The Major Differences between ReactJS and React Native

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Despite having same parent, similar names, and same technology backbone, ReactJS and React Native are still worlds apart. Here is how

The confusion between Java and JavaScript is one of the most discussed topics in the tech world. The languages though entirely different are often confused with one another, mainly by newbies, due to their similar names.

Now, given that name is perhaps the only thing common between them, they are quite easy to distinguish.

That is not the case with ReactJS and React Native. They are intermingled at a much deeper level and name is just one of the many components where they are similar. To get a clear understanding, we will have to look at the functionality of each one separately and point out the differences as encountered.

Before we begin, it is worth pointing out that since both these technologies are different, things like setup or how they render any specific function will also certainly differ but there is little to be gained from getting into such details. So, we will just consider the most notable differences for a broader outlook.

ReactJS is a JavaScript library for creating user-interface for large web applications. Created and largely maintained by Facebook, this open-source library is especially useful for creating dynamic web pages that process data in real-time and can display the changes without needing to reload- like the Facebook/Instagram feed we all love.

React Native, on the other hand, is a framework consisting of native libraries for creating mobile applications. The libraries, released in 2015 by Facebook, can be used to develop applications for all platforms where the React Native code complies into native mobile app components.

So, as a simple rule of thumb, ReactJS is for web development and React Native for mobile app development.

Apart from this basic difference, there are also a few other subtle changes in how they approach towards the same task:

Animation

Web applications built on ReactJS mainly rely on CSS or other JavaScript libraries for animation while React Native has got this feature inbuilt. Though it takes some initial learning, the output of React Native is far better than that of ReactJS.

Navigation

This is one aspect where though both of them take a different approach, the results are fairly neck-to-neck. Web pages built in ReactJS use React-router for navigation while React Native has an entirely different library- Navigator or the purpose.

Overheads

This has more to do with what each of these technologies creates than any inherent difference in themselves. With ReactJS, you write a single piece of code and it runs everywhere. Conversely, though React Native is compatible with all platforms, it requires some platform-specific codes. To put it simply, creating applications in React Native takes more time and effort than ReactJS, if you wish to reach all platforms.

Conclusion

For the sake of clarity, this comparison between the two technologies is mainly to clear the confusion because they are the technologies of two different domains- and comparing them both is never a smart idea.

Now that you know what each one of them is meant for, you can hire ReactJS developers for web application development or if mobility is your choice, opt for React Native app development to get the most feasible solutions. If you want help in either of these technologies for your next project, get in touch with our experts and we will guide you through.

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About Author
Mrityunjay Kumar

Mrityunjay Kumar

Mrityunjay is a content developer at Konstant Infosolutions- a leading mobile app development firm that caters to enterprises of all scales and industries with cutting-edge tech solutions. Being an engineer by education, a reader by passion, and a writer by profession, he finds no topic truly boring, yet nothing seems to content his craving as well- an essence he leaves in everything he writes.

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