Building Apps in React – Who Else is Doing it?

If you’re in the early stages of a new build project, you may have heard your Project Manager or other members of the software development team at your development agency talking about something called React or React Native.
So what is it? React is a JavaScript library used for building interfaces. In other words, the front end of the application or website, the space where humans react with computers. It was developed by Facebook engineers for their own internal projects and later shared with the wider development community as an open source resource in 2013.

Building apps in React allows developers to streamline the storing and handling of data, and is designed to be fast and scalable.
It is good because it allows data to be changed in an application without refreshing – making it perfect for newsfeeds and the hottest fast-moving social media platforms, but also a wide variety of other apps and interfaces. In my experience, React allows the creation of complex apps from reusable pieces by using the building blocks of components, updating only the specific parts that need to be updated when application data changes.
React Native also allows developers to reuse the majority of app development code across different operating systems, meaning that developing separate apps for iOS and Android can become a much more efficient process, with faster turnaround times and smaller development teams. This is great news for projects of all budgets, and especially startups and projects looking for fast-to-market proof of concepts.

What Big Companies are Building Apps in React?

Facebook Ads was the first React Native app for Android and needed to incorporate seamless service for around 2,000,000 global users. Obviously, the Facebook app was built with it but there are a lot of other famous names that were created with React, so if your team is planning a React build, you can be confident that your project is in good company. According to Facebook, since they implemented the system to create the Facebook and Facebook Ads apps, many thousands of apps have been built in React Native, with users ranging from small startups to established global Fortune 500 companies.
Unsurprisingly for a Facebook-based project, Instagram, the world’s most popular image sharing site is based on React. Modern Instagram has moved far beyond its original image sharing capabilities, with people now using the platform for everything from shopping to trendspotting to dating.
Global information, data, analytics, and news providers Bloomberg used React Native to create their consumer mobile app in 2016, allowing them to develop simultaneously for iOS and Android in one development team. This allowed them to develop the new app in under 5 months, which they claim was around half the time it would have been expected to take otherwise. The Bloomberg development team are also on record as saying that technology allowed them to accelerate the release of new product features and streamline Beta testing.
At the other end of the instant information scale, instant messaging and communications giant Skype used React to develop their revamped app. Electronic car and battery futurists Tesla used React for their customer diagnostics and control app was created with React.
Still, need convincing? How about Walmart? The world’s largest retailer used React native for their app, and claim to have been able to share 95% of the codebase between platforms, leading to great efficiencies in timescales and development manpower. One of the other key positives they highlighted was the ability to host updates on their own server, without having to go through the often laborious and time-consuming process of app store approvals every time.
So if your software development agency is recommending React for your new e-commerce project, you might want to follow their lead.
See also: How to use Neuromarketing to increase Facebook Engagement?