There are various articles about the cross platform mobile applications development; also on the Android & iOS applications development, on reactive and native applications and on how to monetize all these mobile app development projects. However, we have a good mobile development option that we have never clearly indicated. We are talking about cross-platform application development with HTML5.
For those who have just landed in the world of applications, the difference between native and cross-platform applications is that the former is "written" in their own programming language. On the other hand, it is developed in a unique code that is interpreted and adjusted to different devices; we would say that the concept is virtually synonymous with that of web applications - which we have discussed several times.
There are two different application branches in the Cross Platforms category: the first one runs on WebView; the other is Xamarin: the code is written in a common programming language that will be "translated" into the native language of a given platform.
HTML5 is precisely one of the languages for creating cross-platform applications - which can be accessed from any device - by undertaking a unique development process. Let's see what it is a little deeper:
What Exactly is HTML5?
HTML5 is a markup language used to structure and display the content of websites. It provides support for advanced multimedia applications, including audio and video. But it also allows us to change the layout of a page and thus change its appearance.
In this regard, how can application developers benefit? An expert can program interactive applications with HTML5 that will be displayed via a browser on any device.
HTML5 is indeed one of the most versatile languages for developing web applications and the most widely used for creating non-native applications.
Why Programming Apps With HTML5?
First of all, it should be noted that HTML5 is a very widely used programming language. In fact, this is the standard web programming language since October 2014, so there are always plenty of resources to find. In addition, the World Wide Web Consortium (W3C) has granted its "Recommended" stamp to its fifth release.
Compared to previous versions of HTML and other programming languages, its fifth release includes new features to include video and audio and - in addition to that - implements responsive design automatically.
Importance of HTML5
We have already explained why this programming language is important both in a global sense and for conventional programmers. But do you know which features make it one of the best options for programming multi-platform applications? We will now discuss the benefits that HTML5 entails when it is used to create mobile apps.
First and foremost, we meet its universality, that is to say that it works in all browsers, whether on mobile devices or a traditional computer. The code is interpreted and displayed by any browser.
It is also a language with clear audio visual vocation and which allows to include both audio and video at the native level. It rises to show and include multimedia content.
This is a very good option for limited budgets as it is cheaper than other native alternatives. Similarly, an HTML5 version implies substantial savings when setting up a beta version of our activity or our mobile game. It's a smart way to see if it works and if there is a market for it. Games like Candy Crush and others can be created with this technology and redeveloped as native applications later.
HTML allows you to program applications in beta. Last but not least, HTML5 is a type of open-source language: that is, anyone can modify, improve, develop, or implement new services on previously developed applications.
Advantages and Disadvantages of Cross Platform App Development
To follow what we said in the last section, most of the benefits of creating cross-platform applications with HTML5 and other languages ??must be exploited by former web developers. Web developers can use their previous experience to become familiar with the development of cross-platform applications very quickly and easily.
"Another advantage is that the development of the same application for Android, iOS and Windows Phone takes double or triple the resources," adds José Antonio Llopis, technical director at Yeeply.
Among its disadvantages, we meet the speed of the application, which is reduced to a large extent. Similarly, access to device hardware is limited to available plugins. Another disadvantage is that even if the application should work automatically on any platform, this is not entirely true. In the real world, we need to check our application on all platforms to be sure that a given feature that looks good on one platform works equally well in the others.
REMEMBER that even if an application is a cross platform application, it is necessary to build an app (for Android devices) or a native IPA (for iOS devices) for it to be readable and displayed on mobile devices. That's why we will need SDK for each platform. Alternatively, we can use services like Adobe Build that will automatically generate them for us.
Cross Platform App Development Tools
The most common cross-platform application development tools for WebView-type applications are shown below:
Ionic: it is a free and open-source tool for the development of hybrid applications based on HTML5, CSS and JS. The tool is built around Sass and optimized with AngularJS.
Although the quality of these applications is not the best, especially compared to the development of native applications, they work very well for small and medium-sized projects that require neither high performance nor too much functionality. In fact, the first Facebook application was developed with this technology until it was decided later to develop native application versions.
If you need any assistance related to mobile app development or cross platform mobile app development, you can contact us. We are a leading mobile app development company in India & USA engaged in providing feature packed, secure and scalable mobile apps across all business verticals.