July 16, 2020
February 1, 2020

Top 12 Best Mobile App Development Frameworks in 2020

With more than 4 billion mobile users today if you aren't on connecting with your audiences on mobile, you don't exist. People enjoy using smartphones so much that it's come to needing to challenge ourselves to have a no-tech day.

Checking your time, emails, booking a cab, shopping, ordering medicine, getting a legal consultation. Anything you want people to use in 2020, has to be built mobile first.

Keeping this goal in mind, hybrid mobile development frameworks were built to roll-out mobile apps faster across multiple platforms by significantly reducing their development time.

Our the top 12 mobile app development frameworks

1. React Native

React Native is a very popular framework which builds for both Android or iOS apps. React Native allows mobile app developers to build high-performance apps in shorter build cycles with faster deployment times, it is a budget-friendly option.

One of the major advantages of React Native framework is that it lets you develop truly native apps but doesn't compromise on user experience (UX)

React Native provides a core set of platform-agnostic native components like Views, Text, Images all mapped to a platform’s native UI building block. It supports JavaScript which is a must for the full stack.

Facebook owns React and that means a large pool of developers in an active online community that never stops optimising & debugging.

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Some famous apps built with React Native:

  1. Facebook
  2. Instagram
  3. Soundcloud
  4. Airbnb
  5. UberEats

2. Flutter

Flutter is backed by Google so it inherits its UI toolkit for building beautiful native applications for mobile & desktop apps from a single codebase. It provides a wide array of customizable widgets to build native interfaces within minutes. Flutter gives a native experience to both the engineer & end user with commendable platform features such as scrolling, navigation, icons, plus fonts. Its built-in material design widget so you can easily create powerful, expressive UI for your applications.

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Some famous apps built with React Native:

  1. Alibab
  2. Google Ads
  3. Reflectly
  4. Cryptograph

3. Xamarin

Xamarin is a Microsoft owned open-source platform for building hybrid mobile apps using .NET and C#.

Xamarin extends the .NET dev platform with tools + libraries for building apps for Android, iOS, tvOS, watchOS, macOS, and Windows.

Being a Microsoft product, it has more than 60000 developers & contributors along with good customer support and extensive documentation. With an excellent native user interface, you can build natively while providing an amazing user experience.

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Some famous apps built with React Native:

  1. Azure mobile app
  2. UPS mobile app
  3. Alaska Airlines
  4. Microsoft News App
  5. Outback Steakhouse

4. Ionic

Ionic is an open-source, cross-platform mobile UI toolkit for native Android, iOS and web apps.

The main advantage of an Ionic framework is templates. You can utilize more than 100 default UI components like forms, filters, action sheets, list views, tab bars, and navigation menu in their design. It encourages devs to focus on creating applications rather than getting bogged down working on UI components. On the off chance that the designers know about CSS, JavaScript, or HTML, utilizing the Ionic structure turns out to be significantly more reasonable. It supports Android 4.1+ & iOS 7 and above versions. Additionally, if engineers utilize Ionic with a local versatile application in PhoneGap, it works even better than hybrid applications.

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Some famous apps built with React Native:

  1. GE Transportation
  2. Amtrak
  3. MarketWatch
  4. Sworkit
  5. Instant Pot

5. PhoneGap

PhoneGap is a widely adopted framework for cross-platform mobile app development. The core of the framework runs on HTML5, CSS3 which gives it the capabilities to access underlying hardware like your camera, accelerometer, and GPS. It also uses Javascript to render the backend logic for applications. This gives it a competitive edge as Javascript is very widely used in programming. It allows you to write a single app that is installed as a native app across multiple devices. PhoneGap was powered by Adobe Systems but then handed over to Apache to maintain & keep it open-source. It's a distribution from Apache Cordova.

Some famous apps built with Phonegap:

  1. Wikipedia
  2. Health Tap
  3. TripCase
  4. Paylution
  5. Buildr

6. Framework 7

Framework 7 is a full-featured mobile app dev framework for Android, iOS and web development. Mostly used as a prototyping tool in the industry, this framework has had its share in full-fledged app development as well. With its rich ecosystem of plugins, this framework allows you to use tools of your choice along with HTML, CSS, and Javascript. It also comes with the powerful support of Vue.js and React which is icing on the cake. It’s open-source with updates rolled out regularly. A framework with a highly active community of developers is always the way to go for many developers

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Some famous apps with Framework 7:

  1. Kidoverse
  2. Cyberbrain IT Services
  3. HICAPPS
  4. Blokt
  5. Wappler

7. Monaca

Monaca is an HTML5 based framework built with PhoneGap and Cordova. A key feature of Monaca is that it’s a cloud-based IDE. This allows developers to use Monaca without having to install anything. They can work straight in the browser. There’s now also a desktop application and CLI tool to support working offline. You can always sync your progress to the cloud. Another advantage of using Monaca is its integration with Onsen UI . Onsen is a very powerful UI designing tool for mobile apps. It provides remote build and UI features that are secured in the cloud. Monaca Debugger brings a supreme debugging experience. It adds advanced JavaScript debugging to your Cordova apps, including breakpoints, step in/out and profiler.

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Some famous apps built with Monaca:

  1. Asics shoe finder
  2. SmartEat
  3. Hashtiv
  4. ScanIt
  5. Drive2Chat

8. Mobile Angular UI

Mobile Angular UI provides essential mobile components switches, overlays, sidebars, scrollable areas, absolute positioned top and bottom navbars. The key feature is that it allows you to take an already developed desktop/web application and make it mobile, and vice versa. An open-source tool with cross-browser compatibility allowing it to automatically handle JavaScript code based on the browser used.

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Some famous apps built with Mobile Angular UI:

  1. Hotelier News
  2. Zaobao Mobile Website
  3. Gunks
  4. iKeyBox
  5. Guezz It

9. jQuery Mobile

jQuery is a touch-based mobile app development framework allowing developers to code less and build more in less time. It has a ready-to-use JavaScript library having various plugins like Image Slider, Content Slider, and Pop-Up Boxes, and many more. Instead of writing unique applications for every device or OS, the jQuery mobile website allows you to design a single highly-branded responsive web site or application that will work on all popular smartphones, tablets, and desktop platforms. JQuery is used along with PhoneGap to develop the apps.

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10. Appcelerator Titanium

Appcelerator is another open-source framework that allows developers to create true native apps for Android, iOS, and Windows from a single Javascript codebase. It comes with ready to use UI components which allow you to create seamless experiences for the end user. It You can create custom APIs to be used within your application with error free integration. Appcelerator is also connected to the cloud so you can access your code from anywhere, anytime. Pretty neat.

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Some famous apps built with Appcelerator Titanium:

  1. Avis
  2. Blackbaud
  3. Family Dollar
  4. Comerica
  5. MIT

11. Corona SDK

Corona is a cross-platform framework ideal for quickly developing apps and games for mobile devices and desktop systems. It allows you to create one application and publish it to multiple platforms for devices like Apple’s iPhone and iPad, Android phones and tablets, Amazon Fire, Mac Desktop, Windows Desktop, and even connected TVs such as Apple TV, Fire TV, and Android TV. This framework is widely used to create 2D games with bleeding fast OpenGL graphics thus allowing apps to give better performance.

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Some famous apps built with Corona:

  1. Designer City
  2. Gunman Taco Truck
  3. Beasts Battle 2
  4. Zip Zap

12. Onsen UI

OnsenUI is a hybrid mobile app development framework most widely used for designing application UI. It is open-source with lots of features like JavaScript, HTML5 and CSS support. It also supports a wide array of pre-designed UI elements like tabs, side menu, stack navigation and components such as lists and forms. These UI elements are supported on both android and iOS platforms and they will automatically optimize to each platform. It also gives you an advantage to the graphics of the application, which is not the case with PhoneGap and Cordova based apps. OnsenUI is easy to learn and also a very powerful tool to create complex mobile apps. Extensive tutorials and learning materials are available for different levels of experience, beginners as well as advanced coders will find useful reads in the onsen site.

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Some famous apps built with Onsen UI:

  1. Opal
  2. Offcourse Golf
  3. Ski Patrol Mobile app
  4. PopVox
  5. Ohalog

How Much Will Your Mobile App Cost to Build?

Do you know how much the app you want to build will cost you? Estimating your price tag is the first step! But that's not so easy, costs can vary by as much as 70% depending on where you build your mobile app, so don't rush out to your local software development agency before you read our guide on estimating your cost and picking a software development partner that can deliver the best value - highest quality for the lowest possible cost.

Download our FREE eBook to see how much building your app will cost you around the world and how to identify the best software partner for your particular project and budget! Dive it !

eBook: How to Estimate the Cost of Building a Mobile App

What you'll learn!

  • How to validate your mobile app idea before you invest your time and money building the MVP
  • How to identify and assess significant cost factors for building your mobile app and optimize a strategy to reduce them
  • How to compare development models and talent across different geographies to select the best market for building your mobile app
  • How to source specialists that will provide the highest quality to cost ratio for your mobile app budget
  • How to accurately estimate your mobile app development costs then slash those rates by 1/3 using geographic arbitrage
  • How to hire a top mobile app development team for the cost of a single local hire

I hope this list helps you in choosing the right framework for your application. Happy Developing!

Author
Max Uperiaka
About author
Co-founder of 'Make it in Ukraine', Growth, Talent Hunter @laconeat
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