What is Nativescript

What Is NativeScript?

NativeScript is an open-source framework for building cross-platform mobile apps with JavaScript. It lets you use the same source code for all platforms and takes advantage of the target platform’s rendering engine to deliver an app that feels native.

In this article, we’ll take a closer look at how NativeScript works and what its main features are. We’ll also see how it differs from other app development frameworks. Let’s jump right in.

What is NativeScript – How Does it Work?

what-is-nativescript-codingNativeScript lets users build iOS, Android, and Windows apps using JavaScript, XML, and CSS. Instead of having to code each application from scratch for every target platform, NativeScript enables developers to build native apps from the same source code.

It achieves this by combining an application framework with core modules, plugins, and NativeScript runtimes. NativeScript uses the native rendering engine of the target platform.

More specifically, NativeScript uses a JavaScript virtual machine that executes the code, and a bridge module that can call application programming interfaces on supported mobile platforms. Unlike other cross-platform frameworks, it doesn’t use WebView, or a browser engine contained within an application.

With NativeScript, you use components to build the app’s user interface and customize styling. After viewing the app on an emulator, you add functionality and install packages.

What is NativeScript – Key Features

what-is-nativescript-frameworkIf you are considering using NativeScript, here are some of the most important features you should know.

  • Code mobile apps with JavaScript – With NativeScript, you can access native platform APIs entirely through JavaScript without having to know Objective-C or Java. For some development teams, this can be an important advantage that speeds up app deployment.
  • Build apps that feel native – Because it uses the rendering engine of the native platform rather than WebView, NativeScript allows you to build apps that feel and run more like native apps. The performance boost can lead to a better user experience.
  • TypeScript support – NativeScript allows you to write apps using the TypeScript programming language. A superset of JavaScript, TypeScript can make it easier to spot and eliminate errors as you code.
  • Large library – The extensive components library makes it easy to build different types of apps while speeding up the development process. You can also find plenty of plugins, though most of them are not verified. Overall, the support for components makes this a powerful and highly customizable platform.
  • Powerful command-line interface (CLI) – The NativeScript CLI lets you debug, install plugins, deploy on a platform, and more. Once you’re familiar with it, it can save you time. NativeScript’s command-line interface runs on Windows, Linux, and macOS.
  • Hot reload – With the correct testing setup, NativeScript reloads the app so you can see the changes in real time. Hot reload can add more flow to your workload when previewing changes, which comes in handy when you have to build lots of features into an app or are specific about details.

What is NativeScript – Are There Any Limitations?

what-is-nativescript-programmingApps built with NativeScript that require sophisticated code may end up running slower because of the one-thread model that the platform uses.

In some cases, this single-sequence approach in which commands to the API are processed one at a time may lead to slower performance. Like other cross-platform frameworks, NativeScript is not ideal for building visually intensive apps such as games.

One other thing that’s important to remember is that unless you are familiar with iOS and Android APIs, accessing native platform features may be difficult. Also, with NativeScript you have to test apps on an emulator or actual device, which can slow down the testing phase.

Who Is NativeScript For?

NativeScript is a powerful and flexible framework for apps that share common functionalities across Android and iOS. It’s especially suited for apps that will use JavaScript or TypeScript.

Developers with a background in Angular won’t struggle to get started with NativeScript. But even developers who are new to app building can use the extensive documentation available to get started with this platform.

Overall, NativeScript is a powerful platform for developers who are comfortable with JavaScript and want to speed up cross-platform mobile app development times.

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