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How Is React Native Dif­fer­ent From ReactJS?

19 Dec 2022

Reac­tJS and React Native cur­rent­ly pow­er some of the most pop­u­lar mobile apps and web­sites.  But, often, we con­clude and think both plat­forms are the same. 

Reac­tJS was first devel­oped inter­nal­ly at Face­book in 2011 to resolve prob­lems with con­stant updates and changes. In 2012, Insta­gram was acquired by Face­book, fol­low­ing which React Native was devel­oped to over­come the short­com­ings of Reac­tJS at the time. Since then, they have had par­al­lel development.

With this, the world of devel­op­ers wit­nessed the emer­gence of two of the most pow­er­ful tech­nolo­gies — Reac­tJS and React Native, but both are different.

Reac­tJS vs. React Native is an intrigu­ing com­par­i­son and makes devel­op­ers think care­ful­ly about their use­ful­ness and appli­ca­tion in devel­op­ing respon­sive web apps, mobile app web­sites, and more.

Let’s have a look at some of the key fea­tures and dif­fer­ences between React JS and React Native.

What Are The Unique Fea­tures of React JS?

Reac­tJS is a JavaScript library used by var­i­ous projects to cre­ate the user inter­face of web pages. Here are some key fea­tures that make it favor­able to dif­fer­ent devel­op­ers worldwide.

1. Serv­er-side ren­der­ing and SEO

Because Reac­tJS sup­ports serv­er-side ren­der­ing, it increas­es the SEO of a webpage/app and attracts more organ­ic traf­fic for its excel­lent user expe­ri­ence. When a Google bot vis­its a serv­er that has already ren­dered con­tent and images, the index­ing and caching of con­tent becomes faster.

The fast speed also gives tremen­dous insight into the over­all SEO strat­e­gy of the web­site. More­over, if the Google bot index­es the con­tent direct­ly on the serv­er side, the page load time decreas­es. This quick vis­i­bil­i­ty of web pages pro­vides end users with a bet­ter expe­ri­ence, hence a win-win situation.

2. Fast Devel­op­ment of Appli­ca­tions and Websites

One of the sell­ing points of Reac­tJS is its abil­i­ty to devel­op high-speed appli­ca­tions and web­sites. Reac­tJS cre­ates an in-mem­o­ry data struc­ture cache that com­putes the result­ing dif­fer­ences, then trans­par­ent­ly updates the DOM dis­played by the browser.

The pro­gram­mer writes the code as if each mod­i­fi­ca­tion dis­plays the entire page when in real­i­ty, only the mod­i­fied sub-com­po­nents are dis­played. This gives Reac­tJS an advan­tage over oth­er mobile app devel­op­ment plat­forms because speed is one of the essen­tial fac­tors in build­ing a suc­cess­ful mobile app.

This fast devel­op­ment extends even to mod­i­fy­ing or refac­tor­ing exist­ing appli­ca­tions. Fur­ther, Reac­tJS intro­duced the con­cept of com­po­nent-based archi­tec­ture, which improves the reusabil­i­ty of com­po­nents and thus saves a lot of time. This com­po­nent-based archi­tec­ture takes indi­vid­ual ele­ments of a more exten­sive user inter­face and con­verts them into an inde­pen­dent, self-con­tained microsystem.

3. Com­mu­ni­ty Sup­port and Third-Par­ty Tools

Reac­tJS has a mas­sive com­mu­ni­ty of Android and iOS app devel­op­ers who are known to build a react native exosys­tem with many tools, com­po­nent libraries, IDEs, code edi­tor exten­sions, web browsers, and more.

The avail­abil­i­ty of a wide range of third-par­ty tools and exten­sions opens up a new dimen­sion of inno­va­tion and saves time and resources. Com­mu­ni­ty inno­va­tion makes Reac­tJS one of the most pop­u­lar options for devel­op­ing react native apps and inno­v­a­tive websites.

What Are The Unique Fea­tures of React Native?

React Native is a cross-plat­form mobile frame­work for build­ing apps and web­sites. Let’s look at some unique fea­tures that make it appeal­ing for any react native app devel­op­ment com­pa­ny to choose React for app devel­op­ment over oth­er plat­forms and frame­works. Feel free to con­tact us for React Native App Devel­op­ment services.

1. Easy to make apps using only JavaScript

It’s pret­ty easy for a front-end devel­op­er to under­stand the tech­nol­o­gy, and all they need to know is

  • JavaScript (espe­cial­ly Reactjs)
  • Plat­form APIs
  • Some native UI elements 
  • Any spe­cif­ic design pat­terns to the platform. 

This sim­ple usage and learn­ing curve allows non-pro­gram­mers to cre­ate appli­ca­tions with­out much effort. Even front-end web devel­op­ers can quick­ly build apps using React Native since most of React Native’s code is in JavaScript.

As a result, apps and web­sites are being cre­at­ed in a com­plete­ly dif­fer­ent way today. So all you need is an idea and a plan to make this idea a reality. 

2. Easy Cross-plat­form development

One of the most sig­nif­i­cant advan­tages of build­ing apps and web­sites with React Native is it allows you to build codes depend­ing upon the plat­form, which the frame­work auto-detects; hence, you find the cor­rect code. 

React native builds for native app com­po­nents allow the pro­gram­mer to cre­ate mobile apps that can run on dif­fer­ent plat­forms like Win­dows, Android, and iOS using JavaScript. Addi­tion­al­ly, Reac­tjs is used to build com­po­nents under React Native, and React Native imple­ments Reac­tjs under their framework.

3. Auto­mat­ic Reload­ing in Mobile Applications

Reac­tjs sup­ports hot reload func­tion­al­i­ty, which gives devel­op­ers the free­dom to reload a mobile appli­ca­tion auto­mat­i­cal­ly. This makes the devel­op­ment process fast and saves time. To offer an extreme­ly smooth expe­ri­ence, there are sev­er­al Com­po­nent UI libraries available.

Hav­ing com­mon UI libraries, such as Expo, Native Base, Shoutem, etc., can save you time build­ing them from scratch. As a result, you can focus more on inno­va­tion and ideas rather than build­ing all the libraries from scratch.

What Are The Key Dif­fer­ences Between React JS and React Native?

react native app development company

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Below is a detailed list of dif­fer­ences between React JS and React Native. 

React JS React Native
Reac­tJS is a JavaScript library used by sev­er­al projects to cre­ate the UI for web pages. React Native is an entire cross-plat­form mobile frame­work by itself used for devel­op­ing native mobile applications.
Reac­tJS is pri­mar­i­ly used for web browsers; as a result, you can use it across all plat­forms with­out need­ing to cus­tomize it for them. React Native is best for native appli­ca­tion devel­op­ment, and despite Face­book’s best efforts, it still takes con­sid­er­able effort to opti­miz­ing for all platforms.
Reac­tJS uses HTML tags to ren­der its user interface. React Native uses JSX to ren­der its user interface. 
Reac­tJS uses CSS for styling, and it can also have ani­ma­tions using CSS. React Native uses JSON for styling in the form of a Stylesheet object and for ani­ma­tions, it uses an ani­mat­ed API.
Reac­tJS uses Vir­tu­al­DOM for easy ren­der­ing of DOM elements. React Native relies on native APIs for most of its rendering.
Reac­tJS uses the React router, which enables users to nav­i­gate web pages. React Native has a Nav­i­ga­tor library to let users nav­i­gate dif­fer­ent screens.
Reac­tJS has sup­port for third-par­ty pack­ages but no sup­port for native libraries. React Native has no sup­port for native libraries nor any third-par­ty pack­age support.
Reac­tJS is con­sid­ered more secure because its use is lim­it­ed to browsers. React Native is com­par­a­tive­ly less secure since it relies on the basic secu­ri­ty fea­tures of the native sys­tem, which may vary.

When To Use React JS and When to Use React Native:

Reac­tJS is pop­u­lar­ly used to devel­op dynam­ic user inter­faces for web­sites and appli­ca­tions. At the same time, React Native is used to cre­at­ing native mobile apps entire­ly. Users of these plat­forms include com­pa­nies such as Face­book, Net­flix, Medi­um, Ude­my, Uber Eats, Tes­la, etc.

What Are The Key Limitations?

React Native and React JS plat­forms have their lim­i­ta­tions, so let’s look at them.

Lim­i­ta­tions of Reactjs

  1. Learn­ing Reac­tjs can take much longer than React Native. This means the learn­ing curve for Reac­tjs is steep, which can be a prob­lem for new devel­op­ers try­ing to build an app with Reactjs.
  2. While Reac­tjs sup­ports many third-par­ty exter­nal libraries, there are very few native libraries for Reac­tjs. It is often nec­es­sary to down­load oth­er libraries com­pat­i­ble with ReactJS.

This increas­es project devel­op­ment costs and adds delays. For exam­ple, sup­pose the devel­op­er is using a high-per­form­ing spe­cif­ic frame­work for UI. In that case, they must add oth­er com­po­nents of that frame­work with React even if they are not using it.

Lim­i­ta­tions Of Using React Native

  1. Although JavaScript makes React Native easy to learn and devel­op, it can also lead to var­i­ous oth­er problems. 
  2. React Native is a frame­work where pro­gram­mers can get markup like HTML, stylesheets like CSS, and code from JavaScript. This loose cou­pling presents many chal­lenges that can cause log­i­cal con­flicts, which is unlike­ly with Swift or Java. 
  3. Gad­gets and devices also take longer to ini­tial­ize because of JavaScript threads.
  4. The lack of native iOS and Android libraries and depen­den­cy on exter­nal third-par­ty libraries can slow down the devel­op­ment process for React Native. 

Because of this, the devel­op­ers need to find workarounds for them or devel­op their solu­tions. If spe­cif­ic func­tions do not exist in React Native, devel­op­ers must write the native mod­ules in anoth­er lan­guage or frame­work. This can increase over­head sin­gle code­base devel­op­ment time and costs.

Licens­ing and Patent Issues

This is a com­mon prob­lem in Reac­tJS and React Native. They both have sev­er­al licens­ing and patent issues and will like­ly remain so. 

Accord­ing to their license terms, if a devel­op­er uses these open-source plat­forms for pur­pos­es that Face­book does not like, they have the right to block that devel­op­er from using them. 

This has affect­ed both Reac­tjs and React Native devel­op­ers as their appli­ca­tions devel­oped on these plat­forms can be ter­mi­nat­ed at any time.

Con­clu­sion

Reac­tjs and React Native are essen­tial frame­works for web­site and appli­ca­tion devel­op­ment. They are gain­ing momen­tum dai­ly with their flex­i­ble, cut­ting-edge fea­tures and evolv­ing library ecosystem.

To make it easy to remember:

  • React Native is the entire framework
  • Reac­tJS is a JavaScript library 

Reac­tJS is the core of React Native appli­ca­tions and makes it pos­si­ble to build fea­ture-rich apps with com­plex cal­cu­la­tions. React Native is great for adding a native touch to your app.

All tech­nolo­gies have their uses and lim­i­ta­tions, and devel­op­ers should choose the one that best React Native devel­op­ment ser­vices that suits their spe­cif­ic needs.

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