PhoneGap – A Few Significant Factors to Mull Over
PhoneGap- the application framework enables the developers in building native mobile applications while leveraging state of the art web development technologies.
The apps are usually natively installed on Android, Blackberry, IOS, windows phone, Firefox OS, Tizen, all leveraging –
- CSS for styling and layout
- HTML for user interface
Possibly you know this already; PhoneGap offers you enough flexibility. It supports –
- Multi-page apps or single page
- AJAX apps
- Common frameworks
- User interface libraries and more
Let’s not deny; no single pattern can cover every developer in every use case. Also there is hardly any one size all approach for this as different apps have different requirements and also developers have different skill sets. There are also a whole lot of permutations and combination to mull over. In this blog post, we will highlight all the aspects that you may need to consider when building a PhoneGap application.
A closer look at the General Architecture
Simply put; there are two distinct approaches to follow when building PhoneGap applications –
- Single-page apps
- Multi-page apps
Single Page Apps
The Single Page approach thus helps you create web apps, which look and feel more like the apps instead of web pages.
It is also relevant mentioning here; you don’t have to reinitialize, once the PhoneGap js library gets initialized.Also; with the single-page architecture there is hardly any chance of missing the in memory resident data.
It also helps you manage the transition of content easily. Yes; you have guessed that right; many development frameworks nowadays leverage this single page approach for building applications.
On the other hand; the multi-page applications somewhat functions like the traditional web pages. Each “HTML file” or each “page” contains a discrete set of functionality. It works pretty simply. Once the page loads the content is displayed. The user interacts with it and then another page is loaded. All these pages are either loaded from the remote servers or from the local file system.
This typical style of architecture works for many developers but there are a few notable drawbacks to multi page approach.
- 3rd Drawback: As already briefed; there is not much differentiation between the mobile app and the website. This means if your app looks too much like the mobile website then there is high chance of getting rejected at the app store approval processes. For instance; Apple’s App Store clearly states, “Web Based Designs” will be rejected.
Keep in mind; building successful PhoneGap applications is more than just the client-side architecture as you also need to consider services related to user interface as well. As a matter of fact; this is not particularly about PhoneGap applications but it’s applicable to all mobile apps in general.
Here are a few significant factors to mull over
You should consider a few important things prior leveraging the existing libraries. A few pros and cons for you to consider –
- Libraries increases the productivity greatly
Frameworks and MVC
The Model-View-Controller frameworks or more precisely the MVC frameworks typically enforce the common coding practices, which help in separating the data from the MVC codebases. However MVC controller frameworks are rather complex, and may require a rather higher degree of programming knowledge.
It also makes sense to mention here that MVC architectures may help you develop a particular codebase that can be optimized for each platform and device classification.
Developers should respect the operating environment of the mobile applications. It also makes sense to mention here; the structuring and streamlining data that your app may needs further helps in streamlining the app’s performance.
Yes; you have whole lot of options when building the PhoneGap applications. Yes; a whole range of web tools are at your disposal to help you create stunning apps. The more responsive and the faster you can make a quality app, the more your users will love you.