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What Is React Native: How to Make 2 Apps from 1 Code?
06 MAY 2022

Long story short, you have a mobile app idea. What do you need to develop it?

— Money. To develop a quality app, you will have to invest a lot of money.
— Time. Mobile app development may take several months or even a year.
— Great development team. With this request you can turn to a React Native app development company 🙂

But what about time and money? In a world where new apps are released every day, it’s hard to compete and count on minutes. To develop apps for two platforms, you need to find separate iOS and Android development teams and have patience while waiting for both applications to be ready. It’s expensive and takes a lot of time. A mobile app idea can bring you millions — or not, and you’ll end up losing time and money.

To make life easier for entrepreneurs, the guys at Facebook have come up with React Native — a cross-platform framework that allows you to write a single code that will work on both platforms. Due to this, you can save time and money on development. Sounds good, yep? I’m a mobile development expert at Brivian and I wanna talk about the advantages of React Native development services.

How to develop a mobile app?

To understand what React Native is, you need to understand what mobile development is all about. Let’s make it clear! 

Mobile applications mostly exist on both iOS and Android platforms. You can develop an iPhone app, but then all Android phone owners won’t be able to use it. To avoid this problem, you need to develop separate applications for both platforms. Such development is called native. A developer uses a native language to make an application to meet the requirements of a particular operating system. Native apps provide exceptional user experience (UX) because they typically have high performance. User experience is also improved because visuals are tailored to the UX design of the platform.

This kind of development is good if you target a specific market, for example iOS, and want the application to be optimized to the platform to ensure high performance and scalability. But if your plans are more grandiose, and you are interested in both markets — you will need to hire different teams of developers for iOS and Android. And what if you just think about building a startup? Hiring a large number of developers will cost you a lot of money. Is there an alternative? I say yes.

What is React Native?

In order to get a mobile app adapted for two platforms at once, developers choose React Native app development. This is a JavaScript framework, which is used to create cross-platform mobile applications for iOS and Android. It is a framework that Facebook launched in 2013. Initially, the project was presented at a hackathon, and a few years later, it was officially released. React Native framework quickly became popular and gathered a large community of fans from all over the world. 

The main advantage of such development — it saves time and money. Because while creating React Native app, we make a common code base, which is suitable for both platforms at once. React Native allows you to hire a single team to develop an application for two platforms. This way, your startup saves time and brings the release closer. And the sooner you get published, the sooner you get precious feedback from users and go to make changes and improve the application.

An example of an app created with Native React development

An example of an app created with Native React development

Now let’s learn more about React Native development services!


What is React Native advantage?

Many global giants started with the React Native framework— Bloomberg, Airbnb, Discord, and Salesforce. So why is it so good to create React Native apps?
  • Common codebase. As I said before, React Native app development allows you to develop two versions of an application faster, because they share most of the codebase 60-70% code. Native elements are used only in particularly critical places. Less code means fewer bugs. For startups and for those who want to test their idea on the market, this is heaven, since you can implement the idea and release the product faster. The time and money you save on development can be later spent on marketing.
  • Almost the same as Native. The React Native framework doesn’t mimic the browser environment, it uses native APIs. There is a large number of libraries and component sets for React Native, so we close tasks faster.
  • Wide ecosystem of JavaScript libraries. If you have a web app made on React, parts of that code can be reused for a React Native mobile app as well. This works because React is an open-source JavaScript library for developing user interfaces, which is also supported by Facebook (the creator of the React Native framework).
  • Low entry threshold to the technology. Due to the connection between React and React Native, it is easier to teach a React developer to create React Native apps than Swift or Kotlin ones. Frontend developers are usually familiar with HTML, CSS, JavaScript and React technologies. And React Native framework has a similar set of components to HTML. 
  • Fast search for a contractor. Due to the popularity and advantages of the React Native development services, it is easier to find a RN contractor than a native developer. Especially considering that you will need two of them, one for iOS and one for Android. You can find someone who knows JavaScript, or someone who understands React (the same RN, only for the web) and start to develop. Btw! Native developers usually have high salaries, while cross-platform mobile developers cost less. For example, you will need to pay an Android developer about $1500, while a React Native developer will charge three times less.
  • A large community. Bugfixes and patches are released much faster for the new version of the framework. The popularity of the React Native framework provides access to a large number of tested libraries from the React Native community. Such libraries are very well supported. Some React Native developers created several libraries — with full documentation, and in some cases even entire application templates. In addition, they have also presented several entire application templates. The most popular ones are: React Native paper, Native Base, React Native Elements, and React Native Starter Kit.

What is React Native disadvantage?

Talking about what React Native is, it may seem that using React Native development services, you can almost build a hadron collider. This is a joke, of course, creating React Native apps is really cool, but it’s worth mentioning a couple of minuses.
  • A young framework. React Native is still being updated and  turned into the best version of itself, so developers need to keep track of its updates. If the product is developed longer than a few months – it will take time to update the framework.
  • Adaptation for all Androids. Keeping track of new phones with the Android system is many times more difficult than with the iOS. There are too many models, and new ones appear almost every day. I think that in the future, developers will improve the mechanics of development on Android to use the React Native framework for it painlessly.

When is it best to use React Native?

If you look at React Native examples, you can understand that the framework has no significant limitations — it is suitable for businesses of any size. You can use this framework even if you already have a native product — new features can be added to both versions of the application at once. If you are a startupper with a mobile app idea and little investments, React Native development services are your best bet. This way, the app will come out faster and at a lower cost. You will market your idea faster, and if it fails — you can improve with the help of user feedback. But even if it fails, it’s not as bad as spending twice as much money and time to develop a native version. 

React Native is a versatile framework suitable for a wide variety of projects. Talking about what React Native is, we need to mention that React Native also has minuses. Some of them inherently depend on the platform itself, some are the result of the specific nature of React Native. In terms of performance and user experience, React Native is a great solution. This framework allows you to create a product that resonates with users.

Mobile development in React Native is an excellent alternative to development in Swift and Java. The only exceptions are projects that require supercomplex animations or 3D graphics. But if you want your own food delivery service or marketplace — feel free to choose React Native.

I want to start creating my own app right now!

Great to hear it. When we started talking about what React Native is, we said you need a cool and experienced team to develop the app. If you already have one — nice! But if you don’t, you’ll need to hire your own staff. Frontend developers to make your application look awesome, backend developers to make sure everything runs like a well-oiled machine. And before that, a designer who will make great UX and UI design for your project. And of course, a project manager who will make sure the processes run smoothly, budgets are respected, and work gets done on time. And that’s not to mention QA engineers, business analysts, and even a marketer. 

To create React Native app, you can hire your own team, or you can turn to
React Native app development company Brivian. Here you will find a full-cycle development team. We build high-quality native and cross platform apps for businesses of any size. You come to us with ideas and budget expectations – according to these parameters we offer different solutions. The approximate cost and terms:
— Cross-platform mobile application development – 2 months and $30 000
— Native mobile app development – 3 months and $45,000
If you are not sure yet whether you need a native or cross-platform application, you can contact us for a consultation 🙂
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