PWA advantages and disadvantages
Progressive Web Apps have gained significant popularity since big business and startups alike started implementing them to boost performance. Let’s look at the benefits and drawbacks of PWAs from a business standpoint to determine whether or not they are a suitable fit for you. In this article, we’ll go through the most essential pros and cons of PWA to consider.
What are Progressive Web Apps (PWAs)
Progressive Web Apps (PWAs) are app-like web pages that may be accessed via a browser on mobile devices. They provide all of the benefits of native apps without having the user’s device to be installed.
These are the web applications that integrate new technology with tried-and-true best practices and develop dependable, accessible, and engaging experiences.
Simply explained, a PWA is a web app that has the feel of a native app: After installation, users access the website by clicking on its icon on the device’s home screen.
“Progressive Web Apps make use of modern web technologies to provide a user experience similar to that of an app.”
PWAs are becoming increasingly popular. Many popular websites, including Starbucks.com, bookmyshow.com, MakeMyTrip.com, and Uber.com, are available as PWAs that can be installed on your home screen and provide a similar experience to their native applications.
Table of contents
- Pros of Progressive Web Application
– Benefits for users
– Benefits for businesses
– Benefits for developers
– The Benefits of Progressive Web Apps Over Traditional E-Commerce Sites
- Cons of Progressive Web Applications
- Progressive Web Apps Have More Advantages Than Disadvantages
- Future of PWAs
- Is PWA suitable for your business?
- Build your PWA with Ailoitte
This blog post will mainly focus on the advantages of progressive web applications including disadvantages as well.
Pros of PWA
The Progressive web applications have several advantages based on the group of users, businesses, and developers.
Progressive web applications are:
- Fast: PWA allows for efficient apps with the benefit of a responsive user interface similar to that of a native app. With the aid of caching and service workers, the app works like a native app and saves data like a regular website.
- Reliable: Even if the connection is unreliable, the application always replies promptly when using a service worker. The data will be cached even if the connection is inadequate or if you are offline. Instead, the cached data will be loaded.
- Engaging: PWA’s native feel makes it difficult for consumers to tell which native applications are utilizing PWAs. Users may then use the program as if it were a native app without having to install it.
Benefits for users
- Offline functionality: PWAs are far more convenient than webpages because of their capacity to operate offline or in compromised networks. Built-in service workers automatically cache critical progressive web apps’ features and information, eliminating the need to download it and allowing users to view it without an internet connection.
- A native app-like experience: Progressive web applications combine the appearance and feel of mobile apps with the best of website performance to create an improved user experience. They have a design and configuration that is extremely close to native mobile applications. PWAs deliver the same user experience as native mobile applications, and it is deemed superior to that of websites, regardless of the technologies, tools, and frameworks on which they are built. They have the same speed, responsiveness, and extensive capabilities as websites that have database access and automated data.
- Faster loading time: PWAs, as compared to traditional websites, have quicker load times. Companies may see a big increase in revenue as a result of this. Faster load times imply that more clients are engaged in the application, and greater engagement translates to more income. PWA-enabled web retailers may also see a significant reduction in server load. This implies that even when there is a high volume of traffic, clients will not have a degraded experience and will always operate as intended.
- Easily installable: PWAs are installable, which means they can be accessed from the home screen just like any other app. This is especially advantageous for startups or businesses trying to save money at the expense of building a native mobile app.
- Small size/lightweight: In comparison to their native counterparts, PWAs are small. When you download a traditional application, you are committing to something. A user must go to their app store, search for the program they want, and then download and install it. Long download periods, especially when the internet connection is poor, might generate an unpleasant experience if it’s a huge application. Users may easily add PWAs to their home screens, and because the size of the app is small, there is essentially no waiting time for the user to start/continue using it.
- Responsive design: A PWA’s responsive design allows it to operate on most mobile devices, desktops, laptops, and tablets. A PWA, for example, may work on both a Google Pixel phone and a Microsoft Windows PC, but a native software designed for an iPhone would not run on an Android.
- Easily Shareable: PWAs are accessible web pages with a live URL. Content is readily shared across devices, allowing you to reach a larger audience. PWAs do not require complicated installation because they are shared and linkable.
- Push notification functionality: PWAs, like native apps, take advantage of the device’s push-notification functionality. This is a fantastic feature for businesses and their advertising strategies. Because people enable their PWAs to give them alerts, which are extremely visible on mobile devices. As a result, businesses have a better chance of reaching their target audience, reaching out to their consumers more frequently, and being more known as a brand.
- Efficient security: PWAs rely on HTTPS to protect data and reduce the risk of security vulnerabilities, as this protocol prevents surveillance and content modification. In addition, the applications make use of Web Bluetooth technology, which has unique security protections.
- Anytime access anywhere: PWAs can work from anywhere. Users who often switch between devices can get cross-support anywhere. This is done to meet the needs of the consumer, to ensure a consistent experience, and to contribute to business automation, especially for companies that rely on PWAs, as they must understand that the software their employees use performs optimally, whether it is a platform or an app version. PWAs are very responsive to different form factors and adapt well to different screen sizes.
Benefits for businesses
- Reach a wider audience: PWAs are made to work for everyone, no matter what platform they’re using. They’re also adaptable to different screen sizes. More people embrace them than would download an app because they’re instantly available to a large audience and easy to distribute via a link.
- Low development costs: Native app development is more expensive since the process is more difficult and distinct apps for web, iOS, and Android must be produced. Because it is compatible with most browsers and systems, a progressive web app just has to be designed once. The use of a single codebase simplifies and lowers development expenses. A PWA’s upkeep is also less expensive than that of a native app.
- Faster development time: Building PWAs is fast since the development approach is cross-platform. Hence, the developers don’t need to write different codes, instead, a single codebase can be used for multiple platforms. Therefore, the PWA development is faster.
- Increased conversion rates: PWAs give a better user experience for consumers, in part because of the benefits mentioned above, and a better user experience equals greater conversion rates.
- No updates required: Progressive Web Apps are automatically updated. The application does not notify the user of impending upgrades and does not require user permission to update itself. The idea is that every time a user opens the app, it automatically updates without downloading and installing any batch modifications.
- SEO-friendly: Faster loading sites receive a ranking boost, which has a significant influence on search engine rankings. Your PWA will be indexed fast, and it will give a wonderful user experience, all of which will help your SEO plan succeed. In fact, PWAs can be implemented into your existing online marketing strategy.
Benefits for developers
- Multi-platform support: Progressive web apps are designed to function smoothly on the web platform, as the name implies. As a result, both Android and iOS users may effortlessly enjoy PWA and its numerous capabilities. Native apps are designed to work only with iOS or Android. As a result, native apps are limited to a single platform, which is determined by the operating system on which the app is built.
- Modern development approach: The developers make use of the modern development approach while building PWAs. However, the use of modern development tools and approaches makes the PWAs fast, reliable, and secure.
- Use of hardware features: PWAs allow different mobile functionalities, such as push notifications, to be included. The best part is that developers have complete control over their implementation, which might open up new marketing and sales channels for firms. Furthermore, PWAs may take advantage of mobile device hardware characteristics like geolocation and camera.
The Benefits of Progressive Web Apps Over Traditional E-Commerce Sites
PWAs have gained traction for a variety of reasons, including their numerous capabilities and ability to build on prior web development principles like progressive enhancement, feature detection, and responsive web design to support as many current browsers and devices as feasible.
PWAs provide several distinct advantages over typical responsive web pages, including:
- PWAs have operational costs that are a fraction of the cost of running and maintaining native apps over time.
- PWAs are quick to load and don’t necessitate the loading of new pages for each user interaction.
- Using HTTPS/URL requests to deliver
- Search engines index PWA pages since they are SEO-friendly.
- Android users may enjoy native app-like functionality.
Cons of Progressive Web Applications
- High Battery Consumption: PWAs use more battery than native applications because they are built-in high-level web code, which requires phones to work harder to decode. Users who observe a decrease in battery power are less inclined to utilize this type of software if they need to extend their battery life.
- Access to app stores is restricted: If you create a PWA, you will not be listed as a firm in the Apple or Google app stores. Apps are frequently discovered because they are displayed on one of the popular app platforms.
- iOS Compatibility: PWAs have been supported on Apple devices since iOS 11.3, although compatibility with previous devices is no longer guaranteed. Furthermore, Apple restricts PWAs from accessing several critical functionalities, including Touch ID, Face ID, ARKit, Bluetooth, serial, Beacons, altimeter sensor, and even battery information.
- Issues with legacy devices: PWAs have only been available for a few years, so it’s not surprising that older mobile devices with outdated web browsers don’t support them very well. While this issue will certainly be resolved in the future, it may become a cause of customer complaints about some businesses.
- Limited Hardware and software support: Progressive web applications are still in their early stages, and not all device hardware and software support them. iOS, for example, does not enable notification and home screen shortcuts for progressive web apps. Progressive web apps, unlike native apps, do not allow the usage of GPS, fingerprint scanners, phone cameras, and other modern device functionalities.
- Still in the development stage: The PWA is still in development, as is its compatibility with (mobile) browsers and OS systems. For example, because Apple does not support all of the functions of a PWA, the user experience will be more constrained in some circumstances. Currently, it is not feasible to utilize Bluetooth or Siri, send push notifications, or use Face ID or Touch ID.
Progressive Web Apps Have More Advantages Than Disadvantages
The list of arguments in favor of PWAs is lengthy. PWAs are taking over, as seen by the increasing number of firms opting for PWA over native. PWAs, more than any native-based applications, bring responsiveness to the table. They also do not require installation or rely on an app store, and they function better. On the other side, there are several features that PWAs do not have, and the fact that PWAs are store-independent isn’t necessarily a positive thing. Another issue is the high battery use, as well as the absence of support for cross-app login.
Overall, progressive web apps are worth considering for the majority of enterprises.
Future of PWAs
PWAs are the future of web-hosted apps as they are a hybrid of a native app and a web app, load rapidly, run offline, and work well on all platforms, including mobile. It seems to be a web app but is engineered to provide a native app experience.
PWAs aren’t a one-size-fits-all alternative for native apps. However, they can be used as a universal alternative for responsive websites. They are more responsive, more intuitive, and provide a native app-like experience that outperforms mobile web pages. Furthermore, push alerts and the “add to home screen” capability increase engagement and sales chances.
PWAs may be a significant tool for achieving a competitive advantage in the digital market, where enterprises compete largely on experience.
Is PWA suitable for your business?
You must consider building PWA if:
You have a restricted budget: Creating a progressive web application is substantially less expensive than creating a mobile app. Furthermore, a single PWA may be used on both Android and iOS devices. When it comes to native applications, you’d have to create one for each platform, which would cost you more money, time, and effort.
You run a small online store: PWA capability is sufficient for the majority of e-commerce sites. It will allow consumers to perform safe HTTPS transactions and explore your business when offline.
Your target audience has a sluggish internet connection: The capacity to work with limited internet access is a major deciding factor. PWA can run properly even on sluggish networks without sacrificing performance. So, if your organization caters to customers in remote places or rural areas, you should go with a progressive web app.
Build your PWA with Ailoitte
Ailoitte is well-versed in the pros and cons of PWA and has relevant expertise with its deployment. Regardless, Inoxoft participates in PWA development, improves its expertise, and looks forward to producing progressive web apps to boost your company’s potential, increase end-user engagement, and increase product pay-off.
We create native mobile apps, progressive web apps (PWA), and cross-platform solutions that integrate easily into your digital transformation plan.
Contact our team of specialists if you need more information on PWAs and their development.
Start your journey with Ailoitte