Matt Netkow

Camp Counselor

Web Native: A New Approach to Cross-platform App Development

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Tuesday, July 27, 2021 - 9:00 PM UTC, for 1 hour.

Regular, 60 minute presentation

Room: A & H


Over 10 years ago, Apache Cordova launched, providing web developers the opportunity to use their existing skills to build mobile apps. They could do everything native devs could, including accessing native device functionality like the camera, geolocation, and Bluetooth. The Cordova community grew strongly for several years, driven primarily by open source maintainers. However, the pace of native platform innovation, especially on mobile (iOS, Android), overwhelmed the community. With new device hardware released every year, new design paradigms to learn, and the introduction of modern plugin systems (CocoaPods, Gradle) and programming languages (Swift, Kotlin), it became clear that this approach wasn’t sustainable long-term. Enter Capacitor. This open-source, modern cross-platform app runtime makes it easy to build web apps that run natively on iOS, Android, Electron, and the web. Dubbed “Native Progressive Web Apps”, they represent the next evolution of hybrid apps - backed by a company dedicated to hybrid mobile development (the creators of the popular Ionic Framework UI component library). Capacitor enables: - Web Developers to leverage web standards-based APIs to access rich native device features - Native teams to work alongside web teams - Cordova devs to migrate easily, adding improved maintenance and troubleshooting and more visibility into native project changes - Powerful native extensibility via a simple Plugin API - Swift on iOS, Java on Android, and JavaScript for the web. Capacitor is a breath of fresh air for That Conference campers - a mix of pine and cedar with web development and modern native tooling. It’s "write once, run anywhere" redefined. Come learn how to craft modern, compelling app experiences with Capacitor.


Basic web development experience.

Take Aways

  • Web developers trying out different hybrid app development approaches in the past encountered rough developer experiences
  • Today, multiple great cross-platform options exist, including Capacitor, Ionic’s new app runtime. The developer experience is vastly improved, drawing upon lessons learned from React Native, Turbolinks, and Cordova
  • Capacitor features easy Cordova migration, improved maintenance and troubleshooting, visibility into native project management, and powerful native extensibility
  • Capacitor provides a best in class developer experience, especially when paired with the rest of the Ionic Platform, which includes a UI framework, native solutions, and mobile DevOps suite.
favorited by:
Ryan Holmes Vanessa Radlinger Tim Kempster Cacie Robichaux Mary Lou Essert Kevin Kelchen Gregory Owen Christopher Ebbert Cody Backhaus Ryan Wisniewski Bob Dankert YURSHIA XIONG Timothy Tyson Dale Sande Justin Weyenberg Elizabeth Groom Shawn Cannon Warren Janisch Matt Netkow Dustin Ewers Mark Anderson Beth Bollinger