ReactJS vs React Native: Key Differences, Pros, and Cons


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reactjs vs react native

React Js and React Native are pretty similar technologies. However, there are some differences that one needs to be aware of before they start developing their first native app or website.

Today, we will be talking all about what React Js and React Native are, and the main differences between them. 

Read down below to find out more.

What is React JS? 

React Js is an open-source, component-based library intended for front end development. It is primarily used to build user interfaces for single-page applications. 

JavaScript on the other hand is a text-based programming language used in web development to create interactive, dynamic and scalable websites and web applications. It is responsible for adding interactive elements to the websites such as videos, animations, graphics and more. 

What is React Native? 

React Native was created by Facebook and it is an open-source mobile application framework. So, basically it allows web developers to develop effective mobile applications using their existing knowledge of JavaScript. 

React Native is used to develop apps for iOS, Web, UWP, macOS, Android, TvOs and Android TV by allowing developers to use both; their native platform, as well as React framework capabilities. 

React vs React Native – The Pros and Cons

Let's have a look at some of the advantages of React Js and React Native which help them differentiate from one another.

Advantages of React Native

The advantages of React native are:

1. Can be used across different platforms

One of the biggest benefits of React native is that it needs to be learned once, but can be written everywhere. It supports both Android and iOS devices. 

2. You can easily develop apps

You can easily build native mobile apps if you hold JavaScript knowledge. 

3. Offers optimal performance 

React Native works great at improving performance with the help of native modules and control. 

4. Development is quicker

Thanks to pre-developed components available in the open-source library, the development doesn’t take as much time as compared to other programming languages.  

5. Hot Reloading

You can view the changes being made to your app's code during the development. Moreover, developers can also select specific components and examine and edit their current state and props. 

6. Large community of developers

React JavaScript and React Native have a large community of developers, which allows developers to easily find answers to any questions they might have regarding the code. 

Advantages of React JS

The advantages of React JS are:

  • Easier to learn and use

One of the main reasons so many developers enjoy working with ReactJs is because it is easy to learn and use. It can be understood easily by any developer who is familiar with JavaScript background. 

  • Easier to create dynamic web applications

Working with React JS is much easier, and it is possible to create dynamic web applications much quicker because less coding is required. Whereas, creating dynamic web apps with HTML is much more difficult as it involves complex coding.

  • It is a popular and mature language

React Js is certainly not a passing trend. It’s actually a mature and stable technology, and its use is only expected to further increase in the coming years.

  • Offers support of handy tools

Its support of a handy set of tools makes the development task quite hassle-free and understandable for developers. 

React vs React Native –  The Limitations and Drawbacks

Let's have a look at some of the drawbacks of React Native and React Js.

Drawbacks of React Native 

The drawbacks of React Native are:

  • It can be difficult to learn for newbies 

If you are a newbie in the app development field, then you might find it difficult to learn the language from scratch.  

  • Security Robustness requires improvement 

Since it is an open-source framework and a JavaScript library it’s not the best in terms of security robustness. Also, it is advised by experts to not choose React Native for developing financial and banking apps. 

  • Difficult to debug 

Since React Native is built using JavaScript, C / C ++, Java and Objective-C it is more difficult for developers to debug bugs, for which knowledge of the native language of the platform might be needed. 

  • Inferior Android support

Initially, only the iOS platform was supported by React Native. Later on, Android support was released later on only in subsequent releases. This is one of the main reasons React Native is linked with inferior android support. 

Read down below to find out the disadvantages of React Js and React Native.

Drawbacks of React JS

The drawbacks of React Js are:

  • The High Pace of Development

This is actually both; good and bad. Since React is still a newer language it is evolving very quickly. Therefore, its new features are getting rolled out at a pretty fast pace, which somewhat makes it difficult for developers to keep up with the newer features.

  • It Only Covers the View Part of the MVC Model.

Since React only covers the ReactJS it only covers the UI Layers of the app and nothing else, developers need to rely on other technologies as well. However, this is also viewed as a plus point by some developers as it offers full independence. 

  • Lack of Proper Documentation

Since React JS is constantly evolving and the library is getting updated frequently, the React documentation is poor. 

Differences Between ReactJS and React Native?

Though React Js and React Native hold a lot of similarities, there are also some notable differences between the both. Let’s have a look:

React JS React Native
It is used for web app development It is used for mobile app development
It was initially released in 2013 It was initially released in 2015
React Js uses HTML tags React Native does not use HTML tags
It provides robust security The security feature of React Native is not very robust
The learning curve is easy It is difficult to learn for newbies
It uses React-router for navigating web pages. It features an in-built navigator library for navigating mobile apps.
Ideal for building high-performing, interactive and dynamic UI for your web interfaces Ideal for giving mobile apps a truly native feel


Each technology in the realm of development comes with its own benefits and set of drawbacks, same is the case with React Native and ReactJS.

Whether you should choose React Native or ReactJS is a question that would require you to weigh the pros and cons of both technologies in order to come up with the right answer for yourself. 

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