Keys to a good development of hybrid apps: Ionic and React

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Over the years, and in full 2018, hybrid development has changed a lot, for the better, and very powerful platforms have been born that make this task much easier for us. React and Ionic Framework Hybrid Mobile Application Development are just two of them, but without doubt the most popular. Today we are going to make a brief introduction to these two tools so that we can consider whether it is worth investing part of our time to grow as developers by adopting them in our range of skills. Let’s go there!

Ionic and React: two perfect allies

I think the most interesting thing is to start with their similarities, which are not few, although the objectives are different. Ionic and React are practically brothers in the professional field that they try to cover: they are two JavaScript libraries, their objective is to provide the user with modern and comfortable graphical interfaces, and at the development level they both use the controller view model. So far we don’t see big differences, right? But the truth is that the nuances begin here. Originally, ReactJS, from Facebook, was not born with the objective of meeting the needs of the hybrid development of mobile applications, we wanted to focus on desktop web pages and that they were reactive (responsive). And he did it very effectively; there is no doubt about that. But let’s think that at that time, in the market, Google AngularJS was being widely used, which was used as the base, along with Cordova, to provide the companies with hybrid applications by Ionic. We begin to see “the problem” at the market level, right? Something had to be done about it, and Facebook then decided to extend a branch of its platform called React Native. In this way they had in their hands a rival at the height of Ionic not to be left behind. After all, what makes Ionic so powerful is:

  • The base of components like Angular
  • Vista-Controller Model
  • Native graphic elements of each platform
  • The foundations that Cordova has left when compiling

It is a very prepared framework and it was necessary to be able to compete.

Leaving this aside, we can find ourselves in two situations when deciding on one: that in the past we have seen AngularJS, however little it may be, or that we have done absolutely nothing related to hybrid applications. And these two situations are the key to choosing correctly. The rest ends up being irrelevant in a relative way because both have good and strong communities, you can find support without too much trouble and they are two tools that come from two very large companies, so they will not disappear overnight. It is clear that if in the past you have worked with Angular, I recommend you head first without hesitation to Ionic, for being one of the pillars of the tool and with what you are going to build all the logic. You start with an advantage and when it comes to moving fast you have to take advantage of any weapon we have in our bedroom.

If you find yourself in the situation of starting from 0, then I will give you a couple of details that will help you decide.

  • React does not allow recycling of native components. This means that, unlike Ionic, each platform has its share of code dedicated to native elements. These elements are buttons, dialog messages (“loading …”) and everything that makes us think when we see an app “this is an iPhone” or “this is an Android”. That they cannot be recycled implies that we, as developers, must make more decisions so that the final result is as close as desired.
  • Both Frameworks lack IDEs, so we need a code editor like Atom, so this part is common. It is not a problem because the two platforms refresh the changes in our favorite browser automatically
  • In Ionic there are more plugins to be able to have support in some features that we need, since Cordova has been on the market much longer. Instead in React you must integrate some plugin that Cordova integrates. It can be a bit confusing.

Which is the best platform? As usual, this is subjective to each one, but the good thing is that both have jobs available so that investing time in either of them will be rewarded, whatever.

I encourage you to feel like it and hours since currently the development of applications has never been so simple and with web knowledge, which will serve you for the desktop part of the brand you want to represent, will help you to build a fully functional mobile application, elegant and multiplatform to reach the maximum possible audience. Do not be afraid for all!

Hattie B. Trosclair

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