While browsing the internet have you ever come across a website with an “Add to Home Screen” banner? When you click on the banner, the application installs itself? When you open the application, you have the same experience as the website, but on your mobile phone. What you have is a mobile app that has been downloaded from a web application. You are doing all this without using the app store. Getting the app was very easy, and you can browse any content even without any internet connection. Generally, you can access the app offline. This is called progressive web applications from your browser window, and the app will be available on your phone similar to a native app, which works offline.
The app is designed in a way to make a web application function in the same way as a desktop or other mobile application. The main aim of the application is to ensure people have an experience that is similar to the native mobile application. Progressive web applications can perform the same function on any other iPhone phone.
Reasons progressive web application could benefit you.
Progressive web applications provide fast experiences to all users. When the user downloads the application to the moment they start using the app, everything happens very fast. It is possible for the user to cache the data, and quickly start the application again without using the network.
Provides an integrated user experience
Progressive web applications naturally behave like native applications. They are found in the user’s home screen and send notifications like other native applications. They also have access to the functionality of the device. When the user uses the progressive web applications, the experience is seamless and integrated.
Offers reliable experience
Using the progressive web applications the user can paint a picture on the user’s screen without the availability of the internet.
It is engaging
The application can send notifications to a user, it can keep the user notified and engaged.
How to build a progressive web application
Having a web app manifest
This means the file that can give all the information about the web application. It contains various information like the icon of the application, which can be installed by the user in the app drawer. It also has a background colour, the name of the app. The user can easily write the app manifest themselves, but they can use various tools to generate one.
When the user installs the progressive web application in their application drawer, they get an icon. The manifest tool helps in coming up with icons for different formats.
Served over HTTPS
For a web application to be a progressive web application, it should be served over a secured network. With many services like Cloudflare and LetsEncrypt, it is effortless to get an SSL certificate. The application is a secure site that can establish the user’s web application as a trusted site for various users demonstrating trust and reliability, which avoids middleman attacks.
Advantages of progressive web applications
It allows offline mode
As you know, most websites do not work without access to the internet. Most mobile apps are self-contained, which allows the users to browse the app when the user is not online. This increases the engagement and availability of the application. Using the offline mode, the user can get any information, which is automatically saved after the user logs off. The offline page also has a brand logo with several brand features. The progressive web application can help a business that has a product catalogue that most people can view in the offline mode. This will lead to an increase in customer retention rates.
It is designed like an app
One significant advantage of the progressive web application is that they are designed like a mobile app, while still working as a website. When developing the progressive web application, every user has a chance to determine how they want the app to look. The user has control over the framework of the application as compared to other websites.
It has an improved performance
The progressive web applications are very fast due to the underlying technology caches, stylesheets, images and other contents found on their websites. Due to all these factors, the user experiences a mind-blowing performance.
When the user installs the progressive web application, they do not have to download it as compared to other mobile applications. The user does not have to access google play or app store to get the app. This implies that with progressive web applications, the user receives their icon on their phones or tablet. This is similar to mobile applications, but the user does not have to go through the slow app store submission process. This means that progressive mobile applications are convenient for users who are not familiar with applications.