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Which technology is better for cross-platform app development, Xamarin or PhoneGap?

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The Cross Platform software is a type of computer program that can run on many operating systems. Cross-Platform Mobile App Development is the technique of creating such mobile applications. These platforms include Android, iOS, Windows Mobile, Blackberry, and many more.

Today, there exist many cross-platform app development software. Hence, selecting a good cross-platform app development tool is somehow a difficult task. In this article, we will compare Xamarin and PhoneGap. Xamarin and PhoneGap are the two well-known app development tools.

We will also discuss the pros and cons of both of these cross-platform app development tools.

Brief about Xamarin:

Xamarin is a cross-platform app development tool/software. It lets developers develop mobile applications that run on different platforms. A software company named Xamarin developed this software. The company got established in the year 2011. Later Microsoft Corporation acquired this app development company.

Today, Xamarin is one of the most popular cross-platform app development tools. Also, it is the first choice of most of the app developers. The best part of the Xamarin is it uses a single language C# to create the apps for different platforms. It does not matter whether you are an Android app developer or an app developer of any other platform. You can develop apps compatible with different platforms by implementing the C# programming language.

Features of Xamarin app development software:

  1. Using Xamarin, you can create platform specific UI code layer. This makes the apps native to the devices running on any operating system.
  2. With the help of Xamarin, developers can access platform-specific SDKs with C# syntax.
  3. Developers can create mobile apps by sharing them on iOS and Android. For this, developers need Xamarin.Forms. Xamarin.Forms is a Xamarin product.
  4. Xamarin.Forms come with a preview support for GTK# apps.
  5. Using Xamarin tool, developers can develop apps for Apple and Android watch devices.

Advantages of using Xamarin software for cross-platform mobile app development:

Xamarin cross-platform app development tool comes with the following advantages:

  • Xamarin uses a single code for all platforms. Xamarin uses C# programming language along with them.Net framework. This single code applies to all platforms. Hence, you can develop apps compatible with different platforms. Moreover, you can also develop Xamarin apps in Visual Studio.
  • Xamarin covers almost all major mobile platforms including Android, iOS, Windows, etc.
  • Xamarin comes with complete hardware support. Hence, there are no hardware compatibility issues with Xamarin.
  • The Xamarin SDK along with runtime, libraries, and command line tools are open source. These all are available under MIT license. Due to which, it has become the first choice of most of the developers.
  • You can change the applications or update them to the source files by using Xamarin.Forms. This makes the maintenance and updates of the Xamarin apps easier. This not only saves your time as well as saves your money.
  • Xamarin comes with a complete development toolset. Thus, there is no need to buy any other third party tools for the development of apps. It includes IDE, Xamarin SDKs, Xamarin test cloud, Hockey app, and Xamarin.Insights platforms.
  • Using the C# programming language and .NET framework you can create native apps for iOS. For this, you need Xamarin.Mac tool.
  • Xamarin.Forms do not need the knowledge of native languages.

Cons of using Xamarin software for cross-platform mobile app development:

Every coin has two sides. Besides pros, Xamarin also has some negative points, have a look:

  • Xamarin offers limited access to the open source libraries.
  • You must have the basic knowledge of some native languages. For example, Java/Kotlin for Android and Objective-C/Swift for iOS.
  • The apps developed by Xamarin consume much space.
  • Xamarin is not compatible with some of the third party tools and libraries.
  • One of the biggest disadvantages of Xamarin is it is not suitable for the apps with heavy graphics.

Brief about PhoneGap:

PhoneGap is another popular cross-platform mobile app development software. Nitobi had created it at first and named it as Apache Cordova. In 2011, Adobe Systems acquired Nitobi and renamed it as PhoneGap.

Features of PhoneGap:

  • One of the best features of PhoneGap is its free of cost availability.
  • It is an open source cross-platform tool for the creation of the apps supported by many platforms.
  • PhoneGap is a flexible tool. You can use it to develop any type of mobile applications without any hassle.
  • If you are using PhoneGap, you need not learn any extra languages.
  • PhoneGap boosts the development process hence, reduces the developers’ efforts.

Pros of using PhoneGap for cross-platform mobile app development:

  • The cross-platform code of PhoneGap works for almost all mobile platforms. You can use it for iOS, Windows, Android application development and many more. This lets cross-platform app developers port applications developed for one platform to the other platforms.
  • PhoneGap also supports old JAVA script or other libraries. These include jQuery and MooTools. You can use these libraries to develop applications compatible with different platforms. This makes the developing process easy.
  • PhoneGap offers rapid testing of apps.
  • You can also use PhoneGap to create hybrid apps.
  • PhoneGap does not need any extra development skills.

Limitations of using PhoneGap as a cross-platform mobile app development tool:

Following are some of the limitations of PhoneGap cross-platform mobile app development software:

  • The user interface of PhoneGap is a little bit complicated to understand. Hence, you may face some difficulties if you are using it for the first time.
  • The documentation of PhoneGap lacks many pieces of important information.
  • The apps created by PhoneGap show poor performance.
  • PhoneGap is also not suited for the development of gaming applications.
  • PhoneGap also comes with a limited amount of UI widgets. That’s why the development process will take more time than expected.


Every technology has its own advantages and disadvantages. Both Xamarin and PhoneGap offer some unique features. You can select any of this software to develop cross-platform mobile applications. First, understand your requirements, then select the cross-platform app development tool.

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The NineHertz - Mobile App and Web DevelopmentThe NineHertz
Category: Mobile App DevelopersCompany about: The NineHertz is a Mobile App and Web Development company working for the businesses all around the Globe. We are active since 2008 and constantly maturing throughout our journey by creating prodigious apps for world's most inventive brands. We are specialized in Mobile App and Website Development, Digital Marketing, and providing Salesforce and E-commerce Solutions to a broad spectrum of businesses. We at The NineHertz strive for excellence in quality and seamless user’s experience. Business V ...
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