Are you ready to embark on an epic journey through the ever-evolving world of mobile apps? Today, we’re going to be tackling one of the biggest debates in the industry: Progressive Web Apps (PWAs) vs. Native Apps on iOS in 2023.

In a world where our lives revolve around our smartphones, choosing the right type of app can make or break a business. So, if you’re a business owner looking to launch a new app, or just a curious tech-lover, you’re in the right place.

We’ll be taking an in-depth look at the pros and cons of both PWAs and Native Apps on iOS, and exploring which one is better suited for your business needs. With 2023 just around the corner, it’s crucial to stay on top of the latest trends and technologies. So, whether you’re a tech geek, a business owner, or just someone curious about the latest trends in the mobile app world, this post is for you!

Importance of Choosing the Right Type of App for Your Business Needs

Choosing the right type of app, whether it’s a PWA or a native app, is crucial for any business. It can determine the success or failure of your app and ultimately, your business.

One of the key factors to consider when choosing the right type of app is user experience. A well-designed app that provides a seamless user experience can help increase user engagement, retention, and ultimately, conversion rates. A poorly designed app, on the other hand, can lead to frustrated users who are likely to abandon the app altogether.

Another important factor is development costs. Developing a native app can be a costly and time-consuming process, requiring specialized skills and expertise. PWAs, on the other hand, are typically faster and more cost-effective to develop, as they leverage existing web technologies.

Platform-specific development is also an important consideration. Native apps are built specifically for a single platform, such as iOS or Android, while PWAs can be accessed on multiple platforms. This can be an advantage or disadvantage depending on your business needs.

Finally, discoverability is another key factor to consider. Native apps are typically found through app stores, while PWAs can be discovered through search engines. Optimizing your app for discoverability can help increase visibility and attract new users.

What are Progressive Web Apps?

Progressive Web Apps (PWAs) are a revolutionary new technology that combines the best of both worlds: the versatility and accessibility of web applications and the robustness and seamless user experience of native mobile apps.

In simpler terms, PWAs are websites that behave like native apps. They offer a wide range of functionalities, such as offline access, push notifications, and device hardware access, just like a native app would. However, unlike native apps, PWAs don’t require any downloads or installations from an app store. Users can simply access them through their web browser and enjoy an app-like experience on their mobile devices or desktops.

But what makes PWAs truly remarkable is their ability to work across all platforms, whether it be iOS, Android, or Windows. They are built with a responsive design that can adapt to any device screen size and offer a seamless experience across all platforms.

Advantages of PWAs

Progressive Web Apps (PWAs) have several advantages that make them an increasingly popular choice for businesses and developers alike. Here are some of the key advantages of PWAs:

  • Cross-Platform Compatibility

PWAs are built with web technologies like HTML, CSS, and JavaScript, making them compatible with multiple platforms and devices. This means that businesses can create a single app that works seamlessly on both Android and iOS devices, as well as on desktop and mobile devices.

  • Easy Installation

Unlike traditional apps, PWAs can be installed directly from a website or a link, without the need for app store approval. This makes it easier and faster for users to install and access the app, without the need for downloading from an app store.

  • No App Store Approval

Since PWAs are not distributed through app stores, businesses do not need to go through the lengthy and often unpredictable process of getting their app approved by app store administrators.

  • Low Cost

PWAs are typically cheaper to develop and maintain than native apps. Businesses can save money on development costs by leveraging their existing web development skills and resources.

  • Discoverability

PWAs are discoverable through search engines, which makes it easier for businesses to reach potential customers who are searching for their products or services online. This makes PWAs a powerful tool for businesses looking to increase their online visibility and reach a wider audience.

Disadvantages of PWAs

While PWAs offer many advantages, they also have a few disadvantages that should be considered:

  • Limited Access to Device Features

As PWAs are designed to be lightweight, they have limited access to device features such as camera, GPS, and other hardware. This can be a disadvantage for apps that require access to these features to function properly.

  • Offline Functionality

PWAs are designed to work offline, but their offline functionality is limited compared to native apps. For example, if a user is in an area with poor or no internet connection, the PWA may not work as intended.

  • User Engagement

While PWAs are great for discoverability and easy installation, they can be challenging to engage users. Since they don’t have a prominent presence on the user’s home screen, users may forget about them or not use them as frequently as they would a native app.

What are Native Apps?

Native apps are software applications that are developed for specific mobile operating systems, such as iOS or Android, and are installed directly on a user’s device. These apps are built using platform-specific programming languages and tools, making them optimized for the particular operating system they are designed for.

One of the unique features of native apps is their ability to take full advantage of the device’s hardware and software capabilities, including camera, microphone, GPS, and other sensors. This allows for the creation of highly engaging and interactive user experiences that are often not possible with other types of apps.

With their superior performance and optimized user experiences, native apps are often the go-to choice for businesses and organizations that require a high level of reliability and functionality from their mobile applications.

Advantages of Native Apps

Native apps are built specifically for a particular mobile platform like iOS or Android. They can deliver top-notch performance and functionality. Here are some unique advantages of native apps:

  • High Performance

Since native apps are developed specifically for a particular mobile platform, they can take full advantage of the device’s hardware and software, delivering lightning-fast performance and smoother user experience.

  • Full Access to Device Features

Native apps can easily access and use all the features of a device, like the camera, microphone, GPS, and more. It makes them a perfect fit for apps that need these features to function properly.

  • Offline Functionality

With native apps, users can continue to use certain features of the app even when they’re offline. It means that they can still access previously downloaded content, play games, or perform other offline activities, which is particularly useful for users who frequently travel or have limited access to the internet.

  • Push Notifications

Native apps can send push notifications to users, alerting them of new content, features, or messages even when the app is not open. It can help to keep users engaged and up-to-date on app activities, leading to higher user retention and engagement rates.

Disadvantages of Native Apps

Native apps are mobile applications developed specifically for a particular mobile operating system, such as iOS or Android. While native apps can offer a wide range of benefits, including high performance, better user experience, and more advanced features, they also have several disadvantages that developers and businesses need to consider:

  • Platform-Specific Development

Native apps need to be developed separately for each platform, which can significantly increase the development time and cost. For example, if you want to develop a native app for both iOS and Android, you’ll need to hire separate teams of developers who specialize in each platform.

  • App Store Approval

 Native apps need to go through an app store approval process, which can be time-consuming and sometimes unpredictable. For example, Apple’s App Store has strict guidelines that apps must follow to be approved, and any violation of these guidelines can result in rejection.

  • Higher Cost

Native app development can be more expensive than other types of app development, such as web or hybrid app development. This is mainly due to the need for specialized skills and the platform-specific development required.

  • Discoverability

Unlike web apps, which can be accessed through search engines and shared via links, native apps rely on app store search and promotion to be discovered by users. It means that app store optimization and marketing efforts are crucial for a native app’s success.

Comparison of Progressive Web Apps vs Native Apps 

AspectProgressive Web Apps (PWAs)Native Apps
DevelopmentWritten in web technologies (HTML, CSS, JavaScript)Written in platform-specific languages (Java for Android, Swift/Objective-C for iOS)
DeploymentHosted on a server and accessed through a web browserDownloaded and installed from an app store
Platform compatibilityCompatible with multiple platforms (desktop, mobile, tablets, etc.)Platform-specific (Android, iOS, etc.)
App Store ApprovalNot requiredRequired
User AcquisitionDiscoverable via search engines, social media, and web linksSearchable on app stores and can be promoted with paid ads
User EngagementCan be saved to the home screen and accessed like a native appOffers more functionality and offline capabilities
PerformanceSlower performance compared to native appsFaster performance compared to PWAs
Push notificationsSupported on most platformsSupported on all platforms
Integration with device featuresLimited access to device features such as contacts, camera, and notificationsFull access to device features such as contacts, camera, and notifications
CostRelatively inexpensiveExpensive due to the need to develop for multiple platforms

Progressive Web App Use Cases

  • Offline Mode

PWAs are particularly useful for users who travel frequently or have poor internet connectivity. Since PWAs can work offline, they can save user data and enable users to continue using the app even without a stable internet connection.

  • Travel and Hospitality

Travel companies can use PWAs to offer a seamless and reliable booking experience. By providing real-time updates on travel information like flight status, gate changes, and delays. Thus, PWAs can enhance the user experience. 

  • News and Media

PWAs can provide a fast and responsive mobile experience, which makes them an ideal choice for news and media companies. 

  • Banking and Finance 

PWAs are also suitable for banking and finance companies as they can allow users to access their accounts, check balances, and pay bills. 

Native Apps Use Cases

Native apps find diverse applications across various industries. Here are some examples of how they are used:

  • E-commerce

Retailers such as Amazon and eBay offer native apps that enable customers to shop and make purchases directly from their mobile devices.

  • Social media

Native apps for social media platforms like Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter allow users to access and share content on their phones or tablets easily.

  • Gaming

Native apps are frequently used for mobile gaming, with popular titles such as Candy Crush and Angry Birds.

  • Education

Schools and universities use native apps to provide students with easy access to course materials, communication with instructors, and more. 

  • Productivity

Native apps can also help improve productivity, with apps like Microsoft Office that allow users to manage tasks, organize notes, and collaborate on projects.


In conclusion, the debate between Progressive Web Apps and Native Apps on iOS is not likely to die down anytime soon. Both options have their pros and cons, and the ultimate decision should be based on the specific needs of your business and its users.

If you prioritize performance, speed, and access to device hardware, native apps might be the way to go. However, if you value flexibility, cost-effectiveness, and accessibility across multiple platforms, then Progressive Web Apps may be the better choice.

Ultimately, the key takeaway is to keep an open mind and embrace innovation in your mobile strategy. Whether you go native or opt for Progressive Web Apps, the most important thing is to provide your users with a seamless and engaging mobile experience that keeps them coming back for more.

So go ahead, explore your options, and choose the mobile solution that best fits your needs. After all, in the rapidly evolving world of mobile technology, the only constant is change.