Tech Insights: Cross-Platform and Native Mobile App Development

In today’s fast-paced digital era, mobile apps are a great way for businesses to connect with customers, increase brand visibility, and grow revenue. When it comes to developing mobile apps, the first decision to make is whether to go for cross-platform or native development. In this article, we explore the advantages and considerations of each and provide recommendations on which approach is appropriate to differing business needs.

Advantages of Cross-Platform Development
Cross-platform development refers to the practice of creating mobile apps that use a single codebase to run on multiple platforms, i.e. iOS (Apple) and Android. Key advantages of cross-platform development for businesses include:

  1. Cost Efficiency:
    By leveraging a shared codebase, cross-platform frameworks like React Native, Flutter and Xamarin significantly reduce the time, effort, and resources needed.

  2. Faster Time-to-Market:
    Because developers can write code once and deploy it across multiple platforms, the development and testing process is simplified significantly and app launch timelines can be expedited enabling businesses to be more agile in seizing market opportunities.

  3. Code Reusability:
    One of the major advantages of cross-platform development is that developers can write a single codebase that can be reused across different platforms. This saves time, simplifies maintenance, and ensures consistency in app functionality.

  4. Wider Reach:
    Cross-platform apps enable businesses to reach a broader audience by catering to both iOS and Android users, maximising their app’s market potential.

While cross-platform frameworks provide a unified approach, there may be instances where certain features or functionalities require native development. Having a solid understanding of native development allows cross-platform developers to seamlessly integrate platform-specific code when necessary, ensuring a smooth user experience and that platform capabilities are optimised.

Advantages of Native Development
Native app development involves creating applications tailored specifically for a particular platform, utilising the respective programming languages (e.g., Swift/Objective C for iOS, Java/Kotlin for Android). 

  1. Enhanced Performance:
    Native apps are built using platform-specific technologies, enabling them to leverage the full potential of the underlying operating system. This can result in faster loading times, smoother user experiences, and access to advanced device features.

  2. Seamless Integration:
    Native development provides a more seamless integration with the platform’s ecosystem, enabling businesses to leverage platform-specific capabilities such as push notifications, biometric authentication, location services, and in-app purchases. This may provide a more immersive and tailored app experience.

  3. UI/UX Customisation:
    Native development facilitates greater control over the interface, enabling highly customised experiences and the  potential for more unique and visually appealing user interfaces (UI). This level of customisation can enhance user engagement and satisfaction through providing a consistent and intuitive user experience (UX). 


  1. Use Native Development When:
    • The app requires access to advanced device features or functionalities.
    • The target audience predominantly uses a specific platform.
    • Performance and responsiveness are critical to the app’s success.
    • The budget allows for separate development efforts for each platform.
  2. Use Cross-Platform Development When:
    • The app’s functionality can be achieved with cross-platform frameworks.
    • Rapid development and time-to-market are of utmost importance.
    • The budget is limited, and cost efficiency is a priority.
    • The app targets a broad audience across multiple platforms.

If you’d like to discuss the merits and methods of mobile development in more detail please contact us.

cross-platform and native development