Progressive Web Applications ( PWA )

uilding Mobile Experience Without Getting to the App Store

A Progressive Web App uses modern web capabilities to Build Mobile Experience Without Getting to the App Store

Progressive Web Apps bring features we expect from native apps to the mobile browser experience in a way that uses standards-based technologies and run in a secure container accessible to anyone on the web.

Does PWAs Replace Android and iOS Apps?

We all know from our experience that today we spend 80% of our time on using a mobile phone, and most of the phones are either Android or iOS. But another fact is that a user isn’t opening the heavy apps developed for a particular application to run; rather, they are simple apps.

 However, the cost of the development of apps in comparison to web applications is much higher. The PWAs provide the advantage of running a cost-effective solution but shortly no way a replacement to the Android and iOS apps.

A good PWA is replacing mobile websites at a rigorous rate. But the charm of building new apps in native languages still allure the mobile developers. However, the mobile-first approach @ web is a new technology that will improve the customer’s engagement on the web. Also, it will act as a great tool when it comes to developing an engaging and enriched web experience. The successful implementation of PWAs has opened new opportunities for web developers. And might be in the future, there will be the integration of web and mobile development using the same language. The PWAs offline support to run web applications is greater. It further leads to the development of other applications such as great eCommerce experience, push notifications, and saving the page load time.

Progressive Web Applications Represent a Mobile-First Approach

PWAs effectively make use of the native app features such as

1 – Push notifications

2 – Splash Screen

3 – Full Screen

4 – Offline working

PWAs no doubt provide rich features of native mobile phone applications with greater user experience, but there are some features that the PWAs can’t use as of now. Some of them are:

  • No access to diverse hardware sensors
  • Alarms
  • Phonebook Access
  • Modifying System Settings

PWAs are evolving quite fast, and we can hope to see these features come to action in some time shortly soon.

Major components of a PWA are:

1. App Manifest

The head section of the HTML page contains this code to incorporate the file:

It is a JSON file defining an app icon to launch the app on the Play Store or App Store. It is a root file of the app. The link of this file is required on each page for rendering purposes.

<link rel=”manifest” href=”/manifest.json”>

2. Service Worker

A service worker is a file containing JavaScript code acting as programmable proxies responsible for intercepting and responding to network requests. They are like a proxy that can be easily programmable. An application can easily work on HTTPS to keep the data secure. By making use of the service worker file, you can include all HTTP headers, rather than just the response data. The application will be able to make network requests and process the response without any specific code to handle the cache.

How do I get started?

The easy implementation can help us making easy applications. The advantage to custom website developers is that they can easily convert a website to the PWA. Whereas for converting into an app, a separate coding is to be done using mobile app development languages. The PWAs are like a custom web app that can run offline.