How to Choose Your Mobile App Technology Stack (Updated)
Having a next-gen mobile app is the dream of every small to large-scale enterprises. But, the process of sculpting an idea into a profit-generating mobility product involves lots of brainstorming and the ability to make effective decisions in terms of technology and business.
In most cases, organizations are clear about the business part. What matters for them is, to understand the technical feasibility and implementation of the concepts. Here they need to tie up with a reliable mobile app development company that understands and addresses their business needs.
During the prototyping phase, mobile app developers and businesses work together to define the design, structure, architecture, features, and functions of the would-be mobile app. Before starting with code development, both parties have to select the right mobile app technology stack that involves technologies, architecture, platforms, frameworks, and tools.
Ideally, it’s the job of a mobile app development company. But being an investor, you have to participate in the process of selecting an appropriate tech stack. Through this post, we help businesses in selecting suitable and cost-effective tech stack for their mobile apps.
Let’s start from scratch. To build a robust mobile app in terms of scalability and performance, you need to make smarter decisions related to the below technology aspects.
- Front-end (Client-Side) Technologies
- Backend (Server Side) Technologies
- Mobile App Development Platforms
- Non -functional Requirements
Front-end (Client-Side) Technology Stack for Mobile Application
Developing a mobile application for a single platform doesn’t help businesses in gaining a competitive advantage. Get the wider exposure across multiple channels and platforms to reach out to the larger target audience, increase the sales and generate maximum ROI.
With the support and integration of cross-platform technologies, mobile apps run seamlessly on different operating systems. To deliver a next-level experience to the users, enterprises have to select from Native, Hybrid and Progressive Web Apps as per their custom business needs.
Most of the mobile applications that we use are native apps. They are specifically designed to perform effectively on a particular mobile operating system. Native apps are a bit expensive as companies need to build duplicate versions of the same app. Few app enhancements are required to make it compatible with other platforms.
iOS Technology Stack
Swift is a highly functional and widely used programming language. It allows programmers to write less error-prone code by providing inline support for manipulating data and text string. Swift also involves dynamic libraries that can be uploaded to memory directly.
The advanced programming language cut down the size of app and eventually increases the app performance. It is easy to maintain and technology that makes the code reusable, readable, and secure. It allows developers to build a high-performance app with less crashing.
On the other hand, Objective C used as a primary programming language for iOS development before te Swift came into existence. It has object-oriented capabilities and a dynamic runtime environment. With the evolution of Swift, Objective C is less likely to be used by iPhone app developers. Still, it is considered as an important part of iOS technology stack when the developers have to execute a large scale and highly complex projects.
Xcode is a user interface development IDE supported by Apple. It allows them to develop native apps and launch them on Apple’s store. It supports all the Apple devices start from iPhone, Mac, iPad, Apple Watch, and Apple TV. Moreover, it can be used with a variety of tools and supports different programming languages.
iPhone app developers choose AppCode, a third-party developer, as an alternative of Xcode. They claim that AppCode allows for faster coding than Xcode. Well, Xcode has altogether a next-level capability for developing app interfaces without writing any code so there is no clear competitor of this IDE.
Android Tech Stack
Java is a highly used programming language across the globe not only for the Android platform but also for web, big data, and more. It offers a variety of open-source tools and libraries. Moreover, the tech giants like Google, Facebook, Yahoo, etc. are continuously contributing to making the technology better in order to achieve faster development with higher quality. Java is the right fit for the Android tech stack if you want to develop complex projects with greater scalability.
Kotlin was introduced in 2011 by JetBrains company, a third party contributor. Google declared it as a secondary language for Android app development in 2017. It is completely interoperable with Java so that developers can continuously develop the existing Java-based project using Kotlin.
Moreover, Kotlin has a powerful and clean syntax that allows programmers to write 25-35% less code compared to Java. It allows developers to create more stable coding with fewer bugs.
It is an IDE from Google that allows Android app developers to build native Android applications. Though Android Studio is contrary to Xcode, it is available on Mac OS. Apart from this, Android Studio runs on each popular operating system for PCs.
Advantages of Native Mobile App Development
- Faster Performance
- Better User Experience
- Highest Security
- Greater Responsiveness
- Device Notifications
- Access to Device Hardware/Software (contact, camera, GPS, compass, accelerometer, etc.)
- Gesture Control
- Work Offline
Hybrid Mobile App Technology
- Sencha Touch
- Apache Cordova/Adobe PhoneGap
- AppGuyver Steroids.js
Advantages of Hybrid Mobile App
- Easy Portability
- One Code Base Development
- Multi-platform Compatibility
- Faster Speed to Market
- Access to various hardware/software capabilities through plug-ins
Progressive Web Apps
Progressive apps are not mobile applications indeed. They contain HTML5 based development that gives a native-like look and feel to the users. Also, they run in a browser. With the increasing use of HTML5, it becomes difficult to differentiate between regular web pages and web apps.
Toolkit of Progressive Web Application
- React JS
- Angular JS
- lonic 2
Advantages of Progressive Web Application
- Easy to Maintain
- A common code-based development
- Run on multiple mobile platforms
Backend (Server Side) Technology Stack for Mobile Application
Why compromise with slow running apps? Develop high performing mobile applications by using the best backend technology for mobile app that involves LAMP (Linux, Apache, MySQL, PHP) or MEAN (MongoDB, ExpressJS, AngularJS, Node.js). LAMP is considered as one of the reliable mobile app technology stack that supports the enterprise web apps strategies. Using Node.js, mobile app developers create an event-driven architecture that improves user experience and reduces application loading time.
Mobile App Development Platforms
With each passing day, the demand for mobile application development, governance and unification increases. To host low code development features, enterprises have to adopt suitable platforms. This is not an integral part of the mobile app tech stack but plays a key role in improving the development process. To pick up the best platform, it is important to analyze them by considering.
- Ease of integration with the database, APIs, and back-end systems
- Integrated development environment – features and functionality of multi-channel (mobile apps, web, and wearable) and multi-platform (OSs and devices.)
- Seamless integration of core mobile backend services such as offline synchronization, geo-location services, push notifications, token management, authentication, and certification, etc.
- Integration of mobile app development lifecycle management tools that contain architecture design, development, testing, deployment, and support.
Most of the enterprises rely on their IT service providers for the mobile app development and maintenance as they need to focus on core business operations. But, don’t trust anyone blindly. The mobile app development company might suggest a set of technologies in which they have proven expertise. Use of such technologies increases your overall investment and may not serve your business needs. In order to select a suitable mobile app tech stack, you have to consider the following aspects.
Content Delivery Network (CDN)
Business expansion from local to global space is one of the key purposes of mobile app development. If you host your mobile app on a local server, then you may not achieve your milestones. Local servers take too long to respond to global requests.
Let’s assume; your mobile app is hosted on a local server in California. A customer from Japan visits the app. In such cases, the request travels through the continents to get the request server that increases the loading time by 3-5 seconds and even more. This amount of time is enough for a user to leave your mobile app.
Launch your mobile app on CDN. It has exceptional capabilities to cache the frequently used resources or static resources into Content Distribution nodes that are close to your user’s geographical locations. CDN assures for quick downloading and faster response. Undoubtedly, it is the best solution for B2C websites but it also delivers an amazing experience to mobile users.
Both native apps and HTML5 based mobile applications run efficiently without internet connectivity. But HTML5 based apps have the limitations of in-browser caching. Enterprises have to analyze and define what type of behavior they want from their mobile apps in high latency and low bandwidth networks. Businesses have to define response time, acceptable query time and data processing time of application in the Service Level Agreements (SLAs).
Cybersecurity is always a major challenge for the tech industry. Mobile apps are also facing vulnerability issues in terms of data caching. That’s why all the payment and banking applications offer password and pin-based access for the security of imperative data. Though these are not popular security measures, they help in avoiding the online security issues up to some extent. For the extended security of mobile apps, businesses allow VPN only access to their imperative enterprise resources or disable the application access over insecure public networks.
At Credencys, mobile app developers guide enterprises about the most suitable mobility tools, technologies, platforms, and frameworks to offer affordable and scalable mobile app development. We define a custom app development strategy by considering your specific business needs. If you have any queries or concerns related to selecting an appropriate technology stack for your mobile application, get in touch with our experts to make smart technology decisions.
Frequently Asked Questions
Which technology is best for mobile app development?
To build robust mobile apps, a lot of tools and technologies are available out there such as C++, Objective C, Java, Swift, Xcode, Kotlin, AppCode, and more. You can choose the right combination of tools and technologies as per your project requirements and budget.
What is a native application stack?
The native applications allow mobile app developers to integrate inbuilt functionality of the device into their app without relying on any external third party API.
What are the types of apps?
Native, Hybrid, and Progressive Web Application are three different types of mobile apps. Native app are developed using the native programming language of iOS and Android. Hybrid mobile app are developed using third party technology that allows developers to write the code once and use it for both iOS and Android platforms with minimum code changes. Progressive web applications are developed for the web platform but it works seamlessly in the mobile platform too.
Is Kotlin better than Java?
Kotlin is more advanced programming language than Java. It allows Android app developers to release the build faster by writing less code. Thus, it is considered as an important part of Android tech stack.