If you are into developing mobile apps, there are plenty of things you need to know about. Mobile app development is a time-consuming and costly job. Before you decide to dive into development, you must know all the aspects of development.
A programming language is one of the essential factors of development. It depends and differs based on the platform you pick. Programming language for Android is different from that of iOS.
Also, these programming languages will enable new mobile app developers to navigate the landscape to code apps that are secure, stable, and compatible with modern architecture. Languages differ based on the platform you choose. There are basically three platforms for mobile app development, let’s take a look:
1. Native Apps
Separate apps are developed for separate device’s operating systems. Say for example different app for Android and a different one for iOS.
2. Hybrid Apps
It is also known as cross-platform app development. Here apps are coded in one language which will work on multiple platforms.
3. Progressive Web Apps (PWA)
It is basically a light-weighted app that runs on the URL of a web browser of various devices. Such an app looks and works just like a native app but it is not actually installed on mobile devices.
Here are programming languages based on platforms.
Programming Languages for iOS Platform
1. Objective C
It is the first programming language developed by Apple to support apps on its platform. The language is object-oriented which uses syntax from C and OO. Although it is the oldest and used by plenty of developers, it still has a drawback. The language is not developer-friendly and syntax feels clunky and not to forget the square bracket which is tough to debug.
Swift programming language was launched back in 2014 and soon gained popularity among the developers and clients as well. The language was available for development in Xcode next year only. This language has become the developer’s favorite for iOS app development. For any modern app developed on Apple, Swift is nowadays the first choice. Swift is easy compared to that with Objective C and even more compact. Developers knowing how to work with Objective C can easily transition to working with Swift.
Programming Languages for Android Platform
Java has been the official programming language for Android since the launch of the Android platform in 2008. It is an object-oriented language for an open-source platform. Java is very popular and all the other languages are versions or flavors of Java.
Google extended its support for Kotlin in 2017 and practically replaced Java for Android app development. Even though the language is new, it has gained a lot of popularity and became the developer’s favorite. Kotlin and Java both are interoperable which means the same information can be used for both platforms. All the libraries of Java can also be accessed with Kotlin. If you see from an execution standpoint, kotlin language can comply with Java Bytecode. On a whole, it can be considered as a cleaner version of Java.
Programming Languages for Hybrid Apps
Hybrid apps are developed just one time but written in a programming language that works on multiple platforms. Here are some of the languages used to develop hybrid apps.
1. Xamarin and C#
C# (spelled as C sharp) is developed by Microsoft is an object-oriented programming language. Microsoft also acquired the Xamarin framework to allow developers to program apps using C# instead of other frameworks. There are other low-code alternatives like Kony and OutSystems having an SDK that can be used with multiple languages and not limited to just one. With an IDE (integrated development environment) for hybrid development, the C# code is cross-complied to work natively on Android and iOS devices.
- React Native
Google also has a niche builder like Flutter and Dart.
3. MBaaS (Mobile backend as a service)
Most of the native languages and hybrid frameworks for developing mobile apps have certain things in common. All of these apps have to be built from scratch and they are all missing an important component.
For a mobile app, the front-end is just a part of the solution and not the entire app. You will need a mobile backend as a service known as MBaaS. Here are some of the reasons why you need an MBaaS.
- Host the app data
- Compile analytics
- Send push notifications
- Host user profiles
You also need to develop and maintain a server on the cloud to support your application. Unless you are developing a simple app, you will need some type of user authentication, CMS, database, and such.
4. BuildFire JS
The platform will offer all the functionality that the majority of the apps need like user logins, database access, and access to CMS platforms, and password reset functionality. By using BuildFire, you can build what is new and unique to your specific mobile app. Databases, analytics server, API gateways, push notifications server, and many more things are all part of the MBaaS provided by BuidFire.
So, according to you which is your favorite programming language for mobile app development?
Well, I know there is no right answer to this. It totally depends on the type of app you choose. We have listed the best ones; you pick one based on your app.