Hybrid Mobile Development: Top 10 Frameworks for Cross Platform Applications
With 2.1 million apps available for users in the market, mobile application development has become a necessity for businesses. As a result, companies are looking for ways to develop a mobile app that is easy to use with an attractive interface and friendly functionality for its users. For doing the needful, there are several hybrid app development frameworks to choose from. Generally speaking, the type of framework to select depends on the kind of app you want to make.
To make the choice easier for you, we present you with the top 10 hybrid mobile app development frameworks.
- React Native
- Mobile Angular UI
- Sencha Touch
- Onsen UI
- Kendo UI
Best rated frameworks for cross platform Mobile App Development can help in creating good hybrid apps. These applications operate on both iOS and Android platforms seamlessly. Let us discuss the leading hybrid mobile development frameworks in detail.
Formerly known as Mono, Xamarin first came to use in May 2011. It is owned by Microsoft since 2016. It is now one of the most popular frameworks for cross-platform mobile development. It is widely used for implementation of Common Language Infrastructure (CLI) and Common Language Specifications (CLS). Xamarin.ios was previously called as Mono for iOS, and Xamarin.android was formerly known as Xamarin for Android.
Xamarin offers code reusability, tools and functions for native apps and interfaces. All these features help developers in hybrid app development. By saving crucial time in development, programmers utilize the same code and tools multiple times.
Mobile Angular UI
Being a hybrid mobile framework, Mobile Angular UI makes sure of the fact that you get the best out of both Bootstrap and Angular framework for building flawless HTML5 mobile applications. Without any dependencies of Bootstrap js libs or JQuery, Angular UI is like an extension to Bootstrap 3. With the addition of fastclick.js and overthrow.js, the mobile experience is quite smooth.
Moreover, you can use some AngularJS directives for creating amazing and memorable user experiences. To help you with your development, the responsive media queries are separate files from the bootstrap. The UI components in the framework are like overlays, switches, scroll-able areas, sidebars and absolute positioned navigation bars that don't bounce on scroll. Most of all, this platform is open source and free to use under the MIT license.
Developed by Nitobi, PhoneGap is an open source cross platform mobile development framework. It is owned by Adobe since 2011 and is distributed as Apache Cordova. It was previously also called as Apache Callback. PhoneGap remains one of the most popular choices for Hybrid app development. Adobe PhoneGap is commercial version of Apache Cordova. Applications developed in Apache Cordova or PhoneGap are licensed under Apache 2.0 license.
Through this platform, you can use a single co-debase that can be run on all iOS and Android devices. The concept of re-usability is also there as you can reuse old web development skills that are supported by various languages including HTML, CSS etc. PhoneGap or Apache Cordova supports developing apps for iOS, Android and Windows Phone.
Similar to other hybrid mobile development platforms, Ionic is also a free and open source framework. Developed by MIT, this platform uses the same technique as used by Angular.JS and Apache Cordova for building apps. Ionic also uses tools that are based on various technologies such as CSS, SASS, HTML5 etc. From there on, apps are distributed using native stores.
The best part about this platform is that it is endorsed by a wide pool of developer community. So the patronage helps beginners opt for Ionic for their web development needs. The native feel is very much there, thanks to its 120 native features of various devices including Bluetooth, HealthKit to name a few. The apps built through this platform use their own CLI to develop, test and deploy the app on any major OS which is a big plus for small sized businesses trying app development for the first time.
This is an open source HTML framework that can be used for free by any developer. Through Framework7, you can develop a hybrid mobile app for native iOS and Android platforms. The look and feel of the app is akin to the platforms. The framework is also used as a prototyping app tool through which you can view a workable app prototype whenever the need arises for a demo.
Through Framework7, you get features such as native scrolling, library agnostic; pages transition animation, multiple views support, hardware accelerated animations via CSS3, route pages by using a combination of XHR, caching, browser history and pre-loading.
Sencha Touch has an edge among its competition by providing a native look and feel across all of the platforms supported by it. One of the most popular JS frameworks that help in creating performance driven apps with near native experience is ExtJS, which is of the Sencha Touch platform.
This platform has ready to use widgets for all iOS, Androis, Windows, and Blackberry. It also has a drag and drop HTML5 visual application builder that includes a high number of reusable templates. You can also build customized components that can be added in the library to reuse across different apps.
Once again, this is an open source framework; ready for developers to create apps by combining native-looking components. This is a fairly easy to use framework without AngularJS. Onsen UI also has documentation collateral for guidance related to its layouts and common app structures.
Although for now, the framework only offers iOS theme but the latter versions promise to offer Material Design support. Onsen UI has semantic markup components and is free to use for the commercial projects. Mobile applications developed through Onsen UI are distributed through Apache 2.0 license.
Powered by Telerik, Kendo UI is an HTML5 framework widely used for cross-platform mobile development apps. jQuery serves as its backbone with the framework having more than 70 jQuery widgets for use. It can also be integrated with Angular or Bootstrap UI framework.
Learning the Kendo UI is not that difficult as most developers are already familiar with jQuery. Moreover, it is a free and open-source framework. With slightly limited features, you don't get dedicated support as some common widgets are still under a commercial license.
Although there are many types of various cross-platform frameworks available but the final word on selecting a framework for your mobile app development is based on your business requirements. If you are a small to medium business that is just to venture off in the app market, then it is probably prudent to select an open source framework with easy to use functionality and a developer community that can help you benefit from the online available resources on the framework.
However, if you have already ventured out in the app market but are still waiting to have serious success then it's better to move to a framework that can help you with better customer engagement. Nowadays a popular choice is React Native that has qualities to encompass business requirements for various companies of different magnitude.
In any case, Custom IT Services Firm like Techliance has wide range of skills on various development frameworks. Our team of resources has high expertise on hybrid app development frameworks like React Native, PhoneGap and Ionic. Talk to us today about your app idea and we will help you in less turnaround time. Techliance will deliver a hybrid app that will be the next big thing in the market.
This post was originally published as Top 10 Hybrid App Development Frameworks on Techliance Blog.