React Native, Flutter, or PWA – Which One Is the Best Choice for Your Business?

January 20, 2023 12 min read
react native vs flutter vs progressive web apps

Mobile apps have completely revolutionized the world in a better way. You can play your favorite games, find partners, shop online, and manage your finances with mobile apps. 

Having a tailor-made, scalable, and feature-rich business app can help uniquely interact with your clients. Not just that, you can also amend your policies and offerings by getting data insights from the app. 

All you need is a mobile app. One thing that you carefully need to decide is the framework and technology to build a mobile app. 

There are many frameworks available in the market, but you need to choose one that fulfills your expectations and takes less time to develop. 

The main alternative to mobile apps is progressive web apps. If you have budget constraints, you can go for PWAs too. However, you will need a careful assessment before you make a decision. 

You need to have a clear understanding of the differences between a react native app vs PWA and Flutter Vs PWA to make the right decision. 

In this post, we will compare Flutter, React Native, and PWAs to find out what is the best for your business. 

Stay tuned!

react native

What is React Native?

React Native was invented by Facebook and is an open-source JavaScript-based mobile app development framework. Since its inception, it has been a widely preferred mobile app development framework among developers across the globe. 

React Native allows developers to build mobile applications quickly for both Android and iOS. Developers just need to code once and use the same code for different platforms. For example, if you have written code for the Android app, you can use the same code to build an iOS app. 

Some of the apps that are built on React Native are Facebook, Instagram, Oculus, Coinbase, Shopify, and others. 

React Native uses JSX and combines it with XML-sequence markup and JS coding. You can also use React Native for web app development. 

Benefits of React Native 

  • With the React Native mobile app development, developers need to code once and this code can be reused to develop another app for another platform. This code reusability ensures quick app development and short app-to-market time. 
  • React Native apps are compiled in native code, and hence, they can be used for both, Android and iOS operating systems. 
  • React Native apps offer a native-like performance to users. 
  • React Native app development allows developers to build apps faster and with less effort. 
  • The React Native open-source libraries and modules further quicken the development process. 
  • For startups and enterprises with budget constraints, developing a React Native app is a cost-effective affair. 

Disadvantages of React Native 

  • The learning curve of React Native is very steep for beginners. 
  • Facebook regularly updates the React Native framework, making it difficult for enterprises to understand what these updates mean. They will need to hire a professional React Native developer to work on it. 
  • The React Native framework environment evolves constantly. Here too, you will need to hire professional React Native developers to understand all the working procedures. 
  • The React Native framework also struggles when it comes to security. Some security measures need to be improved by Facebook. 

flutter

What is Flutter?

Flutter is the brainchild of Google and is also one of the most preferred cross-platform mobile app development frameworks. You can create robust, native-like, and secure cross-platform apps with Flutter. 

One of the best things about Flutter is its global community which helps Flutter developers when they are trapped in some issues or looking for assistance. You can develop highly impressive and intuitive user interfaces for mobile apps with Flutter. 

Flutter’s hot reload feature allows developers to come up with highly efficient and high-performing apps. If you want to change code in the Flutter app, you can look at the preview of the code in the machine or hardware of Android or iOS platforms. You don’t have to compile it again. 

Also, the user interface of the Flutter apps looks more customized and its ready-made widgets help developers to build highly versatile and robust apps. 

Benefits of Flutter Framework 

  • As we just discussed, the hot reload feature allows developers to check out the outcome of the code change in just no time. The feature also allows them to try different variations to make the app more versatile, impressive, and intuitive. 
  • You can develop high-end, advanced Android apps on low-end machines. 
  • Flutter is highly responsive and eliminates the need to update the app from time to time if you have maintained high coding standards. 
  • While updating the app, developers just need to make changes in the variables and UI components and the app will look fine and functional. 
  • You can also use Flutter for web app development. You can download Flutter SDK and start making Flutter web apps. 
  • Flutter is highly compatible with all Android and iOS development tools such as Visual Studio Code, Android Studio, etc.

Disadvantages of Flutter

  • Flutter does not offer any support for the Web View widget and it is a limitation. 
  • Furthermore, experts believe that Flutter is not for long-term practice. 
  • Compared to React Native, the Flutter framework is so big. 
  • Flutter is a UI software development kit that uses a single code, Dart. on Android, it is integrated with Java and on iOS, it is integrated with Objective C and Swift. 
  • The framework’s layout is highly confusing and challenging. Developers have to work hard to be familiar with it to work on it.

pwa

What is PWAs?

Progressive Web Applications are apps that can be accessed through a web browser and also are developed similarly to native apps. The PWA app development process consists of a web stack that is made in the form of HTML, JS, and CSS. 

PWAs are easy to develop and offer a unified user experience similar to native apps. If you don’t want to develop a native or hybrid app, you can go for a PWA. 

It is a budget-friendly choice when you are looking to launch the app in a short time. Also, PWA apps are not too hardware-centric. It is the perfect mixture of both the worlds-web and mobile apps. 

You can reach out to your users easily by offering them a satisfying user experience through PWAs. 

As PWAs offer the flexibility of the web with a native-like experience, you can also create a PWA for mobile devices. You need to hire the best PWA development company to get the best customized, secure, and versatile app. 

Benefits of PWAs 

  • PWAs can be developed in just no time. Hence, you can launch your app without compromising on the quality, efficiency, and performance app. 
  • PWAs are compatible with any web or mobile devices and browsers. 
  • PWAs are easy to launch, easy to use, and easy to maintain. 
  • They offer a native-like experience to users. 
  • You don’t have to take permission from App Stores to launch a PWA.

Disadvantages of PWAs

  • If you want to integrate your social media handles with your PWA app, it is not possible. Also, social media add-ons cannot fetch data from the app. 
  • The PWA platform might not allow users some latest hardware development such as fingerprint scanning or visual scanning. 

A Comprehensive Comparison of React Native, Flutter, and PWAs

Now that we know about these three frameworks, in brief, let’s compare them for top 10 parameters. Here is the comparison between React Native Vs PWA Vs Flutter:

1. Development Language

When it comes to development language, React Native uses JavaScript while Flutter uses Dart. On the other hand, PWAs use HTML, CSS, and JavaScript.

Most Popular Apps:

most popular apps of flutter, react native and pwa

Flutter - Some of the most popular apps made with the Flutter framework are Google, Stadia, Alibaba, eBay Motors, etc. 

React Native - Some of the most popular React Native apps are Facebook, Instagram, Bloomberg, and Tesla. 

PWAs - Some of the most popular PWAs are Twitter, Uber, Forbes, Pinterest, and 2048. 

2. Development Time 

For any enterprise or business, the app’s time-to-market time is highly valuable and crucial. 

However, when you compare Flutter Vs React Native app Vs PWA, the development time is almost short and similar. As Flutter and React Native allow code reusability, developers can easily develop the app in a short time. On the other hand, PWAs are also easy to develop in just no time. 

3. Development Cost 

The development cost of a Flutter app might be high as finding certified Flutter developers is a challenging task. On the other hand, you can easily find React Native and Web developers to develop React Native apps and PWAs. 

4. Security 

You cannot overlook security as the number of cyber attacks and security breaches is increasing day by day. You have to ensure that the app you develop is highly secure and safe to use. 

React Native and Flutter - When it comes to React Native and Flutter, their security measures are not up to the mark as compared to native apps. There is always a risk of security breaches with React Native and Flutter apps. However, when you hire the best-talented developers for app development, you can mitigate security risks. 

PWAs - PWAs are developed similarly to a website and all the security measures can be taken into account while developing a PWA. 

5. Performance 

The app’s performance is also a vital parameter to check when you are choosing the best framework for your app development project. 

Flutter - Flutter offers a good speed. You can expect a decent performance from a Flutter app. 

PWA - Even PWAs are also good when it comes to performance. 

React Native - React Native is the best when it comes to performance. They offer a native-like speed and hence, when you are looking for excellent speed, go for React Native. 

6. User Interface 

For Flutter and React Native, there are user interfaces. For Flutter, it is proprietary and for React Native, there are native components. 

7. Platform Availability

For React Native - Android, iOS, web and Windows, tvOS, and Android TV

For Flutter - Customized widgets, iOS, macOS, Windows, Web Platform, Google Fuchsia

For PWAs - Web on desktops and mobile devices

8. Discoverability

You can easily find React Native and Flutter apps on Google Play Store or Apple App Store. However, PWAs are not visible on app stores. You can add a shortcut to the PWA in the Google Play Store with the help of a Trusted Web Application. However, adding a PWA to the Apple App Store is not possible. 

9. Support and Stability 

When you develop an app, you want to know how the app will perform after 5 to 10 years from now. Hence, you need to think of support and stability as well. 

React Native - The React Native community is coming up with continuous updates and versions. Hence, you have to update your app from time to time or it will stop performing at all on future OS versions. 

Flutter - Flutter is a relatively new framework and hence Google is releasing controlled updates. However, experts believe that Flutter will also come up with regular updates in the future. 

PWAs - Here, web browser developers are in a pivotal role. Developers don’t have any role to play here. Hence, you cannot expect continuous updates. This is one thing you need to take into account while deciding to develop a PWA. 

10. Content Updates 

Updating Flutter and React Native apps are easy and quick. For React Native, the Microsoft CodePush functionality allows developers to update content fast.

For PWAs, you can update content instantly as it relies on web technologies.

Which Technology to Choose For Your Project?

which technology is best

React Native and Flutter have similar benefits. Hence, we will consider them in that manner:

You can go for React Native and Flutter frameworks when:

  • You want to build a simple, small app with common features. 
  • When you are scaling up for a big app and want to be in the game for a while. 
  • When you have some budget constraints and want a simple, easy-to-market app for your business to start with. 

You can go for a PWA when 

  • You don’t want approvals from Android and iOS to launch the app. 
  • You are not looking for special features such as Push notifications and others. 
  • You want a mobile app that also plays a role as a website for your business. 

Conclusion 

It is the right time to have a mobile app that works wonders for you. React Native and Flutter are excellent hybrid mobile app development frameworks that can help you increase your visibility in the market in just no time. 

On the other hand, PWA development is a cost-effective deal when you don’t want approvals from Android and iOS operating systems and reach out to your audience in just no time. 

When it comes to React Native app Vs PWA Vs Flutter, all three are good in their ways and you can go for either of them as per your business requirements and future goals.

➤ Read More: Flutter vs React Native: Which is better for your future App & Why(infographic)

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