Well, the real question here is whether to develop a native app or go ahead by designing a responsive website. This is a tough call to make while planning and designing an approach for application development. We have been in the web designing and application development business for a long time. Hopefully, we can give shed some light on this topic.
Let’s start by defining what a native application is, a native application is designed to perform on a particular platform. This platform can be Android, IOS or even windows depending upon the objectives of the business. A native app is designed as per specifications and guidelines for a particular platform or device. For example, YouTube offers background playback for Android devices. But to date, Apple users are waiting for this feature of their iPhones.
A responsive website is self-optimizing and it provides the best experience to users no matter what device is being used. The device may be an Android or an Apple or a user may be using their computer device to access the website. Each device will be able to browse and scroll without any issues on a responsive website.
A responsive website optimizes itself to offer a better viewing experience to the user irrespective of the device he/she may be used with minimum resizing, panning and scrolling. The main purpose of designing a responsive website is to have only one website but still offering ease of use for different devices.
This approach allows the business to build its digital presence without having to invest in developing an application for their business. With the increase in the use of smartphones for viewing websites and webpages, having a responsive website is essential to offer better user experience and interface to each type of device users.
Remember the old days where some websites which used to work brilliantly on a computer device gave users navigation problems or scrolling issues through the content properly on mobile phones. This is because a mobile device has a smaller screen size than a desktop or laptop device and thus the navigation and scrolling experience is different for each device. A responsive website eliminates this issue and gives almost similar experience throughout devices. This gave users almost similar experience across all types of devices.
Why a responsive website is better than a native application, well as you have read above the major differences between a responsive website and a native application. We can say that instead of developing an application for different platforms having a responsive website is a much better option. To further support this statement we can sum up a few more points which may help shed more light.
The main reasons why one can use responsive web designing over application development are:
- A responsive website is cheaper than a mobile application as it requires less planning and development time. Also, there is no need to change the coding language as per the different mobile platforms.
- A responsive website works properly on all the devices and platforms. Thus, there is no need to develop an application for a particular platform or device.
- The number of smartphone users, from 30 percent to almost 76 percent in the year 2019. Users were switching from computer devices to smartphones for internet access.
A concern that most people have is whether to use a responsive website or not. Well, you can use either of these approaches, or you can have both. It all comes down to your business objectives and the timeline for which you are planning your strategies.
Being a tech development agency here in Singapore, we can give an example. Our website is responsive as we value our visitors’ experience. This provides visitors from different platforms or devices full accessibility to our website. As the term stands, customers are the major stakeholders and they should get the best experience.