React Native vs Cordova vs Native app development - Which one to pick?
Mobile App Design & Development

React Native vs Cordova vs Native app development – Which one to pick?

React Native vs Cordova vs Native app development

Comparison between React Native VS Cordova VS Native mobile app development

One of the hottest questions in today’s app development landscape is whether to go for native apps versus hybrid apps versus cross-platform apps. Native apps are usually faster, smoother, and provide more core user experience as compared to hybrid apps. On the other hand, hybrid apps bring more agility in the app development process but are not as performant as native apps.

Nowadays, in the app development ecosystem, there is a plethora of technologies and frameworks to develop native and hybrid apps. Amongst all, React Native and Apache Cordova are the most popular open source JavaScript-based frameworks used for this purpose. So, if you are confused which one you should pick up for your next app development project, then read the detailed comparison below to find all your answers.

As we are in the app development business for quite a long time now, we have developed many native and hybrid apps (our portfolio speaks for itself). However, we totally believe that native apps are always the best option as they are a lot faster, smoother, and provide a more native user interface and experience. However, hybrid apps are most suitable for large platforms like Facebook and Uber.

Before comparing React Native to Cordova to Native app development, let’s first see how they work:

React Native:

React Native is based on React (a JavaScript framework) to design apps UI using JavaScript. It supports both Android and iOS to develop hybrid apps. Basically, React Native apps don’t use WebViews to render the app UI as in Cordova. A JavaScript interpreter is embedded to run only the JS code of the app.


Cordova is another open source JavaScript framework to design hybrid apps. Cordova apps use WebViews to render the user interface of the app. Cordova also allows developers to use latest web technologies like HTML5, JS, etc. to design apps for Android, iOS, and Windows.  

Native app development:

In native app development, platform-specific coding languages and tools are used to build apps with a fluid and responsive user interface with fast performance.

Now, let’s compare React Native to Cordova to Native App development and see in which areas do they excel than others:

[table id=2 /]

Based on the comparison table, we recommend React Native if you want to build hybrid apps with fast performance and native UI appearance. But, in that case, you won’t be able to reuse much of the source code to port the app to a different OS. Cordova solves this problem is also a good option if you are looking for code reusability factor while targeting multiple mobile platforms at once but it comes at the cost of user experience.

In a nutshell, it totally depends on the project requirements before picking up a technology stack for hybrid apps. When it comes to native app development, there are standard IDEs and coding languages to build apps for a specific platform like Android Studio for Android (Java/Kotlin) and Xcode for iOS (Objective-C/Swift).

In order to decide which type of app you should get developed, you can use this formula: if the major part of the source code, then at the front end and not in the backend goes for native apps otherwise opt for hybrid apps. Once you have decided which type of app to get developed, you can then choose the perfect set of tools and technologies to begin the development work.

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