A Progressive Web Application (PWA) is a disruptive innovation that integrates the functionality of a native mobile app and the usability of a responsive website. Several business brands have harnessed the goodies of progressive web apps to reach unprecedented heights of success.
Take a look at the success stories of the following brands on account of PWA adoption, as published by the online research portal “Cloud Four”.
Thus, it is evident that progressive web app development is successfully fulfilling the demanding user expectations and challenging business requirements of modern times.
So, if you too are one of those planning to build a PWA, the obvious question that will crop up in your mind is, “Which framework is best suited for PWA development?” Many, businesses and corporates prefer React Native for end-to-end PWA development and hire efficient React Native developers for the same.
This blog guides you through crafting a PWA using the React Native Framework. But before we commence, let me enlighten you on some crucial facts about PWAs and the reasons to choose React Native Development.
The usual websites can be conveniently accessed from any device or browser, but they fail to leverage the platform-specific hardware that ensures high performance. Native apps, on the other hand, can completely utilize the platform-specific hardware and software capacities to optimize performance but are available only for the particular platform for which they are designed. But, progressive web applications combine the best of both worlds and are known for delivering a native app-like experience in the browser. The distinct capabilities of this futuristic software solution are as follows.
React Native is considered to be an apt progressive web app development framework as it proves immensely advantageous for developers. Let’s peek into the reasons:
Thus, if a PWA is built using React Native, the end-product becomes more progressive with lesser efforts.
Check out the key requirements for PWA creation.
Adoption of a Secure Network Connection
Adopting a secure network connection for PWA creation ensures security and helps you to gain users’ trust. Sometime back, the Google team had declared HTTP web pages as not safe and secure and had advised going for an HTTPS connections that is more secure. So, it is essential that mobile app companies opt for HTTPS connection while developing PWA. For using HTTPS, one can employ service workers, thus, activating home screen installations.
Implementing the “Add to Home Screen” Option
After you serve the web on HTTPS, do not forget to implement the “Add to Home Screen” option for your users. This move is sure to improve the user experience and as such, expedite the conversion rate for your brand. To execute this task you need to add a Web App Manifest or manifest.json file to the PWA.
Employing Web App Manifest
Adding the manifest.json file to the app’s root directory allows the users to install the app on their smartphones effortlessly. It should contain details such as name, icons, description as well as a splash screen for the application. The manifest.json file can either be written by your React Native Developers or created employing a tool. This file consists of metadata in a public folder that controls the app’s visual appearance on the home screen of users.
So, given below are key terms used while coding manifest.json. (Let’s assume that your app’s name is Dizon)
Implementing Custom Splash Screen
Whenever users launch a PWA on their Android devices, a white screen is displayed till the app is ready for use. This white blank screen is visible for a longer time, hence implementing a custom splash screen is important to get a better user experience. A Custom splash screen enables you to employ an icon displaying your brand and a custom background for the PWA, imparting a native-like look and feel.
Usage of Pusher to add Real-time Functionalities
A React Native App Development Company should employ Pusher to add Real-time functionalities in their PWA. This is so because Pusher simplifies the task of binding the UI interactions to the events which are triggered by the server or the client. The setup process involves:
Integrating a Service Worker
A PWA development company needs to integrate a service worker — a script running in the background that does not interact with the actual app. Its function is to regulate installations, push notifications, caching, etc. Service Workers play a vital role by intercepting the network requests in the background and caching information to facilitate offline usage.
Auditing the Code with Lighthouse
Auditing the code with Google’s automated open-source tool called Lighthouse will help in monitoring the performance of a web application. This tool runs multiple tests for examining the performance, accessibility, etc. of a web app and generates a report for the same. These reports prove useful in fixing the weak aspects of the PWA like performance, best practices, accessibility, etc. Additionally, the Lighthouse plugin guides on resolving the issues and thus, improving performance.
React Progressive Web Apps help businesses across diverse domains establish their digital footprints successfully. In today’s smartphone-dominated world, PWAs have become an absolute necessity for businesses to gain loyal and happy customers. Therefore, if you are planning to develop a web app or a website, it is advisable to deploy the same as a PWA as it adds convenience to the users and hence improves the user engagement and experience. For any technical assistance on PWA development reach out to Biz4Solutions, a distinguished React Native app development company offering incredible web/mobile app development services for clients across the globe.
I hope this blog was beneficial.
Do share your opinions and experiences on PWAs in the comments section.
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