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The secret to React Native’s success

When we at Infinite Red decided to focus on React Native mobile app development and consulting in 2015, it wasn’t an obvious choice. There were a lot of other options and most companies were skeptical of “hybrid” solutions, having been bitten by Cordova and PhoneGap and others that just couldn’t provide a good user experience because they wrapped webviews rather than using native views.

Looking back, a few things in particular stand out as contributors to React Native becoming the number one cross platform mobile framework in the world.

First, the relationship with React.js (web) was huge. React became the biggest front end web framework in the world, and companies that need front end web frameworks tend to need mobile apps too. And going from React to React Native is obvious.

Secondly, having Facebook/Meta behind it was a big factor. So many other frameworks are pretty good, but they aren’t sustainable because they don’t have money or people behind them. Meta made React Native a priority and continues to.

Thirdly, Microsoft heavily invested in RN. What’s better than one big tech company behind a tech? How about two? And they’ve been an awesome partner. They’re currently rewriting large swaths of Microsoft Office in React Native. This gives a lot of security, knowing that one giant tech company falling out of love with the technology wouldn’t sink it.

I also want to point out Expo; when they started building a layer of services and high quality libraries on top of React Native, it was clearly a risk. But it has improved the ecosystem immensely over the years.

And lastly — I like to think that we at Infinite Red had a bit to do with it. We have been tireless advocates for RN over the years, producing podcastsnewsletters, the biggest RN focused conference in the US, the biggest third-party React Native starter project, and much more.

Sometimes you have to help make the success you are depending on!