There are many mobile platforms that are working currently in the market, famous ones are listed below:
1- iPhone Applications
2- iPad Applications
3- Android Applications
4- BlackBerry Applications
5- Windows Applications
6- Symbion Applications
As all of these platforms need different app to work so native mobile app development is a difficult work for app development companies. That is why cross platform mobile development is preferred by many developers.
Benefits of Cross Platform Mobile App Development
Look at the benefits of cross platform development that are listed below:
1- In cross platform it is possible to make such an app that can run on all platforms with little efforts.
2- Cross platform development is cheaper than native development.
3- It is easy to handle because it mainly works with HTML5.
4- Cross platform development may help in decreasing the time of app development.
Frameworks of Cross Platform Mobile Development
There are about 50+ frameworks which work in cross app development. DON’T worry i am not going to explain all these fifty plus frameworks. I will explain and compare only top 5 frameworks.
Comparison of Frameworks of Cross Platform Development
1- PhoneGap / Apache Cordova
- Cordova is free and an open source so no one has to pay for it, developers can easily write apps without any investment.
- Cordova apps install just like a native app and also it is discoverable in app store.
- Cordova app will give Leverage from tons of libraries.
- PhoneGap or Cordova will also enable you to receive or send payments through the app store.
- Cordova / PhoneGap is free so there is no guarantee for success in it
- If the app has many graphics then there is a major problem which is performance of the app.
- You have to find its plugins according to your app and if you are unable to find then you have to write the plugin yourself.
- There is no information about the usage of interface.
2- Appcelerator Titanium
Appcelerator Titanium is also a cross platform mobiles apps development framework. According to Appcelerator Titanium’s website that they have 5000 device and mobile operating system API’s that able to create native applications.
- In order to stream an audio clip in the app normally the developer has to write about 50-500 lines but in Appcelerator one can do this in a single line.
- It provides app analytics and marketplace for the third party. Appcelerator Titanium mobile SDK has its own IDE.
- It’s community is growing rapidly.
Appcelerator Titanium has advantages but it has also some disadvantages.
- The targeted platform SDK’s are locally managed by the developers. And for managing the SDK’s locally your team has to establish a controlled build environment, especially if you want to target multiple platforms.
- Increasing complexity day by day.
- It does not have good flexibility. At start you will love the API of Appcelerator Titanium but sooner you will face bugs and errors.
3- Adobe Air
- It is famous due to it’s new technology for creating fancy and good looking interfaces.
- It is specially for the apps that need rich media such as games. It is also especially for the apps that need flash.
- It’s installation is very easy as your files already go to the database.
- It is also good for those vendors who want desktop like display.
- Some complicated languages are needed to use Adobe Air.
- In Adobe Air there is no way to execute external applications.
- Developers has no access to COM automation.
- The database access is also limited in Adobe Air.
4- Sencha Touch
- Sencha Touch provides lot of facilities including access to data, business logic and also has good amount of utility classes.
- Sencha Touch includes a handsome number’s library of standard UI components out-of-the-box.
- Sencha Touch has tutorials, support and forum help for developers.
- Sencha Touch also enables the distribution of apps on the app store.
- It also has commercial training and support.
- It has lot of users with thousands of success stories.
- We can also use its apps in Cordova / PhoneGap.
- As the Sencha Touch is not an open source so there is a chance of vendor’s lock-in.
- It has good set of libraries on animation, networking, threading etc.
- QT gives the mobile app developers a support of multiple languages which helps them to provide more than one language within their app.
- It is not free now. It needs investment from the app developer to write any app through it.
Hence there are many cross platform applications developing tools or frameworks working in the market. Some are free of cost and some are paid. Some provide advantages in one section of apps development and some provide in another section, it simply means that you can’t write a complete app by just working on the single framework because when you work for a cross platform app it requires more functions. So you will need to work on more than one frameworks for developing a good app that can work on multiple platforms reliably. Choose the frameworks that suits your work to make the apps of your desire.