How To Select The Best Tools For Cross-platform Mobile App Development

Best Tools For Cross-Platform Mobile App Development

Earlier, organizations used to rely on a single device to run business. However, things have now changed significantly. Now enterprises need to cater to multiple devices at the same time. From tablets and smartphones to wearables, businesses are leveraging multiple devices and platforms to keep the operations efficient and smooth.

Amid increasing multi-device requirements, IT teams are now under constant pressure to come up with cross-platform applications that can render support to both iOS and Android devices simultaneously. This is also one of the reasons that engineers are now leveraging cross-platform mobile app development tools that can increase the efficiency of app development in the long run.

Java was launched way back in the 90s to ease out the workflow of developers as it could work anywhere. Modern IT teams are also looking for a solution that is capable of working in multi-environments including iOS, Android, Web, and other platforms seamlessly. An efficient cross-platform app development tool can help in expediting speed-to-market by simplifying development.

Cross-platform mobile app development can be segregated majorly into two categories:

Cross-Platform Hybrid Tools

These hybrid tools rely on popular technologies including JavaScript, CSS, and HTML5. They assist in developing apps that run within a native container of required devices. These codes help in speeding up the development process by splitting between different platforms. Most importantly, unlike native approaches, cross-platform hybrid tools are also cheaper.

Popular Tools

Some of the most popular hybrid tools include Apache Cordova, Framework7, Search Ext Js, Adobe PhoneGap, and Ionic among others. 

Cordova is one of the most common tools that is used to develop peer cross-platform hybrid tools including Framework7, Ext JS, and Ionic. Both Cordova and PhoneGap emerged from a 2008 project led by engineers of a web development company called Nitobi. However, after Adobe took over Nitobi, PhoneGap became an Adobe product and Cordova transformed into an open source Apache tool. Despite the split, both platforms have too many similarities.

Some tools use languages like HTML and JavaScript to mobile app development for a smoother process. It also helps businesses with a web infrastructure to easily transition to mobile apps with minimal efforts. Developers can also use these tools in an integrated app development framework including Xcode, Visual Studio, and Eclipse.

These cross-platform hybrid tools also bring other crucial attributes. For instance, Ext Js enables end-to-end app building with Sencha Architect that supports the drag-and-drop feature. Developers can generate an app by using ExtGen. It is Ext JS’s command-line tool. On the other hand, Sencha Cmdon assists with lifecycle management and ExtBuildis helps in transpiring and building apps.

Also Read: Why React Native Is An Efficient Solution For Hybrid App Development

Cross-Platform Native Tools 

Cross-platform native tools act as a perfect blend of native and hybrid approaches of the app development. They leverage intermediate languages including JavaScript and C# to develop multi-platform apps. These apps leverage the native UI controller. It is opposite to the hybrid approach but helps in using the full potential of device features to deliver top-notch performance.

But the catch here is that the development with cross-platform native tools is more difficult and can increase your time-to-market deadline. Its performance is also inferior to true native apps.

Popular Tools

Some of the popular cross-platform native tools include Xamarin, Appcelerator, React Native, NativeScript, and Flutter among others. However, these tools vary from each other in several ways. The majority of the tools enable app development by leveraging JavaScript. However, some tools including Flutter use Dart and C# is used by Xamarin. 

All these tools also have different custom coding requirements, availability of libraries, maturity, app performance, and development effort. 


Here are other advantages of using cross-platform mobile app development tools.

  • Single development tool reduces the overall cost and learning curve for developers
  • A single development team can easily handle the development of platform irrespective of the type of mobile devices
  • Cross-platform tools are designed to assist development teams in creating state-of-art features including bar code scanning, image recognition, data connection, and text voice. These features are required by all modern mobile applications

Small businesses and startups often work on a shoestring budget that in most cases can’t enable separate iOS and Android app development. Cross-platform applications are the only option if you are on a tight budget. Now, even large organizations are leveraging cross-platform apps for smaller projects to enhance operational efficiency.

In Summary

Different organizations have different mobile app requirements. Businesses should pick a cross-platform mobile development tool that meets specific business goals. For instance, startups and small companies should focus on launching an app at the earliest without having to pay for an expensive development team.

Also Read: iOS vs React Native App Development: Which is Better? 

Midsize businesses with a few hundreds of employees might need to deal with complicated costumes needs. For that, they need a cross-platform app developed with technologies including Xamarin and Titanium where everything is easily migrated to the mobile platform.

DevLabs is a leading cross-platform mobile app development service provider. Talk to our experts to know how we can help you.

About the Author

QA InfoTech

QA InfoTech

Established in 2003, with less than five testing experts, QA InfoTech has grown leaps and bounds with three QA Centers of Excellence globally; two of which are located in the hub of IT activity in India, Noida, and the other, our affiliate QA InfoTech Inc Michigan USA. In 2010 and 2011, QA InfoTech has been ranked in the top 100 places to work for in India.

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