App development has revolutionized the world of business and technology. From small companies to multinational corporations, a majority of businesses are turning towards app development to capitalize on the increasing number of smartphone users and capture the maximum market share.
However, developing an app for specifically iOS or Android leads to the loss of users on the left-out platform. Therefore, to grow the market share companies need to focus on cross-platform app development which will give them access to a wider market and maximize their ROI.
Companies today believe that an application with a rich user interface that works on different platforms is the key to gaining a competitive edge. Industries ranging from software to healthcare understand what a good quality app can bring to its business.
Benefits of Cross-Platform Application Development
Cross-platform applications are those apps that are compatible and work across multiple operating systems.
The two major operating systems include Android and iOS, the market for which faces heavy competition with each other. Thus, the only solution to capture a major market share is to develop an app that works on both platforms.
Some of the major benefits of cross-platform apps include –
- Lower Development Cost: Building cross-platform apps results in lower costs of development as the code has to be written once and can be executed for multiple platforms. The code is reusable and it enables companies to mitigate the cost of developing separately for both platforms. This will bring your business to multiple platforms at a lower cost and increase your audience reach.
- Rapid Application Development: With cross-platform development, the process of development itself becomes faster. Since only a single course can be utilized to build apps for different platforms, the efforts in developing the app are reduced by nearly 50% to 80%.
A high-performing app can be developed quickly and deadlines will be met with ease as developers can focus all their efforts and resources on single code development.
- Increases Reach: Building cross-platform apps results in lower costs of development as the code has to be written once and can be executed for multiple platforms. The code is reusable and it enables companies to mitigate the cost of developing separately for both platforms. This will bring your business to multiple platforms at a lower cost and increase your audience reach.
- Native App Experience: Developers focus on giving a native feel to the apps. With cross-platform applications, the native look for apps can be given for both platforms. The advancements in technology have allowed developers to incorporate functionalities and features that support the native feel on both platforms. Even though the native look of apps varies on both platforms, it is expected that with better technology, the gap is likely to reduce redundancy With one source code written for the app on both platforms, the maintenance of the app becomes easier. The changes made in the source code will implement changes in the app on both platforms. With the easy synchronization of apps, updates can also be made easily and if any errors or bugs are found, they can be fixed for both applications at once.
Developing a cross-platform app comes with a plethora of benefits. The uniform design of the apps is also a primary reason which attracts the attention of companies to develop cross-platform apps for their business.
However, there are still a few challenges that cross-platform application development has to face. These challenges do not outweigh its benefits but certainly act as bottlenecks in the development process.
Some of these challenges
- Inadequate Tools: The tools to develop cross-platform are many, but those that allow developers to keep pace with upgrades and changes are not enough. Advanced features and functionalities are implemented to improve the user experience and these tools fail to walk along with these changes. Thus, it becomes difficult for them to maintain a standard in the application over some time.
- Security Issues: Mobile applications are highly vulnerable to cyber-attacks and security issues. Although developers continuously update applications and try to equip them with security that can’t be bypassed, they remain at risk of being attacked. Cross-platform app development tools lack in providing the tools that can monitor security concerns. If a single issue occurs, the users of both platforms suffer. Thus, when dealing with sensitive information and a huge amount of user data, it is recommended to go with native-app development to reduce security concerns.
- Performance Hiccups: Cross-platform apps sometimes face performance glitches which largely diminish the user experience. They face a major challenge of integrating with the platform and there’s not enough communication between the native and non-native components of the operating system. This is the primary reason for poor performance as the app starts to lag and worsens the whole experience.
- Different User Interface: Whatever benefits cross-platform apps offer, they can never compete with the richness of the user interface that native app development offers. The app can be quickly made and marketed, but for seamless performance, it still struggles against native development.
With the number of smartphone users multiplying exponentially, companies are shifting their focus on building apps that can serve the customer on every device.
Gathering a huge audience base becomes possible with cross-platform applications. It is a cost-effective solution for reaching the target audience in the least amount of time and marketing a consistent application across all users.
As the world of software technology advances, it will be possible to build a corporate-grade cross-platform that will augment the organization’s capabilities and provide a rich user experience.