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Undoubtedly mobile apps have become an inevitable tool for many businesses. Almost every organization has started to find ways to build engaging and high-performing apps. Moreover, mobile app users are rapidly expanding so it is important for enterprises to develop apps to compete in the digital ecosystem. 

Whether to build mobile apps is a far past question; organizations are now thinking of ways on “how to build apps in the best way possible”. 

Well, there are primarily two approaches to app development: Cross-Platform app development and native app development. Both have their fair share of pros and cons.  

As a noob in mobile app development, you might be confused where to begin with!

This guide will briefly explain the difference between cross-platform app and native app, what are their benefits and downsides, what should you pick as per your requirements, how do they fill in each other’s shoes and lastly, what decides the destiny of a mobile app. 

First things first. Let’s get to know about both application types briefly. 

What is Cross-Platform App Development?

Cross-Platform app development refers to the app developed for more than one platform using a single codebase. This is possible with the help of using some popular cross-platform frameworks like React Native

Single app builds can be seamlessly used and deployed across multiple operating systems such as iOS and Android, offering the same set of features and functionality.  

Usually, a cross-platform app is easy to build and maintain as it saves your time to write codes for various platforms. The app user experience on each operating system is the same, thus cross-platform apps are accessible to a wide audience. 

Moreover, cross-platform app development is scalable in nature as it allows developers to deliver the same user experience, marketing managers to leverage the same marketing strategies and quality assurance experts to quickly find and fix bugs. All because the app is built using a unified codebase. 

What is Native App Development?

Unlike cross-platform app development, native app development means building platform-dependent apps that are developed and designed for a specific platform either iOS or Android. Native apps have high adaptability as they take up the platform’s functionalities. 

Exploring Similarities & Differences Between The Two

In the following section, we’ll shed light on pros and cons of progressive web apps vs native apps, further helping you make an informed decision.

Pros of Cross-Platform App Development

  • Cross-Platform Compatibility 

One of the major advantages of Cross-Platform mobile app development is its ability to function seamlessly across different platforms and devices. A cross-platform app can be accessed via web browsers, eliminating the need for platform-specific development.

  • Improved User Experience

Cross-Platform app development offers a smooth and responsive user experience, akin to that of native apps. They increase user engagement by offering offline access, push notifications, and app-like interactions.

  • Cost-Effectiveness

It may be less expensive to create a single cross-platform app that is compatible with many platforms rather than creating separate native apps for iOS and Android. Costs for development and maintenance can be greatly decreased in this way.

  • Easy Updates

Without the need for consumers to download and set up updates from an app store, Cross-Platform apps may be updated immediately. This guarantees that users may always access the most recent version of the app.

  • SEO Benefits 

Cross-platform apps are indexable by search engines, allowing them to be discovered through organic search results. This can improve your online visibility and attract more users to your application.

Cons of Cross-Platform App Development

  • Limited Native Functionality

Cross-Platform development may not offer access to all device-specific features and capabilities that native apps can utilize. This limitation could be a drawback for applications requiring extensive hardware integration.

Native Apps: Leveraging Platform-Specific Features

Pros of Native App Development

  • Outclass Performance

Native apps show supreme performance as they are developed as per the platform’s requirements. They can make the best use of UI and UX, demonstrating device best capabilities. 

  • Access to Device Features

The GPS, camera, accelerometer, and other functions of the smartphone are all freely accessible to native apps. They are therefore perfect for applications that strongly depend on these features.

  • App Store Presence

Publishing your app on popular app stores like Apple App Store and Google Play Store can provide significant visibility and credibility, leading to higher download rates.

  • Enhanced Security

Native apps often benefit from robust security measures provided by app stores, ensuring a secure environment for both users and developers.

Cons of Native App Development

  • Platform Dependence

Developing separate native apps for different platforms (iOS and Android) can be time-consuming and expensive. Maintenance and updates also require individual attention for each platform.

  • App Store Approval Process

Getting an app approved on app stores involves a meticulous review process, which can sometimes lead to delays in launching updates or new features.

Choosing Your App’s Destiny – Native vs. Cross-Platform 

The choice between Cross-platform app development and Native app development ultimately depends on your specific business requirements and goals. Here are a few pointers to consider before you jump on a final conclusion:

Budget Constraints

If you have budget constraints and want to reach a wider audience with a single codebase, cross-platform mobile app development is your ideal choice.

Performance and Functionality

If your application relies heavily on device-specific features and demands optimal performance, investing in native app development could be the right path.


Cross-Platform approach generally has a faster development and deployment cycle since they don’t need approval from app stores. If speed is of the essence, Cross-Platform offers a quicker route to market.

User Experience

Consider the user experience you want to deliver. Cross-Platform development approach offers a seamless experience, while native app development approach can provide a highly immersive and platform-optimized interface.

Long-Term Strategy

Think about your long-term business strategy. If you plan to expand and require in-depth integration with device features, starting with a native app might provide a stronger foundation.

Final Verdict: Who Wins The Battle?

To cut a long story short, the cross-platform app development vs native app development is a never-ending debate. That’s because both mobile app development approaches cater to different app development goals. What matters at the end of the day is you develop an application that is well-suited for business objectives and users’ requirements. Both approaches have their merits and demerits and the destiny of your app entirely depends on your business needs, users’ requirements and the purpose of your app development. 

Cross-Platform app development approach would be a perfect option if your business currently has an established online presence and you want to reach a larger audience with the least amount of cost possible. 

On the flip side, native approach is your best bet for app development if you have the resources to create a high-end product for your valued clients and want to make the most of the device’s hardware and software features.  

With an array of expertise and a huge list of accomplished app development projects, Stackup Solutions is ready to explore the destiny of your app. We have a team of professionals skilled and experienced in popular app development frameworks. Reach out to us and our team would be happy to assist you!   


1: What is the difference between native app development and cross-platform app development approaches?

    Native mobile development implies building apps for a specific platform or operating system. Native apps offer a customized and unbeatable user experience while staying  consistent to the device’s hardware. 

    On the other hand, cross-platform app development approach refers to the development of a unified app for multiple platforms, designed and developed using a single codebase. Such apps are a treat to develop for developers since they save development time, efforts and resources. 

    2: When is the native app development the top pick for your business?

      We suggest you to bank on native development approach if your app’s features are relevant to the device’s hardware or if you want OS-specific features and UX on multiple platforms. 

      3: When is cross-platform app development the top pick for your business?

        Cross-platform mobile development approach is an ideal one for you if:

        • Your project needs to be rolled out in a shorter time span
        • You have a limited budget for app development
        • You plan to develop a relatively simple app with specific features for various platforms
        • If your app, in no way, dependent on hardware, or OS-specific functionalities