Many people, even non-professionals, wonder what is the difference between a native app and a web app; to find out, we link you to the article Differences among native apps, hybrid apps and web apps. Which are the best? by our JOurnal.
Here we will talk about web app development, their advantages and disadvantages, and why they are preferable to native apps in some cases.
Table of contents
Web apps: what they are
Web app development concerns: Office packages, instant messaging services (like Telegram), graphics softwares (e.g. those included in Adobe Creative Cloud) and videogames.
One of the problems of web apps is that, unlike native apps, they do not adapt perfectly to the hardware and have limited access to certain device functions. However, they are supported by the latest browsers (Chrome, Edge, Safari, FireFox, Opera, etc.) and do not require downloading of updates, as these take place directly on the server, thus guaranteeing greater security.
To sum up, web apps:
Web app examples
Among the best known web apps are Google services such as Maps, Gmail and even the search engine itself; Amazon with Prime Video and Prime Music; and Microsoft Office 365, which offers Word, Excel, PowerPoint, OneNote, Outlook and all the other programmes of the Office suite in the form of SaaS in cloud.
These examples are enough to show how, even in the case of the most renowned applications, the boundary between web apps and native apps is very blurred. Of the services mentioned, in fact, there are native counterparts downloadable from the stores, developed for mobile and desktop operating systems and capable of storing data directly on the devices.
How to develop a web app
There are ideally four phases in the development of a web app:
First, you need to have a clear idea in mind of what you want to develop. Therefore, proceed with a market analysis, followed by a sentiment analysis. In addition, for an idea to be considered “functional” for solving a problem, it must relate an interesting topic for the community or satisfy an unexpressed need.
This is the phase in which you decide what functionalities your web app should have; a “sketch” (literally) of the interface, buttons, forms, etc. must then be prepared. Once this is done, imagine how the app should work, answering the following questions:
The design phase also includes the creation of the prototype, with the relevant tests to be carried out.
For the development of a web app, you need a database that is either SQL or document-based. The choice will be made according to the relationship between the data. After choosing the database, programmers can move on to the front-end construction of the site with the various languages. At the end of this procedure, and before moving on to the back-end, it is always a good idea to make a backup of what has been created. The back-end will be used to route data and manage communication between the server and the database.
Finally, after having tested and tried the app in depth, it will be time to put it online. This is the phase in which you choose the hosting where you will run the web app. Important: the choice of hosting affects the functioning of the web app. What is next? Simple, you move on to distribution through marketing and communication campaigns. The objective here is to reach a large audience and make the service offered known as much as possible.
Which type of web app to choose
There are many different types of web apps: depending on the service you intend to provide, for some you may need to integrate e-commerce functionalities, for others more static endless databases and for others more dynamic CMS.
The creation of a web app follows several steps, it is not easy and in case you do not have the right personnel you will have to turn to a company specialised in web app development such as HT Apps that, since 2004, creates tailor-made web apps and native apps for a multitude of companies.
Differences between web apps and traditional websites
At this point, you may be asking yourself: «Yes, but what is the main difference between a web app and a website?». The answer is that the former offers a service, while the website has mostly an informative or, in the case of e-commerce, ‘transactional’ character. If you want to create a showcase or e-commerce website, you can contact our friends of Moka Adv, who deal precisely in website creation.
It is not difficult, however, to imagine that in the not too distant future web apps and websites will be increasingly hybridised, contributing to a further evolution of the World Wide Web and the diffusion of digitisation processes.
Web app development? Ask the experts, contact us!
Whether you need a web app or a native app, HT Apps, of the JO Group cluster, can guide you through the decision-making process and beyond, developing the app you desire. For more information call us or fill in the contact form below, we will be happy to get back to you and together with you design the app you have always wanted to develop.