Understanding the Difference between Native, Web and Hybrid iOS Apps

You have probably heard of native apps, web app, and hybrid apps. This might be quite confusing because, for many, an app is simply an app. In this article, we are going to look at these 3 types of apps and see what makes them different.

(a) Native Apps

Native iOS apps are those apps that are on a specific device. When in operation, these apps may use the device’s memory or storage. They are installed from Apple’s AppStore and can be accessed by clicking the respective icon on the home screen. Native apps are built for specific OS and use other features like the camera, contacts, notification system, GPS, and so on. These apps can be written in Objective-C language or Swift. Some of these apps include Facebook, Instagram, Candy Crush, and so on.

(b) Web Apps

On the other hand, an iOS web app is an app that can be accessed via the web on a browser like Safari; it only works online. Unlike native apps, web apps can work interchangeably between a variety of operating systems. Besides, you don’t need to have a mobile device to view a web app. It is important to note that while native apps use the device’s memory, web apps don’t take up any memory or storage. Examples of web apps include; Financial Times web app, Moodboard, and so on.

(c) Hybrid Apps

As the name suggests, a hybrid app is a blend of two apps; native and web. These apps combine web views in their native codes in order to deliver their content. Just like native apps, they are found in the Apple AppStore and are mostly developed by 3rd party companies like PhoneGap. Examples of iOS hybrid apps include Amazon App Store, Evernote, Twitter, Gmail, and so on.

Final Words

If you are just starting with iOS App development, it is important to decide which type of app you want to work on. Having this clear goal in mind is the first thing you need to do as an iOS developer.