Home Mobile App Development How Should You Develop Mobile Apps in 2022: Xamarin vs React Native?

How Should You Develop Mobile Apps in 2022: Xamarin vs React Native?

by Krowd Digital


A decision like Xamarin vs React Native can have a significant impact on businesses engaging in mobile app development. The global mobile application market was valued at USD 212.72 billion in 2022, and it is predicted to reach USD 452.35 billion by 2028.

The two main operating systems, Android and iOS, must be able to smoothly run modern applications. Most business owners desire cross-platform app development to be competitive while also aiming to provide excellent UX at lower development costs. React Native and Xamarin are two of the most widely used frameworks for building cross-platform applications. What matters most right now is whatever framework shines brighter than the other. In this post, Krowd will acquaint you with the principles of creating mobile apps.

React Native: An Overview

Facebook created the mobile application framework React Native. The React UI library for JavaScript serves as the foundation for the framework. “The biggest error we made as a company was banking too much on HTML as opposed to native,” claimed Facebook co-founder Mark Zuckerberg. In other words, Zuckerberg understood that he was compromising efficiency by adopting HTML5 to create Facebook’s mobile version. His response was to create an entirely new framework specifically for mobile programming. There are fundamental similarities between React and React Native. Both frameworks directly address state management, and more libraries are required to provide extra functionality. States govern an app’s behavior at a specific time. State management describes the control of user interface elements that react to human interaction, such as text fields, OK buttons, and other controls. Everything is written in JavaScript, allowing for code interchange between different platforms. Additionally, programmers do not have to use languages exclusive to iOS or Android. A practical way to achieve near-native performance without actually using native languages is through a process known as hybrid app development.

Xamarin: An Overview

For creating cross-platform Android, iOS, and Windows apps, Microsoft offers Xamarin. The programme is a part of the.NET platform, a set of tools and frameworks for creating software applications. Xamarin is a.NET extension, but the platform was created exclusively for the creation of mobile applications. These platforms can be regarded as a part of the ecosystem for Microsoft C#. Microsoft created the programming language called C#. C and C++ served as inspiration for the language. However, it supports object-oriented programming and has richer class libraries. The language is statically typed with a lexical scope and offers a variety of programming paradigms. The.NET Framework uses Visual Basic, F#, and C#. Xamarin employs C#. Up to 90% of your codebase can be shared between platforms with Xamarin.

Performance issues with cross-platform development, or sharing codebases between the Android and Apple operating systems (OSs), are a major worry for mobile app developers. Xamarin and other frameworks aim to alleviate that worry. With Xamarin, developers may utilize C# in place of the host languages for mobile operating systems like Java for Android and Swift for iOS, allowing for a native-like performance while saving time during development.

In-Depth Comparison of Xamarin and React Native:

  • Performance

This category is crucial to your choice because cross-platform and hybrid frameworks have a reputation for compromising performance in favor of convenience. While both Xamarin and React Native have a speed that is close to Native, Xamarin runs code the fastest on Android and iOS and offers a user interface (UI) for utilizing native features.

  • Popularity

Although popularity doesn’t necessarily determine a piece of software’s worth, it significantly impacts how other people use it. The popularity of the software is frequently a factor in attributes like a vast skill pool, thorough tooling, and a fantastic community. For example, react Native is more well-liked than Xamarin, possibly because it is open-source, while Xamarin is closed-source and only supported by Microsoft. This is evident in both Google Trends and insights from Stack Overflow.

  • Community & Developer Ecosystem

You may anticipate that the React Native community will be bigger and more helpful than the Xamarin community for the same reasons mentioned previously. React Native’s community was small when it first started. But as the framework expands and JavaScript frameworks gain popularity, it’s getting simpler and easier to identify other React Native programmers.

  • Development Environment

Pre-built components are available for Xamarin and React Native to improve performance and the development experience. React Native has a live reload feature. However, overall, the framework is inferior to Xamarin. Xamarin.Forms alongside Xamarin.IOS and Xamarin.Android gives developers the ability to make platform-specific native UI components. Compared to React Native developers, Xamarin developers can get performance that is more similar to native performance.

  • Availability

The majority of open-source frameworks are free. But regrettably, Xamarin cannot use that description. Although Xamarin does provide a free version, it has little functionality. Free typically equates to more access, giving React Native the edge in this division.

  • Compilation

JIT compilation is used by JavaScript and its frameworks, including React Native. JIT compilation might provide the best of both worlds, even though compiled languages normally execute more quickly than interpreted languages since they are translated into machine code before execution. All three, Java, JavaScript, and C#, use JIT compilation. However, React Native’s JIT compilation only supports Android, not iOS, which affects iOS applications’ performance. Both JIT and ahead-of-time (AOT) compilation are available in C#. And AOT-produced code typically executes more quickly.

  • Costs

React Native and Xamarin are free. However, Xamarin is only free for private users and micro businesses. The annual edition of Visual Studio Enterprise can be close to $3,000. Naturally, this increases the attraction of React Native, which is completely free.


What Benefits Does React Native Offer?

  • Similar to React, which has a modular architecture, React Native also uses this style. This flexibility makes it simple to distinguish between various functionalities using separate code blocks. This makes development simple.
  • React Native was initially developed as a personal project for Facebook, but once it was made available as an open-source project, there was no turning back. Due to the sizeable and helpful React Native community, creating mobile applications truly seems like a team effort.
  • React Native makes the same high percentages of code reuse promises as Xamarin. Naturally, the product helps consumers save time and money. React Native’s ability to distribute processing resources is another benefit that contributes to its popularity in the cross-platform development sector. React Native primarily uses the graphical processing unit (GPU), as opposed to other frameworks that depend on the central processing unit (CPU) (GPU). As a result, react Native is incredibly quick compared to hybrid technologies.
  • React Native has several features that are more notable than others. For instance, many React Native developers adore the “hot load” or “live to reload” functionality of the framework, allowing you to view changes to your codebase immediately.

What drawbacks does React Native have?

  • React Native is unable to utilize all of a given platform’s advantages and possibilities. A native app, on the other hand, may actually increase functionalities and produce the best user experience. But the re-architecture works very hard to make RN more performant; for instance, Hermes, a new JS engine, makes apps run significantly faster on older Android devices.
  • Consider native development if intricate designs or sophisticated interactions are a key component of your competitive edge.
  • Although there are already many custom modules accessible, you could need some particular parts that you will have to create yourself from the start.
  • The most recent React Native version is difficult to maintain the app updated with. It can be challenging to update React Native versions.

What Benefits Does Xamarin Offer?

  • Creating mobile apps is significantly simpler with Xamarin because it is a component of the.NET framework and uses C#. As a result, you continue to enjoy the advantages of native-like performance in addition to your code functioning across several platforms. Developers can access relevant SDKs for Android and iOS with Xamarin.Android and Xamarin.iOS. The Xamarin.Essential library provides overlapping native application programming interfaces (APIs).
  • Xamarin is effective for a similar reason. Cross-platform development enables time and money savings because codebases may be transferred between several mobile operating systems. In addition, with Xamarin, you can develop both the UIs and the application’s main functionality in C#, allowing you to leverage a single technology stack.
  • The Xamarin.Forms app maintenance tool allows you to update the source code of your app. Every solution will instantly receive the changes. You can conduct automated tests with Xamarin Test Cloud and Xamarin Test Recorder to catch errors before they show up in a stable release.
  • Xamarin features a tonne of robust tooling to support a rich developer experience because it is supported by.NET. In contrast, to React, Xamarin allows you to use CSS and other libraries in addition to the aforementioned libraries. Along with code cleanup and intelligent suggestions, Visual Studio Live Share also offers real-time collaboration.

What drawbacks does Xamarin have?

  • Xamarin is a more recent platform; hence its community is continually expanding. As a result, businesses looking for an experienced Xamarin developer may have issues finding one, and engineers may have trouble finding assistance when they run into problems.
  • There are more issues on a newer platform and fewer resources available to manage them.
  • Despite the huge Xamarin library, more complicated projects could necessitate additional native coding.
  • Xamarin apps come with a bundle that contains both the app and the libraries. However, since apps are typically significantly larger than those that are natively designed, downloading and installing them takes longer.
  • Before updating an app, developers must wait for Xamarin to incorporate OS upgrades. Sometimes there are delays in these updates.
  • As a component of the.NET platform, Xamarin itself is free. However, using Microsoft Visual Studio for development can be expensive for certain people.

Which Apps Utilize Xamarin?

  • UPS

There is almost no need for an explanation of the United Parcel Service (UPS). It is the company responsible for a sizable portion of international package deliveries. You may simply create shipments on the go with the help of the UPS mobile app. The app’s developers were able to work more efficiently because of Xamarin.

  • FreshDirect

FreshDirect is a well-known online grocery delivery service that specializes in fresh seafood, custom-cut meats, and chef-prepared meals, in addition to local and organic fruit. Early in 2015, the related mobile app switched from Objective-C and Swift to C# to shorten time-to-market.

  • Olo

Olo is assisting the biggest restaurant chains in embracing digital hospitality and offering 30 million customers online ordering options. Olo, which began as a text message ordering business, quickly tried one of the hybrid JavaScript frameworks, but this forced developers to deal with too many abstractions, sometimes making it take weeks to complete simple features. Making the choice to rebuild the app with Xamarin was not challenging. They took the chance to finally bring their existing engineering onto mobile since they were already a C# and.NET firm. In either case, Olo gains from code sharing at the fundamental level, which includes calls to services, networks, databases, and APIs. They are able to produce distinctive projects for each brand utilizing the tooling they have developed.

  • MRW

The top international express transportation firm in Spain is MRW. Over 1,300 franchises across Spain, Portugal, Andorra, Gibraltar, and Venezuela are run by more than 10,000 MRW employees. An app that supports 2,500 concurrent users by facilitating delivery coordination is essential to the company’s development. After successfully developing an app for Windows, MRW began exploring a solution to develop for Android while maintaining native performance. The cost and effort required to completely rewrite MRW Mobile’s extensive feature set for a different platform would have been excessive. They were able to reuse the code and capitalize on the already-existing skill set thanks to Xamarin. The management is excited to begin developing for iOS and believes that 90% of the code will be shared with the Android app.

  • Novarum DX

BBI Solutions, a top producer of finished test platforms for the pharmaceutical and diagnostics industries, is the parent company of Novarum DX. The goal of the developers at Novarum DX was to create an app that would make it easier to understand lateral flow testing and enable users to view findings using a smartphone camera. The first diagnostic tool that doesn’t require any additional hardware was developed by the team using native camera access and the same code that works on all operating systems, called Novarum Reader. The business was able to use less staff by allocating all apps to a single engineering team, thanks to Xamarin. Using the same Xamarin-based development methodology after their initial encounter with the technology, Novarum DX shipped roughly 20 different apps created using Xamarin, each in four to six weeks.

Which Apps Utilize React Native?

  • Bloomberg

Bloomberg is a financial business that offers solutions for enterprise applications like analytics and stock trading. It’s also the name of their neighboring website, which disseminates news to keep the public updated on industry and market trends. The Bloomberg app uses React Native to carry out the same operation and has the same goal. Bloomberg was able to integrate automated code refreshes using React Native, ensuring that users always receive the most recent updates when they open the app.

  • Facebook

React Native was created by Facebook, which also used it to create their app. Since they use the framework for their own apps, it would be worrying. React Native was used exclusively in the development of Facebook Ads Manager, an easy-to-use tool for both people and businesses to handle adverts for their goods. Although it is cross-platform, it seamlessly accommodates UI variations in regard to ad and date formats. The transitions and animations in UI adhere to the same standards.

  • Uber Eats

What began as a way for eager consumers to go from point A to point B without having to pay the frequently exorbitant fees of a yellow cab quickly evolved into a novel method of transporting food. Uber Eats is a delivery service, much like Seamless or DoorDash, in other words. React Native is responsible for a minor portion of the Uber Eats app, specifically their dashboard. Uber Eats was given the development resources by React Native to create a classy user interface and a seamless user experience. The app’s dashboard should also provide sound and push alerts.

  • Discord

A beloved application of Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP) in the workplace is Discord. VoIP is simply internet-based digital communication. Friends can connect online via voice, text, or video in Discord, and communities do so increasingly regularly. Most gamers utilize it, and it is completely free. 98% of the code for the Discord apps for iOS and Android is shared thanks to React Native.

  • Instagram

Another social networking site is Instagram, which, unfortunately, Facebook now owns as of 2012. Instagram operates mostly through digital pictures, as opposed to Facebook, and occasionally with brief films. Instagram began considering a transition to Reactive Native seriously in 2016. Although integrating React Native with current technology was difficult at first, they are now able to release features more quickly and easily maintain both iOS and Android app versions.

Wrapping Up

We should compare Xamarin to React Native in-depth and upfront. The two frameworks are very similar to one another. Both frameworks give developers the ability to create cross-platform mobile apps that perform nearly natively. It’s obvious from a side-by-side comparison of the frameworks that React Native outperforms Xamarin in most areas. However, a company that values speed of compilation and performance over other considerations might choose Xamarin instead. Whatever the case, keep in mind that Trio has the resources and developers you need to bring your project through to the finish line. If you need assistance with using Xamarin and React Native to create mobile applications, Krowd is here to help you in any way. Whether using Xamarin or React Native, the elite mobile app developers at Krowd are the best in their respective fields.

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