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Ionic V/S ReactJS: Which framework you must use for your app?

author Written by Vikash Jangid on Jan 03, 2017 1205

Have you been biting your nails over the best framework selection while developing a new Mobile app?

Welcome to the clan!

Developers often face this dilemma and only reason behind it is the frameworks are really competitive in terms of functional capabilities and cost-effectiveness.

2018 has been witness to a love-hate relationship between the Ionic Framework and React framework supporters. Both the frameworks offer exceptional support to the poles apart operating system of Android and iOS.

Have you been through the same grind? This article is only for the Mobile App developers who are serious about delivering excellence through their work.

Let us go do a quick run through the introduction of both frameworks before we compare them feature by feature.
To clarify: Sequence of intro has been picked up without any bias towards React or Ionic. So pay attention to the whole write-up, instead of the sequencing.


Ionic Framework

Introduced to the developer community in the year 2015 by Apache Cordova, Ionic Framework offered an advanced platform for hybrid Mobile App development company. Other than that you can always develop mobile, web and desktop Apps.
Ionic Framework harnesses the potential of:

  • CSS,
  • HTML5
  • Sass
  • Angular JavaScript

Coming across as an open-source Android App development Framework, it is a very affordable framework. Ionic development has really changed the lives of developers and enterprises. Supporting the development of highly-progressive solutions and it is being used for smart engineering.  Developers were skeptical in the phases of initial adaption as the Ionic boasted about the advanced Graphic User interface. Ionic proved its metal as is evident from the count of developers using it now.

  • HTML syntax support by AngularJS
  • Inexpensive Cordova Plugins that let developer’s access device features.
  • Has reusable UI elements
  • Bug search is easy
  • UI widget support.

The command level interface (CLI) of the Ionic framework is a hot favorite of new developers; it is like a cheat sheet that offers them helpful commands.

React Framework

React did make quite some noise when it was introduced for easy, fast and astounding GUI building. It is a rich React library, a virtual DOM, sub component level development, only SEO friendly framework and to top it all “EFFICIENT”.
Don’t you find it irresistible?
React has been casting its spell over the front end development. Developers have been able to build out-of-the-box Applications as there is less to learn but lot more that you can do with its reusable components

"Did you just see what we saw?
Oh my God, They both are in a never-ending battle!"

But choosing between them gets easy when you know the answers to these questions.

What is the type of Application that you are developing?

If you were reading attentively you already have the answer to this question:

Hybrid applications: Ionic Framework works better.
Light and fast Apps: React is always preferred over Ionic here as you will not have to install any plugins. You just need to create different options.

Do you want to code to be reusable?
The ionic framework offers ease of structuring the code so that it can be reused. It is evident of its Typescript code language that it can be used for both iOS and Android with just a few tweaks. Going further you can reuse it for Windows Phone, Web App, Desktop & Progressive Web Apps.
Talking of React, it is immensely loved by its community due to the component re usability of the code. So whenever you are working on React you have to develop sub components for each functionality and assemble them together. A little time taking that Ionic re usability but the tweaked code of React works without any hiccups.

What should be the performance capability of the App?
We will tend to be a little biased here as the React framework wins hands down when we talk about the performance factor of the Apps. Faster loading Apps because of the React Fiber Algo and Virtual DOM concept.
Hybrid Apps are already notorious to be slow, beat it by offering to React framework based Apps for your clients.

What is the adaptability index of your App?

Ionic development is quite adaptive and multiple programmers can work at once on it and still keep the essence of the project same. React is not a very adaptive platform.

What more languages would you need to learn?

React is just a view library. You need to know a few commands and use the CLI to work ahead. Rest all will be taken care of you excellent JS skills. Having a knowledge of React JS, Native and Redux will help you more to build versatile Apps.
Ionic is an easy baby. All you need is the knowledge of JavaScript or TypeScript to develop efficient Apps.

How efficient are you debugging skills?

Debugging is one aspect that becomes a headache while you are dealing with Ionic. After you debug, you can only do Live Reload.
React offers the Hot Reload feature that makes the task of updating the deployed application easy and less time-consuming. So what will happen is the App will keep running and you will be able to inject a bug fix or a new feature.
How cool is that!

What is the desired Application size?

Now, this aspect leaves us scratching our heads.
It has been noticed that Ionic Framework developed Android App is lighter and iOS App development is heavier. While on the other hand, it is vice versa for the React, it develops heavy Apps for Android and light ones for Android.
We cannot offer you a clear choice here.

How much community support do you need?

Are you building your App in isolation?
Open source frameworks like Ionic and React offer a very productive and supportive community. A massive technology support is available if you get stuck anywhere.
GitHub support for Ionic is noticeably higher than React but the activity levels are pretty much competitive on both frameworks.
Does your client ask for a prototype?
React prototypes are built pretty easily as compared to Ionic and will save you any last minute design changes as per client’s feedback.
Ionic has few third-party tools for drag-n-drop prototype building.

Did you make up your mind?

If you already have a project at hand you would have made up your mind already. Both of the frameworks have their own advantages and cannot out beat each other completely.
React has no doubt been the facilitator of faster development cycles and enterprises have shown a bend towards it. It offers end-product level features like faster App and page loading, cross-browser excellence and beautiful GUI development.
More important you need to understand how your team works, what kinds of tools and technologies is it comfortable with. Ionic is no doubt a cost-saving platform as compared to React but usability issues have been reported more for Ionic Apps.
We completely agree that it’s is a tough call to make. If you still have doubts just go through the evaluation question set again to make the best decision for the App. A lot more depends on your personal taste too.
If you are not a professional developer and trying to pin down the best framework for your App, get in touch with our development gurus.

Vikash Jangid
Corporate Director Chairperson and CTO at Xtreem Solution with unbound opportunities. As CTO of Xtreem Solution, build leadership to the growing and diverse membership to build a strong and environmentally sound IT Enterprise. Responsible for the management, organization and implementation of all activities and programs. As part of this role also helps to develop and promote mutually respectful partnerships around Nations, Business Executive, Developer, investors and key stakeholders within the global exploration and IT community.

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