Since its launch in 2015, React Native has matured into a versatile, efficient cross-platform framework. Our clients trust us to recommend tooling that is capable and stable for the long run, so we created WillowTree’s React Native Pilot Group to put the cross-platform development framework through its paces.
The bottom line? We’re all in.
How are we going to build this product?
What tech stack will help us achieve our vision?
Where can we cut costs without sacrificing quality?
We’ve heard these questions a thousand times. Every client comes to WillowTree with distinct budgets, capabilities, and goals, so every digital product we create is by definition bespoke. Before writing code, one of the most significant decisions we make is selecting a product’s development framework.
Options typically include progressive web apps (PWAs), hybrid-web “wrappers,” native app frameworks, and cross-platform frameworks. Native apps built with tools from Apple and Google are the gold standard, but they’re expensive. Third-party tools can simplify the process, but each is nuanced, offering benefits and drawbacks.
To make matters more complex, developer communities have historically disagreed on preferred frameworks, and platforms are rapidly evolving to meet modern demands. For nearly a decade, frameworks like React Native, Xamarin, and Flutter have been duking it out.
Together, these complexities breed confusion, misconceptions, and false cost/time expectations — especially for clients new to mobile products. Is it possible to build a product once and operate that product anywhere?
As experts in digital product development, it’s our job to understand client constraints and recommend the right tool — or combination of tools — for the job.
WillowTree has worked with all of these frameworks, and we’ve learned the pros and cons of each. This eBook will focus on cross-platform solutions, which offer a comprehensive capability set with potential pricing efficiencies (15-25%, not 50%).
Spoiler alert? We’ve seen enough to confidently make the call: if you’re going cross-platform, we recommend React Native as your development framework.