From its Seamless Integration with JSX to its Cross Platform compatibility, React Native has come to stay!
Here are 10 things about React Native you probably want to know about.
React Native is Cross Platform
Cross platform app development frameworks allow you to run the same code on multiple operating systems. In this section, we examine why you might choose developing cross platform mobile apps over native development, technologies for cross-platform development, and how these technologies compare to each other.
Namely, we compare Flutter vs React Native vs Xamarin — three of the most popular mobile app cross platform frameworks. We want to consider their structure, tooling, and the kind of applications you can develop with them.
1. Advantages Of React Native Over Other Cross Platform Development Tools
Unlike some other cross-platform development frameworks, the React Native framework implements a selection of native UI components. This means that applications will look like native apps. If done correctly, a React Native app is hardly distinguishable from a native app.
Simplified development experience:
Native mobile development implements the imperative programming approach, an approach where developers need to strictly define a sequence of actions that describe how the application works in order to create a user interface.
With React Native however, developers can use declarative programming, outlining only what the program needs to do and not how it should be done. Declarative programming makes for simpler code and easier coding, which also means that the end product will be easier to maintain.
React Native supports architecture modularity, which allows separating application code into several self reliant blocks. This results in flexible development, making it easy and seamless to upgrade and update the end product.
Ready-made solutions and libraries:
Because React Native has been around for quite a while, developers have had time to build a variety of tools and libraries to automate and aid most routine processes involved in app production. There are testing frameworks, tools for type checking, technologies for workflow setup, optimization and so on. This means that developers will have an easier time solving tricky or mundane issues and have more time to spend perfecting the end product.
Because the developer community has endorsed the benefits of React Native, many third-party services have created APIs and plugins to enhance the features of React Native applications as well as to extend their capabilities. There’s third-party support for maps, payment systems, graphics, and much more.
When developing a mobile application, it is quite resourceful to look at the actual app often (possibly after every single change made to the code in order to see updates and results). Hot reloading, a feature available in React Native, allows developers to immediately see changes they make to the code whenever they’re saved.
Great developer community and active ecosystem:
There is a substantial global community evolving around React Native, which also happens to be an open-source platform. A good community is an added advantage because it means that developers are less likely to get stuck when learning the language or developing applications since there are always so many people to go to for help.
These reasons and more makes React Native a Favorite when it comes to cross Platform mobile application development.
2. Write Once Run Anywhere Codebase
Write once run everywhere? I think history taught us that we all should give up on that one. But for React Native, when you call a component ProfileHeader, it can either be implemented commonly for iOS and Android, or separately, and your code still depends on that component directly:
And certainly things like TabBar will be specifically modeled per platform. It is up to you to abstract things in a way that your code will be reusable to as high degree as possible — that’s software engineering, and React Native simply uses React’s compositional model — which means you should be able to do whatever you want t on your application.
3. Updates to your application Can be made Remotely
Facebook says that the glitches in the publishing process of Native applications have forced them to develop React Native.
Let’s think. You want to add a new property to your application. You’ve added this feature on both Android and iOS and you need to update your applications already on the market. One of the problems here is that you can instantly publish your Android app on Google Play while you’ll be under the control of AppStore. This means that the features you develop are published at different times on different platforms.
Especially in A / B testing, we can experience difficulties because data on different platforms arrive at different times. As a workaround, you need to send iOS before. In this case, development processes can lead to various troubles such as the same features of Android and iOS being developed at different times. Of course this is not the only problem. Beyond publishing, the update we publish is not always available to the user. Many users can resist downloading the new update. This, in turn, leads to a lot of additional work, from API versioning to force update.
You can try many alternatives such as Codepush developed by Microsoft regarding remote updating.
4. Application development Using React Native can easily be Sped up
The biggest obstacle for software developers in their development process is undoubtedly limited time. In addition to working overtime to train the project on time, it is important to think seriously about development processes and optimize as much as possible.
On the other hand, we can not overcome some obstacles. When we look at the mobile world, we can think of compile times of languages that we use for Native development. If we use Java, ObjC or Swift language, Compile-time is giving us serious time loss.
5. Many Top Companies Are Using It
The contribution that Facebook has made to the open source world in recent years is an undeniable fact. They have made many technologies open source so that we can meet many beautiful products. It is important to note here that the production of a technology by a large company is not always enough for other developers to trust and incorporate into their systems. The company has to invest in this technology and most importantly it has to use it in its own systems. In this regard, Facebook is one of the most beautiful examples. They develop and adapt it to their systems.
The Facebook Ads Manager and Facebook Groups applications were developed using the React Native framework. In the following period Facebook has added React Native to its own application and Instagram application. The use of React Native in complex applications is important for the observation and resolution of many problems.
6.Styling Is Easily Done with React Native
If you’re doing CSS on the Web, this is what you’ll be looking at, on every project (multiply that pain when you’re a team):
Mobile application developers need to optimize the UI of the application for different devices. In the mobile world where the number of devices is increasing day by day, different screen types make extra effort for developers.
Besides, the time that is spent when the tablet support of the application we have developed is added.
Flexbox is the implementation on the React side of the Flexbox Layout system, which is particularly prominent on the web side.It allows you to do UI development independently of the screen.
While developing your mobile application, you can also apply the design of your tablet application at the same time by applying a few minor exceptions. It is now easier to develop applications for different screens.
Flexbox is not just about React Native, but it is an approach you should try when developing native applications. It’s a good idea to try the Facebook Yoga library.
Pick a higher-level language, such as Sass, Less, Stylus, to allow for variables, inheritance, and mixins in existing work
Set up a build pipeline for that
Go through a browser-specific prefixing processor to add all the pesky -moz, -webkit etc. prefixes.
Minify all that
Fight browser inconsistency for layout and style
Layout is done solely with React Native’s implementation of flexbox, which is arguably one of the most successful layout models a developer can use today. Everything else that exists in CSS was left out, so I say: this is “CSS — the good parts”.
For simple and aggregate types, such as strings, ints, arrays and dictionaries, this works fine. However, for opaque types such as a binary buffer, it is less than optimal: currently there’s no support for passing binary data back and forth and apparently, it is because of a non-optimal Buffer implementation.
The solution is one of two:
Keep the original binary at the Native side, and build native wrapper modules to manipulate it through your own set of commands. The downside here is that you will have to do the bookkeeping in a reliable manner and ensure no binary piece of data is left stale on the device.
8. You don’t break when iOS or Android changes
When you use a library that abstracts over the operating system SDK API, a peculiar thing happens to your codebase: it does not depend on that SDK directly. Surprisingly, this means the following:
Less stress when facing major iOS releases
Less breakage and deprecation of APIs
No need to conform to new or changed language features (i.e. Swift)
No need to adapt to new tools (i.e. Xcode, Intellij/Gradle)
Effectively, you detach yourself from these concerns completely, and you can take defensive actions on your terms, in your time.
9. Learning React is easy
ReactJS, the father of React Native, was the biggest problem syntax in developer’s minds at first release. Front-end developers who have used HTML for years as a template for JSX syntax have frightened. But over time it was actually seen how easy it was. Besides, learning RN compared to native application development is quite simple. And because you are a big community, you can find many books and tutorials.
10. The sky is the Limit with react naitve
Native technologies are constantly evolving and updating. In the components of the React Native core you can not always find your needs and innovations. However, this does not mean that we can not use these new structures or develop custom made ones. Whether it’s a new product on the Native side or a need not found in the React Native, you can connect it with React Native by developing it on the Native side.c
This will give you flexibility that is not available in many hybrid mobile application technologies. In addition, you can make your component or API available again and again.