What is the best framework for mobile app development in 2023

Having a mobile application to represent your business in 2023 is hardly something original. If you don’t have one at this point, you must’ve felt the advantage of your competitors that are using their mobile apps to cater to their customers’ needs. It is now a business necessity that provides necessary services to the most significant chunk of your audience - smartphone users.

With each year, mobile application development is getting more and more new tools and technologies that facilitate the creation of your next ideal software. Variety is not an issue anymore. Choosing the right tool is. As a mobile application design services provider, we have the perfect opportunity to help you choose the framework that will assist in developing an iOS app or an Android app, a web app, or a hybrid application.

Don’t forget to also check out our piece on evaluation methods for mobile app design to further ensure your app’s success with your customers.

Top app development frameworks of 2023

What is a mobile application framework? In software development, a framework is a software library that provides a long-term framework to enhance your code. In custom mobile application development, it serves as a tool that supports successful app development through a specific code.

To achieve that, frameworks use pre-built, reusable components, such as toolkits, compilers, debugging tools, etc., which are basically ready-made packages that help you build your app’s functionality, run the application, provide speed and efficiency for your development process, and overall offer a positive environment for app creation.

Top app development frameworks of 2023
Top app development frameworks of 2023

React Native

The first mobile application development framework on our list is an open-source, cross-platform React Native, offering speed and consistency to numerous companies worldwide that create iOS and Android apps. The JavaScript base and a single codebase make this framework an especially suitable solution for those wanting to create complex, feature-rich platform-specific applications.

Benefits of using React Native:

  • Allows recycling of components and component-based front-end development;
  • Support for third-party plugins and libraries;
  • Low-code development;
  • Short development and fast deployment.

Flutter

Google’s own open-source framework is a software development and UI toolkit for creating natively compiled mobile, desktop, and web applications. Natively compiled means that the approach this tool uses imitates native functionality and performance but, in the end, helps create cross-platform apps.

Benefits of using Flutter:

  • A rendering engine that helps render the specific page requested by the user;
  • An aesthetically appealing program that also helps quickly create engaging and visually pleasing applications;
  • It includes rich motion APIs for debugging and integrating;
  • Widget support.

Swiftic

Known for its flexibility and intuitiveness, Swiftic is an excellent cross-platform to use, especially when you need to build a user-focused iOS application, even though it’s also used for Android development. With multiple affordable plans, a refund guarantee, a low learning curve, and launch assistance, Swiftic is great for beginners and small companies.

Benefits of using Swiftic:

  • Customisable UX + comfortable UI;
  • An extensive feature collection containing essential functionality for businesses, e.g., push notifications, delivery, social media, app advertising, etc.;
  • Advanced analytics.

Xamarin

Yet another cross-platform mobile app development framework, Xamarin-based applications are written using C# and usually require less code in the end, making the development process quick and efficient without losing on quality. Xamarin also provides tools to build apps with native-like performance.

Benefits of using Xamarin:

  • Integration with Microsoft Visual Studio helps increase productivity;
  • Single codebase on multiple platforms;
  • Additions of diagnostic tools, IDE (Integrated Development Environment), and BCL (Base Class Library);
  • Great compatibility with lots of devices.

Ionic

Next on our list is Ionic, one of the best open-source frameworks for not only quickly building dynamic both cross-platform and hybrid applications for Android and iOS users but also Progressive Web Apps as well.

Benefits of using Ionic:

  • Interactive mobile-optimized UI components;
  • Features like lazy loading, pre-rendering, and ahead-of-time (AOT) compiling;
  • Consistent user interface;
  • Lots of additional built-in packages.

Apache Cordova

This next framework uses a universal trio of JavaScript, CSS3, and HTML5 and a single code production approach to help developers create a native-like experience with less effort, faster iterations, and lower costs. Apache Cordova also has a very user-centric UI, great security features, and multi-platform support.

Other benefits of using Apache Cordova include:

  • CLI (Command Line Interface);
  • Plugins with features from smartphone hardware;
  • The combination of WebView and native app components;
  • Fast prototype deployment.

NativeScript

Best for developing JavaScript, Angular, CSS, and Typescript-based mobile applications, NativeScript has numerous useful features for big companies, such as business support, backend support, native UI without Web Views, etc. This framework is also great at reducing the future app’s loading times.

Other benefits of using NativeScript:

  • Code sharing;
  • Full API access for iOS and Android;
  • Helpful developer community.

Framework7

And last but not least, Framework7 is considered one of the most lightweight, easy-to-use, and intuitive open-source mobile development frameworks for desktop, iOS, and Android applications that resemble native, incorporating its most useful functionality.

Benefits of using Framework7:

  • Pre-styled widgets;
  • Built-in layout grid;
  • An extensive set of plugins, templates, and icons;
  • Support for Svelte, React, Angular, Vue.js, etc.

Types of mobile app development frameworks

As you might’ve guessed already from our list of this year’s best mobile application development frameworks, there are typically three types of those - native, web, and hybrid. However, there’s a fourth one that is also quite prevalent in our list - a cross-platform one. Let’s look at all their differences.

Native mobile development frameworks are used to create applications for a specific mobile platform - usually iOS, Android, and Windows. They work solely for that platform and usually utilize features only available on devices with that operating system.

Web app frameworks serve to create web applications - apps that are stored remotely and distributed through the Web via a browser interface. The web apps are not platform-specific and range from messaging apps to online shops.

The hybrid mobile app platforms are again accessed from a smartphone as a standard native app, but their functionality combines native and web app features and components.

And lastly, the hybrid and cross-platform development’s main and only similarity is sharing the same code. It might resemble a hybrid, but cross-platform development is less limited, and the UI performance is much sleeker and closer to the native one.

How to choose the right mobile app development framework?

Choosing the right mobile app development framework depends on a few factors. The most important are the following:

  • Cost of development, specifically the correlation between Return-on-Investment and development cost itself.
  • Speed and efficiency - for example, native and cross-platform apps require efficiency and fast performance. Efficiency is also based on how well developers can utilize their experience when working with it.
  • Platform feature support.
  • Post-launch maintenance.

Overall, consider choosing native mobile app development frameworks when you need a more custom solution, your project is more complex, and you aim for a native feel and a great UX. Cross-platform ones work better if you want cost-efficiency, your project is not too challenging, and being multi-platform is one of the top requirements.

For a more accurate assessment of what mobile development platform is right for your business, feel free to contact our team for advice.

Mobile development frameworks summarized

All in all, today, mobile development frameworks are irreplaceable if you want a quick and efficient mobile application creation process.

Since mobile app development is time-consuming, using a framework gives developers more time to advance their code and leave the routine to be automated. Plus, bugs are less likely to occur if you leave these parts to pre-build scripts.

Custom mobile development is always a great choice. If you require a reliable partner to help you with that, Merge is at your service.

Serhii Hyliuk

Head of Growth

Head of Growth and Customer Success. I'm interested in design, new tech, fashion, exploring new places and languages. My mission is to make our clients happy.

Head of Growth and Customer Success. I'm interested in design, new tech, fashion, exploring new places and languages. My mission is to make our clients happy.

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