React Native or Xamarin: Which framework should you Pick in 2022?

React Native or Xamarin: Which framework should you Pick in 2022?
react native app development
Modern-era applications are required to run seamlessly on Android and iOS – the two major operating systems. Needless to say, most entrepreneurs prefer cross-platform app development to stay competitive; and at the same time aim at offering outstanding UX at reduced development costs. Two of the most popular frameworks leveraged for crafting cross-platform apps are React Native and Xamarin. Now, the million-dollar question is; ‘Which framework outshines the other?’
Well, this post compares the offerings of both these frameworks and guides you through picking the right one that best suits your app development requirements. Let’s explore!

React Native and Xamarin: An Overview

The React Native framework was coined by Facebook and launched in March 2015. This open-source app development technology has been leveraged by biggies like Uber, Tesla, Facebook, Walmart, Skype, Bloomberg, and Vogue to create success stories.
Xamarin, the brainchild of Novell, came into being in 2011 and was taken over by Microsoft in 2016. This framework has been adopted by high-end firms and brands such as Cognizant, Honeywell, Cinemark, 3M, Alaska Airlines, Pinterest, YouTube etc.

React Native vs Xamarin: Analyzing the Differences and Distinct Offerings

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Let’s dig into the major differences between React Native and Xamarin based on the following parameters and analyze what each of these outstanding cross-platform frameworks has to offer.
Development Environment (IDE)
The React Native development eco-system promises a substantial amount of flexibility and adaptability. This is because, developers need to install Node and choose any text editor or IDE they are comfortable working on, from a host of options available and accessible on the internet – Vim Editor, Visual Studio Code, Atom, Nuclide, Sublime Text, GNU Emacs Editor, TextMate Editor, Spacemace Editor, Deco IDE, etc. Besides, the hot reloading feature allows React Native developers to instantly reload the application without having to compile it and view the impact of the code changes live in real-time, thereby speeding up the app development process.
The Xamarin app development environment offers one single choice – developers are required to work in Visual Studio. Developers need to download and install Microsoft Visual Studio or the Visual Studio Community Edition; along with Mac. This developer environment comes with an IDE, a host of handy development tools, designs, and controls to ease out the app development process and make it faster. Additionally, utilizing Xamarin and NuGet plugins can further simplify development.
Inference: React Native development environment offers more flexibility than Xamarin.
Market Trends: Popularity
As per the stack overflow survey, React Native is placed in the 6th position in terms of popularity whereas Xamarin has bagged the 8th position. Besides, React Native enjoys 52013 stars and 12207 forks on GitHub, while Xamarin doesn’t appear in GitHub altogether. React Native has elaborate tooling, large community support and a large talent pool. Also since React Native is open-source, it is more popular than Xamarin.
Inference: React Native is more popular and widely adopted globally as compared to Xamarin.
App Development Cost
Most open-source frameworks including React Native are free, but this is not the case for Xamarin. Xamarin has a free version, but with limited features and so, it usually suits the need of individuals or small-sized businesses. In most cases, the paid version is needed and the cost of obtaining a Visual Studio Annual Edition is approximately $3000. Contrarily, React Native is not only free but also allows developers to pick the IDE as per their choice. Thus, React Native is immensely cost-efficient.
Inference: React Native app development projects involve more flexibility to developers and reduced developmental expenses as compared to Xamarin projects.
Testing Abilities
Both React Native and Xamarin offer adequate testing tools. However, the React Native framework offers easily configurable tools such as Jest, PropTypes, etc., the opportunity of creating Snapshot testing, and a rich API behavior. For this reason, the testing process becomes easier with React native and the chances of regressions in the code are ruled out completely.
Inference: React Native outperforms Xamarin.
Architecture and Working Principles
Xamarin uses the MVVM (Model View-View Model) architecture clubbed with a two-way data binding approach that allows collaboration between divisions. It is highly recommended for an app development project wherein it is not known whether the developmental cycle follows a performance-suited approach or not. The reason is this architecture offers flexibility and enables developers to obtain the desired outcome within a short time.
React Native, too, possess a modular architecture that allows developers to separate the code into independent functional blocks. The data binding, in this case, is uni-directional that enables working on the app’s generic performance. React Native also supports manual data binding and this trait helps in minimizing complex errors.
Inference: It’s a win- win situation for both the frameworks!
React Native provides comprehensive documentation that is accurate and well-organized too; such that developers can effortlessly find the required elements and use them productively.
Xamarin offers comprehensive documentation too. But, this documentation is less useful because accessing it becomes hassle-prone as well as time-consuming due to the segregation of components into two forms – the NuGet and the components store.
Inference: React Native outshines Xamarin in regards to community support.
Community Back-up
React native boasts of a humongous global community comprising more than 3000 developers, who are constantly working for the betterment of the framework. This vibrant and dynamic developers’ community answers questions on React Native development and are ready to extend help to developers via forums and websites.
Xamarin, being a paid platform, has the smallest community support as compared to the top-tier mobile app development platforms including React native. So, the professionals working with Xamarin lack instant access to community help.
Inference: React Native outshines Xamarin in regards to community support.
Programming Languages and Learning Curve
The key programming language used in React Native development is JavaScript, but certain modules are written in Swift, Java, Objective-C, and Kotlin as well. As such, it’s not enough for React Native app developers to master JavaScript alone – they must possess thorough knowledge of all the aforesaid programming languages for being able to write better and effective codes. Besides, developers must know about different third-party libraries that are essential for React Native app development.
Fortunately, Xamarin developers need to be proficient in only two programming languages – .Net and C# – for executing all the developmental processes that Swift, Java, Objective-C, or Kotlin are capable of accomplishing. Moreover, Xamarin enables reusing several open-source as well as in-house source code projects.
Inference: React Native developers need to discover and master new libraries besides being well versed in the required programming languages; while the knowledge of C# and .Net is sufficient for Xamarin developers. Hence, Xamarin fares better than React Native concerning the developer learning curve.
App Performance
React Native mobile apps deliver native-like performance. However, React Native apps encounter certain performance woes. Firstly, this framework doesn’t support the 64-bit mode on Android applications. Moreover, whenever the fastest codes are executed on the iOS platform, pathetic outcomes follow.
Xamarin, on the contrary, is known for running the fastest codes across Android as well as iOS platforms. It supports the apps that require the 64-bit mode and also offers extended support of UI tools to deliver an incredible performance. Furthermore, it employs platform-centric hardware to ensure top-quality service.
Inference: Xamarin apps outshine React Native applications in terms of performance.
The React Native framework offers pre-built components such as buttons and text inputs that are partially adaptive. Therefore, for creating an advanced application, developers need to recompose the existing built-in components.
Xamarin.Forms provide a complete cross-platform UI toolkit containing native UI components that function on Android as well as iOS. Furthermore, Xamarin.Android and Xamarin.iOS enables the development of customized app user interfaces that deliver a rich performance.
Inference: Xamarin overshadows React Native regarding the availability of components.
The compiler offered by Xamarin is well suited to Android as well as iOS. Contrarily, React Native employs the JIT (Just In Time) compilation approach, which works for Android only, and may adversely affect the performance if used for developing iOS apps.
Inference: Xamarin emerges as the winner in this category!
User Experience
React Native comes with ready-to-use UI kits including Shoutem and Virgin for building native UI components. Xamarin, on the other hand, is capable of customizing the components and elements of the app across Android and iOS platforms. Moreover, it employs native APIs and SDKs for improving the user experience.
Inference: Xamarin fares better than React Native concerning the UX.

Which Framework is best-suited for your Project: React Native or Xamarin?

React Native is ideal for developing eCommerce apps, social media apps, and applications intending to utilize Facebook ads.
Xamarin suits projects that require a speedier development cycle, apps with MVC and MVVM architectural patterns, applications that don’t need complex graphics, and situations where the app creators intend to conduct app testing within the development eco-system.

Final Words:

Both the frameworks React Native and Xamarin, come with distinct offerings and are suitable for specific app development needs. The choice of framework depends on factors like project requirement, business needs, resource availability, app development budget, etc.
For any assistance regarding app creation using either React Native or Xamarin; contact Biz4Solutions. We are a highly experienced mobile/web app development firm that excels in providing React Native app development services to clients around the globe.

React Native App Development: Reasons to Adopt and Key Aspects to Consider!

React Native App Development: Reasons to Adopt and Key Aspects to Consider!
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React Native, based on the Facebook-developed JavaScript library called React, facilitates the creation of purely native apps for Android and iOS platforms. It happens to be one of the most preferred and trusted frameworks for architecting app solutions for diverse industrial and commercial requirements. Renowned app owners like Facebook, Instagram, Bloomberg, Walmart, Townske, etc. owe their success to the React Native framework.
However, entrepreneurs need to gain insights into the unique selling points of this framework and consider certain aspects, before investing in React Native development. This post provides all the aforementioned information and a quick read will help aspiring app creators to make meaningful decisions.

React Native App Development: Top Benefits

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Lesser Resources/Smaller-sized Teams
React Native projects do not need a lot of resources or large teams. Entrepreneurs are able to build a React Native app with a small team comprising of a project manager, a technical lead, a business analyst, 1/2 UI/UX designers, one developer, and one QA specialist. This is indeed a huge business benefit.
App Performance
React Native development involves executing the entire project in short developmental cycles. React Native apps come with a quick loading speed due to the absence of heavy components that can adversely affect the speed. Furthermore, React Native’s hot reloading functionality accelerates the bundling process enabling developers to detect changes in the real-time application, even if that change is trivial. For these reasons, it speeds up app development to a great extent.
Third-party Integration Compatibility
Thanks to React Native’s high third-party integration capability, developers do not have to entirely depend on the web view for particular functions. For instance, for integrating Google Maps into your app, the React Native environment enables linking the plugin with a particular module. The map feature can be connected with certain functionalities of the mobile device such as rotate, zoom, etc. and the periphery can be maintained so that the app uses less device memory and loads quicker as well as effectively.
Flexibility across Multiple Platforms
React APIs are mostly cross-platform-oriented. Moreover, the file extensions offered by React Native support modules as well as platforms. And, these platforms are able to effortlessly determine the OS on which an app is running and also save this information for usage in more platform-oriented implementations. Since the file extension is platform-specific, developers can easily define specific files meant for executing particular functions.
Faster Deployment and Reduced Cost
React Native’s open-sourced nature makes several components readily available to app development teams. Furthermore, the same code is applicable for deploying the application on the iOS and Android platforms. Additionally, the usage of Redux, an innovative management tool, shortens the development time further. This results in a shorter app development cycle and reduced app development expenses without having to compromise on the originality, quality, and productivity of the application.
Dynamic Community
There exists a vibrant and dynamic community to help out React Native developers with doubts and queries. The offerings are manifold including handy information on React Native development, beneficial resources, and extended assistance.

React Native App Development: Key Considerations

Picking the Correct Navigation Library
Picking the right navigation library is important. The React Native ecosystem offers two kinds of navigation libraries – JavaScript Navigators and Native navigators. JavaScript Navigators can be set up easily while Native navigators deliver exceptional performance. You need to select the one that works best for your mobile app development project. In this regard, a quick discussion with experienced React Native app development Services will help you to choose the best-suited library.
Scalability: Scope
Today, it’s crucial to consider the scalability of the proposed application so that it perfectly fits into the differently-sized screens of smartphone devices. Besides, a modern-day app should have the required scalability for handling more real-time users as well as devices to accelerate profitability.
To scale react native applications to a larger codebase, adopt good tools like prettier and ESLint can help reduce syntax errors, include good libraries like React Router, react-hook-form, use GitHub for sharing and managing the components as building blocks that are independent and you can use Next.js instead of Create React App for starting the project.
React Native mobile app development offers plenty of room for scalability. – Facebook, a React Native empowered app is a good example. Nevertheless, for getting it right, it is important to understand the structure of the React Native app thoroughly. And, this can be achieved through extensive developmental efforts by skilled and experienced React Native developers.

Which Types of Apps are best suited for the React Native Framework?

Fully Functional Prototypes/MVPs
The strategy of hitting the market with a quick app prototype (MVP) at budget-friendly development costs, instead of investing in a full-fledged app at the beginning, is incorporated by most start-ups for getting their app idea validated and identifying the requirement of the target audience. This plan of action is one of the key prerequisites of agile development:
  • Developing a solution before competitors get time to act
  • Ensuring that a wide range of target audiences use the solution
  • Iterating speedily based on user feedback
React Native development is the ideal solution for this strategy as this framework involves low project expenses and speedy development cycles as compared to native tech stacks. And, unlike hybrid apps, React Native applications will deliver test users a truly native UX. In fact, most of the popular React Native apps have begun their journey as quick prototypes and were thereafter updated with necessary functionalities.
Airbnb possessed a website built using React. Thereafter, the rising popularity of mobile apps put them under pressure to craft a mobile app solution for staying competitive. So, in 2016 they developed an MVP using React Native and added new features in the form of updates. Once, they were well versed with the requirements of target users and the shape of the full-fledged mature product; they architected two native applications – one each for iOS and Android.
Basic Cross-platform applications
Native app development is advisable for developing highly complex software solutions that require several platform-specific features like audio/video processing, multi-threading, etc. But, if you intend to create a basic cross-platform app in a cost-effective way and your target market is evenly distributed across Android and iOS platforms; opting for React Native app development will be the ideal strategy. The reason is React Native apps involve low developmental costs and app owners can effortlessly make the interface function for both Android and iOS platforms using one single codebase.
The business brand Townske has leveraged React Native to build an application that shares city guides. The firm had only one developer, and so it was impossible to even think of developing separate apps for the iOS and Android platforms. React Native development enabled them to create a cross-platform app speedily, with their existing resources – the brand reused most part of the business logic of its existing React-based web app for building their mobile application. React Native’s key offerings – high code reusability, development speed, easy debugging, and helpful community – helped this brand to sail through all project-related challenges.

Final Words:

I hope, this post has clearly defined why React Native app development is a top pick amongst app creators and the kind of app creation projects that are best suited for this framework. If you are planning to craft a customized React Native app, contact Biz4Solutions, a prominent offshore mobile app development firm offering high-end React Native app development services in India and U.S.A. We possess extensive experience in partnering with global clients across diverse industrial domains.