Coding

Phonegap First Impressions

April 8, 2015

A workmate made an iPhone application using phonegap and being ever curious of any technology, i decided to make an application using the framework to see what it could do and how i found it to create iPhone / Android hybrid apps.

I found that initial install of phonegap was simple and easy, although along the way i ran into various problems that don’t seem to be documented very clearly.

Likes

  • Simple install
  • Can get started on making an app quickly
  • Familiar code, you code in html, css, javascript.. so any web developer will be very happy with this. No need to learn Objective-C or Java
  • One app for Apple and Android

Dislikes

  • Slower than a native app
  • Documentation isn’t great
  • Not loads of support (e.g. stackoverflow issues) compared to native Objective-C etc, if you fall into an issue it can be a struggle to find a fix.

Overall

I would say it really depends on what you are looking to create and most importantly how fast you want the app to respond to touch etc. If you are working on an app that needs to be very quick and want to be the next best thing… I would stick to a native application. But if you are going to create both native android and ios apps, you need to have a lot of time and budget to create both.

If you are working on a smaller app that needs to work across both ios and android and don’t have a large budget or time to develop both apps separately, then a phonegap application may be right for you.

Examples

Pub Golf Scorecard – this was the first app I created using phonegap and I feel this app was perfect for phonegap, generally due to the need to work across android and ios.

Movie Picks – this was the second app I created using phonegap, and where the app development in the browser went well and the application worked great there. When it was translated into app form, phonegap was a little slow and performed a little sluggish.

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