An exclusive guide to Hybrid Apps vs Native Apps

By Chandrapal Singh | January 5, 2021
native apps vs hybrid apps

“Mobile applications are projected to generate revenue of $935.2 billion in 2023”

After all those efforts and great market research, you are here with your mobile app idea but a dilemma. The dilemma of whether to invest in Hybrid apps vs native apps. Both sides of the app development are rich with their features, functionalities, and can fits well as per the requirements of the app idea.

The ongoing debate between both Hybrid apps vs Native apps is already fierce and is unending, however, choosing one over the other can be done on the basis of their advantages, disadvantages, features, metrics, and so on. 

So, before getting started with the native vs hybrid app comparison, let us very first begin with some stats that strengthen your decision to choose one over the other. 

Mobile app downloads & usage statistics 2021

  • As per Google Play Store Statistics, there are over 2.87 million apps available for download
  • Apple app store currently has 1.96 million apps for downloading
  • Over 21% of Millennials open an app 50+ time a day
  • Around 49% of the people open app 11+ times every day
  • As per Buildfire Survey, there are around 2.7 billion smartphones users whereas tablet users 
  • Social media tops the chart with users sending an average of 131 minutes per week whereas over 22.2% of users place these apps on the top app category
  • Users are opting for streaming services like Youtube, messaging services, Netflix, social media, music streaming apps majorly
  • As per the research, 80+ apps are installed on an average smartphone

These are mobile app statistics that shadow upon the importance of mobile apps, their popularity, and why the world of mobile app development is thriving! 

For a business with great revenue on the side can simply opt for native and cross-platform app development, however, a firm with less investment option finds the debate between Hybrid Apps vs Native apps a little confusing and a lot challenging. 

To clear doubts, and offer a clear vision to the choice between Hybrid Apps vs Native apps along with an in-depth difference between Native and hybrid apps, here is the article for taking the right decision. 

Let’s begin with Native apps, the advantages & disadvantages, and then moving towards Native apps examples. 

What are Native Apps?

Meant for a specific platform among many like iOS, Android, Windows, these apps can be installed directly to the smartphone and work with no internet connectivity in most cases depending on the nature of the application.

Native apps can simply be installed from either the Apple App Store or Google Play Store. They are written in languages that can be easily accepted by the platforms one at a time like Objective-C, Swift, Java, Kotlin and can work faster by harnessing the processor power along with accessing specific hardware like GPS. 

Many times, apps installed in smartphones can also control devices while acting as a controller too. Apart from that, these apps are also capable of incorporating gestures like app-defined gestures, standard operating system gestures, and so on. 

All in all, native apps are dedicated to a particular platform and can deliver a great number of features to the user while controlling lots of digital activities nicely. The native app development approach carries its sets of advantages and disadvantages. In order to understand which way to pick for the app development, let’s get started with the advantages of Native applications- 

Advantages of Native applications

Secure & reliable

One of the very first advantages of native applications is reliability and security. Native apps use core languages during the programming phase for any of the platforms providing robust protection against security threats. 

Native apps also provide a chance for evaluating risks along with offering security upgrades and proactive performance. Also, multi-factor authentication for native apps is easier, adding security becomes easy. 

Interactive & intuitive

Native apps can run smoothly when it comes to the user’s input and output. Also, these apps flawlessly mimic the OS interfaces and make themselves the integrated part of the device itself. 

Moving on to interactiveness & intuitiveness then native apps are the same as they are made for a dedicated platform. Hence, for a particular platform, the native apps are made with the respective platform guidelines making the flow natural for the users.

Great performance

Meant for a particular platform, native apps are powerful and provide fast performance and outstanding operational efficiency. Because of using core programming languages and APIs for the respective platform, these apps are proficient and can use the platform’s features immensely to the fullest. 

Also, using the processing speed of the device, native apps offer robust performance while lowering the loading time too.

Hardware integration

Because of the better mobile hardware integration adaptability, native apps use the device’s hardware features to the maximum like microphone, camera, GPS, contacts, and others. 

Due to robustness, adaptability, and hardware integration, mobile applications are said to be the most acceptable choice for people investing in mobile app development. 

Enhanced UI/UX experience

As native apps are made for a particular platform, they provide a way better and enhanced UI/UX experience to the users. Also, by maintaining the aspect ratio, native apps also ensure to provide high-quality visuals. 

“Know- The difference between cross-platform vs native app development

Commanding over the size, orientation, and resolution, native apps offer enhanced user experience resulting in higher customer satisfaction. 

“Also read- Top mobile app UI design trends

Offline working

Native apps can also work offline as per nature and build of the application. Due to the no internet connectivity workable development, native apps appeal more to the app investors as they will be getting nonstop interaction from the real users.

Disadvantages Of Native Apps

Long Downloading Process

A native app can be used and get started with when it is downloaded from the respective app stores. The process of getting started with the native application begins from the app store, looking for the application, accepting all the terms & conditions, and finally downloading the app. 

The overall app download funnel takes time making users skip downloading the app if not required on a high priority.

app download funnel

In every step app downloading and usage funnel, about 20% of the users lost! 

Low Flexibility

Mobile app developers are given less or no flexibility for developing the application for the dedicated platform. Also, for developing native applications, developers have to code for one platform at a time resulting in different coding processes for different platforms- iOS vs Android.

Thus, for developing native applications for different platforms, developers need to create different codes for respective platforms.

Costly Development

The cost to develop an android application varies from the cost to develop iOS applications. Also, the programming used for developing native apps is quite tricky and a little difficult. 

Thus, the hard work for developing native apps is laborious which makes it important to look at how much time does it take to develop an application. As the time for developing native apps is high, it results in more app investment too.

Also, app maintenance cost is also high for native apps. The app maintenance might go somewhere between 15-20% of the overall app development cost. Also, a basic native app costs $25,000 where maintenance cost will be around $5,000. 

The higher the app development cost, the higher will be the app maintenance cost too!


As native apps are made for a dedicated platform, the time taken to develop an application for a separate platform requires a set of codes, adding up to the time taken to develop the application. 

“Read also- The ultimate difference between PWA vs Native apps

On average, it takes around 18 weeks for developing a robust application, also the time might increase in the case of an app with complex features and functionalities. 

Frequent Upgrades

For native applications, any bug, or new update whenever done or launched, developers on the other side first have to submit updates to the app stores. Also, on the user side, users are also required to update their apps to the new versions. 

The situation becomes a little challenging when a user doesn’t notice the mobile app update notifications, or if they don’t have enough storage space in their devices- in both the situation, they might abandon the application due to unfixed glitches or issues.

Native app Examples- Pokemon GO, Pinterest, Artsy, 

Done with the basic understanding of Native applications, it is now the time to look at the next competitive app development form- Hybrid applications!

Let’s understand hybrid applications along with keeping an eye on Hybrid app examples too.

What Are Hybrid Applications?

Hybrid applications are a combination of Native apps and web apps that can work on multiple platforms. The working of the hybrid application is somewhat similar to the web application but it installs like a native application. This type of application consists of two components- a backend code written in CSS, HTML, or javascript, however, the code is loaded through web view. These types of applications are developing using third-party frameworks. 

“Know more- Top mobile app development frameworks

Hybrid applications are considered the most selected choice by the app investors as it requires only one app to develop for working in multiple platforms. In addition, an internet connection is required for the working of hybrid applications which is not the case with native applications. 

With it, let us begin with hybrid app advantages.

Advantages Of Hybrid Application

Enhanced UI/UX

The first advantage of a hybrid application is that it offers a flawless user experience across multiple platforms like iOS, Android. Such a kind of application is made to work by embracing the web-like features. 

“Get to know- How React native is the future of Hybrid apps

Other than that, a lightweight hybrid application UI makes the time for loading content and graphics quick and less time-consuming. Also, the hybrid application can easily adapt to different device screens for seamless data streaming and faster data display.

Saves Time

As compared to native applications, hybrid mobile apps are easier and faster to develop. Other than that, for developing hybrid applications, a mobile app development company can leverage existing web development pools with developers having knowledge of Javascript and HTML.

After the completion of codes for multiple platforms, the app can smoothly run on both the operating systems offering a great user experience.

Easier Maintenance

When it comes to the main advantage of hybrid app development, it is it’s easier maintenance part. Unlike native application that requires new versions to roll with each update that goes it the user updating the application, a hybrid app bypasses as such requirements and simply keep the app maintenance simple that too in real-time.

Low App Development Cost

Due to the reduced development cost, hybrid apps carry their side of additional advantage. As hybrid applications can work on multiple platforms eliminating the need for numerous codebases, it gives developers the flexibility to accelerate the development process while reducing the time to market which is not the case with native applications. 

Integration With Other Apps

When it comes to native apps, making harmony with one app with other apps is challenging, resulting in a lack of inter-app interactions. Moving on to hybrid applications, there is no such issue. Hybrid mobile apps can easily integrate with other applications giving users a flawless and smooth experience while using the app.

Offline Support

Because of offline support, hybrid applications are frequently used by users. These apps can provide offline support even in case of poor or low connectivity. Apart from that, hybrid applications do not come up with performance issues during the online and offline phase. 

Disadvantages Of Hybrid applications

Limited Capabilities

Because of the hybrid mobile app’s architecture, they depend upon plugins for accessing the build-in features of the devices. And because the plugins can be out of date or unreliable, they pose as a disadvantage to the side of hybrid applications.

Also, app developers also require to create plugins in case of no available ready-made solutions for accessing some part of the device functionality. 

Poor User Experience

As the same codes are used for two separate platforms- iOS, Android,  the user experience to the fullest lacks somewhere in the middle. Because of this, the next disadvantage for the hybrid app goes to poor user experience. 

Also, if you are focusing majorly on Android applications, the iOS side of the user experience will be bad and vice versa. 

Performance Issues

The next take for understanding the disadvantage of Hybrid application is performance issues. As these applications load in a browser-like component called webview, they are considered best only when displaying the UI and running JS codes. 

Carrying limitations, hybrid applications are still used by a major number of big names in the market. 

Those names include- 

Top Hybrid Apps Examples

  • Evernote
  • Instagram
  • Uber
  • Baskin Robbins
  • Gmail
  • Twitter
  • Apple App Store
  • Amazon App Store
  • Sworkit
  • Remote POS

With everything made ready about the plus and minus of both the side of app development- Hybrid apps vs Native apps, it is now the time to look at the core part of the blog- Native vs Hybrid comparison. 

6 Points To Native vs Hybrid Apps Comparison

App Development Cost

One of the deciding factors for the Hybrid apps vs native apps comparison is app development cost. Among both the app development approaches, both the types of development cost varies. 

As no one wants to lose customers from any of the platforms and opting for native app development for gripping over the customers might cost higher as compared to hybrid apps that require one investment for multiple platforms. The efforts with native app development will be more resulting in more cost.

Moving on to the concrete cost- there is no fixed app development price as the development of the app depends upon the number of features, functionality, complexity, nature of the app, etc. 

However, if given a rough idea, the cost to develop native apps ranges from $18,000 to $21,000 whereas the cost to build a hybrid app costs $22,000. The cost to develop a native application for both the platforms separately will cost nearly from $30,0oo to $32,000. 

App User Interface

Moving from app development cost, the next factor that comes with native vs hybrid apps comparison is the app user interface. Users want their app to work smoothly and without glitches, as they are not concerned about the backend processes. Thus, ensuring a high-end user experience is the most important thing for successful app development

An enhanced user experience might lack with a hybrid application as the approach needs to take from both the platform while offering a robust and smooth app experience. Sticking to the app development guidelines, the ASO strategies and other parameters will also play a major role here. 

“Know also- How to submit your app to the Google Play Store

You cannot get biased with any of the platforms when investing in hybrid app development as both sides of the users might lack a great experience which is not the case with native apps. Native apps are made for a dedicated platform, getting things done smoothly here can happen. 

Thus, apart from bridging the gap between platforms, it is important to come up with an app with a great user interface and experience. 

App Security

A secured app is way better than a rich app with numerous features. Finance-based apps, banking apps, medical apps, and others require high-end security, and losing grip over the security might make one lose customers. Thus, security in the apps is the best hooking point to encourage users to use the app. 

When it comes to making a native vs hybrid comparison on the basis of security, the former is considered more secure because of built-in security features. Hybrid apps on the other hand depend upon webviews that are prone to vulnerabilities because of poorly written codes. Hybrid apps are vulnerable if they are related to Javascript, HTML. Some of the most common attacks related to the respective apps are weak SSL, implementation, and caching problems. 

However, this does not justify that native app are not vulnerable.

App Maintenance

The difference between native and hybrid app also depends upon app maintenance. As mentioned above, hybrid apps are better when it comes to bug fixing, updating the app from both sides- users and developers. Developers need to work on one platform and users are not required to download the updated version of the app manually. 

The process is a little lengthy, and a little challenging when it comes to native app development.

App Functionality

The app functionality is the other point when doing native vs hybrid app comparison for investing. Functionality can be speed, updates, features, and others. Native apps got better functionality because of accessibility to the device’s features like location, databases, cameras, and others which are limited to hybrid applications. 

Also, hybrid apps are a little slower than native apps as they mimic the app’s behavior while working on a website browser. 

Thus, when it comes to investing in app development, make sure you are sure of the app’s functionality too!

“Read more- Things to ask from a mobile app development agency

App Approval Rate

The choice of the app plays a vital role just like publishing it to the respective platforms. Native apps are faster and have a higher chance of getting accepted by the play store, however, this does not mean that hybrid apps are not accepted easily. 

Also as compared to Android app store guidelines, iOS app store guidelines are strict and take a longer time to get approved. 

Thus, the time taken for app approval varies as per the app platform.

Considering all the factors for native vs Hybrid app comparison, what to choose next for the app development is now the task. 

advantages and disadvantages of native & hybrid apps

So, What To Choose Between Hybrid Apps vs Native Apps

Native App Development

If you would like to invest in native app development, you will be getting unlimited areas for app development. The user experience will be smooth and outstanding here, however, the time taken for the app development along with the hard work will also double, as you will be developing apps for separate platforms. 

Hybrid App Development

Hybrid app development comes under the budget which is not a pain for the development process. Also, by investing once, you will be getting an app that will work on multiple platforms, however, the UX might suffer here. 

The difference between Native and Hybrid app with example has been explained above along with showcasing how both the set of app development approaches carries their set of plus and minus, also the choice among them depends upon the nature and requirements of the application. However, if you still have more clarity between Hybrid apps vs Native apps, connect with our app experts today!

Chandrapal Singh

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