Advantages and disadvantages of hybrid and native apps

13 January 2022

A common challenge for any company that is thinking of starting to develop a mobile app is to decide whether building a native app or a hybrid app. There is not one size fits all type of answer as it all depends on preferences, the user experience trying to deliver, resource availability, the type of app you are building or the time you want to spend building the app.

In this article we will lay down the benefits and disadvantages of hybrid and native apps to better decide the best approach that fits your strategy and develop a great app for your users.

Hybrid apps

Hybrid apps are basically a website packed into a native wrapper. What this means is that for the development of these apps your team will be using mainly JavaScript, HTML5 and CSS for building the application. We find here the first advantage of hybrid apps, iOS and Android apps are using the same code and then wrapped for each of the OS. This characteristic is the one that will condition the benefits and disadvantages of this sort of app.


  • Faster to develop and involve less maintenance costs.
  • Access to a web browser allows for more dynamic content access.
  • Single code base for all platforms therefore they are easier to manage and maintain. Updates affect all environments at once.
  • The UI is cross platform.


As mentioned above the usage of a wrapped browser is what conditions this sort of apps. Mainly the disadvantages are:

  • The user experience is not as great as in a native app. Due to OS differences if too much focus is put into Android then the iOS experience will be deteriorated and likewise the other way around.
  • The app is limited to the browser resources. In the case of apps trying to use WebRTC this was an ongoing issue until Safari started supporting the technology in mid 2017.
  • The access to native OS features is restricted so some features might be compromised.
  • QA and testing can be more expensive, this is because the target device is wider so you need to make sure that the app behaves correctly in the different devices.

Native apps

Native apps are those built for each OS using the specific framework of the environment. This means that an application needs to be developed for each of the environments. The bright side is that the application can interact directly with the device operating system meaning you gain a better experience and optimized application at the cost of time and resources. These are the main benefits and disadvantages.


  • Optimized user experience per operating system.
  • Direct access to the OS features.
  • Better performance of the application.
  • The apps can work whether you have internet connection or not.


As mentioned above the usage of a wrapped browser is what conditions this sort of apps. Mainly the disadvantages are:

  • You need various code sources, one for each operating system (even by device, I.E: Smartwatches)
  • Costlier to maintain, a team is required to support each of the apps.
  • Updates need to be done for each platform.


As stated previously there are pros and cons for creating a native and hybrid app and the decision on which type of app will be the optimal to develop will depend on the specific needs of the organization and the end user experience you want to deliver.

Whatever you decide you should always think about the end user experience, a great idea will not matter if the user experience does not follow suit. So always keep in mind that user experience is more important than costs when making this sort of decision. As an example in Quobis we decided to develop our apps as native apps, we firmly believe that user experience should never be sacrificed for short term savings. Users are the judge, jury and executioner when it comes to success in the market so providing a solid, tailored experience per device was our main driver when deciding whether to create a hybrid or native app.

Next article

Why independence is important for your ICT strategy

Digital sovereignty in the public spotlight through the European cloud project Gaia-XAs we’ve mentioned in one of our pre[...]