An all-terrain. Capable of combining the strengths of the native ones and the powers of a web app. Broadly speaking, we could say that this is what we understand by hybrid applications.
However, in this world of technology in which everything is increasingly technical, deep, and specialized, it is convenient to explain in detail what and how exactly this type of app is: what advantages it offers, with what frameworks are they designed, if they are suitable depending on which projects…
That is precisely what we address in this article, based on the experience we have gained working on and developing them.
Table of Contents
What are hybrid apps?
First of all, let’s start with the basics. That is, defining what hybrid applications are. And we do it in our own words: a hybrid app has the particularity of working on all kinds of devices with the same interface and with single programming. In this way, a hybrid app offers a considerable optimization of resources in costs and time compared to native applications.
Therefore, when we talk about hybrids, we are referring to those applications suitable for different devices. The reason is that they can work on different operating systems. That is, iOS or Android, so it will not matter if you use a tablet or smartphone of a specific brand or manufacturer.
On the contrary, the native ones are programmed only for a specific type of operating system. In other words, a native app that is designed, for example, for iOS can only be used on Apple-branded devices. In the same way, you can only download it from the Apple Store. In turn, another version of this native application for Android will have to be created. The fact is that hybrid applications do adapt what the code requires to the requirements of each operating system.
What are its main advantages?
Due to this feature, a hybrid app offers a huge benefit over other apps: savings . A huge saving in time and money invested in mounting two or more versions of the same application. However, it is not the only advantage they have. In fact, here we list the main benefits that an application of this type can bring you:
The economic cost of developing hybrid apps is lower.
By requiring only the same version, they require a much lower investment of hours.
They use the same code for any type of operating system and device.
A single version can appear and position itself in all application stores: Google Play, App Store… Likewise, they can cover a much larger market.
In turn, all that glitters is not gold and they also have some disadvantages compared to native apps or web applications. If you want to compare the different types of apps that are currently being developed.
The role of frameworks in the creation of these apps
Meanwhile, in these lines we take the opportunity to continue focusing on what exactly hybrids are. And we can’t keep doing it without mentioning the role that frameworks play in them .
We call the abstraction layer framework that allows adapting a web view to a mobile device. Thanks to them, it is possible for a website or a web app to be displayed as a mobile app when viewed and used on smartphones or tablets.
Therefore, we are talking about a vital and essential tool when creating a hybrid application. These are the most popular frameworks for hybrid app development:
React Native: It is developed by Facebook and has been used to create some of the most popular hybrid applications.
Ionic: another of the big brands on the market that has its own development IDE and that is coupled with other frameworks in some other apps.
Angular: offers many functions of native apps and being from Google it has a very large developer community.
Flutter: Also from Google, it is very useful for developing applications with a good UI and has many adaptable widgets.
JQuery Mobile: It is a high-performance framework for the mobile interface, although it usually needs additional libraries or plugins to improve its mobile design.
Framework 7: it is the ideal framework to create hybrid apps for iOS systems, that is to say, from the Apple brand. It can also be used for Android apps, although it is not the most common.
How do I know if a hybrid application is suitable for my project?
If you are reading this article, it is probably because you are considering creating an application. You may not know what types exist or which is the best or the one that best suits your idea. In that case, don’t worry. We are going to give you some advice: think about the needs and objectives of your project and not about its architecture , since that is what the development team will take care of.
In addition, taking this into account, what we also advise you is that, when coordinating the creation of the hybrid app, take into account the following five aspects:
- The user experience.
- The performance it will offer.
- The development and creation time that it will take you.
- The possible modifications and adjustments that the application may require in the future.
- The economic cost of the entire project and the budget you have.
Several examples of hybrid apps that you may not have known about
And if with everything we have told you so far about hybrid applications you still have doubts, what better way to illustrate them with real examples . Below, we list several apps of this type that you surely know, use often or have been able to use at some point:
- Social networks as famous as Facebook or Instagram, Pinterest or Twitter.
- Evernote , ideal for taking notes.
- Skype , king in the telecommunications and video calls sector.
- Atrápalo , for the organization of your trips and plans.
- Uber , which monopolizes the transport and shipping sector.
As you can see, we are talking about some of the most powerful companies in the world, which have already launched and have a hybrid application that millions of users use daily. Those responsible for these brands at some point also considered what type of application was best for them. From there they trusted a team (own or external) for the development of their app.
At Gunka Studios we are that team of developers you need. But not only for the fact of mastering and knowing how to handle frameworks, code, programming, etc. We go beyond what it is to execute. We give a personal and close vision as well as a professional one, helping you to choose the type of application that best suits you according to your project. For this we only have to get in touch and get to know each other .