Applications are software that help users to complete tasks, application software types have the most interaction with a user, and in other words they make most use of a Graphical user Interface (GUI). An app is a similar thing but Apps usually have limited functions compared to applications, and that’s why we see mostly applications in personal computers whereas our mobiles and tablets are filled with apps. This is because Apps have limited functionality and are suited for small screen devices. Apps are designed to use the features of mobiles and tablets and are the main reason why these devices are so easy to use.
There are 3 types of mobile apps: Native, Web and Hybrid. The general apps that we are most used to downloading from Play store or IOS are Native apps. We call them native apps because they can only work on one platform, so a developer needs to create a different native app for each platform in the market. They are expensive to develop as well. Native apps have the highest performance and can use the device’s features such as camera, GPS, call, messages, etc. They are easily distributed through their platforms (Play Store and IOS). Developers can benefit from Play Store and App Store ratings and also fund themselves from in-app purchases.
What is a web app then?
Well, would you prefer using internet from phone if you were prompted to download an app in each web page? This is where the work of web-based apps lies; they don’t need to be downloaded, so do not take up local storage. Moreover, users from all kinds of platform can access a web-based app, so developers only need to main one source code, and update it whenever they want. However, web-apps cannot be used offline, but this can be considered an advantage as users always experience the latest version of a web app. But users still prefer using apps because compared to native apps, web apps are slower and also have no access to a device’s hardware features.
Is there an intermediate between both?
Yes, it’s known a hybrid app. A hybrid app just has a web app within it, increasing its capabilities. They have the features of both native and web-based apps. The greater advantage of hybrid apps is they cost less as they are developed to work on multiple platforms, such as both Android and IOS. Everything has its cons, so does hybrid apps and these include lower performance compared to native apps, and lack of some features that can be found specifically in android or IOS apps, developers also need highly skilled workers for creation, development and maintenance of a hybrid app.