Mobile Applications are the heart of the business. Today, the majority of the business happens over the phone. Customers prefer less physical interaction and more quality service over the phone and mobile Apps are indeed the best way to do so. As a result, the demand for Mobile Apps and the variety of tech stacks are growing significantly. Thus, the Ionic and Cordova result from these growing needs for robust mobile App development TechStack. Let’s understand each of these Mobile App development frameworks in more detail.

What is Apache Cordova?

It is an open–source framework that allows web developers to use HTML, JavaScript, and CSS to create the native application for different platforms. It was initially created in 2009 by Nitobi and later in 2011 later Adobe Systems purchase Nitobi and renamed it Phonegap. Apache Cordova is a popular mobile development framework that allows developers to access the native features of mobile Applications such as location, audio, camera, video recording, etc. Using Cordova developers can integrate multiple plugins and fulfill the entire hardware requirement to run the application.

As a free and open–source technology it is easy to learn and develop cross–platform applications using JavaScript. It facilitates multiple plugins and has good community support. As a result, Cordova makes Apps develop quickly and effectively. However, since it relies on web–based UI, therefore one has to compromise on the appealing App UI. Alongside, this technology is not well–suited for developing gaming applications as it requires high-end plugins which are presently not supported by Cordova.

What Is Ionic?

Ionic is a popular name when it comes to Mobile App development frameworks as it is an open–source UI toolkit for building the high – quality Mobile Apps, Desktop Apps, and Progressive Web Applications (PWA) too. It was created in 2013 by Max Lynch, Ben Sperry, and Adam Bradley and developed by Drifty Co. However, its first version was introduced in March 2014. The framework uses web technologies such as HTML, JavaScript, and CSS for creating high – end cross – platform Applications. Moreover, it allows developers to build it once and run it everywhere.

It largely focuses on UI Interaction i.e. optimizing the front-end user experience which wasn’t that great in Cordova. Besides this, it is easy to learn and integrate with other libraries, and frameworks such as React, Cordova, Angular, Vue etc. The ionic platform allows its components to adapt to the platform’s requirements easily. However, there are still some security concerns with the platform that needs to be addressed. Since the Ionic technology is in the development phase, therefore it requires updating regular changes and standards to work optimally.

Ionic vs Cordova

There are some major differences between the Ionic and Cordova frameworks that define their suitability for the projects.
• Ionic provides frameworks for developing the applications whereas Cordova provides plugins to run the mobile applications similar to the native application.
• Ionic provides different integration functions whereas Cordova provides the hardware access for the device.
• Ionic does not allow developers to make their plugins whereas Cordova facilitates making their plugins. As a result, developers choose Cordova widely due to its plugin capabilities.
• Ionic is suitable for rapid prototyping, hybrid mobile style, and great designs while Cordova holds plugin capabilities, excellent community support, and the ability to use JavaScript for developing mobile Applications.
• The tools integrated with Cordova are Wikitude, GameAnalytics, LokiJS, WebStorm, and Sentry whereas tools that are usually integrated with Ionic are Readymag, Backand, Jscrambler, Atatus, etc.

Final Words

Ideally, Ionic and Cordova are not seen as competitors instead Ionic is built as an extension of Cordova. Both these popular technologies are widely adopted in the market for developing Mobile Apps. Both these frameworks have an extended community of passionate developers. However, the combination of both these technologies forms a development platform that supports hybrid App development.