Going hybrid with Turbo Native doesn’t mean every screen needs to be powered by a web view. While good enough for most of your app, there are times where a little more fidelity is required. Times when you want something a bit more… native.
There are no hard and fast rules about when to go native. Every app is different. Remember, each native screen adds additional complexity and maintenance.
Here are a few examples I’ve picked up building Turbo Native apps for clients. I follow these rough guidelines to decide if a screen should be native or not.
Three candidates for native screens
Going with a native home screen means the app can launch quickly and offer the highest fidelity available right away. HEY and Basecamp both follow this guidelines, launching directly to SwiftUI views. Bonus, they cache the data for offline access, further speeding up launch times.
Native maps offer a better user experience than web-based solutions. You can fill the entire screen with map tiles and tack on individual features as needed, like pins, overlays, or directions. And MapKit now works out of the box with both UIKit and SwiftUI, removing even more boilerplate.
Three screens better served by a web view
Screens that are changed frequently, like settings or preferences, are easier to manage when rendered via HTML. Changes on the web are cheap relative to native ones. A SwiftUI update often requires updates to the view and the API. And each API change needs to ensure backwards compatibility with all previous versions.
Boring, CRUD-like operations that aren’t unique to your app’s experience or product probably don’t need to be native. Yes, they might be fun to experiment with. But the time and resources spent are most likely better served working on critical workflows like the three examples above.
Rendering a lot of dynamic content is often faster to build with Hotwire. A list of heterogeneous items, like a news feed, requires each item type to be implemented as its own native view. And each new item type requires an App Store release. Leaving all this logic and rendering to the server helps ensure the iOS app won’t block new features on the web.
Or not at all
One more word of advice: you might not need any native screens for your app’s initial launch.
Your initial App Store release should be as barebones as possible. It should do just enough to ensure Apple will accept your app and publish it. You might end up wasting time implementing native features for an app that is never even available for download.
My priorities are always to get accepted in the App Store then progressively enhance screens when needed. If you need a hand with your app then please reach out – I’d love to help!