What is React Native?
React Native Features:
- Larger audience
- Platform consistency
- Reusable code
- faster development
- Lower costs
- Requires more experience to ensure high performance
- More difficult code design
- Long start time for functions
The history of React Native
When Facebook first decided to make their service available on mobile devices, instead of creating a native app like many of the big tech players at the time, they decided to create a mobile web page based on HTML5. However, the solution didn't stand the test of time, leaving plenty of room for user interface and performance improvements. In fact, in 2012, Mark Zuckerberg admitted that "the biggest mistake we've made as a company has been too much on HTML instead of native".
This is how React Native came to life. Initially developed only for iOS, Facebook quickly followed suit with support for Android, before the framework was made public in 2015.
React vs. React Native
In the simplest terms, React Native is not a "newer" version of React, even though React Native uses it.
React Native Limitations
- Performance Isn’t Yet at Native Level
Another factor to consider when choosing React Native for app development is the amount of time you can spend on testing. While the work hours of development teams are decreasing, the same cannot be said for the work of your test team. Test time is similar to test time in native development. In some cases it can be even higher.
- Build an Efficient Development Team
React Native is a technology that requires developers to be familiar with various technologies. A cross-platform app can come with some challenges, and it's much more challenging to build a team that can handle them all.
How to Begin a React Native Project
Key Skills React Native Developers Should Have
Any React Native developer you hire for your team must have a broad set of skills to successfully complete your project. Let's take a look at some of the most important.
Understanding of Native iOS and Android DevelopmentUnderstanding the basics of native iOS and Android development and becoming familiar with Kotlin, Java, or C will help developers become better React Native developers, bearing in mind that sometimes native tools are also needed.
Git SkillsGit is a necessary tool for the everyday life of any React Native developer. In modern software development it is essential to understand how to use all the basic commands.
Experience with ReactA developer with an understanding of React fundamentals such as Virtual DOM, component lifecycle, and component health would be a great addition to any mobile development team. Also, knowing how to handle tools like Flux, Flow, Redux, etc. is a great advantage.
Follow Best Coding PracticesWriting clear and concise code is an essential requirement for the success of any React Native project. Developers who follow best coding practices and consistently write clear code are preferred.
Improved Application PerformanceCompanies looking to add value to the end-user experience need React Native developers who can see the big picture and know how to optimize and improve the overall performance of the app.
Effective CommunicationDeveloping an app is a team effort. A developer must be able to communicate well with teammates to achieve their goals.
Problem-solving SkillsEvery project has its own problems. Facing bottlenecks is more than likely. Using analytical skills to overcome these challenges makes you a great developer.
Code is shared across platforms using React Native
- The user interface, made of components that you interact with as a user (think buttons, inputs fields, sliders, etc.);
- The logic layer (think data manipulation, calculations, storage, and fetching).
Like ReactJS, React Native uses JSX, an XML markdown language for developing UIs which replaces HTML and CSS. From JSX, Ul components are compiled into native platform-specific components which create a fast and familiar experience for end-users.
For example, a React Native Text component renders natively on iOS as a UILabel and on Android as a TextView. Some other hybrid mobile frameworks use web-based components which render HTML and CSS, and ultimately provide a sluggish user experience.
Independently built native applications typically have a lot of logic in common. This can nearly double the cost for development as they have to be written in two different languages and tested twice.
Benefits of React Native
We've covered products built with React Native, so let's move on to the benefits of React Native development and why you should choose it as a solution for building your mobile app.
Reuse of CodeThe ability to reuse code is the biggest advantage of React Native and indicates that apps can run effectively on multiple platforms, something that CEOs and product owners really appreciate. They can integrate 90% of the native framework to reuse code for both operating systems.
Cost efficiencyAnother benefit of developing React Native is increased profitability. As mentioned above, this is because developers can use the same code to create apps for iOS and Android. It means you don't have to hire two separate iOS and Android development teams to get your project done; a small team is enough to build it. The cost of developing apps in React Native is much lower than apps built with languages that don't allow cross-platform development.
Quick UpdateQuick Update allows developers to run the app while updating to new versions and customize the user interface. The changes are immediately visible and the developer does not have to rebuild the entire application. This leads to two main benefits: saving time because developers save time compiling, and increased productivity because they don't lose any state when making changes to the application.
Future-proofGiven the speed at which the framework took over the market and its straightforward approach to solving development problems, the future of React Native for cross-platform apps looks bright. While it has some drawbacks, which we'll discuss in the next section, its development speed and convenience more than make up for it.With this in mind, let's take a look at why React Native might not be a good fit for you.
Risks and Drawbacks
Lack of some custom modulesAlthough React Native has been around for several years, some custom modules can be improved or are missing altogether. This means that you may need to use three separate codebases (for React Native, iOS, and Android) instead of just one. That said, it's not common. Unless you're developing your app from scratch or trying to hack an existing one, you probably won't run into these issues.
Compatibility & debugging issuesAlthough it may come as a surprise, after After all, React Native is used by high-tech gamers; it is still in beta. Your developers may encounter various issues with package compatibility or debugging tools. If your developers are not proficient in React Native, it can negatively impact their development as they spend time troubleshooting.
ScalabilityMost of the time, React Native works just fine for you, even if your app ends up turning into a complex and highly advanced solution. After all, companies such as Facebook and Skype are very successful with the framework and have been using it consistently for years. That said, some companies have decided to stop using React Native. For example, Airbnb decided to use the framework for its mobile app when the company was just a start-up. Over time, however, React Native proved unsuitable for the company's growth plans, and Airbnb resorted to developing two native apps. With current advancements in RN and with the right software architecture choices, scalability issues are easy to avoid.
RN is a solution if you want to create a cross-platform mobile app. It has a wide range of benefits that will help you save time and money. Even if you are new to the world, you will easily find support because this framework has a wide community. Although React Native can be a solution for applications that are not so complex, in the long-term the advantages are greater when creating 100% native apps and it is currently possible to do so in record time thanks to the native MCSS framework. MCSS using the time consumption of developing will be decreased and give a responsive look to our project. MCSS is a low code platform that makes it simple to develop a high-code program.
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