5 Benefits of Cross-Platform App Development

Your business needs to ensure that its offering is available to users across platforms in the modern application economy. From iOS to Android, you need to ensure that your application can engage with the target audience across their favored user platform.

Developing Native or OS-specific applications allows for best performance of apps. These apps perform better when custom-designed for a specific environment. Furthermore, cross-platform app development employs frameworks that is compatible with a wide variety of OS platforms. 

Choosing a single platform to gain market share can be challenging. Therefore, developing apps for multiple platforms will enable customers to enjoy the same across devices. Moreover, the uniformity with cross-platform applications allows users to take advantage of the same interface and user experience. 

Instagram is an excellent example of cross-platform app development. The application showcases uniformity in design and user experience across Android and iOS. Therefore, even if the user decides to switch devices, they can continue to use the application without facing any difficulty. 

Post the release of React Native in 2015 by Instagram’s parent company Facebook, engineers at Instagram started testing the framework. Since then, Instagram has deployed multiple features using the React Native frameworks to ship features faster to both its iOS and Android apps.  Even though Instagram has native apps for its iOS and Android platforms, the implementation of React Native frameworks has allowed the company to ship features faster through code sharing and higher iteration speeds. 

Still not sold on cross-platform app development? We have collated a few points to showcase the advantage of this modern approach. For the purpose of this article, we would like to take the example of React Native – our ‘go-to’ framework for cross-platform development

1. Reuse Of Code – Upto 60% With Platform Level Customizations

Cross-platform app development uses frameworks that can be applied across multiple OS platforms. Therefore, developers can use common codebases, cutting down on repetitive tasks. This not only allows for faster development but also makes the whole process efficient.

Nevertheless, businesses using cross-platform app development can develop efficient applications by reusing the majority of the source code. However, that being said, the entire codebase cannot be reused. Generally, only up to 60% of the codebase can be reused; this excludes platform-level customisations. Still, the saving is significant.

2. Faster Development And Cost Reduction

Designing and developing a native application is a time-consuming process. It involves developers to study and write the code natively for each OS platform. This increases the duration of the development phase. 

When building an app with a framework like React Native, you are largely coding for both platforms – iOS and Android. Moreover, the cost of development dramatically decreases with cross-platform app development. Your business need not invest in multiple development teams using the cross-platform approach, and a single development team can be responsible for cross-platform app development. 

3. Cross Platform App Development Leads to Easier Maintenance 

Cross-platform app development is simpler than maintaining multiple native versions across platforms. For one, pushing app updates becomes easier. The common structure of the code receives updates without pushing out native updates across various OS environments. Furthermore, changes or iterations in the shared codebase becomes easier as the changed reflect instant changes across platforms.

Developing, prototyping and maintenance become accessible using a common codebase and overall app uniformity across platforms. Moreover, the approach saves time and resources. Additionally, scaling cross-platform apps is easier. Therefore, deploying new features becomes effortless.

4. React Native Bridging 

One of the biggest and the most talked about features of React Native is its ability to reuse a single JavaScrip code across iOS and Android. However, there’s a major disadvantage with the reusable code approach. This causes performance issues, and features unique to iOS or Android find it hard to be leveraged. 

React Native Bridging solves these issues allowing developers to create native code for functions that aren’t supported by the cross-platform code. For example, as mentioned above, Instagram employs React Native to support multiple features across iOS and Android. React Native is used to design the “Save” feature on the iOS app. Essentially, when developing an app on JavaScript, bridging allows developers to overcome the lack of SDKs on JavaScript and create native code for more straightforward implementation across platforms. 

5. Scalability

As we mentioned earlier, a standard source code allows for easier development. The common platform source code allows for easier development and maintenance, as well as allowing for easier scalability. The common source code powered by tight-knit cloud integration enables cross-platform app development to use new features, fix errors and scale the app more efficiently.

While expanding functionality and building upon existing features becomes easier by using a single platform source code. Unlike cross-platform app development, scalability in native app development is more challenging. Each of the native platforms make an increased use of resources. 

In Conclusion 

Offering your app on a single platform can risk your business’s market share, and developing native applications for multiple platforms can significantly increase your development costs. Therefore, cross-platform app development can act as a winning strategy for your business.

At Catalyst Media, we specialize our skilled developers have of cross-platform app development. We have years of experience and expertise in cross-platform frameworks like React Native mixed with our deep understanding of major OS platforms like Android and iOS to develop quality apps reflecting your business’s unique functionality.

Get in touch with us for any application development needs!