What Is React Native and What Do You Need to Know About It?

It’s no secret that we all got used to living lives on the go. In such an environment, our smartphones are like extensions of our identities. They serve us as a means to connect and communicate with others, to instantly access and surf the web, to explore the world, learn, and stay informed.

Today, 3.5 billion people own a smartphone, which is a whopping number. That’s almost half of the population, and the number of users keeps growing. Bearing that in mind, no wonder mobile development is booming right now.

Businesses that are looking to create mobile apps are often indecisive about whether they should focus on creating an extraordinary user experience or if they should prioritize faster development and compatibility with multiple platforms. However, with React Native Development, they can easily do both.

According to the recent StackOverflow survey of 2019, React Native is among the most loved frameworks with 62.5% of developers using it. Wondering why it ranks so high in the community?

In today’s blog, we at Share IT will discuss the benefits of using the React Native framework and help you get a better understanding of why React Native is so widely used.

But let’s start from the beginning.

What Is React Native?


React Native is a native version of React.js, a popular web library created by Facebook. It is a JavaScript open-source framework that’s designed for building native mobile apps for iOS, Android, and Universal Windows Platform. This is why it has often been referred to as ‘the future of hybrid development’.

React Native enables developers to write the code using their knowledge of JavaScript, and create production-ready mobile applications that look and feel native. React Native is convenient and time-saving for developers, as it ensures almost instant compatibility with both iOS and Android systems.

How is this possible, you may wonder?

Well, the framework uses existing compilers and its code is not platform-specific, which means developers need to code only once and the open architecture will ensure the code can run on multiple platforms. React Native deploys a so-called ‘bridge’ that enables the communication between the written code and the native platforms. So, it connects the JavaScript thread with the native thread.

Why Do Developers Love React Native?

The main reason why developers love React Native so much lies in the fact it’s easy and simple to work with. The framework has been around for more than 5 years and its stable release was on March 26, 2020.

React Native is well funded, it has huge community support (check out this Facebook group and this tag on Medium) and a well-developed documentation, which helps developers of all expertise levels stay on track and learn. Robust tools, effective error messages, and quick iteration cycles are just a fragment of the reasons why the Native React development experience is so great.

Developers who have experience working with React.js are in for a treat. From custom animation and navigation, to fluent and accelerated scrolling - it’s honestly a very pleasant work environment. React Native renders real native components, so you can always follow your progress and ensure an authentic look and feel.

To sum it up, here are the top reasons why developers love React Native:

  • In addition to being easy to use, React Native is also easy to learn
  • The community is extremely helpful
  • It offers a familiar work environment
  • It saves up your resources
  • It’s well funded and continuously improved

If you’re a newbie, we advise you to start by exploring the documentation. It is very well written and helps you build your knowledge from the ground up.

What Are the Biggest Pros and Cons of React Native?

We already touched upon the reasons why React Native is so loved in the community, but it’s time to take a closer look at this framework’s pros and cons.

React Native Pros

In terms of cross-platform application development, React Native is definitely among the top frameworks out there. Opposed to some methods for mobile development that rely on webviews, React Native relies on standard rendering APIs to produce renders. Because the markup gets translated into native UI elements, both great performance without any lag, and an authentic, native look and feel - are achieved.

Much of the code can be shared and reused, and because of the effective cross-platform development, businesses can save up money and manage their resources better. The development team can exchange knowledge immediately and enjoy faster iterations. App updates can be pushed directly to users.

Reactive Native Cons

When it comes to Reactive Native cons, many developers argue that the procedure to debug an app is a bit complex. Some also say the configuration process is a bit lengthy whereas with the actual native Android development - these things are usually solved within a click or two. However, the benefits do outweigh the cons.

What Are Some of the Famous Apps Created With React Native?


Because of the undeniable React Native advantages, some of the most prominent brands used this framework for building their mobile apps.

Naturally, Facebook used it for its mobile apps. Take Instagram for example. Because Instagram was built with React Native, developers managed to use between 85% and 99% of the same code for both iOS and Android. This has made the development process much easier and faster.

Other well-known apps created with React Native include:

  • SoundCloud Pulse (see here)
  • Wix (see the full project here)
  • Bloomberg (see their story here)
  • Pinterest (see their story here)

In most cases, developers tend to point out how React Native helped them build great interfaces and lighting fast apps with low loading periods, pleasant user experiences that even support full animations without causing any issues with the app’s functionalities. They also underline how the development cycle gets significantly shorter because they don’t depend on other specialized mobile developers. So, there is no need to learn Android-specific Java or Swift for iOS, which is great.

What Is the Future of React Native?

When it comes to the future of React Native, it looks rather bright. Even though Flutter managed to attract a lot of attention and even spark the ‘React Native vs. Flutter’ debates, it’s not likely the React Native framework will die out, and there are two big reasons why.

Firstly, React Native has a large, active community that pushes React Native forward. With Facebook behind its back, it gets regular updates and it continuously evolves. The framework is widely accepted and used by some of the most renowned Fortune 500 companies.

Secondly, React Native is still unrivaled when it comes to the quality of UI and user experience in general. Believe it or not, but some of the apps made with React Native are much better than ones developed on native platforms.

Some speculate that Google’s Fuchsia will be a game-changer and impact the status React Native currently has. However, it would be impossible to replace all the active OS out there, so it’s not a genuine threat. We can surely say that React Native is not going anywhere.

Over to You

Thank you for reading our article about React Native, we hope you learned something new about the amazing functionalities of this framework. As you can see, it’s a very useful framework that’s loved by many developers for various reasons: from its nice work environment to the fact it saves time and energy, it sure does offer a lot.

At Share IT, React Native is one of the many technologies that we use for mobile app development. If you have a project in mind, reach out to us today.