Building universal mobile and web apps with React Native

NOTE: Due to circumstances Mo will join us via video connection and recorded session.

Nowadays, you can write web, mobile, and server side code in Javascript/Typescript. There’s a lot of excitement brewing around using React Native to build a single universal web & (native) mobile app – write once, ship everywhere. It’s an exciting idea, but does it hold up in reality?

React Native advertises a “learn once, write anywhere” paradigm. This comes with a lot of benefits, as a single tech team can build both your web and native mobile apps.

Early on, there was a push to build a unifying technology to write an application once and have it work on both web and native. This is an exciting prospect – but combining web and mobile code together comes with a cost. Once codebase containing the mobile and web apps simultaneously becomes a behemoth to architect and opens many questions, such as:
– How do you share business logic?
– Do you share components and rendering logic?
– How do you share app state?
– What about calling APIs and app configs?

Even if you succeed, blurring these lines comes with a cost – you start to have mobile apps that look like websites, and websites that look like apps.

In this talk, I’ll be going over:
– Overview of Cross platform development, RN, and using React Native for Web.
– A basic demo of React Native for Web.
– The different layers where you can share code: Business Logic, UI Rendering, API Logic, App State.
– Pros and cons of sharing each.
– The challenges of designing UI components for web and mobile.
– How do you handle navigation?
– When to use a unified app, and when not to.
– A pragmatic solution.

I hope this can be a good overall introduction into the topic and highlight the benefits and challenges of having one mobile+web app, and (hopefully) save the attendees from making the same mistakes we did. :)


Session info:

Speaker: Mo Khazali

Head of Mobile & Tech Lead @ Theodo UK

Date: 12 mei 2023

Time: 11:50 - 12:20

Relevant tags:
Cross Platform

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