Mobile and web technologies are undergoing changes and improvements literally every hour. Smarties from all over the world break through the conventional methods and patterns of building and developing the web thereby facilitating the browsing process for the users. One of the latest and probably most striking digital innovations so far is Progressive Web Apps (PWA).
What is a PWA, then? A Progressive Web App is an elaborated and advanced version of a traditional website that combines the qualities of Internet browsers and those of mobile apps. We can also denote a PWA as a hybrid of a web page and a mobile application allowing the users to get the benefits that any app offers while browsing a website. Native Apps send push notifications, work offline and perform many other things inherent in the nature of mobile technologies.
Mobile Web Apps work with the help of a browser and differ significantly from the Native ones in their functionality spectrum. Putting it straight, Mobile Web Apps productivity is confined to few simple functions. Here is where Progressive Web Apps come to help.
They level up the productivity of Mobile Web Apps by giving them the features of Native Apps. Progressive Web Apps comprise design innovations, brand-new technologies and other diverse app features. This is what makes them the latest successful combination of the two major IT sources of contemporary world knowledge that are aimed at satisfying the needs of each aspiring centennial.
Top Сharacteristics of Progressive Web Apps
In order to fully grasp the essence of the difference between PWAs and traditional web apps, we have listed the most important characteristics of Progressive Web Apps.
Advantages of PWAs
Being highly innovative and advanced, PWAs are aimed at improving a regular website and thus facilitating its use. We’ve compiled some of their advantages.
Fitting the size of any gadget and being comfortable to use are the key features of Progressive Web Apps. The user shouldn’t have trouble discerning the text on the screen or any picture embedded in between the lines.
A PWA should be smart enough to accommodate to any device it is being used on and resonate with its peculiar technologies. The key word “progressive” implies being up-to-date with the newest gadget shticks as well as meeting their software requirements.
A Progressive Web App normally takes less than 3 seconds to load as it is a widely known fact that users quit an app if it takes more. So it was very thoughtful of the developers to make it convenient and fast to prevent the users from deleting the app without trying it.
As soon as the users launch a PWA, it immediately loads whatever the Internet connection is. How is this accomplished? The PWA service enables the users to pre-cache key resources thereby reducing the dependence on the network state and providing reliable and high-quality experience.
The ultimate goal of each app is to attract users and satisfy their whims. PWAs have been close to managing to do this since their very first launch. The great success of PWAs being highly responsive to the users’ needs lies in the exceptional diligence and attentiveness of the developers.
The most important safety requirement for each website is being hosted over HTTPS in order to cut cyber attacks and provide the users with complete data protection.
Disadvantages of PWAs
There is no such app that can be called completely flawless. Neither are PWAs. They do have downsides and we’d like to list the most common of them.
- Limited access to native system
PWAs are built to feel and perform like native apps, but they are still improved versions of mobile websites. As a result, such apps can’t take advantage of all device’s features.
- Android centric solution
Almost all the support for PWAs is taken over by Android which leaves less opportunities for iOS users to make the best out of PWAs, however powerful and excellent the iPhone software is. Yet there is a great chance that in no time each mobile browser will be able to support a PWA.
- There is no online store to download a PWA
This means that users don’t have to create a dime a dozen of accounts to install PWAs. They are available right on the Internet. Although, something might change in the nearest future due to the growing popularity of PWAs.
Commonly used frameworks for PWAs
- Keep Polymer a sample
The Polymer project is updated by Google allowing it to sync with other open source projects. Polymer utilizes the PRPL pattern to improve the app delivery to the device.
- Make React your core framework
It’s supported and used by Facebook. There’s no more advertisement needed. Moreover, Facebook informs you on the number of users testing this framework which is about 1.18 billion daily.
- Lighthouse as an impeccable code checker
This framework gives you a thorough analysis on the web app efficiency and performance by monitoring it. It then gives you useful suggestions on how to improve your web app performance and upgrade its technologies.
In a nutshell
All in all, each technological innovation is known to be way more avant-garde and convenient than its preceding version, despite all the minor disadvantages it has. Did they manage to bring to life this plan? Or did they fail and we should go back to somewhat obsolete forms of work and entertainment on the web? Drawing conclusions has always been up to you, the priceless user of mobile apps.