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Progressive Web App Development: Bringing Your Design to Life

Dec 2
4 min read

Do you want to capitalize on a new technology that offers tremendous benefits to your business?

Progressive web apps combine the capability of a website with the functionality of a native app to deliver an improved user experience. In fact, PWAs are becoming the top choice for many businesses.

Progressive web apps can decrease costs, speed up load times, and increase user engagement. Keep reading to find out more about progressive web app development.

What Are Progressive Web Apps?

A progressive web app (PWA) is a web application that behaves more like a native app. PWAs take advantage of the latest technologies to provide an improved user experience.

A progressive web app is hosted on a web server so developers can push updates through directly instead of having to send them to multiple app stores. A PWA will run on all platforms and browsers.

PWAs combine the best features from native apps and regular web applications.

Once you have installed a progressive web app, you’ll get a home screen icon or desktop shortcut that launches it. PWAs have offline support and include push notifications. 

Progressive web apps mimic native apps in that they can access your location services, camera, and other features.

So what does the “progressive” part mean? It means these apps are enhanced with new, “progressive” web technologies. Tools like the Cache API allow PWAs to load much faster than native apps.

The app’s resources and data are stored on your device meaning you can still access it when you’re offline. Like regular apps, PWAs can send notifications and perform background tasks even when they aren’t running.

Features of Progressive Web Apps

Progressive web apps have several distinct characteristics. PWAs make use of certain technologies to mimic the functionality of a native app. They can also adapt to different devices and they work on any web browser.

Some key features of progressive web apps include being installable and working offline. Progressive web apps are also secure. Information is exchanged over the internet and connections use the HTTPS secure protocol.

PWAs also support native app features such as full-screen mode. These features are guidelines for developers working on progressive web apps. 

Because PWAs are web apps, they don’t appear in the app store. But this isn’t necessarily a disadvantage. Popular app stores can give your app exposure but abiding by their requirements can be tricky.

That’s why building a PWA is a lot simpler and easier to maintain. If you’re looking to market your app to an existing user-base, then building a PWA is the best choice.

Why Build a Progressive Web App?

Developing a progressive web app can improve your online presence. A PWA is a powerful tool for engaging your users.

The core of any good PWA is a good user experience. Faster load times, smoother performance, and a simpler interface increase user retention.

With regular native apps, you’ll need to host them on an app store. This means developing them in accordance with Apple’s or Google’s rules. On the other hand, PWAs give you full control over the development process and are easier to build.

One of the primary reasons to build a PWA is to give your users a better mobile experience. This is very important because around half of all internet traffic is from mobile users.

Having a PWA for your business gives you the opportunity to improve your bottom line and attract new customers.

Advantages of Progressive Web App Development

There are many advantages to using a progressive web app over a regular, native app. Here are some of the most impactful features of PWAs.

Cheaper to Develop

Native apps can cost a lot to build and even more to maintain. And these are just the apps that Apple and Google allow onto their store!

Native app development can cost up to $100,000 and many companies have spent even more than that.

Progressive web apps, on the other hand, are much more affordable to develop and maintain. Building a PWA costs half (or even less) than a regular native app.

Better User Experience 

Due to their progressive technologies, PWAs offer a better user experience than native apps.

As mentioned, PWAs are built for mobile-first which makes them easy to navigate on a smaller device. 

They also load extremely fast. This is a huge benefit. I mean, let’s be real – no one enjoys waiting for web pages to load.

By sticking to best practices, you can develop a lightning-fast PWA that your users will love. PWAs take advantage of cached assets and other features to speed up load times.

Cached assets on your user’s device mean fewer server requests. This reduces bandwidth costs and consumes less of your users’ data.

PWAs also require much less hard drive space than native apps. Users often remove regular apps from their devices because they take up too much space. But this won’t happen with PWAs.

A good developer will optimize images, or use responsive images to further decrease application size. HTML, CSS, and JavaScript files are also much smaller in PWAs.

Many developers have reported PWAs to be around 20% of the size of their native equivalents.

Instant Updates

Another advantage of developing a progressive web app is instant deployments.

Many app developers have reported their updates being blocked by app stores. This is a real problem for many companies.

The process of deploying updates can take weeks with native apps. This is a nightmare if you’re trying to fix a critical bug.

Because progressive web apps are like websites, you can deploy updates whenever you need to. Once the update goes through, the app is updated for everyone. Quick and efficient.

Progressive Web Apps Improve Your Business

Although progressive web apps are a new phenomenon, many companies are adopting them in favor of native apps.

PWAs are easier and cheaper to develop. They make use of advanced technologies to improve user experience and engagement and deliver optimum performance.

Are you considering building a progressive web app for your business? Contact our team to find out more about our progressive web app development services.

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