what is pwa

Progressive web apps (PWA) have seen a dramatic development as it enables users to get rapid responses in web apps instead of installing native apps.

When it comes to smartphone domination, users have recently used mobile browsers to browse web. With the mobile app dynamics, installing an app, which is less frequently used, might not catch consideration. Alternatively, smartphone users prefer using a browser to access web apps. In 2019, reports showed that over 60% of users globally access the internet from their phones. In fact, People currently have an incentive to surf the web on mobile devices instead of on laptops or computers. 

As a result, the more time people spend on smartphone internet, the more expectation they put on their destination websites. They expect fast page load, responsive site, logical flow, web capacity, and more. In dead, there are several factors influencing the performance of web apps. The problem is that native web apps designed for running on PC browsers generally got challenging in responding to mobile phones.

Related article: PWA – future of web app development

Progressive web apps (PWA) were born as a side of web app development to play a connection among web pages and mobile app development. Accordingly, PWAs enable web apps to run smoothly and have stability in mobile browsers. In this article, we discuss some corners regarding the role of Progressive web apps in software development, especially in software outsourcing services.

Progressive web apps in the context of software development

In terms of use, progressive web apps are believed to offer mobile experiences of faster loading, offline accessibility, device accessibility, and more without installing an app.

What is PWA (progressive web app)

Initially proposed by Google, PWA focus on enhancing user experiences by leveraging the latest technology connecting and transforming web apps and mobile applications. So, what is a progressive web app? The progressive web app meaning started with an intention of making the UX-UI phase of a web app perform like a native mobile app.

Following the rapid advancement of technology in browsers, PWA leverage cache, and APIs to enable web application to run smoothly in several browsers and several devices. Accordingly,

When it comes to the terms Progressive, it respects some concepts:

Terms Expression
Progressive enhancement Running in all browsers
Responsive Fit with all devices or screen resolutions
Connectivity Enable offline work
App-like Navigation and interaction followed app styles
Re-engagement Through push notification
installable Install option reserve
Shareable Via URL sharing method

In terms of app development, progressive web app empowers developers with higher advantages in leveraging the web ecosystem power, APIs, available plugins, and development community. In which developers save time and effort in deploying and maintaining. In cases of developing cross-platform applications, the concept of progressive web apps enables shortening the development phase.

Related article: Open APIs platform 
mobile app development companies in vietnam

Progressive web application example

PWAs are extremely popular in Food and beverage software development that they demand an app running on several devices, which adds conveniences to customers. Take Starbucks as an example. They offer user-friendly UX for on-demand ordering. Instead of providing app-like experiences, Starbuck’s progressive web app allows use offline. Besides, it could be launched at a storage capacity over 99% smaller than installing a native app.

Alternatively, companies in the travel and hospitality industry also have the incentive to make progressive web apps that they have to deal with high numbers of booking each day. MakeMyTrip is one typical candidate, suffering high traffic of roundly 8 million monthly. Having PWAs refers to a fitting solution for a fast and reliable booking process.

Leading in ride-sharing services, Uber has developed its own PWA with a similar booking flow to the Uber app. Notably, this app could work responsively with low-speed internet, including 2G, 3G, or weak connection WIFI.

Related article: Food delivery app development- how to be the winner like Uber Eats

PWA in software outsourcing services

Why PWA took the center position in software outsourcing companies? Rather than the in-house team, the challenges of optimizing each app version seem to be more complicated for the software development outsourcing team. Since, they have to deal with different projects, technologies, and expertise at the same time. In this case, PWAs would be a suitable solution to save the time spent on cross-platform app development.

Progressive web app: from native and cross-platform.

In practice, cross-platform app development has a similar based technology to Progressive Apps. In terms of user experiences and mobile-friendly concepts, the gap between native apps, cross-platform apps, and PWAs has gradually smaller.

Since PWAs refer to be an advanced form of web applications, making webpages like a mobile app, PWAs play a connection in transforming native apps, developing solely to a specific platform could run in others. There are several things in common between cross-platform applications and PWAs. Basically, they are two separate concepts. While cross-platform framework applies source code in multi-platform, only PWA has been supported by Apply in referring app in Apple App store running in browsers. Accordingly, the Progressive web app has become more prevalent in application software development strategies.

Three pillars of progressive web app

With the progressive app, the keys are Capable, Reliable, and Installable:

  1. Capable: Indicate the possibility of building a PWA. As mentioned above, progressive web applications require progressive advancement and APIs to transform all the features of a native app into a web app. With the introduction of the WebAssembly concept and new modern APIs support, some complex features, including system access, media control, or, clipboard support, could be performed smoothly in a PWA. 
  2. Reliable: The Realizable pillar in PWA is expressed by the speed and stability of the app when running on several networks. Response time is a significant factor that influences the user bouncing rate. Remarkably, with browsers, the slow speed of PWA would lead to an extremely high bounce rate. Besides, as users expect PWA could respond offline, the ability to deal with a low network connection is indispensable. 
  3. Installable: a PWA needs to enable installation to run independently with browsers. In which, users could use the app from the taskbar, home screen, or dock. In this case, PWA would be run like a local application and make content interaction with other apps.  

Progressive web app framework

With the advancement of web technologies, several frameworks are backing up the progressive web app. We will mention four popular one that every PWA developers need to be an expert on. 

progressive web application

Progressive web app React

PWA React refers to one of the most common JavaScript libraries. Developed by Facebook, it directly supports interface design. With Progressive web app React, developers have available tools and assistants in developing a multipage web app with dynamic content loading.

With a powerful community in forming API interaction, PWA React would be more intense by using additional JavaScript libraries. Moreover, React refers to a fundamental framework, offering a seamless User experience for cross-platform development projects.

Related article: React Native vs. Flutter   

Angular Progressive web app

For several years, the Angular framework provides full-stack tools and a library. Developed by Google, the Angular framework refer to be the leader in supporting progressive web app development. It enables creating JSON configuration files from the Cratch to building PWA.

The previous version of Angular was blamed for its incapacity in maintaining complex apps. As a result, it was less attractive in terms of building modern PWA. However, this claim has been incorrect currently with the latest version of Angular. Today, the power of Angular has upgraded to the next level of sustainability in app development. However, using Angular requires skilled developers as its complication in working.

Ionic Progressive web app framework

Ionic is renowned as a popular framework for cross-platform app development, working with both mobile apps and web apps. Leveraging HTML, CSS, and JavaScript, the Ionic framework for PWAs is seemingly higher flexible than other Progressive web app frameworks on the list. Accordingly, Ionic enables developers with different backgrounds could handily create a PWA. In which it contains roundly 300 plugins supporting work with native device functionality.

Competing with other competitors, the Ionic Progressive web app framework contains dynamic toolkits covering UI components and unit testing. For freshers, Ionic provides a comprehensive guideline for PWA development to follow.

Related article: Ionic app builder for cross-platform mobile development

PWA builder

PWA builder, developed by Microsoft, refers to a converting tool for transforming from a website to a progressive web app without executing long software development tasks. In case the website support PWA transformation, PWA Builders would create a series version of PWA packages. It could be downloaded for further development of adding features or changing user experiences.

Final words: If you have a plan which takes into account both mobile apps and web apps, you should consider PWAs as a strategic solution. In many cases, having PWA induces cost optimization and adds more flexibility to company performance, especially with SaaS companies.

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