Responsive web design or Native Apps? Which to choose?

March 28, 2017

Nowadays, when user consumption has changed drastically and mobility takes the lead, companies face the need to adapt quickly. The process of becoming mobile can be challenging from the technical perspective as well as the marketing point of view. Therefore, many businesses raise a question if a responsive web design or a mobile app is a better decision.  Let’s explore both alternatives and review their pros and cons.

Before making a decision whether one or another is better, it is important to understand that it’s not a black-and-white decision. Both options have their benefits and the decision depends on many factors. However, in order to ease the process of choosing your mobile development strategy, we will review all the advantages and disadvantages of both options.

Mobile application is software downloaded and installed on the user’s mobile device. It is developed for use on wireless devices, rather than computers. Accordingly, this reveals the main beneficial attribute of the app. When a person downloads an app to his device, the company can use certain data in it and to view it you don’t necessarily have to have an Internet connection. On the contrary, a responsive web needs an Internet connection to work. It means that information you want to communicate won’t be available anytime, anywhere.

Additionally, if you build your mobile development strategy based on releasing a mobile app, you benefit from push notifications that could be used only for mobile apps and attract the user’s attention. However, there are several more significant advantages compared to a responsive web. With a mobile app you can access functions like camera or calendar. On the other hand, a responsive web can’t access these functions outside the browser. These limitations not only affect the performance of the product, but also curb the creativity in terms of the design of its features. Moreover, nowadays there are advanced technologies like QR codes, voice recognition and augmented reality which all can’t be used with a responsive web on mobile devices.

However, native apps are more expensive than a responsive web. Why? Primarily, developers have to create a unique design and codebase for every operating system. It is also worth mentioning that all the development as well as dealing with different approval processes that each OS requires are time-consuming

After the short analysis of both alternatives, the question worth discussing is: how native apps benefit pilots in aviation industry? First off, there are numerous mobile applications for pilots that ease the process of training, flight planning or tracking. For instance, very often pilots encounter the difficulties of the weather forecast. An application like ‘My Radar’ is an easy to use mobile app that displays weather radar around your location and allows to quickly check if any weather disturbance is coming your way.  However, one of the most important processes of pilot training is flight tracking and there are not only mobile apps, but many more advanced software solutions and devices that could ease this process of flight tracking.  The Flight Tracker device, developed by MOMoook, enables tracking flight status in real time as well as gathers flight related data.

All in all, the benefits of a mobile application and its impact on aviation training process are clear. Additionally, in a nutshell, it seems that mobile apps are a better, though more expensive solution compared to a responsive web. Mobile apps are superior in terms of quality, speed, functionality and performance. Most importantly, there could be identified more advantages of mobile apps, but it is essential to understand that the decision depends on many other factors like a financial situation or other needs of your company. After having considered all the factors carefully, it is easier to make the right decision and to choose the most suitable mobile development strategy!