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Progressive Web App: Are They Better than Native Apps?

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PWAs, Are They Better than Native Apps

Mobile apps, undoubtedly, have become the core part of every brand’s existence. You would hardly find any company who does not have or is not planning to have a business mobile app. But, let’s turn towards the less asked question: Are all the business leaders successful at launching an app that their users need? Are all the users satisfied with the working of their favorite brand’s mobile application?

When it comes to customer satisfaction and retention, one of the major challenges that the business leaders encounter with is: How to provide the best native experience at the lowest memory consumption and app development cost?

If you too are struggling with this question, this article will be a worthy read for you. Here, we will discuss PWA – the right solution for the aforementioned challenge, along with determining whether or not it is a better option over Native app development.

Progressive Web Apps (PWAs)

Progressive Web Apps, in the simplest sense, are the web apps that appear and function just like Native apps. These apps are developed using web technologies (like HTML, CSS, and JavaScript, can be accessed on any browser (the choice of the browser won’t affect the user experience), and are not submitted to the App Stores. But, at the same time, these apps provide you with the opportunity to access native device features and enjoy the native experience. You share and install the app via a link and tap on the app icon placed on your home screen, whenever required.

This brings the businesses with an entirely new and profitable method to engage the target audience who hesitate to download the app due to the shortage of memory space or unavailability of native features, along with retaining the users via push notifications, as verified by reputed brands like NASA, Twitter, Uber, Flipkart, Tinder, Trivago, Starbucks, and Treebo who have shifted to Progressive web app development and enjoyed a plethora of benefits, like:-

  • Tinder unveiled that their app loading time reduced by 4.69 seconds.
  • Trivago enjoyed 97% rise in click out to hotels.
  • Uber revealed that the app loading time decreased by 3 seconds.
  • PetLove observed 2.8% increase in conversions.
  • experienced 25% more user engagement.
  • Treebo claimed to have 4x conversions after investing in PWA.

These numbers and the skyrocketing competition have tempted the businesses to shift from traditional app development processes to Progressive web app development. But, at the same time, have made all the app curious and business leaders struggle with the question if PWAs are going to be the next big thing in the mobile app development phase. Or it would end up like any other lacklustre trend, with native apps again the ruler of the industry. If you too are facing this question, here’re a few pointers that you can consider for making the right choice for your business future.

Progressive Web Apps vs Native Apps: A Comparative Guide

In this part of the article, we will dig deeper into the technical and marketing aspects of both the technologies to compare and determine which mobile app development option to go with. But in case you are in a hurry, here’s a quick snapshot of different factors that will help you to select what’s right for your mobile app development needs: Native vs PWA:-


FactorsNative App DevelopmentProgressive Web App Development
LanguageObjective-C or Swift for iOS app development; Java or Kotlin for Android app developmentHTML, CSS, JavaScript
DiscoverabilityLower scopeHigher scope
Market ReachMinimalMaximum
SEO FriendlyNoYes
Need to Upload on App Store/Play StoreYes, definitely.Not required.
Battery Drainage RatioLowHigh
Interaction with Device FeaturesHighLow
Responsive NatureHighLow
AccessibilityLower scopeHigher scope
App Development CostHighLow
Third-Party Apps InteractionHighNo interaction with third-party apps. Works in isolation
Download requirementYes, there is.No download option possible. Can be accessed and shared via a link.


Now as you have a glimpse of what we are going to discuss, let’s jump into the factors directly:

  1. App Development Cost

When it comes to how much does it cost to make an app, Progressive web app development is cheaper than Native app development. While the development cost for a PWA is around $3,000-$9000, the Native app development cost begins from $25,000.

The main reason behind this stark difference between the price values is that PWAs need not abide by the standards set by Google Play Store and Apple App Store for Android and iOS mobile application development. So, if you want to enter the mobile market with the lowest budget, pick PWA development.

  1. Native Device Features Integration

Another factor to consider while picking the best mobile app development platform is Native device features accessibility. While both the PWA and Native mobile apps render you with the opportunity to use native device features into the app, PWAs still lag behind Native applications. So, if your mobile application needs an excessive use of native device features, prefer Native over PWA development.

  1. Third-Party Apps Integration

The Native applications can easily integrate with various other third-party applications and provide you with the best of the combined services. However, it is not possible in the case of Progressive web apps which work in an isolated environment. So, if you are developing an app, let’s say an On-demand application, which will depend upon various other applications to deliver an exceptional experience to the target audience, go with Native app development.

  1. App Store Involvement

The Native apps can be downloaded and updated from the App Stores only. However, there is no as such rule for the Progressive web apps. The PWAs are accessed, installed and used via a link, making the app launch process faster and simpler. This reduces the time required to install and employ an application, which again implies PWAs are the winner.

  1. Customer Experience

The PWAs emerge out as a solution to the main pain point of the customers from the Native development, i.e. memory consumption and regular app updates. A PWA lets the users install and use the app directly from a link rather than going through the complete hassle of searching the app on App Store (or Play Store) and install it. Besides, the Progressive web app does not demand updates frequently. This can be proven by the fact that 60% of the customers who have uninstalled the Flipkart app returned to the brand when they turned towards PWA technology. So, when considering this factor, the winner is PWA.

  1. Unsurety of App Idea

As mentioned earlier, the Progressive web apps are a good option over Native applications when you are a newbie to the market or are unsure of your app idea. In short, when you are just experimenting with your app idea. But, at the same time, don’t want to waste a lot of many in the worst scenario.

So, as we covered in this article, there’s a tough competition between Native and Progressive web apps when it comes to choosing the best option for mobile app development. Both are emerging out with the best of the features and possibilities. None of them is better than the other at all the pointers. So, to make a better decision, it is advisable that you look into the results for the prime factors you put on a higher priority and then choose the right app development type.

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