The NextGen Solution- Progressive Web Apps
There are over 6.4 Million apps across all the app stores in the world at present. With this generality in apps, What we hear among the developers is that “All mobile apps will either be Android or iOS”. While native apps can be extremely handy, users cannot download apps that they use once in a blue moon.
Web-based Progressive Web Apps(PWAs) are practical solutions for this scenario; as they combine the best features of mobile app and mobile web i.e., speed and offline usage without downloading anything. They are affordable, less time consuming to develop and are widely available.
- PWAs are web applications that load like regular web pages but include app characteristics like work offline, send notifications and integrate with native device functionalities.
- PWAs support periodic updates providing the user a native app experience.
- They can be installed on any operating system and can access the hardware features of the device.
- Progressive enhancement is used to give users a better experience even when their device doesn’t support all the features of the PWA.
- Security is ensured since https is hosting.
They are hosted on servers and accessed via URLs, thus no need for installation, updates which eats away all internal storage we keep maxing out on. Progressive Web applications seamlessly adapt to different browsers, screen sizes, device specifications on any device because of the effective responsive or adaptive design. It’s an all-in-one solution for a site/app to be delivered across all devices without the hassle of app-store distribution, making it convenient for the client, developer and the user.
The PWA loads even when you’re offline. The requested resources pass through the service worker like a proxy. Each request triggers a fetch event, an API that searches the cache for a match in the service worker. if there’s a match, PWA responds with a cached resource; otherwise the resource is requested normally. Caching resources allows the PWA to work offline by avoiding network requests. Precaching is the highlight of the PWA design that makes it an offline wonder.
As it has a file with metadata (manifest.json); Users can save the PWA to the home screen for ease of use. They can be added to the start menu, taskbar and can handle files from the operating system file manager like a native app would. Even Chrome prompts the user to add the PWA to the screen, when the build meets an established standard.
PWAs can increase the user engagement, and user conversions. PWAs save development time and budget, as they avoid designing in multiple code bases.
Aiming at providing accessible, user-
Some of the best examples of PWAs are Starbucks, Uber, Flipboard, MakeMyTrip, Pinterest, Spotify etc.,.
Let’s look deeper into how these businesses benefited from adapting to PWAs-
- Friendly online ordering to all their customers, Starbucks built a PWA order system that resembles their existing native app, but better; as the size of their PWA is 99.84% smaller than their iOS app. Customers who travel in and out of connectivity and take orders on the go benefited from the new PWA; resulting in Starbucks doubling the number of web users who place orders each day, with desktop users now ordering at the same rate as mobile users.
- Uber PWA is designed to make car-booking viable at low-speed, 2G networks. The core app of only 50kB allows it to load in 3 seconds on 2G network. The million dollar problem of every cab company is resolved with this.
- Even Microsoft has launched Teams PWA for its linux users to get the latest features and desktop experience.
Microsoft’s PWABuilder and Google’s Bubblewrap are now working together to help developers create, build and update projects for Android Applications that launch Progressive Web Apps using TWA(Trusted Web Activity).
While receiving a lot of attention, PWA is relatively a new concept for a major population. Having the best of native apps and websites, PWA is the viable solution for e-commerce. This trending technology will be more demanding in developing countries where data is expensive and connectivity is comparably poor.
Kanerika is a niche consulting firm building efficient enterprises with deployment of automated, integrated and analytics solutions. Kanerika enables efficient enterprises through its unique digital consulting frameworks and AIOps enabled compostable solution architecture. We partner with some of the top vendors to solve some of the critical data and process related challenges. We help some of the top brands across the globe in increasing their speed to respond in evolving market conditions, reducing their cost of operations, empowering them with the right tools and insights for effective decision making.