OTT apps need to be made available for both iOS and Android platforms. You need a broader audience base to generate revenue from such app solutions. However, the differences between Android and iOS app development make it difficult to develop individual apps on a cost-effective budget for both platforms. So, what to do in such a situation? Opt for a cross-platform app development framework like React Native.
React Native is a popular mobile app development framework that enables developers to develop native-like OTT apps for various tvOS platforms like Apple TV, Amazon FireTV, Chromecast and more using a single codebase. Due to this significant benefit, many companies are shifting to cross-platform OTT development frameworks like React Native. However, is it a worthy framework to power your OTT app? Let’s assess the pros and cons of React Native with respect to OTT app development and find out –
Pros of React Native OTT Development
First, let’s focus on the positives of choosing React Native to power your OTT apps. Here are some of the top features and characteristics of React Native that make it worthy of your consideration to choose as your OTT app development framework –
Native app development is always expensive since you need to develop an app for various OS from scratch. There is no point in developing an app that exhausts all your financial resources since it would increase the pressure of earning revenue from your app as soon as it is launched. And OTT platforms take time to amass audience and subscribers.
In contrast, a cross-platform app development framework like React Native helps developers write code once and use it for multiple platforms with minor modifications. Hence, you only to hire React Native developer team for one app, and not individual teams for each platform.
Faster Time to Market
Since you don’t need to waste time developing an app for each tvOS platform individually, you would also have ample time to develop your OTT platform, which means you can make your OTT app solution available to the public faster and start generating revenue too.
Better Engagement through Appealing UI/UX
React Native is known for its appealing UI/UX capabilities, which can drive better engagement rates for your OTT app. How you design your OTT app plays a significant role in how users perceive your app. You could have the best movies and series on your platform. Still, if they aren’t appropriately categorized or the user navigation is complex, you would eventually lose out on most of your existing/potential users.
React Native also has built-in support for features like sharing videos with friends, leaving a like or dislike on movie titles and other interesting features to enhance consumer experience and personalize it.
Since React Native is a cross-platform app development framework, so your app will automatically work on iOS and Android devices. The reach of React Native is way better than older cross-platform app development frameworks like Xamarin and PhoneGap. Hence you will be able to target a wider audience at a significantly lower cost than developing native apps for all platforms.
One of the best advantages of using React Native for OTT development is that you don’t need to run to four places to get a debugger, testing tool or other important aspects of app development.
Cons of React Native OTT Development
Now that we understand the advantages of using React Native for OTT development, we should also look at the limitations and challenges. Here are some of the cons of using React Native for your custom OTT development app project –
No Support for Roku yet
It’s not React Native’s limitation if we think about it, but it is still worth mentioning as if you aim to target Roku, one of the most extensive streaming services worldwide, your React Native-based app will not support Roku. This is because Roku demands its OTT apps to be developed using only SceneGraph and BrightScript (Roku’s framework and programming language).
Limited Customization for User Experience
Since React Native apps are made with the idea of enabling developers to create multiple platform apps with a single codebase, it steals away the opportunity of tailoring the app design for each platform. Hence, you would have a similar-looking app across all platforms, but it may not be the best suited for the individual platform. So, if you have limited platforms to target, it might be advisable to stretch the budget a little so you can opt for native OTT development and access the features of each OTT platform thoroughly.
Again, React Native focuses on quantity more than quality; not to say React Native apps aren’t made with the highest quality standards in mind but when compared to Native OTT apps, React Native OTT app performance may vary and be inconsistent across multiple platforms since it is not configured as per each platform.
Your OTT platform will need sensitive user information such as their birth information, mail id and passwords and their financial information such as debit/credit card details. Hence, you should hire dedicated developers in React Native development who know how to optimize your OTT app for security, or you should opt for another framework.
React Native has its merits and demerits as an ideal choice for the OTT app development framework; however, whether you choose it for your project depends entirely on your project scope, the team of developers and the budget. Consult with a professional app development agency before making your final call.
Ronak Patel is a CEO and Founder of Aglowid IT Solutions, an ever-emerging Top Web and Mobile Development company with a motto of turning clients into successful businesses. He believes that Client’s success is company’s success and so that he always makes sure that Aglowid helps their client’s business to reach to its true potential with the help of his best team with the standard development process he set up for the company.