Responsive website Vs Mobile apps

April 05 2013

Having a website is the core necessity for every organization, and the emergence of mobile technology has changed the perspective of web development. Designing a website for mobile devices is more important than ever. So if you have not yet decided to build a website that can be accessed through mobile devices, it is the time to do so.

The biggest challenge you will face is about selecting amongst the responsive web design (RWD) and mobile application. Both of them have their dedicated marketplace and possess certain number of pros and cons. Selecting any of them entirely depends upon the circumstances of your organizations and your preferences. There are some basic points mentioned below that you may consider before you pick any of the option.

Criteria and considerations:

The main steps you must consider include the basic principles, costs, implementation time frame, design approach, user experience, performance and ongoing maintenance. One of the key questions is whether you want to optimize your site for mobile viewing or for desktop viewing. Recently, a nice infographic was published on MDG Blog entitled “Should You Build a Mobile App or Mobile Website”. This infographic presents a detailed comparison amongst these two techniques. A screenshot of the same is shown below:

responsive website or mobile app

The infographic details every basic feature of each design approach, along with the difference and opportunities in these two. Also, the issues with user access are also detailed.

Most of the people don’t give it a second thought and instantly jump into the mobile app bandwagon. It cannot be a good approach as you must evaluate your organizational needs and requirements before choosing any mobile interaction. Native mobile applications are more beneficial if you are more concerned about user interaction. On the other hand, if you want to display your current website as it is on all devices, then responsive web design is the way to go. Once you can determine the pros and cons along with all principles of these two approaches, only then you should pick the better one out of them.

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