Progressive Web apps are the latest phenomenon that is currently happening in the world of applications. These progressive web applications basically link properties of a website with several other features of native mobile apps. This operation further allows the app to detach itself from the respective operating system (i.e. from the device’s OS).
Over the past few years, we have witnessed the growth of mobile apps and web development separately. But today, responsive Web design has made its way deep in the mobile app industry. Does that mean that native mobile apps will fade away? To know the answer to this question, keep on reading!
What are PWAs?
The term progressive web apps also known as PWAs can be defined as a new technique of application development that uses modern web capabilities to deliver an innovative app-like experience to the end-user in an existing format of the web app.
As a further app development technique, progressive web applications are known to bring in many promising opportunities as well. With PWAs, one of the main issues that have been addressed is the persistence problem of responsive design in native mobile apps.
Differences between Mobile Apps and PWA
Now, before we move forward towards the reasons why progressive mobile apps are emerging as a tough competition for mobile apps. Let’s have a look at some of the main differences between mobile applications and PWAs:
Native Mobile Apps
The native apps are those mobile applications that can be downloaded onto your mobile devices, straight from app stores like the Apple App Store and Google Play Store. Android and iOS mobile apps fall into the category of native applications.
There’s no denying that native mobile apps have great performance and very fast load timing. These mobile apps can also access additional functions of the smartphones like features of device’s torch, Bluetooth, camera etc. Because of its high functionality, native apps are able to deliver robust features with an overall rich user experience.
Native mobile application development companies develop apps separately for each platform along with a particular programming language with respect to the platform, to accommodate the ‘native’ aspect of the development process. In short, you would have to build a separate app for the iOS platform and Android platform, instead of creating a single code base for all platforms.
Progressive Web Apps
Nowadays, our smartphones have become a crucial part of our daily routine, and we are in constant need of apps to perform our simple day-to-day activities. Like booking an app, ordering food online, learning a new language etc. all of these tasks are now dependent on mobile applications. Now, the concept of native mobile apps is being transformed into an advanced version of app development i.e. PWAs (Progressive Web Apps).
The main objective behind the inception of PWA has always been to capitalize on the time of the end-users by combining the user experience of a native mobile app with the instant accessibility features of a website. This was done to overcome the amount of time spent on searching and browsing through the web for a particular requirement.
Reasons Why PWAs Are Future
Below are the top 5 reasons why PWAs are emerging as a great competition for mobile applications in the coming future:
- Offline Access: Users have always been looking to somehow access their app’s content in offline mode, and this feature has been incorporated by PWAs. This is due to the service workers that work in the core background of PWAs. With these applications, end-users are able to work offline and initiate processes that are based on program logic.
- Higher User Engagement: The ‘Add to Homescreen’ is a great option that was introduced first by the Chrome app by Google, which is a great way of eliminating the need of websites that ask the user to ‘Allow or Deny’ options. All you need is a single click and the website will be added on your device’s home screen as a shortcut to directly access the PWA.
- Better Security: Cyber risks have been a serious threat for the users, that’s the reason why websites are now being integrated into the HTTPs concept. This further makes the process of launching a progressive web application much more secure than the ones that are still using HTTP. Entering personal information like bank and card details into a PWA is considered to be more secure in comparison.
- The flexibility of Native App: To access a PWA in your device’s browser is quite similar to accessing a native mobile app because the appearance of a PWA resembles a mobile app by replicating a similar user experience. A progressive web app can easily perform functions like customer information, loyalty programs, online ordering etc.
- Seamless Accessibility: There’s no denying the fact that PWAs are trending for delivering an excellent mobile experience to their users along with offering seamless accessibility. Also, there is no need to install or download a progressive web application like the native mobile apps that require installation from iOS and Android app store.
This concludes that there won’t be any extra payments required for downloading PWAs and that end-users don’t need to create additional memory space in mobile devices to accommodate the installation of an app.
Although PWAs are taking over the app development industry rather quickly but still the mobile native apps are not going to go extinct any time soon. There are still few aspects in PWAs where improvement is required, like in the performance area of the apps. For progressive mobile apps, there are still some limitations that need to be overcome because the native mobile apps offer in-depth features which are not available in a PWA environment.
But, keeping in mind the above-mentioned reasons why PWAs are the future of app development, it can be stated that Progressive Web Apps are indeed emerging as a strong competitor for mobile apps.