Mobile apps are revolutionizing the way people live, work, stay informed and even shop. In a study, it was found that one in three people use smart devices such as — mobile, tablets, iPads etc. There is hardly any person in the world that is not familiar with mobile apps and their benefits. Companies are trying to reach mobile audience through mobile apps. However, many companies are not certain about how to proceed in this competitive environment.
In this post, we are going to focus on the most important decision of choosing and developing the right architecture for mobile application. The main aim of mobile architecture is to enhance the effectiveness of building mobile app. As mobile technology is revamped by the way things are being done, every company is yearning to reap the benefits of mobile apps and expand their presence.
Before we go further, let’s see why it is important to select the right tech stack/architecture for your mobile application?
Do you know what happens when the user clicks on your mobile app?
It opens and performs the allotted task. There are many things that work in the backend to ensure that the app is performing well. Mobile architecture is a set of measures and tasks that come together to build an app. It depends on the functionality of target app and the devices it supports.
Many projects that are started without having a right mobile architecture failed in the market. The most important components of mobile application architecture are — mobile platforms, tools & frameworks and application technology.When it comes to mobile apps, it is essential to choose the right architecture. As the mobile apps generate huge revenue and enhance the user experience for modern businesses, it is must to choose the right architecture.
You can either opt for on-shelf applications or off-shelf applications, based on your business needs. It is must to know and understand different mobile application architectures available in the market to discover the best approach.
Different mobile app architectures
There are different technology options available, and hence,mobile apps can be developed in different ways. There are three fundamental mobile app architectures — native, cross-platform and mobile web apps.
Building an app on native code allows the mobile app to run on specific device or operating system. The app resides on the device, once it is downloaded from the relevant app store.
Cross-platform/hybrid apps can run on multiple mobile platforms. These apps reside on the device, and can be downloaded from any app store.
Mobile web apps are designed to run over the internet from a central server, and can be accessed from any device with a compatible browser.
Due to the differences in technology, each approach has its own advantages and drawbacks. It is must to analyze the app requirement carefully to ensure that the app is built using the right technology.
How to choose the right mobile architecture/tech stack?
Choosing the right architecture is a daunting task. As said above, each approach has its own advantages and drawbacks. To meet your mobile app goals, make sure to find a well fit architecture. Once you have identified and assessed your architectural options, choose the approach that fits the specific application use case.
· Native approach
If you wish to choose purely native approach, you need to satisfy requirements related to — device access, disconnected functionality, user experience and accessibility. The main advantage of native approach is a complete access to the native user interface APIs. If you want the app to access some device features, it must be written in native environment. The apps built on hybrid or web app platform can access only some device features, while native apps provide full access and performance.
To develop native android app, you should consider using Android Studio in Java. For native iOS apps, you should consider Objective-C that runs exclusively on iOS devices. By following the right architecture model, OS updates have negligible effects on the app.
· Hybrid approach
Hybrid approach should be chosen if you want the app to be reusable across multiple platforms. If you want to give an amazing user experience, platform specific architecture is the best. This architecture follows application development using web based technology and is ideal for big enterprises. The applications developed with hybrid approach have additional benefits of pre-built integration with web services and data sources.
Hybrid frameworks have different strengths and weaknesses. The right choice depends on the needs of your business and application. The most important thing is whether the framework supports targeted devices or not. However, you also need to consider how well the app will adapt the features of each platform so that it performs at its best.
· Mobile web apps
Mobile web apps have some advantages over other development architectures. The main advantage is that they are platform independent and they run on any device equipped with a web browser. Web apps can reach large target audience in less time and least effort. However, mobile web apps can’t use hardware or software on the device, and they need internet connection to work.
Factors to consider when choosing the right architecture
There are a number of factors to consider that help you identify the right architecture. First you need to understand the purpose of your mobile app, know target audience, understand what type of user experience they expect etc. Other factors to consider while choosing right mobile architecture are — portability to run across different platforms, security, industry-specific requirements, functionality and compatibility.
User experience is the key factor to determine the right technology framework. However, as the industry requirements point you towards a particular solution it makes sense to use both native and hybrid approaches to capture the audience. If time is essence of your mobile app, you should consider web based approach as it is the fastest way to reach large group.
The cost to build a mobile app varies highly depending on the architecture you choose. Mobile web apps are very cost effective compared to other two approaches, as they can run on any device. They are easy to maintain as well. However, the benefits of native app may make the developing cost an attractive investment.
Mobile app development is an ever changing industry. It will continue to grow as more and more enterprises are opting at using mobile technologies. If you want to create a highly functional mobile app, choosing the right architecture is the key ingredient. Once you have understood the key features of your mobile app, you should have a clear idea of which architecture to consider. With right planning and strategy, you can make the process easier and faster. Still not clear which strategy to follow? Contact Promatics and discuss your project for the best advice on mobile app development.