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In 2021, we are witnessing sea changes across industries. Enterprises are striving to create digital-first and customer-focused applications to acquire new and retain existing customers. 

Are you one among them? 

Would you like to grab your customer’s attention with a customized mobile app?  

Then, have you ever wondered what makes a mobile app intrigue and drive users to hang on? Undoubtedly, it’s a mobile app development framework, technology tools, and the platforms developers use.

With more than 5 billion active smartphone users, mobile applications have become an integral part of our day-to-day operations, including communication to food delivery, gaming, entertainment, commute, and shopping. Surprisingly, we are spending more than 70% of time on mobile apps to fulfill our needs.   

In the current competitive market, if your business is not yet available on the Play Store, you will be losing new business opportunities coming all the way. Thus, having a customized mobile app with the best development framework is the need of the hour. 

A framework offers a fundamental structure to apps for their execution. There is a huge list of robust, secure, and high-performing mobile app frameworks available in the market. However, you need to be very specific about choosing the best app framework to make your business agile and accessible.

What is a mobile app development framework?

A mobile app development framework is a collection of libraries/tools used to develop platform-specific applications. It provides a fundamental structure that supports mobile app development and boosts the process while cutting down the costs. 

Precisely, by using app development frameworks, developers can save time from writing lengthy codes from scratch. Furthermore, mobile app frameworks allow you to drag and drop a few commonly used base codes to make the process easy and effective. 

However, the mobile app development industry is going through a competitive phase to provide a superlative customer experience across the platforms. 

In fact, modern businesses are more likely to build cross-platform applications to save time and cost. 

Mobile development frameworks consist of the following elements

  • Predefined classes & functions
  • Code libraries
  • Compiler
  • Managing hardware device
  • Interact with system software
  • Assistive programs to help software development

Why do you need mobile app development frameworks?

  1. You can save time from writing lengthy codes.
  2. Code reusability across platforms.
  3. Apps customization according to your business requirements. 
  4. You can build scalable and secure applications.

And before you know about the top 5 mobile app development frameworks, understand the top 3 categories of mobile applications.

Top 3 categories of mobile applications frameworks:

Primarily mobile application frameworks are classified into three categories. 1. Native framework for platform-specific apps, 2. Mobile web app frameworks, and 3. hybrid app frameworks.

1. Native mobile apps:

A native app is an application software specifically designed for a platform or device. If your audiences are specific to a platform, you can develop customized native apps to nurture them. Comparatively, a Native mobile application development cost is relatively higher than other apps. 

Ex: Tweetbot, Overcast, and Bear apps are exclusively designed for the iOS platform.

2. Web applications:

Unlike traditional computer-based software programs, web apps utilize web browsers and web technology to perform tasks over the internet. Web app is a collection of design concepts, technologies, and web APIs to render an app-like user experience on the mobile web. They deliver an intriguing user experience with a few limitations. 

Ex: Twitter, Uber, Telegram, Washington Post

3. Hybrid or cross-platform apps:

A hybrid app is a combination of both native and web applications. They are accessible on multiple platforms with a single code base. In this, you need not invest an exorbitant amount to develop apps for multiple platforms. With little changes to the code, you can have an app that can seamlessly serve your purpose.  

Ex: Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, LinkedIn, and the list goes on and on. 

Check out our latest blog to know more about custom mobile app development benefits for SMEs.  

Top 5 Mobile Application Development Frameworks for 2021:

There is a dramatic shift in mobile applications usage over the last decade across the globe. Especially with the enormous growth of millennials and Gen Z users, the surge for customized apps has increased exceptionally high. 

Moreover, customers are likely to use applications that can provide a seamless experience across platforms and devices. Besides mobile application development framework, customization, scalability, and personalization are crucial to gain a competitive advantage. 

Let’s look at the top custom mobile application development frameworks in 2021 that can help you build cost-effective and scalable applications. 

1. React Native:

514-5142665_react-native-transparent-react-native-logo-png-png

React Native is an open-source mobile app development framework launched by social media giant Facebook in 2013. The React Native app framework is based on ReactJS and JavaScript, allowing developers to build cross-platform applications. 

Although it was launched in 2013, React Native has gained momentum due to its scalability and code reusability. You can develop an app for both Android and iOS platforms with a single code base. 

Benefits of React Native app framework:

  1. Code reusability and cost-effective development
  2. Easy to integrate with third-party applications like payment gateways
  3. Ease of maintenance
  4. Support from a large community of mobile app developers
  5. Modular architecture allows you to break down the app code into individual blocks making the structure less complicated
  6. Delivers optimal performance across platforms

2. Flutter:

Flutter

Compared to React Native, Flutter is the latest mobile app development framework launched by Google in 2018. According to a Google report, more than 2 million app developers have used it since its launch in 2018. 

What makes the Flutter framework so popular? 

If you want to build intuitive mobile apps without compromising quality, the Flutter framework has evolved as the best solution for many app developers. 

Flutter is an open-source UI framework launched by Google to support native mobile apps. It is more like a software development kit comprising all the tools and graphics used in app development. 

The Flutter app framework was written in Dart language. It allows you to customize the widgets of your mobile app, further enhancing the native app experience.

Similar to the React Native framework, Flutter also supports cross-platform application development. 

Benefits of Flutter app framework:

  1. Less development time
  2. Customizable UI designs
  3. Provides Full-native performance
  4. Multiple IDE support

3. Ionic app framework:

ionic

It is one of the widely used app development frameworks to build multipurpose and cross-platform applications. The Ionic mobile app development framework is open-source and allows developers to create apps for Android, iOS, and Windows platforms.

The Ionic app framework comes with customized UI components such as files, forms, action sheets, filters, navigation menu, and many more in-built features to deliver intuitive native apps. 

Ionic app development framework uses web technologies like HTML, JavaScript, and CSS. Furthermore, the Ionic framework provides mobile-optimized components and native APIs using Cordova and Ionic Native. 

Benefits of Ionic app framework::

  • Faster Application Development
  • Availability of Cordova Plugins
  • Built-in UI components
  • Platform Independent
  • It works well with the power SDK such as Angular and PhoneGap

4. Xamarin mobile app development framework:

xamarin

Along with the tools and platforms, the cost is also a crucial factor in application development. If you want to develop an app for Android, iOS, and Windows platforms with a single code base, you can prefer the Xamarin framework.

Xamarin is an open-source, cross-platform mobile app development framework acquired by Microsoft. It uses .Net and C# programming languages to build cross-platform mobile applications.  

The Xamarin framework consists of three components: Xamarin Platform, Xamarin Cloud, and Xamarin Insights. 

Xamarin Platform provides APIs, controls, run time engines, encryption, authentication, virtual machines, and every other coding tool. Xamarin Cloud is an automated testing platform that allows developers to test the quality on various devices. And Xamarin Insights tracks application crashes and exceptions in real-time.  

Benefits of Xamarin app framework:  

  1. Provided exceptional performance as a native app
  2. Compatibility across various platforms and devices
  3. It supports MVC (Model-View-Controller) and MVVM (Model-View-ViewModel) architectures
  4. Native UI support
  5. Huge community to support
  6. Good for offline apps
  7. The cost-effective and faster development process

The rising demand for commercial mobile devices and the advent of cross-platform applications are anticipated to foster the growth of the mobile application development platform market globally in the future.

5. PhoneGap app development framework:

phonegap

PhoneGap was initially built by Nitobi in 2011 and launched as Apache Cordova. However, after its acquisition by Adobe, it was named Adobe PhoneGap. 

PhoneGap is an open-source and cross-platform custom mobile app development framework used by many app developers. To build cross-platform applications, PhoneGap uses popular technologies like Javascript, CSS3 & HTML5. 

PhoneGap framework helps in developing responsive mobile apps that can deliver top-notch performance across all platforms and devices. PhoneGap doesn’t have any restrictions to access some in-built hardware features like camera, GPS, Accelerometer, and more. 

Benefits of PhoneGap app framework:

  1. Code reusability
  2. No hardware restrictions
  3. Compatibility
  4. Plugin Library and third-party tools

How to choose a mobile app development framework?

With the continuous evolutions in technology tools, there are many app development frameworks available in the market. However, choosing an app development framework certainly depends on the current requirements and long-term business objectives.  

Thus to make your mobile app framework selection easy, answer these questions.

  1. Where are your target audience and preferred platform? Android or iOS, or both 
  2. What type of framework should be adopted? Native, Hybrid, or cross-platform
  3. What are the must-have features to build your app? i.e features required to develop MVP
  4. What are the plugins required to make the development process seamless?
  5. How should the user interface be? 
  6. Hardware compatibility

Having answers to these questions will make your app development framework selection easy and effective.

However, if you search on Google, you will find many app development frameworks with captivating features. Selecting the right framework that fits your requirements would help you save money and time. 

Above all, remember, you can add new features to your app on the go. Therefore, choose a framework, develop an app, and test its performance across various devices. If you find it can reach your expectations and comply with modern security standards, move ahead and add other features.

Amzur mobile app development services:

Want to build a remarkable cross-platform mobile application that has vibrant native UI/UX design and features? Get in touch with Amzur’s mobile app development experts today. 

We are one of the leading mobile app development outsourcing companies in Tampa, Florida, with a strong offshore presence in India. 

We have proven expertise in developing and delivering applications at the pace of innovation that ensures seamless customer experience and improved sales. Amzur can help you in developing customer-focused Android and iOS mobile apps to create a digital-first experience. 

Our elite team of app developers has helped many SMEs accelerate their digital transformation journey. Our futuristic mobile apps are scalable and can be easily integrated with third-party apps to drive operational efficiency and improved productivity.

Want to build an app that scales your business and brings a good ROI? Let us help you with the best mobile app development framework.