How To Make Your Hybrid Mobile Apps Feel More Native

Developing Hybrid Mobile Apps to Appear More Like Native Apps
 

Advancements in development for mobile and cross-device usage are blurring the lines between what we can call "hybrid" and "native". While it's common knowledge that mobile app development performed using web technologies just don't perform as well as native technologies, it is possible to achieve a more native feel and better app performance. In most cases, Ionic framework and javascript can help your hybrid apps feel more native, and in some cases, make it impossible to find noticeable distinctions between hybrid and native. Hybrid app development continues to exponentially improve and build on itself. Below are just a few areas you can use Ionic framework to improve your app's performance and make them feel more native.

 

Native Page Transitions


Hybrid page transitions can underperform and disappoint when compared to native page transitions. While certain frameworks do a decent job of improving this with their built-in transitions, performance is still not always satisfactory. Native page transition Cordova plugins can help improve app performance and make page transitions smooth as buttah. Check out the details of the Native Page Transition plugins at Telerik.com here.

 

Caching


Ionic app framework offers some caching options by default, but many developers find this inadequate, particularly if you plan to pull in content through an API of sorts. There are many options for page caching. Angular-cache (GitHub Here) enables app developers to easily store and retrieve any amount of objects in lots of different ways.
Script code below pulled from Scott Bolinger's blog.

To install, use:


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bower install --save angular-cache


or


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npm install --save angular-cache


Add it as a dependency:


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angular.module('myApp', ['angular-cache'])


Then you can use it like this:


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.controller('Posts', function (CacheFactory) {

 

if (!CacheFactory.get('postCache')) {

CacheFactory.createCache('postCache');

}

var postCache = CacheFactory.get('postCache');

// Cache a post

postCache.put(id, data);

// Delete from cache

postCache.remove(id);

// Get a post

$scope.post = postCache.get(id);

})


 

Native Scrolling


Ionic scrolling's default is javascript, which can choppy and cause scrolling problems. You can expect problems with javascript's scrolling if you're working with Android devices and/or have a lot of graphics and images.

Luckily, you can enable native scrolling with a script we've again pulled from Scott Bolinger's blog:


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.config(function($ionicConfigProvider) {

$ionicConfigProvider.scrolling.jsScrolling(false);

 

// Or for only a single platform, use

// if( ionic.Platform.isAndroid() ) {

// $ionicConfigProvider.scrolling.jsScrolling(false);

// }

}

 

Native Looking Header Bars


From a User Experience standpoint, the header bars are a critical part of the native "feel" of a mobile app. Title area and navigation elements, such as the back buttons, menu dropdowns, etc. are key areas of focus.

Smashing Magazine posted a piece on using HTML5 to make hybrid apps more native. Read for further details here.

 

By utilizing natively-available User Interface elements, hybrid apps can be developed to blend in seamlessly with a native app world. Frameworks like Ionic and plugins like Native Page Transitions can be easily added to most hybrid apps and are likely a great place to start when developing hybrid apps to feel more native.

 

Other great resources for Making Ionic Apps feel more Native:

Switching from iOS to Ionic

Getting Started - Ionic Framework

 

Interested in Building a Native or Hybrid Mobile App? Contact us! 

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