Ionic Framework arrived in the mobile app development scene in 2013 and is now a preferred choice for hybrid mobile application development. It was introduced as an open source SDK for providing a platform for Android and iOS hybrid mobile app development and known for offering platform specific UI elements for both iOS and Android via its library of native components. Basically an npm module, it now has around 5 million apps built using it and requires Node.js installed to function. Web-pages created are run on device’s browser instance WebView, to gain every bit of the functionality required Ionic Native was created based on a set of Cordova plugins to support APIs & integration.
Advantages in Ionic mobile app development:
- Reduction of development costs saving on hiring native developers, on codebase maintenance.
- Easy maintenance via built-in browser debugging tools and instrument.
- Faster time-to-market on both Android and iOS platforms.
- Easily transform your Ionic app into a desktop application or PWA
The economic advantage of Ionic framework is obvious for a mobile app developer / development company. If you intend to launch your hybrid mobile app quickly on both the app stores, it becomes significantly cheaper than native app development across iOS, Android or even Windows devices, using a single codebase.
The Ease in Learning and Using Popular Technologies
- Front-end developers can quickly grasp the basics of Ionic which is considered to be an easy-to-learn tool or select from various frameworks that it supports. It is easy to create applications using the web technology stack, but to fix or develop a plugin specifically, you’ll need a native mobile app developer.
Wide choice of Integration and Plugins
Get more out of your Ionic application by integrating it with numerous tools provided for security, payment, analytics and others. It also has many plugins that help it integrate with the hardware of the devices.
Wide range of UI Elements to use.
Thanks to Ionic’s UI component library, a wide range of components can be used to construct graphic user interface (GUI) quickly and also customize, paired with web components; Mimicking the native look and feel at no additional costs.
Using ready-made UI elements, Ionic creates prototyping of the app under development in a short time. Developers use the Ionic Creator to drag and drop components to speedily construct an interactive prototype but not the whole app.
Convenient Mobile app Testing
As Ionic mobile apps work via WebView, the device’s browser can be utilized to test the app. Browsers offer built-in debugging and testing tools for convenient testing for Ionic apps.
Some of the drawbacks
- Ionic mobile app development lacks performance when it comes to heavy applications compared with native applications.
- Rendering the app on WebView will give good results for common functionality as it is browser centric. But in case of heavy applications that may use augmented reality, via the device or in the case of heavy graphics, 3D animation, it will slow down the app. Some community authorities claim that poor performance is not the fault of the framework itself but of bad code.
- In software development hot reloading is seen as a standard feature. Ionic does not provide hot reloading using live reloading instead. Whenever developers apply changes the app has to be restarted.
- When building hybrid apps security is a common issue. Basically your Ionic application is a website running on the device. So you have to use security measures on the app just as you protect your site.
The question is whether you have the in-depth knowledge about web and mobile application. Nevertheless, before taking up ionic mobile app development, it is wise to first make a cost benefit analysis to assess whether a mobile platform is viable for your business. If yes, go for an hybrid mobile app development, as it can work on both major mobile app platforms for more users and on many devices too, to push your online presence.
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