The product named “React Native” was released 2 years later after the first announcement of React JS. Although this mobile app development framework is based on the same principles, there are certain differences between ReactJS and React-Native in a practical sense.
In order to understand the essence of React Native vs React JS, we should look at the pros and cons of these two technologies for web development.
React Native Review
Pros of React Native
Since this framework is one of the most effective tools for the development of mobile applications, let’s look at its pros and cons.
React Native uses the most popular programming language. Moreover, the main benefits of JS and React JS are combined. This results in faster and more effective work of developers since there is no need to restart an updated application for changes, but simply refresh the page.
Android and iOS support
React Native was initially developed by Facebook for iOS. Now, the framework supports both operating systems. For example, the Android and iOS versions of Ads Manager application by Facebook were created using this web app framework.
Improved performance due to the native modules and controls
Unlike most cross-platform frameworks, React Native uses native APIs to render the code components instead of WebView. This allows the direct and independent code rendering hence increases the performance. For example, if you need to add the functionality of Google Maps to your app, due to React Native the plugin will be linked with a native module.
No rewriting to augment an existing app
React Native offers a great feature that allows incorporating the components into the code of your existing app. There is no need to rewrite the code of your app built with Ionic or Cordova. Use a plugin to reuse the existing code.
Features of React JS to improve UI
User interface is the focus
High efficiency of native app development
In general, the native app development is characterized by poor developer productivity and inefficiency. React Native disproves all these flaws, and provides the agility and speed of the web app development.
Cons of React Native
Slow SDK Updates
The update of SDK of Android or iOS is a trouble for React Native resulting in slowing down the update. The synchronization of new SDK and React Native usually takes much time, because the new software requires the integration with a code library. Every part of the API should be updated at once that is almost impossible despite all efforts of the developers.
Although many iOS and Android native modules are available by default, the number of outside components of React Native is limited. This may cause troubles is some community-built module will not be supported by the framework.
React JS Review
Facebook released this product in 2013. Since ReactJS had an open access, it gained much popularity among the developers. Another attractive feature of this library was an unordinary approach to UI programming. Now, ReactJS is a popular tool to build user interfaces and web apps.
Pros of React JS
High performing websites
The main advantage of React JS is the use of virtual document object model (DOM) instead of direct interaction with it. DOM is a logical structure of data outputs and inputs in a tree form. We see DOM in the browsers. A lot of other libraries like a React JS alternative jQuery work with the real DOM. Since React uses the DOM’s abstract copy, it allows creating a highly-dynamic user interface.
As a result, the work with UI-objects accelerates and real-time applying changes are enabled. The performance and programming are made faster.
Reusing code components
ReactJS provides a significant time-saving effect by reusing code components of different levels. Designers have to reuse constantly the same assets. Reusing eliminates such necessity and improves a design efficiency. The same thing but more difficult relates to programming. Every change can influence the other components and their functionality. ReactJS isolate each component preventing any effects of changing a certain component. The programming becomes more comfortable and precise while the components are reused and do not depend on each other changes.
Migration of web app developers can be slow or quick depending on the needs. It is possible because React JS can be implemented into any existing page. However, a runtime library is required to run React JS efficiently.
Stable code by downward data flow
Downward data binding is provided by React JS to ensure a stable code. Unlike the complex data flow structures in view-model systems React JS eliminates any possible effects of child elements against parent ones. Only one downward direction of data flow is used. Any object can be changed without effect to parent data by simple modification of its state and application of updates.
Improved debugging speed
The process of identification of errors is facilitated due to the set browser developer tools providing more precise data regarding the code for generating a user interface.
Cons of React JS
It may sound weird but too fast development of a certain product can be a disadvantage. Naturally, the environment experiences constant changes causing the developers to accommodate and relearn the new peculiarities or features of tools or products. However, if a pace of development is rather high, it provokes discomfort for the members of the development community.
JSX as an obstruction
Due to the fast update and development of the React technologies, there is a lack of proper documentation. The constant releases of new tools aggravate the problem with documentation.
According to the developers who actually use React Native and React JS both these technologies have mostly positive feedbacks. The users admit high efficiency, great usability, and easy steep learning curve. It is not about comparing React JS vs React Native and choosing the best tool, while the essence of the tools is different. However, if you are familiar with React JS, you will have no troubles with mastering React Native.