Web App vs Hybrid App vs Native App

As people are using mobile apps more, the opportunities for businesses to deliver better service experiences to their existing customers and prospects are immense. As per Statista, in 2023, Google Play will have over 3.5 million apps, and Apple Store will have about 1.6 million apps for users to download. And the number of web apps has also touched 22K+ this year.

This shows that businesses are constantly trying to use apps to break into new markets and keep their existing user base more engaged than ever before.

However, there are diverse apps for a business, like native apps, hybrid apps, and web apps. Each app type caters to a specific business goal, and you need to know about them to choose the best one for your business.

That’s why we discuss all three mobile app types in this post.

Web App Native App Hybrid App Architecture

What Is a Native Mobile App?

A native mobile app is designed and developed specifically for a particular mobile operating system, such as iOS or Android. They are installed directly on the user’s device, making them easily accessible from the home screen.

These apps take full advantage of the device’s hardware and software capabilities and offer a plethora of functionalities to ensure a seamless user experience.

Features of a native mobile app

Native mobile apps boast many distinctive features that set them apart from other applications. Here are some of the most essential features of native mobile apps.

Device access

A native mobile app has seamless access to the device’s native features, such as the camera, GPS, and push notifications. This results in superior performance and user experience.

Offline functionality

Users can utilize a native mobile app even without an internet connection. Working offline proves invaluable when internet connectivity is unreliable or unavailable.

Quick and responsive

Due to their optimized code, native mobile apps exhibit excellent speed and responsiveness. This leads to smoother interactions and quicker loading times that customers would love.

Advantages of a native mobile app

The advantages of native mobile apps are manifold, making them the preferred choice for many developers and businesses.

The most important advantages are here:

  • Native apps always deliver exceptional performance as they can leverage the full potential of the device’s hardware and software.
  • With native apps, users enjoy a fluid and responsive experience, resulting in higher engagement and lower bounce rates.
  • Native apps are more secure as they adhere to strict app store guidelines and utilize the platform’s built-in security features.

Limitations of a native mobile app

Despite their numerous benefits, native mobile apps are not without their limitations. A few of the limitations of native mobile apps are:

  • They are more expensive to develop as each platform would need a separate app.
  • Native app development is time-consuming and resource intensive.
  • Native mobile apps are not compatible with other platforms.

What Is a Hybrid Mobile App?

A hybrid mobile app combines elements of both native and web applications to offer a versatile and cross-platform solution for mobile development. Unlike native apps, hybrid apps are presented within a native app container. This enables them to be deployed across multiple platforms, such as iOS, Android, and Windows, with a single codebase.

Features of a hybrid mobile app

Hybrid mobile apps boast unique features that bridge the gap between native and web applications.

And some of the most prominent features are given below:

Access native functionalities

A hybrid mobile app can access certain native functionalities and features like the camera, geolocation, and contacts for a robust user experience.

Faster development process

A hybrid app benefits from a simplified development process as they utilize web technologies, saving time and effort in the learning curve associated with native app development.

Offline access

Like a native app, hybrid apps also can function without being connected to the internet. This ensures that users can interact with the app without the internet.

Advantages of a hybrid mobile app

The advantages of hybrid mobile apps make them an appealing choice for businesses and developers.

Here are a few crucial advantages:

  • As developing a single codebase that can run on multiple platforms can reduce development costs, it is an excellent option for startups and businesses with budget constraints.
  • It is easier to roll out updates and changes to the app quickly as there is no need to submit the app to different app stores separately.
  • Hybrid apps are much faster to develop than native apps. Hence, businesses with short product-to-market timeframes can use hybrid apps well.

Limitations of a hybrid mobile app

While a great option, hybrid mobile apps are not free from limitations. The following are a few significant limitations of hybrid apps.

  • Hybrid apps rely on web technologies, which may result in a performance gap compared to native apps.
  • As hybrid apps operate within a native container, they are limited by the container. This restricts access to certain features and the app’s functionality.
  • Hybrid apps depend on a single codebase, and any issues or bugs that arise will affect all platforms simultaneously, which can lead to complex issues on all platforms.

Related Article: Must-have On-Demand Mobile App Clones For the Startups

What Is a Web App?

Web apps, or progressive web apps (PWAs), represent a distinct approach to mobile application development. Unlike native and hybrid apps, web apps are accessed through a web browser and do not require installation from an app store.

Features of a web app

Web apps possess various features, making them an intriguing alternative to traditional mobile apps.

Some of the top features are given below.

No need to download

Users do not need to download the app as it can be accessed directly on the browser. This makes it easier for users to access it.

Cross-platform compatibility

Web apps are platform-independent as they run within a web browser, making them compatible with various operating systems and can adapt to different screen sizes.

Search engine visibility

Unlike hybrid and native apps, web apps are easily discoverable through search engines, which can boost their visibility and attract new users organically.

Advantages of a web app

Here are the most significant advantages of web apps.

  • Web apps do not require users to install anything from an app store, saving storage space on their devices.
  • Web apps facilitate easy updates, ensuring that all users have access to the latest version of the app without having to go through an update process.
  • Maintaining a single codebase for web apps simplifies the development process and reduces the time required to develop and maintain them.

Limitations of a web app

Web apps, while offering considerable advantages, also come with certain limitations. A few are given below:

  • Web apps are highly dependent on internet connectivity. Hence, users cannot access the app without internet connectivity.
  • Compared to native and hybrid apps, web apps may not have access to the full range of native device features that other apps can leverage.
  • Device-specific functionalities and hardware integrations for web apps are still not at par with native and hybrid mobile apps due to their browser dependency.

When to Choose Native App vs Hybrid App vs Web App

The decision to opt for a native, hybrid, or web app depends on several factors and the business’s goals. Consider the following factors before finalizing the type of app you want to develop.

Time to market

When you want to release a minimum viable product (MVP) for your customers, the web app is the best option as it takes the least time for development.


Some customers prefer to use native mobile apps as they would carry out several activities on the app. In such situations, a native mobile app is the best option.

Marketing strategy

Businesses that want to reach as many users and customers as possible in the shortest time can use web apps. Once that’s done, the app can be gradually migrated to a native or hybrid app as needed for a better user experience for customers that stay.


This is another reason to consider. If your app requires extensive device integration and hardware capabilities, a native or hybrid option is best.

A Comparison: Native App vs Hybrid App vs Web App

Here is a table for the native app vs hybrid app vs web app comparison to understand them better.

Native App vs Hybrid App vs Web App

Related Article: Flutter vs. React Native: Which Cross-Platform Framework is Best for Your App Development Needs?

How to Choose the Best Mobile App Development Agency

Selecting the right mobile app development agency is critical in turning your app idea into a reality.

When evaluating potential agencies, consider the following factors:

Expertise and portfolio

You must first check their expertise and portfolio while researching potential agencies. An experienced and reliable agency would always have a solid and extensive portfolio. You can also check if they have done similar projects in the past.

Technology stack

A strong understanding of relevant programming languages, frameworks, and tools is essential to develop the best app you need. Hence, check if the agency is well-versed in the technologies required for your app and stays updated with the latest changes and trends.

Cross-platform proficiency

If you require cross-platform compatibility, verify that the agency has experience developing apps that seamlessly run on multiple operating systems. This is essential to check and ensure that you are on the right path.

Client references

Another easy way to check if your potential mobile app agency is good is to ask for client references. This way, you can reach out to their past clients to gain insights into the agency’s reliability, communication, and overall performance.

Budget and timeline

Try to obtain detailed quotes from potential agencies and compare them against your budget and project timeline. The idea here is to pick an option that is not too high or too low, as you may need more than both options.

Post-development support

You may need the agency’s support even after your app is live if any technical glitches happen or if you need to run an update. Therefore, inquire about post-development support and maintenance services offered by the agency.

Security and privacy

The security of your app and the data you share is another element. Talk about the agency’s security and data privacy approach to safeguard your app and user data from potential threats.


The mobile app development landscape offers diverse options for businesses looking to use mobile apps to grow their business. Each mobile app type has unique features, advantages, and limitations. While native apps provide unparalleled performance and access to native device capabilities, hybrid apps offer cross-platform compatibility and cost-effectiveness. Web apps, on the other hand, excel with better discoverability.

However, an integral part of developing apps for businesses is the mobile app development company you choose. You must work with an experienced and expert agency to get the mobile app development services you need. With an experienced mobile app development company like AddWeb Solution, you can get the best mobile app you need. Having delivered impeccable cross-platform app development services to businesses and enterprises worldwide, AddWeb Solution can always exceed your expectations regarding quality, affordability, and project efficiency.

Our team of experienced mobile app developers can help you bring alive your mobile app vision no matter if you need a web app, a native app, or a hybrid app in no time.

Floating Icon 1Floating Icon 2