Getting featured on the React Native showcase

iPhone with a React Native logo on the background

Here’s yet another reason to hire our React Native developers: an app we built is being featured on the React Native showcase.

About a year ago, our mobile engineers joined the product development team of a global news publisher. Our guys assisted the client’s internal developers in merging the functionality of their iOS and Android applications into a cross-platform React Native app. This app can now be found on the React Native showcase, a GitHub project that demonstrates the potential of the technology for large consumer-grade applications.

You might say that this was one small step for React Native, and a giant leap for our React Native developers. After all, it’s never a bad thing to get recognition:)

Why choose React Native?

By now, you’re probably well-aware of the advantages of React Native. This technology has gained strong traction in the developer community. Beyond doubt, React Native enjoys a greater popularity than other near-native cross-platform frameworks, like Native Script and Titanium.

React Native also outperforms hybrid development frameworks like PhoneGap in terms of the look and feel of the final product. It ditches wrappers and the old write-once-run-everywhere approach enabling developers to access native iOS and Android modules via a layer of React/Flux logic.

Technically, React Native makes you develop for two separate platforms, but you get about 80% of the shared code. At the end of the day, your end product is just as good as true native app.

Our own experience with React Native

According to the experience of our developers participating in this project, the benefits of working with React Native go beyond production speed and app performance.

One additional advantage is de-siloing the development of iOS and Android versions of the app. Due to the fact that iOS and Android developers use the same technology, there is a lot more communication going on. This adds transparency to the process.

Working on a shared code base also enables iOS and Android developers to cooperate while working on new features. As a result, there is virtually no repetition.

Instead of developing the same feature for two platforms in parallel and from the ground up, iOS and Android will use the same core code. In many cases, there’s also little to no additional effort involved in making this code work on iOS and Android.

Hot reloading is another minor advantage that certainly makes a developer’s life easier. When building a React Native app, developers can see the effect of their code changes on the fly. Real-time feedback of this kind increases precision.

Not having to recompile your code accounts for another win for React Native. In the long run, this allows you to add updates and features faster, and it simplifies the development of UI versions for multivariate testing. In a nutshell, React Native makes it easier for development teams to fine-tune the UI and UX based on user analytics and marketing data. This has a huge impact on the post-release development.

What you get

If you’re hesitating as to whether you should move from true native development to React Native, here are the key benefits to consider:

  • Greater development speed. Developing a cross platform app usually takes half the time of parallel development of separate iOS and Android versions.
  • Cost saving. A 50% cut of pre-release development time make production more cost-effective.
  • An opportunity to out-deliver the competition. It’s easy to see how building more features over a shorter time span (and on a smaller budget) can help you occupy a market niche faster than your competitors.
  • Simpler App Store updates. The App Store policy doesn’t require approval for minor updates to the JavaScript code base. This applies for the cases when the updates don’t change the core functionality of the app.
  • Great performance and UX. Both the speed and the look and feel of a React Native app are comparable to those of a true native application.
  • A wide range of applications. Feature rich content apps, messengers, site builders, even virtual reality — most of the true native functionality is achievable with React native.
  • Booming community of developers, with thousands of highly-qualified specialists available for hire.

 

Is React Native worth trying?

Unless you’re working on a game or a processor-intensive and graphics-heavy application of some sort, the answer is “probably yes”. In fact, you can use React Native even for some heavy-lifting cases. React Native plays well with native code, which means you can use it for lightweight parts while leaving heavy-lifting tasks to Java, Objective-C and Swift.

Apps like Facebook messenger, for instance, combine native and React native code to achieve greater performance while speeding up the development of some features. Is your case similar to that of Facebook? A good way to find out is to consult a professional. Contact us and tell us about your project, and we’ll help you find out if React Native is optimal for implementing it.