Today, businesses have a lot of resources to develop and expand their outreach. But before choosing one lane and committing to it, one must always do the required research to weigh out their options and the drawbacks that might come along with them.

When we talk about mobile apps, many business owners encounter a common dilemma: choosing between a native mobile app or a progressive web application.

The ultimate purpose behind choosing either is to increase outreach and make a more convenient online stop for your customers. To gain a more competitive advantage, you should invest in something that requires relatively less maintenance and is easily accessible to your clients.

The mobile app and the Progressive Web Apps (PWA) both seem very similar, but they do have their own sets of features and benefits. Progressive Web Applications have better performance features, while native apps are more convenient and accessible.

In this article, we will talk about the features and benefits of both these structures and will shed some light on whether you really need a mobile app.

Office Workers Ordering Food via Mobile App

What are Progressive Website Applications?

Progressive Web Apps are a recent advancement from the default mobile app. It is a better optimized website for mobiles. PWAs can use some of the features of your device, like the camera, just like any other mobile application.

Unlike the mobile app, a PWA can be easily accessed through any browser on your mobile phone, like Chrome, Firefox, Safari, etc. This application lets the user download and access information just like with any other mobile application, but in a much more sophisticated form than the vintage mobile websites.

PWA Benefits

  1. Mobile apps have to be developed for different operating systems and have to be updated every time a new OS update comes out. But PWAs only have to be developed once. This saves a lot of money and time.
  1. One of the most well known features of PWA is that once your web based application is developed, you do not have to go through the painstaking process of submitting your application to any of the stores.
  1. PWAs are solely built for search engines. With combined algorithms for the search engine and the mobile, PWAs always show up first in the search results. For instance, if you have a real estate PWA, and someone searches for keywords that match your business, your PWA will be the first or second option on the list. Google has been doing that for a long time now and other search engines are quickly adapting to this trend.

  2. Certain businesses do not really require a mobile application, considering their type of service. Here, a PWA benefits the business owner.

PWA Drawbacks

  1. PWAs are not supported by many web browsers yet.
  2. If your business has a specific service that you would like to charge for, you would not be allowed to do that with a PWA.
  3. At the moment, PWAs have access to only a few of the device features. These are mainly bluetooth, mic, and camera.
  4. The user interface and graphics of PWAs are still not that advanced. However, one can use 3D designs to display certain themes.

What are Native Mobile Apps?

Native mobile applications are the good old applications that we download from the app stores. These have been around for more than a decade now. Today, native apps have to be developed at least twice; one for the Apple iOS and one for android. So, these kinds of applications are very popular amongst these two types of phones.

Native Apps Benefits

  1. Native apps are known to be more secure than PWAs, even though PWAs have distinct URLs.

  2. The user interface, navigation, and accessibility to other device features like the camera, mic, and GPS is faster. These are also easier to use.

  3. Native apps bring a lot to the table. One can easily monetize their services on the app and are allowed to have communication and links with other apps on the phone. This includes directly linking or connecting to Facebook. These apps are also allowed to have streaming services like YouTube, etc.

  4. Receiving push notifications on native mobile apps is more convenient than on PWA. For instance, if you are using maps and you are approaching the destination, the native app uses geofencing and gives you a notification that you have arrived.

  5. These are easy to update and can be reinvented from scratch without having to be submitted to the app store again and again.

Native Apps DrawBacks

  1. Native mobile apps have a very high cost of development.
  2. What’s more is that you would always need a separate department or team for maintaining the app and constantly catering to high traffic and new updates on the iOS and android platforms. This costs a lot in the long run.
  3. Because downloading an application from a particular store is a boring task, many customers prefer using the website instead.
  4. Native apps have taken a lot of time to finally come to the market. This is because companies have to submit their apps to specific stores that have stringent rules.


Though both types of applications might have their own advantages and disadvantages, only relying on one is not a good idea. A new and unique way to tackle each of these drawbacks and cruise through competition is hybrid applications.

Hybrid applications are a combination of the PWAs and native mobile apps. In short, the business would have the best of both worlds. The owner would have a better online community and access to all the necessary device features from the native app, and will not have to submit their application to any appstore.

Hybrids do cost a lot in the beginning, but their overall maintenance and long term cost reduces drastically. These applications also increase business outreach and like the native apps, give users an easily accessible medium online as well.

Though it may sound a little stressful and would surely be costly when you start out, at the end of the day, a hybrid application is a worthy investment.