Accessing Android / iOS with JavaScript, HTML and CSS - Visual Studio Magazine

Accessing Android / iOS with JavaScript, HTML and CSS – Visual Studio Magazine

Question and Answer

Hybrid Web Frameworks Q&A with Allen Conway: Access Android/iOS with JavaScript, HTML, and CSS

Learn how offerings like Ionic, Cordova, and others offer an alternative to live web development, Progressive Web Applications (PWAs), native development, and other cross-platform development frameworks like Xamarin (now .NET MAUI), Flutter, React Native, etc. .

Hybrid web frameworks provide a popular approach to cross-platform application development where programmers can target iOS and Android platforms with a single code base consisting of JavaScript, HTML and CSS.

As such, offerings like Ionic, Cordova, and others provide an alternative for live web development, Progressive Web Applications (PWAs), native development, and other cross-platform development frameworks like Xamarin (now .NET MAUI), Flutter, React Native, etc. on me.

As always with these alternative development approaches, choice comes with a series of trade-offs, with each option having its own pros and cons. As seen in 2017 Application development trends article, “Native hybrid apps won a new pollThe benefits of the hybrid approach have been recognized for years, but are still gaining traction with new offerings and functionality.

Native vs Hybrid vs Web Comparison
[Click on image for larger view.] Native vs Hybrid vs Web Comparison (Source: Upwork).

One reason for this is that by working with a single code base consisting of JavaScript, HTML, and CSS, developers can target both mobile operating systems while reducing development time and reaching far beyond just browser- and web-based applications using familiar web technology.

We met a hybrid development expert Allen Conway To get his thoughts on the hybrid approach ahead of his next presentation on November 15, “Quick Focus: Hybrid Web Frameworks“in huge Live! 360 Technology Conference held in Orlando November 13-18.

In the session, Conway will discuss some of the mainstream frameworks like Ionic to see how they can be leveraged to build hybrid web applications, while also briefly looking at the differences between “hybrid web frameworks” and “native mobile frameworks” and the pros and downsides of each.

Here’s what Conway, Web Client Practice Lead at Cognizant Softvision, had to say in a short Q&A.

VisualStudio Magazine: How does working with a single JavaScript/HTML/CSS code base to target both Android and iOS help teams reduce development time and reach beyond browser- and web-only applications?
Conway: Hybrid web frameworks inherently allow write once to take advantage of the web stack, deploying a script anywhere with the goal of native platforms and devices. This allows teams with existing web skills to reuse their core knowledge to build mobile apps first, reducing time to target Android, iOS, and the web without having to manage multiple separate languages ​​and code bases.

What are the tradeoffs involved?
The main trade-off of hybrid web development versus true on-premises development is that you work from an abstraction like Capacitor or Cordova. These abstractions give us the ability to program an original “black box”, but at the cost of not having the maximum capabilities and accessibility of each platform.

Can you explain the differences between “hybrid web frameworks” and “native mobile frameworks” and the pros and cons of each?
Hybrid Web Frameworks work through an abstraction such as Capacitor or Cordova to access the device and work with WebView, but allow working almost exclusively with web technologies.

“Hybrid web frameworks work through an abstraction such as Capacitor or Cordova to access the device and work with WebView, but allow it to work almost exclusively with web technologies.”

Allen Conway, Principal Consultant Web Client Practice for Cognizant Softvision

Native Mobile Frameworks targets native controls and APIs via JavaScript to build truly native apps, but requires more coding and knowledge for each platform than using web technologies exclusively.

How appropriate are mainstream frameworks like Ionic for building hybrid web applications?
Ionic and Capacitor are proven and proven frameworks adopted by the engineering community to solve the needs of organizations in the web and mobile application development space that can handle a variety of software implementation scenarios.

What are the advantages of VS Code over Visual Studio in building a hybrid web application?
The extensions provided in VS Code for Ionic and Capacitor development simplify running, building, debugging, configuring and creating applications. With a suite of integrated functionality, Ionic Extension allows for the productive development of hybrid web applications.

In a 20-minute Quick Focus presentation, what are the key takeaways that attendees will learn?
The main idea learned from a quick focus is to identify exactly which hybrid web frameworks a development background is best suited to take advantage of and take a quick look at how they work.

About the author

David Rammell is an editor and writer at Converge360.

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