Almost every web app development company is trying to master the art of developing a progressive web app.
Before we move forward and determine the best tools you can use to develop your own progressive web application, let’s first understand what exactly a PWA is?
What is a progressive web application?
The features offered by these PWA applications narrow the existing gap between native applications and web-based applications. The features it provides are:
- Offline accessibility
- Excellent performance
- Access to the sensor’s of the phone
- Support for push notifications
- Separate thread for background processing in service workers
Since progressive web applications are a type of website or web app, there is no requirement for users to download them via Google Play Store or Apple App store. You can easily access them through the browser.
The vital capabilities that distinguish a progressive web application from websites are:
- They can work with almost every device and browser.
- Fit all screen sizes and form factor by utilizing responsive design
- Leverages the web app manifest
You can start your first PWA project with the help of Google’s guide that offers instructions to develop a progressive web app. However, in case you wish to find the relevant tools that’ll help you accelerate the PWA development, here’s what you can use:
- Development with React:
The initial step to developing a progressive web application is to make an informed choice determining the core framework. Though there are many technologies available out on the web, React proves to be the most promising one.
What? There are reasons:
- The framework is developed and managed by Facebook that uses it every day on their website. Thus, it is being tested daily with more than 1.18 billion users.
- React Native uses React as a base. Thus it becomes easy for you to switch your application to provide it with cross-platform capabilities.
- Using a Polymer Template:
It is possible to significantly reduce the set-up time of a progressive web application if you use polymer as a template. The open-sourced project is developed and maintained by Google and is continuously touched up to support its sync with other projects.
The PRPL pattern is utilized by the polymer template, which optimizes the application’s device’s delivery. You can use it when:
- You need to render the initial route
- If you need to push critical resources for the initial route
- When remaining routes require pre-caching
- Managing the dependencies with Webpack:
It enables easy development of dependency graphs and is used by almost every prominent web app development company. A graph dependency would help you remove the requirement of managed dependencies, which implies, there’s no longer a need for you to link every JS file at the bottom of your HTML web page. If you can move to the ES6 modules or CommonJS, it would drastically reduce the number of calls providing your application with a performance boost.
- Check the code using Lighthouse:
The final part of completing the progressive web application development with the best toolchain is using the PWA performance monitoring tool provided by Google, known as Lighthouse. This can be installed via Google Chrome masked as a plugin.
Once you are on the progressive web app that needs to be tested, you can run the tests by clicking on the Lighthouse button located in Google’s toolbar (after installation).
You will receive a final detailed report with the result of every single test based on which you can make appropriate changes in your PWA.
The tools mentioned above are just the tip of an iceberg. Several other prominent tools can be used to develop a mind-blowing progressive web application. You can use AMP, AngularJS, Ionic 2, and many other similar technologies to carry out excellent PWA development.
However, you may have to hire a web app development company to fully optimize your application’s development process and ensure you set your app on the track to success.