9 Popular Mobile App Frameworks in 2019

Mobile App Development Frameworks build apps faster

Apps can be built using each platforms native tools Objective-C , Swift for iOS and Kotlin, Java for Android.

They can also be built using the cross platform mobile app development frameworks that would allow the app to work on multiple operating systems allowing developers to write less code.

 In this article i’ll explain what mobile app development frameworks are and some of the benefits of the most popular mobile app development frameworks

What is a Mobile Application Framework?

An application framework acts as a tool to supply the structure and templates for constructing an application.

It lessens the effort of developers by supporting them along the app creation process with  inbuilt tools like compilers, debuggers, application programming interfaces, different code libraries and many other components.

Its usage greatly simplifies the whole development process. Instead of writing an application from scratch and dealing with large portions of code to make your application work on different platforms – you use a framework. 

Advantages of using frameworks include
  • It provides a better beginning for software development and aids in rapid application development. by allowing to reuse components
  • Code and design reusability helps in the usage of tested components, which increases the quality. It results in reduction of errors and a lower cost of development 

Most Popular Mobile App Frameworks

1. Ionic

Ionic is an open-source platform which provides cross-platform mobile application development.

Ionic,an open source framework used for building mobile apps

Uses Cordova or PhoneGap to deploy natively or runs in the browser as a progressive web app.It uses the JavaScript MVVM framework and Angular JS to build native like apps

It also has access to over 120 native device features with Cordova/PhoneGap plugins and TypeScript extensions.

It provides all the functionality that can be found in native mobile development SDK’s (Software Development Kit) which means when the app is being built it can access all the native features like the camera, contacts etc.

Ionic also provides a powerful CLI(Common Language Infrastructure) that allows developers to add Cordova plugins with additional packages that enable push notifications and Splash Screens

Developers can use a set of default UI elements thus helping them to focus more on developing apps .

  

It supports all versions of Android and iOS from Android 4.1 and iOS 7 respectively.

Examples of apps built  using Ionic Framework are   McDonald’s Turkiye, ChefSteps, Untappd, and Diesel.

 

Advantages

  1. Free and Easy to adopt:Ionic is an open source project under MIT ..—Who was involved in the creation of ionic
  2. Cross-platform app development:Write once run anywhere .Apps written on Ionic can run on multiple operating systems.
  3. Performance

2. React Native

Developed by Facebook .Used to create native apps.

Based on ReactJS and Javascript.

React Native

Apps are fast with smooth animations and have native like performance as it compiles to native code

The application logic is written and run in Javascript while the UI is fully native.This allows developers to get the look and feel of a native app without having to use traditional languages

Examples of apps using React Native are Instagram, Messenger, Skype, and Amazon Prime Videos.

 

Advantages
  • Can create high performing apps with shorter development cycles
  • Cross platform:Apps can be created for multiple operating systems 

3. Xamarin

Xamarin is a cross platform mobile app development framework introduced by Microsoft that allows you to develop Android and iOS apps.

Xamarin

Allows code sharing across multiple platforms saving developers a lot of time thereby shortening the development cycle.

Examples of apps built using Xamarin are The World Bank, Olo,  Insightly and FreshDirect

Advantages
  • Based on C#
  • Has great native user interface & controls
  • Xamarin Framework allows you to generate code that can access every native API

4. Adobe Phonegap

Also called Apache Cordova is open source and used to build hybrid apps that can be installed natively across multiple operating systems

Allows developers to develop apps without any hardware restrictions.

Adobe Phonegap

Cordova provides a set of JavaScript API’s that allow apps to use inbuilt device features like GPS, Camera, Contacts, Storage and accelerometer . 

Examples of apps built using PhoneGap are Paylution, The DHS Program, HealthTap, Wikipedia, and TripCase.

Advantages
  • Large developer community that regularly updates the framework
  • Access to native hardware components.
  • Allows developers with even limited knowledge of HTML,CSS and Javascript to build apps

5. Flutter

logo of Flutter

Launched by Google.

It is an open-source mobile application development SDK for creating hybrid apps.

 

Flutter apps are built using Dart, a object oriented programming language.

It makes use of the 2D rendering engine called Skia to develop the visuals.

Examples of apps built using Flutter are Alibaba, AppTree, Google Ads,  Google Greentea, Tencent and Bitfolio

  

Advantages
  • Expressive and flexible designs with composable widget sets, rich animation libraries, and a layered, extensible architecture.
  • Fast and Simple:Hot reload allows you to instantly view the changes made in the code on emulators, simulators and hardware.The changed code is reloaded while the app is running with no need for a restart.

6. Corona

Developed by Corona Labs in 2009.

This software development kit allows developers to create fast and powerful cross platform apps .

Screenshot of Corona Website 

Uses Lua, a light-weight programming language to create apps that are ten times faster than other mobile development frameworks.

Being the fastest mobile app development framework, it is used mostly for developing gaming apps.

Examples of apps built using this framework are Zip Zap, I Love Hue, Fun Run 2, The Lost City, Mandora, Egg Baby, and Draw Rider Plus.

Advantages
  • Cross Platform Development: Corona SDK can create apps for both iOS and Android devices .
  • Performance: Corona is optimized to make use of hardware accelerated features which results in powerful performance

7. JQuery Mobile

Built on top of solid jQuery and jQuery UI foundation, jQuery Mobile focuses mainly on performance.

jQuery Mobile

Can be used to build both both mobile apps as well as websites and gets extensive support for all types of operating systems including Windows, Mac OS, Blackberry, Firefox, and Kindle

Easier to use than JavaScript libraries  as less code is written to attain the same features .

Advantages
  • Cross Platform:Can create apps not only for multiple operating systems but also for multiple devices like desktops , Tablets and e-readers like Kindle.
  • Easy to Learn:If you already know jQuery and JavaScript ,you don’t have to learn any new syntax

8. Mobile Angular UI

Mobile Angular UI

It is a mobile UI  framework that combines features of Bootstrap and Angular framework.It does not have heavy dependencies such as bootstrap.js and jQuery.

Advantages
  •   Excellently styled default controls
  •   Provides mobile components not found in Bootstrap.

9. Django

It is a web framework written in Python programming language, which allows programmers to build web applications with clean and readable code. 

Django logo

The built in security features provided by Django help programmers protect the web applications from security attacks like cross-site scripting and SQL injection

 Advantages:
  • Fast :Designed to help developers make apps as fast as possible that is both cost effective and efficient.
  • Has robust security features
  • Scalable: Can meet heavy traffic demands.
  • Supported by a large and active community of developers.

 

 

Conclusion:

Frameworks help you in building your app in the easiest and fastest manner while allowing your apps to look and work like a professional one. 

Choosing the right framework is important as it is the base of your application.

Study what frameworks offer and what functions you would likely be using from it.

Understand exactly what application you are going to build and what functions it has to perform and match them with the framework that suits you best . 

Still have questions? Still hesitant to develop an app using a framework?

Comment below and our team of developers will gladly answer all your questions

Pravin Selva Ganesan

Pravin selva Ganesan is a digital marketer at Intrepid IT Services-a leading mobile and web app development company in Chennai . He writes primarily about tech and mobile news.

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