the devices.However, today, there are many options that allow avoiding these issues. That’s where alternatives such as PWA and native applications come in.

In this article, we will explore the essence of these technologies, their key differences, and the advantages they can bring to brands, so that you can choose the one that suits you best.

Revolutionize Your Website with Progressive Web Apps: The Benefits and Advantages

Designed by Google, PWA, or a progressive web app, is the technology, which converts websites into mobile applications that quickly load on phones and tablets. In plain words, progressive web apps are a hybrid of a site and an app. Giants brands such as Uber, Starbucks, Twitter, and Forbes are have already adopted this tool.

Here’s how it works: while interacting with the website, users are offered the option to install PWA on their gadgets. Once website visitors click the corresponding button, the app installs just like any other regular application. In addition, when it comes to the interface, PWAs are practically identical to regular applications. However, they are simpler to develop and maintain than the latter.

Other advantages of employing PWA include the following: compared to common applications, progressive web apps do not need to be designed separately for each operating system (iOS and Android). Therefore, development is much cheaper and faster, which is extremely valuable for companies. In addition, PWAs load quickly and have a small size since users get the data in the cached form when visiting the site for the first time. Thanks to this feature, websites load almost instantly in the future. This is crucial because when page loading takes too much time, customers are more likely to leave the site.

In terms of marketing, PWAs are also favorable as they can send push notifications. This means that you can draw users’ attention to your brand, encourage them to return to the site, notify them of the latest news or discounts, and ultimately increase their loyalty. Who wouldn’t appreciate such an opportunity, right?

Lastly, another advantage of utilizing PWA is that it doesn’t depend on an Internet connection. Accordingly, even when offline, customers may, for example, add products to the shopping cart. Later, when they are online, the data will be processed and sent to the server, enabling clients to proceed with making purchases.

As you can see, the progressive web applications have various pros that make this tool so attractive. However, PWA is not the only option at your disposal. Therefore, it’s high time to explore native apps.

Why Native App Development is Worth the Investment

Unlike PWA, native applications are developed specifically for a platform and mobile operating system. As a result, they perfectly match the technical parameters of the gadget on which installation takes place. We can bet anything that you already have such apps on your phone. Among the most popular are Instagram, Skype, and Gmail.

Another feature worth mentioning is the high level of optimization, which significantly improves the performance of these apps. This level of optimization is achieved because the application is created with a specific OS in mind, taking into account its peculiarities and requirements. In addition, native apps have access to users’ data, NFC, and other information, which is safely stored. This ensures the provision of a simple and faultless user experience.

Generally speaking, the development of native applications is considered to be a rather costly and time-consuming process. However, it is still considered worthwhile.

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Making the Right Choice: Factors to Consider When Choosing Between PWA and Native Apps

Once both of these technologies are studied, it’s essential to check out the differences between them in order to make an informed decision about which one to introduce in your business.

Installation: Compared to the native apps, progressive web apps do not force users to take multiple steps to download them. Customers have to go to the store, find the right one, click on the “download” button, and then give various permissions. On the other hand, to install PWAs, clients only need to make one or two clicks to add the app to their devices.

Weight: The matter of space applications may take is among the most essential ones. PWAs do not require downloading, which they do not take up much space on the users’ devices. Native apps, on the contrary, can’t function without downloading, which means that these apps are more space-consuming than their counterparts.

Development cost: Obviously, regarding the development cost, progressive web apps are more cost-effective than the native apps, since separate applications do not have to be created while working on the PWA. Meanwhile, designing native apps require creating separate applications for both platforms, Android and iOS, which can cost a significant amount of money and time.

Access to features: Native apps face no restrictions or limitations to get the desired built-in device elements compared to progressive web apps, which have some limitations when it comes to accessing necessary functions and features such as geolocation, camera, etc.

Updates: Progressive web applications have an advantage over native apps since upgrades are loaded instantly when the page is reloaded. This feature makes these apps always up-to-date. In contrast, native apps require manual downloading of updates, which may not be desirable to some customers.

Offline connectivity: Native apps win in all respects in terms of offline connectivity since PWAs cannot transfer all data to mobile gadgets without a permanent connection to the Internet. Although users still have a chance to interact with the application (as long as the content is initially cached), they will not be able to utilize it to the full extent.

Once these two technologies are examined, it becomes clear that the matter of picking the only one is quite a big deal. However, making such a decision is inevitable since the needs of modern users can’t and shouldn’t be neglected. Users require resources that will work smoothly on their gadgets, and it’s important to consider the advantages and disadvantages of each option before making a decision.

On a Final Note

Are you struggling to decide whether to go for a progressive web app or a native app? It’s essential to consider the advantages and disadvantages of each option before making a decision.

While progressive web apps are easier to install and don’t require separate development for each platform, native apps offer better access to device features and have an advantage in terms of offline connectivity.

Moreover, progressive web apps load quickly, offer push notifications, and are always up-to-date, while native apps offer a high level of optimization and provide a simple and faultless user experience.

So, which one should you choose? It all depends on the goals and requirements of your application. A thorough analysis is always recommended to avoid any mistakes or inconsistencies in the future.

In this article, we delved into the essence of these highly popular technologies and compared them in terms of their efficiency and purpose. We hope the provided information is sufficient, if you have any questions or doubts, feel free to contact us. We are always here to help you make the right choice for your business.

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