Xamarin vs React Native: A Comparison Guide!

Xamarin vs React Native: A Comparison Guide!

Introduction:

With the mobile app market breaking the value of $189 billion in 2020, the two popular cross-platform development frameworks like Xamarin vs React Native can have a significant impact on businesses engaging in mobile app development. 

Both Xamarin and React Native allow mobile developers to build high-performing non-native apps. To understand the difference between Xamarin and React Native, let’s take a close look at the below comparison elements, on the basis of which React Native has a little advantage over Xamarin. 

  1. Performance 
  2. Popularity
  3. Community & Developer Ecosystem
  4. Development Environment
  5. Availability
  6. Compilation
  7. Cost-Effectiveness

In this complete comparison guide, we’ll zoom in on Xamarin vs React Native and evaluate each as per the above criteria and how these frameworks with similar purposes express themselves differently, keep scrolling!

Xamarin vs. React Native: Side by Side Comparison

Let’s begin with the side-by-side comparison of Xamarin vs React Native. Direct comparisons are often a great choice to define which software to choose in 2021. 

Performance:

The App performance is the essential factor you should consider while determining the difference between Xamarin and React Native and selecting the right cross-platform development framework. 

Although both the frameworks ensure a near-native performance, Xamarin quickly runs the code on Android and iOS along with the user interface (UI) for its development tools. 

While Xamarin and  React Native offer near-native app performances, some believe that Android and iOS developers must consider Flutter due to its better performance. Since it is close to native code, Flutter improves the speed of the whole communication. 

It is not possible to benchmark performance as a whole since it is based on multiple variables like device type, code, app, and the features used. 

Related Reading – Flutter vs React Native. What to choose in 2021?

Popularity:

Popularity has a huge influence on how others connect with the software. With comprehensive features like a big talent pool, extensive tooling, and a great community, the ‘Popularity’ factor determines the value of the software. 

Well, React Native is open-source and Xamarin is closed-source. Hence, React Native is more popular than Xamarin. Having said that, Xamarin has developed a vast user base over the recent years with over 1.6M developers across 120 nations because it is one of the oldest frameworks out there. 

Since its release, React Native has gradually surpassed Xamarine in 2017. As per Stack Overflow’s “2020 Developer Survey,” React Native is preferred over Xamarin, with 57.9 percent of developers showing interest in developing apps with React Native, against 45.4 percent for Xamarin.

Community and Developer Ecosystem:

Due to the above reasons, it is quoted that React Native carries a larger and more supportive community as opposed to Xamarin. The cross-platform tool development language is another essential element to consider during decision-making. 

The common languages used by Xamarin are .Net languages, such as C# and F#, and can be used by developers to write native platform code.

On the other hand, React Native uses languages like JavaScript, which was not invented for it, but still performs well with its apps. You may face some problems as JavaScript was originally developed for the web, due to which some APIs might not function well. 

As per TIOBE Programming Community Index, C# is the fifth-most popular programming language globally and JavaScript in seventh place.

Therefore, both Xamarin vs React Native seems like solid choices when you talk about popular development languages.  Both can help increase your productivity and safeguard you from a steep learning curve.

Development Environment:

Both Xamarin and React Native offer pre-built & adaptive components to improve performance and the developer experience. 

Xamarin provides complete cross-platform native UI components whereas React Native offers buttons and text inputs. Thus, Xamarin developers are likely to get closer to native-like performance than React Native developers. Alongside, you also have a choice to use Xamarine.iOS, or Xamarine. Android to develop custom app UI. 

Availability:

Did you know that most of the open-source frameworks are available for free? The sad part is Xamarin can’t claim that label as it lacks the free version with limited characteristics. 

Free means more access, giving React Native hands up in this category. 

Compilation:

React Native uses just-in-time (JIT) compilation for android app development. Though compiled language works only for android and not iOS. As Apple controls the execution of codes, the interpreted JS code will be required for iOS app development. 

Xamarin uses just-in-time (JIT) and ahead-of-time (AOT) compilation for Android and iOS apps respectively. And AOT compiled code runs more swiftly than the JIT compiler. 

Cost-Effectiveness:

React Native is open-sourced and thus, the libraries are free making it the best choice of 2021. This enhances the developer experience as they will be able to create apps quickly compared to one that has no library available. 

Xamarin is maintained by Microsoft and most of its features are not free. You may end up paying a heavy amount for the purchase of the license for a visual studio. It makes app development overall an expensive process. 

Need to know a bit more about the fundamentals of Xamarin and React Native before making a decision? No worries, Mobcoder got you covered just below. Keep reading!

What is Xamarin?

Founded in 2011, Xamarin is software acquired by Microsoft, for creating cross-platform Android, iOS, and Windows apps. It is specifically useful for sharing code & business logic and writing cross-platform apps in C# with visual studio. 

Yes, the Xamarin framework is an extension of .NET inspired by C and C++, but the platform is only designed for mobile app development. All of these platforms can be considered as part of the Microsoft C# ecosystem. 

Did you know that Microsoft developed the C# programming language? You heard it right! 

Xamarin platform is often mentioned for a range of tools – high-class libraries, and support for single language programming. There are various frameworks for cross-platform app development which use javascript and HTML. Xamarin is different as it uses a single language C# and works on three platforms – Android, iOS, and Windows. 

Which Apps use Xamarin?

Apps built using Xamarin include:

  • Skulls of the Shogun
  • SuperGiant Games
  • Storyo
  • Insightly
  • FreshDirect
  • The World Bank
  • Just Giving
  • Olo
  • Thermo Fisher Scientific
  • APX

Benefits of Xamarin:

Xamarin vs. React Native wouldn’t be an equitable fight without a reasonable comparison. Below are some benefits associated with Xamarin app development that will help you compare the two frameworks

  • Cross-Platform – Xamarin is the extension of.Net and uses C++ for mobile app development making it much easier than before. You can still fetch the benefits of native performance in addition to your code working on various platforms. 
  • Performance: Xamarin app is popular for having almost native-like performance levels
  • Complete development ecosystem: Xamarin overall uses C#, .Net, and Microsoft Visual Studio for Xamarin app development, making it one of the most adequate cross-platform mobile app development frameworks in the development ecosystem. 
  • Seamless user experience: Xamarin.Forms let you benefit from standard interface elements as it offers a library of templates where you can reuse your code by leveraging the language. 
  • Free: For only small teams

What is React Native?

Formed in 2015, React Native is an open-source mobile app framework developed by Facebook. The framework is based on React, a JavaScript library for creating UIs to enable developers to build mobile apps with native platform capabilities. 

Co-founder of Facebook Mark Zuckerberg came up with a solution of building a new framework only for mobile development. He realized that it was a mistake to use HTML5 to build facebook’s mobile version that led to the weak performance of the app. 

React Native vs Xamarin are clearly concerned with state management to render further functionality. 

React Native developers are in great demand. If you want one for yourself, Mobcoder offers you a complete cycle service for scalable cross-platform app development

Which Apps use React Native?

High-profile apps built with React Native are as follows:

  • Facebook
  • Facebook Analytics
  • Facebook Ads Manager
  • Instagram
  • Uber Eats
  • Tesla
  • Skype
  • Pinterest
  • SoundCloud Pulse
  • Walmart
  • Bloomberg
  • Discord
  • Myntra
  • Gyroscope
  • Chop
  • Vogue
  • Artsy
  • F8

Benefits of React Native:

Take a look at some of the benefits of using React Native to build cross-platform mobile apps:

  • User Interface: With native UI components, apps look like native apps, and hence, ensure a high-quality UI
  • Ready-made components: Makes app development process faster due to a vast library of UI components. 
  • Access to native functionalities: Like camera, accelerometer, etc.
  • Platform-specific code: You can further optimize your separate native apps with native code
  • Hot reload: Facilitates developers to apply changes to the apps on the go without having to recompile these apps
  • Reliability: Developed and supported by Facebook
  • Free: Open-source framework

Final Note:

Xamarin vs. React Native demands a close look when it comes to real-time comparison. The two frameworks share many similarities yet are different. Well, both facilitate app developers to create cross-platform mobile apps with near-native performance. 

When we talk about the side-by-side difference between Xamarin and React Native, it’s clear that React Native performs better than Xamarin in major ways. Yet organizations prioritizing other factors might go with Xamarin instead.

Whichever way it may be, remember that Mobcoder outshines the app’s deliveries with near-native features created in minimal time and effort. We have the required tools and developers you need to successfully deploy innovative solutions worldwide.