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Top Mobile Development Platforms

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Development
9 min read

App development platforms allow software developers and business owners to create apps that improve business processes and customer relationships. On the other hand, since there are so many native mobile and cross-platform mobile frameworks available, it is not always easy to decide which to employ. This guide will give you in-depth information about the top mobile development platforms and how to choose them.

What Is a Mobile Development Platform?

A mobile development platform is a suite of software development tools and services that allow teams to build, deploy, and test mobile apps rapidly. There are many such platforms in the world today. There are two main categories of mobile development platforms: native, and cross-platform. Native platforms are provided by Apple and Google for rapid development on iOS and Android respectively. Cross-platform solutions try to build upon native platforms to simplify the process of building for both iOS and Android at the same time, and sometimes by extending the functionality of the native mobile platforms. For the sake of this article, we will be looking at the most popular programming languages and the best mobile app development platforms to build your next iOS or Android app with.

The 6 Best Platforms for Mobile Application Development

The six best platforms for mobile development are listed below.

Swift Development (Native iOS)

Swift is actually a programming language designed by Apple. It succeeds Objective-C as the main programming language for iOS and macOS. Swift is primarily written, tested, and deployed from the XCode IDE.

Building applications for iOS directly with the toolsets provided by Apple comes with benefits. XCode is usually aware of the most recent User Interface and iOS SDKs, so the IDE can provide you with a quality programming experience. Additionally, because Swift was designed for iOS, it can be more lightweight. And finally, if you go beyond phones and tablets into the world of the Apple Watch and Apple TV, software development cross-platform is probably easiest in Swift in XCode as you can more easily share code across applications.

Of course, when compared to cross-platform frameworks and solutions, one of the main decision points is typically whether you will support Android in addition to iOS. When Android mobile devices and tablets are introduced to the picture, choosing between Swift and other solutions becomes a more difficult decision.

Here you can also have a complete overview of React Native vs. Swift.

Swift

Kotlin & Android Studio (Native Android)

Kotlin is actually designed by JetBrains, not Google. Nonetheless, it is the primary programming language used for Android development. It is typically to compile native Android apps from within Android Studio using Kotlin. Kotlin will provide a nice experience for software developers that are familiar with Java, as the two programming languages are quite similar.

Here you can check a complete overview of React Native vs. Kotlin.

Kotlin

React Native Development (Cross Platform)

React Native is an open-source and cross-platform development platform that is compatible with libraries provided by third parties and can interface with them. In addition, it may cut down the amount of time needed to create an application on several different platforms by providing simple capabilities to understand and implement.

With this tool, you can create feature-packed experiences for both iOS and Android applications. Further, it enables the construction of platform-specific versions of specific components, making it simple to utilize a single codebase across various platforms. One of the nice things about React Native is that it actually compiles down to native code. Historically, hybrid applications were essentially built with web technology deployed as a mobile app to the iOS App Store and the Google Play Store. This led to performance issues as web views are not as performant as native code on mobile, and the user experience suffered as a result. Since React Native development compiles to native iOS and Android components and code, it is actually generally as performant as mobile apps written in Swift or XCode.

One of the reasons that React Native has infiltrated the cross-platform mobile app market is because it is built in React. React is extremely popular in the JavaScript library and is known for its ability to create complex and scalable user experiences. React Native has React as it’s the underlying technology, so it’s attractive to developers and there is a wide pool of developers that already use it.

Here you can find a complete guide to React Native.

React

Flutter Development (Cross Platform)

Flutter is adaptable in building user interfaces and can generate cutting-edge seamless animations. The Dart programming language may develop the most valuable apps on this platform. Because of this, Flutter development is an excellent choice for creating a 2D app game or an online apparel shop for the iOS or Android operating systems.

Features

Here you can check our full comparison of React Native vs. Flutter.

flutter

Xamarin (Cross Platform)

Xamarin is an open-source and cross-platform app-building platform that provides developers with a development environment consisting of a backend, API, components, and so on. It is a platform for web developers that runs on the Internet and is backed by various tools, libraries, and programming languages.

Xamarin is a provider of add-ins for Microsoft Visual Studio that allows programmers to develop Android apps, iOS apps, and Windows using a codebase written in C#. Xamarin is the preferred option because it enables code exchange across many platforms, making it suitable for cross-platform mobile app development.

Features

While C# is a nice programming language, it’s a Microsoft programming language and in general, Microsoft has not penetrated the mobile apps market as much as Apple and Google, including the number of developers working with their software. For that reason, we don’t find Xamarin a more attractive option for businesses when compared with React Native.

Here you can find a complete overview to React Native vs. Xamarin.

Xamarin

Ionic

Ionic is a tool that will assist you in developing cross-platform mobile apps that are both interactive and hybrid, as well as Progressive Web Applications. This tool supports web, Android, and iOS app development. In addition, when working in Ionic, you can continuously construct mobile apps and send them to the places where they may be deployed. Ionic, additionally, lets you use HTML, CSS, and JavaScript to build your applications. This can be attractive to web developers as there is sometimes a lower learning curve and a lesser need to keep up with the quickly evolving mobile app development landscape.

Here you can find a complete overview of React Native vs. Ionic.

How to Choose the Best Mobile App Development

The following is a list of the essential characteristics and features to consider while choosing a platform.

Device Compatibility

Ultimately device compatibility is one of the largest guiding factors in choosing a mobile app development platform. If you are building an iOS app or Android app that works outside of mobile and tablets, native solutions become compelling. If you are building a mobile phone app for iOS and Android, React Native and cross-platform solutions look a lot more attractive.

Accessibility to Possible Integrations

If you may add new features to your app after it has been established, then you should choose a platform that can meet all of your criteria and provide assistance to add the features later.

Open-Source Libraries Access

Make sure the platform you chose provides you with total flexibility and simple access and integration with open-source libraries and APIs. React Native, native iOS, and native Android have a larger collection of plugins and libraries for you to use off the shelf than lesser-used solutions like Xamarin and Ionic.

Monitoring and Analytics for Mobile Applications

Monitoring and analytics provided by an app assist in transforming user information into graphical insights. As a result, a reliable mobile app development platform makes it simple to monitor the operation of apps and analyze their data. Equally as important is mobile error logging so that you can be sure to keep track of any issues your users are running into.

Mobile App Development Tools

The mobile app development tools provide a platform for easier cooperation throughout creating, testing, debugging, delivering, hosting, and supporting mobile applications. Choose a platform that the developer will feel comfortable with since the limits imposed by CLI may be annoying and may slow down the development process. Here, developer preference will have a say. Many developers prefer to work in Visual Studio Code these days. Some like the XCode experience. Either way, it is reasonable to use the environment of your choice for building mobile apps.

Performance

You always want a performant app. Even when dealing with hybrid mobile apps or apps that need to be deployed for iOS and Android, decreasing the performance of your applications in any noticeable fashion to end users is not worth it. This has been proven time and again in mobile app development, and luckily, we now have enough performant options to choose from.

Final Thoughts

Regardless of the platform, Flatirons can help. The most effective mobile app development platforms include capabilities that augur well in multi-channel sending, security, and back-end reconciliation. Considering the reviews above, it is our opinion that React Native is an excellent platform. React Native’s popularity is comparable to that of Flutter. Ultimately, because Flutter has an entirely separate programming language (Dart) and because Google has a history of abandoning technologies and projects, we are more bullish on React Native as we really see no benefit of Flutter over React Native. Since developers are already familiar with JavaScript, we believe React Native will be easier to work with. If native applications are needed using Kotlin or Swift, that is a logical decision as well.

Mobile App Development Experts

Transform your mobile app ideas into reality with Flatirons' expert mobile development services.

Learn more

Mobile App Development Experts

Transform your mobile app ideas into reality with Flatirons' expert mobile development services.

Learn more
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