We are currently in something of a golden age for app development. Across all purposes and functions, dozens of great apps land in the Play Store every day. These constitute games, tools or just gadget apps. You can find pretty much whatever you need for whatever purpose you need. So which are better? To find out, check out our overview of native mobile apps vs browser apps.
As technology moves forward, it can be difficult to know how best to get the most out of apps. In particular, storage space comes at a premium. How can you know which apps to have running on your phone and what you can just run via browser?
What to Download
There are two key factors to consider when you’re looking at apps: file size and responsiveness. First, the biggest offenders with massive download sizes are high-definition games or anything involving graphics processing. While Adobe’s comprehensive visual editing package in the form of Creative Cloud is reasonably well-optimised, downloading the entire mobile suite at once is likely to bite a big chunk out of your storage space.
Where file size is an issue, responsiveness is essential. Apps that directly interact with features on your phone fall squarely in the ‘must-download’ category. For example, many like to swap out the default Google camera for something more specific. Going back to Adobe again, their Lightroom app works great in directly working with your camera and bringing the images straight into the editor natively. Also in the ‘must-download’ category are functions that you simply can’t rely on internet availability for. There’s no point in having a great alarm on a browser if your connection drops out in the middle of the night.
To get around the file size issue, it is worth looking into browser-based software options for when it isn’t essential to have it directly installed. Compared to native apps, web-based apps take up negligible storage resources on your device and are always up to date. There are plenty of options for whatever function you’re aiming for as well.
For example, if you’re looking for an art or design app but don’t want to grab everything from Adobe, then you have the option to work on the Sketchpad Webapp for the majority of your needs. In another case, instead of needing to download a casino app on your phone and work out whether your device can play it, you can guarantee that all the games on there will work on your browser thanks to HTML5 optimisation. This is a universal feature for slot games, so you can play online slots at MegaRush, for instance, directly in your browser with all the features and options you’d be getting on a native app, often with better payment options as a bonus depending on the exact site used. This same logic also applies to a number of browser-based mobile games that have the advantage of seamless transfer of game data to a computer so you aren’t locked to a device.
As to whether native apps are better than browser apps, it ultimately comes down to what you have available. If your Android is a top-of-the-line model with enough storage to hold half the apps on the Play Store at the same time, then native is invariably the better way to go. If storage is more of a premium for you, though, remember that there are plenty of options out there.