Often it can be confusing to choose which kind of application is better for your business. With so many alternatives out there and so much information, it’s a challenge to decide the most cost effective , and right tools which will increase your efficiency and generate business.. As a start- up entrepreneur, I resonate with this aspect of running a business well. In this article, I will try to shed some light on two similar applications with similar functionalities which is being used by the industry currently..
Which kind of Application is right for your business?
Progressive Web Apps (PWAs) are web applications that are regular web pages or websites, but can appear to the user like traditional applications or native mobile applications.
As commonly described among developers, it is a responsive web site, which gives an app-like experience.
With that, if you have a responsive website already in hand, you somewhat have a PWA.
The biggest challenge of web based applications is, the quality of the connection and the devices used in the world.
A common example would be how we open up these apps. Let’s say you use the same app in your city . There will be a good level of activity to connect effectively as compared to If you use the same service out of town , perhaps on top of a majestic mountain. The level of connection will often be a different range or level. A completely different experience in two different scenarios. This is where PWAs get ahead of native ones. It will improve your experience. Did you ever try to open a native app in the Rockies? Such as, a bank app? Or your telecommunication hosted app? What can be observed is how the app times out on you. However, you will more likely open a well optimized website with ease.
Let me tell you why?
In the PWA’s, the core content loads first, and then the complex functionalities. Thus the end- user can experience the core functions easily. It generates the largest possible audience with less development effort .
Let's delve a little deeper
- 1. When you create a native app, you will need to build it for each device separately. This will of course also reflect to the cost. PWA’s do not have this burden, like one ring for all, it’s one app for all.
- 2. It can help you to remove third parties especially from other app stores. You can download it from the direct link. This will reflect on lowering your cost, which is a plus. However, some companies still want to be in stores to utilize their customer database.
- 3. You will not see the updates , it will keep updating on-the-go.
- 4. They can work on offline mode. Thank goodness for those service workers. This is an important point to understand ,the service workers, behaves like a network proxy for everything the web apps needs, it can decide to fetch it from the network or deliver it from local cache, which makes the app usable offline.
- 5. Big apps utilize a lot of bandwidth and valuable storage space, PWA does that in the cloud, thus increases the life-span of your power of your phone in that regard..
- 6. PWA is a new idea growing fast, and it’s backed up by big companies like Microsoft, Google, and Mozilla, to name but a few. With support like that, it’s only a matter of time, new cost-effective functionalities will be generated.
- 7. PWA can increase your SEO. For the simple reason, Google likes responsive websites. And rank a well optimized, responsive website higher. Native apps on the other hand represented only under their name in app stores.
- 8. Push Notifications: its available in all platforms once again to service workers. However, IOS doesn’t support push notifications in PWA currently.
- 9. Hard on battery. I feel that this is a point, all developers are looking into solving as soon as possible. Logic is, the more resources your app uses, the more the battery drains because you get the data by using the internet. However, I couldn't find trustworthy statistics comparison apart from https://www.greenspector.com/en/articles/2017-11-21-is-twitter-lite-really-that-lite-for-your-battery-life/
When to opt for a native app?
- 1. You want to utilize App Stores customer data-base, as stores like apple doesn’t allow PWA intersect with many capabilities such as Face ID, touch ID, Bluetooth, Siri, etc.
- 2. Native apps are better in interacting with target operating systems, like Bluetooth beacons, wifi, peripheral hardware etc. A native app functions better overall.
- 3. Cross-app communication; maybe you want an app which communicates well with other apps? This can be seen in examples where you want to add information to fitbit or apple watch, cam editing, emoji or trying to use your facebook login to enter another app etc.
- 4. Apple doesn’t support PWA and doesn’t permit push notifications on IOS devices currently. So if your app, focuses and runs with push notifications popping on the screen - perhaps you should consider native. (Say, if your app has an alarm.)
When to consider PWA?
- 1. It’s a good option for a start up business or a business who wants to get mobile app features with a minimum cost.
- 2. You might one an option to talk between your employees and organize your business.
- 3. If creating an organic Google ranking is important marketing strategy for you.
When to consider Native ?
- 1. You want to reach App-store database as part of your marketing plan.
- 2. You want to utilize advanced smartphone features like bluetooth, geo-fencing, touch ID etc.
- 3. You want to utilize your app ,with as many as third-party applications like facebook login.
- 4. if your app will make money solely from the people using it.
PWA VS Native Applications
Check out Googles PWA directory at https://pwa-directory.appspot.com/
i do believe, both applications has its cons and pros. It totally depends on what you want to do, how much can you invest, how long can you wait, and what type of marketing tools are you planning to use.
You may wish to talk to us and get a free consultation.