Native vs Hybrid vs Cross Platform – What to Choose in 2023?

Posted By : Admin

16 Feb , 2023

Native platform development

The mobile app industry has seen a massive surge in popularity over the past few years, with more and more developers creating applications for both Android and iOS. With such a wide range of options, it can be difficult to decide which platform to develop. While it may be tempting to go with the most popular platform, there are several key differences between native and cross-platform apps that should be considered before making a decision. 

Native vs Hybrid vs Cross Platform

Native apps are applications specifically developed for a single platform. This means that developers must create separate versions for both Android and iOS. While this approach can be more time-consuming and expensive, it allows for the most optimized user experience. Native apps are typically better integrated into the platform, making them more reliable and providing access to a greater range of features. 

Hybrid apps are mobile applications that combine elements of both native and web applications. They are developed using web technologies such as HTML, CSS, and JavaScript and then wrapped in a native container. This gives them access to native platform features such as a device’s camera, GPS, accelerometer, and other hardware. They also have access to web-based technologies such as AJAX, CSS3, HTML5, and JavaScript. Hybrid apps can be downloaded and installed from app stores just like native apps, but they are hosted inside a native application that uses a mobile platform’s WebView. This allows them to run on multiple platforms, such as iOS and Android, without requiring multiple codebases.

Cross-platform apps, on the other hand, are built to work on multiple platforms simultaneously. This approach is more cost-effective and allows developers to reach a broader audience. However, these apps are often not as well integrated into the platform and may not be able to take advantage of the full range of features available. 

What Is Native App Development?

The phrase "native app development" describes the process of creating a mobile application specifically for one platform. The app was created using tools and programming languages that are exclusive to one platform. For instance, you can create native iOS apps using Swift and Objective-C and native Android apps using Java or Kotlin.

Since native apps are typically high-performing, they are known for providing exceptional user experiences. Since the visuals are designed with the platform's UX in mind, the user experience is also improved. However, because they must conduct concurrent development for both platforms, startups worry about the high cost of native app development.

What is Hybrid App Development?

The process of creating an app that is compatible with multiple operating systems, including iOS, Android, and Windows, is known as hybrid app development. The apps are created by combining web technologies like HTML, CSS, and JavaScript with native container software, giving them access to the hardware and software features of the device. Although hybrid apps can be developed more quickly and more cheaply than native apps, they often don't perform as well.

What Is Cross-Platform App Development?

The process of developing an app that is compatible with multiple platforms is known as cross-platform app development. The apps created can be deployed on both Android and iOS by using tools like React Native, Xamarin, and Flutter.

Cross-platform development companies can reduce costs and time, but there is a chance that quality will suffer. The performance of an app will suffer as a result of the additional abstraction layer that is required to make it run optimally across different platforms.

Startups will prefer cross-platform development because of the time and money savings. You should be aware, though, that going beyond the framework's permitted customizations may prove more challenging.

What To Consider When Choosing An Approach To Build a Mobile App

The Complexity of the Application

Cross-platform development will be a wise choice if you're creating an app that simply displays data fetched from the network. However, you should choose native development if it involves intensive processing or calls for access to low-level APIs like Bluetooth.


Although native development results in high-performing apps, it can be expensive to build. Cross-platform development is the best option if you only have a small budget to work with. As only one codebase is needed to create an app that runs on both iOS and Android, you'll save between 30% and 40%.

Development Period

In some projects, you'll want to launch an MVP app right away. Here is where cross-platform development should be taken into account. There is no need to develop two versions of the app. Instead, an app can be published for both Android and iOS after just one cycle of development.


Native development is the solution if you're looking for stunning visuals and an engaging user experience. When working in a native environment, developers have access to UI/UX components. Cross-platform will significantly restrict the UI/UX of the app.

Analyzing the Benefits and Drawbacks of App Development

Every business has a different set of factors guiding the development of its apps. You can confidently choose the best course of action once you have clearly defined your priorities.

Native app development


  • Non-reusable code
  • Superior performance
  • Intuitive, customizable UX
  • Reduced productivity
  • Direct hardware access
  • Offline functionality
  • Built-in security


  • Slower time to market
  • Limited audience reach
  • Higher costs

Hybrid app development


  • Reusable code
  • Rapid time to market
  • Broad audience reach
  • Greater cost efficiencies
  • Offline functionality


  • Slower performance
  • Inconsistent, non-customizable UX
  • Restricted hardware access
  • Increased security configurations

Cross-platform app development


  • Reusable code
  • Rapid time to market
  • Robust performance
  • Close-to-native UX
  • Broad audience reach
  • Greater cost efficiencies


  • Limited customization and personalization
  • Restricted hardware access
  • No offline functionality
  • Increased security configurations

Which Platform to Use: Native, Hybrid, or Cross-Platform?

Now that we are aware of the three mobile app development frameworks, business owners naturally wonder which strategy is the best. Whether you choose native, hybrid, or cross-platform depends on a variety of factors, including the project's requirements, budget, business model, target market, demographics, and more.

Startup companies can easily understand native vs. cross-platform vs. hybrid and investigate which app development framework best fits their business in the long run by taking a look at the dropdown below.

1. Performance

Selecting a native mobile app development approach is the smart move to make when it comes to providing the best performance to the users and comparing cross-platform, hybrid, and native app performance. With native Android app development, you can easily learn about next-generation smartphone features, such as memory management, network, wireless access points, and more, to optimize service delivery and subsequently boost the performance of the app as a whole.

2. Time to Market

The Apple App Store sees the monthly release of about 29.5K mobile apps. Businesses are working hard to get their app launched on the App Store and Play Store as soon as possible because of the intense competition in the market. When comparing time to market, native apps take the longest for their development lifecycle, followed by cross-platform and hybrid platforms. Hybrid and cross-platform apps are also worthwhile to take into account as they offer a quicker time to market.

3. Development Costs

Every startup business's main concern is its budget, and they expect to be able to create a high-quality, contemporary mobile app within that budget. A startup with a small budget cannot, therefore, afford a native app. The best option is cross-platform app development because it allows programmers to create a single source code that can then be modified to create the desired OS-based app. Additionally, cross-platform app development requires significantly less time and money.

4. App Security

The protection of sensitive data and the data of their clients and customers is now a top priority for business owners, who prioritize app security at all costs. App security should be your top priority if your business deals with sensitive customer data, whether it be in the eCommerce sector or another industry. Delivering bug-free apps is crucial for business owners or custom application development companies since compromising user security and sensitive data can instantly ruin their credibility. 

In terms of security, native apps have several built-in security features, as opposed to hybrid and cross-platform apps. With the help of these features, developers can easily integrate file encryption and intelligent fraud detection into the fundamental OS libraries, ensuring the highest level of security for the apps. Startups, on the other hand, place a greater emphasis on development costs and time to market, favoring hybrid and cross-platform app development frameworks. And once their apps are established and well-known in the market, they can eventually transition to native apps to guarantee overall app security.

5. Customization & UX

Customers claim that a poor user experience is a reason why 70% of them abandoned their shopping carts. 90% of smartphone users claim that if they have a positive user experience, they are more likely to continue shopping. Modern consumers have higher expectations from brands, and the first thing they want from a company is a rich user experience throughout their app journey. It shows that the user experience of the mobile application alone determines the overall user retention rate.

Businesses must focus on providing personalization, customization, and enhanced usability. Since native apps have pre-built libraries and interface components and are customizable, they hold better UI capabilities when compared to hybrid and cross-platform mobile app development. Therefore, the best option for customization and UX is native app development. 

In conclusion, the choice of platform to use for development depends on the particular requirements of the application. Contact Lanware Solutions, the leading custom application development company, right away to learn more about how we can assist you in making the best choice.


1. What distinguishes native apps from cross-platform apps and hybrid apps from native apps?

Cross-platform and hybrid apps are created using reusable code, while native apps are created using non-reusable code. Thus, native, hybrid, and cross-platform mobile apps vary in terms of speed, user experience (UX), price, time to market, and other aspects.

2. Native platform development: what is it?

Building mobile apps using platform-specific tools and programming languages is known as "native app development." Native development offers the best performance and UXs, especially for complex enterprise apps and rich-media gaming apps.

3. Hybrid platform development: what is it?

Using web-based technologies, hybrid platform development creates mobile apps that share natively rendered backend code across platforms. A hybrid approach reduces effort, costs, and development time while producing subpar UXs and performance.

4. Cross-platform development: what is it?

Organizations can streamline the creation of mobile apps across platforms by writing code only once and then reusing it. This strategy shortens the time to market while lowering the price of development and maintenance.

5. What is the difference between cross-platform, native, and hybrid apps?

A cross-platform, native, or hybrid app should be created depending on the functionality, complexity, and target audience. The decision-making process is also influenced by factors like financial constraints, time to market, developer expertise, and other business priorities.

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