Part 4: Which Cross-Platform Mobile App Framework Is Right For You?

In this final installment (Part 4) of the article series on Cross-Platform Mobile App Frameworks, we will quickly review the pros and cons of both Xamarin and NativeScript, plus our guidelines to use when choosing the right framework for you and your team.

Summary of the Pros and Cons of Xamarin from Part 2:

Advantages of Xamarin:

  • Uses C#, .NET framework, and Visual Studio IDE
    • C# is a powerful type-safe, object-oriented language
    • Visual Studio IDE offers a rich development experience with tools such as intellisense, debugging, and compile-time checker
    • Xamarin is included with Visual Studio
  • Uses native components and has access to native device API
  • Uses XAML, an XML based markup language
  • Uses NuGet for plugin support
  • Microsoft support
  • MVVM pattern support
  • Build platform specific native apps using Xamarin.Android and Xamarin.iOS

Disadvantages of Xamarin:

  • Lack of opensource plugins available
  • Must have Visual Studio license
  • Xamarin apps are larger than native apps

Summary of the Pros and Cons of NativeScript from Part 3:

Advantages of NativeScript:

  • Uses Angular 2, and TypeScript or JavaScript
    • Access to Angular data binding, dependency injection, reusable components
    • TypeScript is a strongly typed, object-oriented language
  • Uses NativeScript Command Line Interface(CLI)
  • Uses Visual Studio Code
    • Lightweight but with a lot of similarities as Visual Studios
  • Use native components and has access to native device API
  • Uses XML based markup language similar HTML
  • CSS style styling
  • Uses Node Package Manager for plugin Support
  • Large assortment of opensource plugins
  • Live syncing of code changes during development

Disadvantages of NativeScript:

  • NativeScript apps are larger than native apps
  • Some buggy opensource plugins

So Which Framework Should You Choose?

Overall, both are great frameworks to use to build a cross platform mobile app or just a mobile app using a language that you may already be familiar with outside of Java or Objective-C. Deciding on which one to use will depend a lot on the skills and experience of your team and what technologies you want to use. If your team is versed in C# and you want to work with the Microsoft .NET technology stack, then going with Xamarin may be a fit for you. If your team mainly does web development and knows Angular, TypeScript, JavaScript and HTML, CSS, then going with NativeScript may be best. Whichever one you end up choosing, we hope that we’ve given you some good information to help make that process easier.

And as always, if you ever need any help with your mobile app development leveraging either of these frameworks, just know that Imaginet is always here to help. Our mobile app development team has worked with many organizations around the globe, from small startups to large Fortune 100 companies, to create and launch innovative mobile apps that transform their business and delight end users on all mobile devices. Contact Imaginet today to receive your free consultation call.

 

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Chue Yee Xiong

About Chue Yee Xiong

Chue Yee Xiong is a Software Developer for Imaginet with experience in mobile and web development using Xamarin, NativeScript, and .NET frameworks. He has a passion for constantly learning new things and has worked on the design and development of mobile and web applications for use in the financial and government industries.