Radiant Media Player Blog

Native mobile apps built with web technologies: reality check in 2020

Last updated on September 9, 2020 - Back to blog home page


Native mobile apps built with web technologies - is that a real thing?

Yes, it is. When I meet native app developers for iOS and Android or executives managing online video projects, they often display doubt - if not pessimism - to our hybrid approach for using our HTML5 video player in a native mobile app through framework like Ionic or Cordova. One of the concerns often brought forward is that the user-base/developer-base is simply not here - e.g. the number of projects launch with those hybrid frameworks that allow for web technologies to be used in native mobile apps are simply too much of a minority to consider using them.

Recently I encountered a site appfigures that finally gave me the real-world data I was looking for.

On that link from appfigures website, The Most Installed Mobile SDKs, we can read the following data (as of September 9, 2020):

Top 5 SDKs used for apps published on Apple App Store:

  • Swift: 47%
  • Cordova: 22%
  • Unity: 11%
  • Ionic: 9%
  • React Native: 9%

For Apple App Store, 31% of apps (Cordova + Ionic) currently living on that store are built with web technologies ported to a native app through a hybrid framework.

Top 5 SDKs used for apps published on Google Play:

  • Kotlin: 36%
  • Cordova: 34%
  • Ionic: 18%
  • React Native: 14%
  • Unity: 7%

For Google Play, 52% of apps (Cordova + Ionic) currently living on that store are built with web technologies ported to a native app through a hybrid framework.

To conclude, YES using web technologies to build native mobile apps is a real-thing - people are even downloading and enjoying those apps :). The gap between native and web has been crossed. Considering using a hybrid framework like Ionic or Cordova is a perfect valid option to build most, if not all, kind of mobile apps. This becomes even more true if you are looking to promote web standards, reduce development & maintenance cost and provide a unified user experience across platforms.

If you are going to build a video-oriented native mobile app through a hybrid framework, then you should want a HTML5 player that fits that approach. Radiant Media Player is that player and will bring a top-notch viewing experience to your audience. We actively test and develop our player to make sure it works with the latest version of Cordova and Ionic. Most importantly we believe in using web standards to develop cross platform apps.

Arnaud Leyder - Radiant Media Player founder

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