Today, React Native is by far the most popular cross-platform mobile framework. According to Statista, over 40% of respondents were using it in 2019 and 2020. This raises a question: What makes this Facebook’s open-source framework so popular? In this post, we are going to find an answer. If you’re thinking about using or learning React Native–this piece is your must-have!
The history of React Native started in 2015 when Facebook released their own open-source mobile application framework, a direct competitor of Google’s Flutter. Facebook’s main idea was to provide the developers’ community with a tool, or rather a framework, that will enable and streamline building native mobile apps. RN can be used for tweaking and updating already existing apps and developing new ones. Additionally, it works well, even with large-scale projects.
Just four years after the release, RN became the number one player in the cross-platform mobile framework section, outrunning Flutter, Cordova, Ionic, and nine other platforms.
This begs the question: What’s the secret of this framework? Why is React Native so popular among developers? We could shortly say it’s because of the RN’s advantages and versatility. Let’s take a closer look at this question. More about React Native pros and cons, you can find at – https://www.elpassion.com/blog/react-native-vs-native-app-development.
First off, as a cross-platform framework, React Native allows developers to use it in order to create iOS and Android apps simultaneously. In other words, you work on a single codebase. Therefore, your work is facilitated, and the end product is available much quicker. This solution saves your company time and money because there is no need to hire or cooperate with iOS and Android teams separately. Moreover, with React Native, you’re essentially developing just one app, which means that the user experience (UX) and layout can be easily unified and adjusted to end users’ needs.
As you already know, it’s a Facebook’s creation. And thanks to their extensive know-how and vast resources, they’ve managed to build a framework that’s reliable and versatile. That’s why RN is considered stable and functional. And speaking of functionality, there is one feature that developers deem especially useful. It’s hot reloading. This feature allows you to implement changes and verify their results without the need to stop working or closing the app. Everything can be done in real time.
Of course, this framework is not perfect. There are some disadvantages you should be aware of. For starters, although RN allows you to develop apps that look and feel native, there is still a lack of some native elements. For example, you cannot use native features of the device in your apps (such as voice recorder, camera, etc.).
Secondly, RN has fewer basic widgets than Flutter and supports only basic components. Of course, there are external repositories available, with many additional components for React Native that you can use, but this obviously requires extra effort and time.
To sum up, RN is a versatile and useful framework that, despite some limitations, will surely help you develop great mobile apps. And if you need help with mobile development, the ElPassion team is at your service!