ReactJS vs React Native: The Ultimate Comparison Guide

ReactJS vs React Native

People frequently get confused in ReactJS and React Native, and vice-versa, because of their similar names. ReactJS and React Native are fundamentally different and serve different purposes. These two technologies are beneficial for creating scalable online and mobile solutions. Facebook created both of these to make it easier to create online and mobile user experiences with JavaScript.

Although there are some similarities between the two, it is critical that you thoroughly grasp them and what they include so that you can make a well-informed choice when choosing one of the two for your project.

In terms of popularity, React is utilized and liked by more than 41% of developers worldwide. On the contrary, React Native is preferred by 32% of software developers globally.

Both options are popular, making a choice between them more difficult than expected. Let’s scroll to find out about these two amazing platforms, features, pros & cons, major differences, and even similarities.   

What is React?

ReactJS is an open-source front-end programming library created and launched by Facebook in 2011. It is widely used to create feature-rich, responsive, fast, and user-friendly mobile and online apps. Additionally, it allows them to automate the design process. It is one of the most popular libraries for creating user interfaces (UI) for web and mobile apps, and it has grown in popularity since then.

ReactJS developers can simply integrate plugins or libraries into their existing code. Additionally, it makes it possible for them to create straightforward, quick, and scalable web apps. The introduction of React in front-end programming brings back much-needed server-side logic.

Because the library is based on JavaScript, developers have access to a vibrant community of participants who have developed a massive environment of tools to make an engineer’s task simpler. It includes React Developer Tools (inspection of component hierarchies in the vDOM) and React Sight (visualization of component hierarchy tree).

Features of React

  • Virtual DOM: ReactJS utilizes a virtual DOM to represent the UI in memory. This virtual representation allows React to efficiently update the actual DOM by only re-rendering components that have changed, resulting in improved performance.
  • Component-Based Architecture: React promotes a modular approach to building user interfaces by breaking them down into reusable components. Each component encapsulates its logic and UI, making the codebase more organized, maintainable, and scalable.
  • JSX: JSX is a syntax extension for JavaScript that allows developers to write HTML-like code within JavaScript. JSX enhances code readability and enables developers to express UI components in a more intuitive and declarative manner.
  • Declarative Syntax: React uses a declarative programming paradigm, allowing developers to describe the desired UI state and let React handle the underlying updates. This simplifies the process of building complex UIs and reduces the likelihood of bugs.
  • Event Handling: React provides a consistent and efficient way to handle user interactions and events within components. Event handlers can be defined inline within JSX or bound-to-class methods, allowing developers to create interactive UIs with ease.
  • State Management: React allows components to manage their state using the useState hook (in functional components) or the setState method (in class components). It enables components to maintain their internal state and trigger re-renders when the state changes.


  • Improved Performance: React’s efficient use of the virtual DOM leads to faster rendering and a smoother user experience by updating only the necessary parts of the interface.
  • Modular Development: React’s component-based architecture fosters a modular approach to development, making it easier to build, maintain, and scale applications by reusing components across the codebase.
  • Simplified Development: React’s declarative syntax allows React developers to focus on describing the desired UI state, resulting in cleaner and more maintainable code.
  • Enhanced Readability: JSX enhances code readability by allowing developers to write HTML-like code within JavaScript, making it easier to understand and collaborate on React projects.
  • Robust Ecosystem: React’s vast ecosystem of libraries, tools, and community support provides developers with resources to address common challenges and accelerate development, leading to faster time-to-market for projects.
  • Cross-Platform Compatibility: With frameworks like React Native, developers can use React to build not only web applications but also mobile applications, allowing for code reuse and consistent user experiences across different platforms. 


  • Complexity: React’s ecosystem and concepts like JSX, virtual DOM, and component lifecycle methods may have a steep learning curve for beginners. 
  • JSX: While JSX can improve code readability, some developers may find it cumbersome to mix HTML with JavaScript, especially if they prefer a clear separation of concerns. 
  • Tooling Overhead: Setting up a React project with tools like Webpack, Babel, and ESLint may require additional configuration and costs, especially for smaller projects.
  • Limited SEO: React applications rendered on the client side may face challenges with search engine optimization (SEO) compared to server-rendered applications. 
  • Performance Overhead: While React’s virtual DOM offers performance benefits in many cases, it may introduce overhead for simple applications or scenarios where direct DOM manipulation would be more efficient.

What is React Native?

React is an open-source JavaScript toolkit that is frequently used to create applications that look and feel native on platforms such as iOS, Android, and Universal Windows Platform (UWP). 

Mark Zuckerberg vowed in 2012 that Facebook would provide a better mobile experience, which inspired the development of React Native. This platform was created in response to the increasing demand for high-calibre cross-platform programming, following React.

Mobile app developers can save a ton of time using React Native because their team won’t have to split its efforts between developing apps for iOS, Android, Windows, and other platforms. Most of the JavaScript code might be reused and improved with native modules or code. 

React Native is one of the most widely utilized technologies, according to the Stack Overflow poll 2020, with 58% of respondents stating they had developed mobile apps using React Native.

Features of React Native 

  • Cross-Platform Development: React Native enables developers to build mobile applications for multiple platforms using a single codebase, including iOS and Android. This cross-platform compatibility reduces development time and effort compared to building separate native apps for each platform.
  • Reusable code: React Native’s greatest accomplishment is that it eliminates the need for programmers to write separate code for the iOS and Android platforms. They can reuse the code as & when required and help streamline development efforts and reduce maintenance overhead
  • Responsive UI: React Native can give consumers a native-like experience because it uses native UI to create responsible mobile apps. If you have a limited budget yet require a cost-effective and high-quality solution that can run on multiple platforms, React Native is your best option.
  • Hot and Live Reloading: If you need to change the business logic, you may utilize React Native’s Hot and Live reloading to change the user interface without losing any code from your project.
  • Declarative UI: The concept behind this feature is rather straightforward: it renders content by returning some JSX. Mobile UI is built on a declarative programming approach, which allows programmers to focus on what needs to be implemented rather than how to achieve it.
  • Offline Support: React Native supports offline capabilities through libraries like AsyncStorage and NetInfo, allowing developers to build apps that can function without an internet connection. This is crucial for applications that require data persistence or work in areas with limited connectivity.


  • Reduced costs: Because there is only one code base for all platforms, React Native may be used to create Android and iOS-compatible apps. As a result, the business will save money on development, upkeep, and administrative expenses. React Native’s complete license-free nature accounts for the additional cost savings.
  • Access to Native APIs: React Native provides access to platform-specific native APIs and functionalities, allowing developers to integrate device features such as cameras, GPS, sensors, and push notifications into their apps. This enables developers to create rich and interactive mobile experiences.
  • Large Community and Ecosystem: React Native has a thriving community of developers, along with a vast ecosystem of libraries, tools, and resources. This provides ample support and solutions for common challenges encountered during mobile app development.
  • Simplified UI Development: React Native uses a component-based architecture similar to ReactJS, making it easy to create complex UIs by composing reusable components. This improves code maintainability and allows for faster iteration of the UI.
  • Support for Third-Party Plugins: React Native offers extensive support for third-party plugins and modules, allowing developers to integrate native functionalities or leverage existing libraries seamlessly into their apps.
  • Performance Optimization: React Native bridges JavaScript code to native components, ensuring that apps have near-native performance. This results in smooth animations, faster load times, and a more responsive user interface compared to traditional hybrid frameworks.


  • Platform-Specific Code: While React Native enables code sharing across platforms, developers may still need to write platform-specific code to access certain device functionalities or optimize performance for each platform.
  • Limited Native Functionality: React Native may not offer access to all native APIs and features available on iOS and Android platforms. Developers may need to write custom native modules or rely on third-party libraries to access certain functionalities.
  • Learning Curve: Developers familiar with web development may need time to learn mobile development concepts and the React Native framework, particularly if they are not accustomed to writing mobile-specific code or working with native APIs.
  • Debugging Challenges: Debugging React Native apps can be more challenging compared to web development or native mobile app development, because the issues related to bridging JavaScript with native components may require specialized debugging techniques and tools.
  • Dependency on React Native Updates: React Native’s frequent updates and changes may introduce compatibility issues with existing codebases or third-party libraries. Developers need to stay updated with the latest releases and be prepared to adapt their apps accordingly.

React Native vs React: How Do They Work?

ReactJS & React Native are two popular platforms, and as we stated ut vary significantly and so does its working process. Let’s find out how both of these technologies work. 

The Working of ReactJS

React works by deconstructing the user interface (UI) into reusable parts, like forms or buttons. It reduces performance bottlenecks by efficiently updating only the areas of a web page that change through the use of a Virtual DOM.

React takes a declarative approach, in which developers express how the UI should look based on the data, and React handles updates immediately when the information updates. This makes creating interactive web apps easier and more manageable by incorporating state management for dynamic content and handling events for user interactions.

The Working of React Native

React Native is a mobile app development platform that lets programmers write code in either JavaScript or TypeScript. It ensures a native appearance and feel on iOS and Android by using native components for the user interface.

When necessary, a bridge that joins native modules and JavaScript logic allows access to platform-specific functionality.

Developers can reuse a large percentage of their software across platforms, making it an effective tool for cross-platform mobile app development.

React vs React Native: A Quick Glance!

AspectReactJSReact Native
MeaningIt is a JavaScript library for building user interfaces for web applications.It is a framework for building mobile applications using JavaScript and React.
Top FeaturesThe top features of this Javascript library include Virtual DOM, Component-Based Architecture, and JSX syntax.The top features of React Native are Cross-Platform Development, Native UI Components, and Hot Reloading.
Core TechnologyThe core technology includes JavaScript and Virtual DOM.The core technology includes JavaScript and Native Bridge.
When to UseIt is best suited for web applications and single-page applications with complex UIs and data-heavy apps.It is highly recommended for mobile application development, Native UI/UX, and cross-platform projects.
Popular CompaniesPopular companies using ReactJS are Facebook, Airbnb, Netflix, and Instagram.Popular companies leveraging React Native are Facebook, Instagram, Uber, and Airbnb.
Performance OptimizationOptimizations like shouldComponentUpdate for improving rendering performance.Offers optimization techniques specific to mobile apps like using FlatList for efficient list rendering.
DevelopmentDevelopment environment setup involves web-related tools like Webpack.Development environment setup requires tools like Xcode for iOS and Android Studio for Android.
DebuggingDebugging primarily in web browser developer tools.Debugging involves both web debugging tools and platform-specific debugging tools.
TestingTesting frameworks like Jest for unit and integration testing.Testing frameworks like Jest for unit testing and tools like Appium for mobile app testing.
CommunityLarge and active community with extensive documentation and resources.Growing community with resources specific to mobile app development.
Learning CurveReactJS has a steeper learning curve for beginners due to complex DOM concepts.React native has a moderate learning curve, especially for developers familiar with ReactJS.
DeploymentDeployment involves hosting web applications on servers or platforms like AWS, Netlify, etc.Deployment involves publishing apps to app stores like Apple App Store and Google Play Store.
PerformanceTypically faster for web applications due to direct DOM manipulation.Offers near-native performance for mobile apps, leveraging native components.
UI/UX DesignDesign considerations focus on responsive web design principles.Design considerations involve adhering to platform-specific UI/UX guidelines for iOS and Android.
SecurityReactJS automatically prevents Cross-Site Scripting (XSS) attacks by escaping any user input rendered within JSX components. It means that user-generated content, such as script tags or HTML attributes, is treated as plain text and rendered as-is, for security. React Native leverages the same JSX syntax as ReactJS, which inherently provides XSS prevention by escaping user input within UI components. 

React vs React Native: Diving Deep into it!

1. React vs React Native: Effectiveness


ReactJS is the ideal library for you if you want to create a stunning user interface for your project. ReactJS can run on the client side and be rendered on the server side. ReactJS gives developers more alternatives to work with when building core abstractions, in addition to increasing their efficiency. In summary, it works well for both higher-level items like dropdown menus and lower-level elements like clickable buttons.

React Native

React Native uses an alternative strategy to increase developer productivity. React Native’s fundamental development elements are reusable native components. These parts are directly compiled into native code. React native stands out from other mobile app development frameworks because the app will have the incredible appearance, feel, performance, and speed of a native app. 

Moreover, React Native programmers can effortlessly incorporate native scripts like Java, Swift, and Objective-C into the framework to obtain a personalized appearance.

2. React vs React Native: Tech Base 


React is a library written in JavaScript. React focuses on leveraging JavaScript to create user-friendly web interfaces. Thus, all you need to do to become an expert at ReactJS is study and comprehend JavaScript. In due course, you can become a React developer if you have the necessary technical documentation expertise.

React Native

React Native is a framework for making mobile user experiences with ReactJS. It also employs declarative components like React and has several advantages because it inherits all of ReactJS’ functionality. React Native isn’t a pure JavaScript framework. It integrates code written in C++, Objective-C, Objective-C++, and Java. 

3. React vs React Native: Library vs Framework


ReactJS is a Javascript library because it primarily focuses on one aspect of development: building user interfaces. It provides a collection of reusable UI components and tools for efficiently rendering them within web applications. Developers have the flexibility to integrate ReactJS into existing projects and use it alongside other libraries and tools as needed. 

React Native (Framework)

In contrast, React Native is considered a framework because it offers a comprehensive set of tools, libraries, and conventions for building mobile applications. While React Native is built on top of ReactJS principles, it provides additional functionality and abstractions specifically tailored for mobile development. React Native comes with built-in support for features like navigation, gesture handling, and accessing native device APIs, streamlining the development process for mobile apps.

4. React vs React Native: Easy-to-Use


ReactJS is known for its simplicity and ease of use, making it accessible to developers of all skill levels. Its component-based architecture encourages modularization and code reuse, making it straightforward to build complex user interfaces by composing smaller, reusable components. Additionally, ReactJS has a vast ecosystem of documentation, tutorials, and community support, making it easy for developers to find resources and get help when needed.

React Native

React Native aims to provide a smooth development experience for building mobile applications, with a focus on developer productivity and efficiency.  It offers a familiar ReactJS syntax and component-based architecture, allowing web developers to transition to mobile app development seamlessly. However, it is a bit complex to use and learn for beginner developers as compared to ReactJS. 

5. React vs React Native: Development Environment


The development environment for ReactJS typically involves using web-related tools such as Node.js, npm, and bundlers like Webpack or Parcel. Developers write ReactJS code using a text editor or Integrated Development Environment (IDE) of their choice. The simplicity of the ReactJS ecosystem allows developers to quickly get started with building web applications without needing extensive setup or configuration.

React Native

Developing with React Native requires a more specialized setup tailored to mobile app development. Developers need platform-specific tools like Xcode for iOS development and Android Studio for Android development, along with the React Native CLI (Command Line Interface) for project management. React Native projects are written in JavaScript and can be edited using any text editor or IDE. Setting up the development environment for React Native may require more initial configuration compared to ReactJS. 

6. React vs React Native: Performance


ReactJS offers fast performance for web applications, thanks to its efficient rendering with the virtual DOM. By updating only the components that have changed, ReactJS minimizes unnecessary DOM manipulations and re-renders, resulting in smoother user experiences and improved performance. However, since ReactJS applications run in web browsers, their performance may be affected by factors such as browser compatibility, device capabilities, and network conditions.

React Native

React Native provides near-native performance for mobile applications by rendering native UI components using platform-specific APIs. This approach allows React Native apps to achieve performance levels. Additionally, React Native’s architecture enables it to leverage the GPU (Graphics Processing Unit) for rendering UI components, resulting in faster load times. While React Native’s performance may vary on factors like hardware and complexity, it generally offers excellent performance. 

Similarities Between Both

React and React Native have several immediately identifiable aspects, despite being two completely different technologies. React and React Native share several important similarities, including being open source and being products of the same company, Meta.

Furthermore, the foundation of both React and React Native is the concept of modular, composable components that can be assembled to form user interfaces. To improve the efficiency of the application, they both make use of a virtual DOM to simplify modifications to the real DOM.

The following are some other areas where React and React Native are similar:

  • ReactJS and React Native technologies make use of the JSX syntax extension, which enables you to write HTML-like code within JavaScript files.
  • These two frameworks manage component data and behaviour using the same state and prop ideas.
  • Both offer a range of lifecycle methods that give developers the ability to regulate how components behave at various points throughout their lives.
  • ReactJS & React native make use of the declarative programming style and the idea of a single source of truth, which are core ideas of the React framework.

React vs React Native: Summing Up

So, you may now have a better understanding of these two seemingly unrelated platforms: React and React Native. React and React Native, as we stated at the beginning of the article, are two distinct technologies created for various use cases, although they share comparable development ideas or processes.

React Native is the full framework, whereas React is essentially a JavaScript library. React is frequently a better option for developing online applications, but React Native is better for developing mobile applications.

All technologies, nevertheless, have unique benefits of their own and are useful for a range of tasks. It all comes down to the precise needs and guidelines of the project you’re working on in the end. So, select the appropriate one based on your needs.

If you are seeking the best web development solutions, feel free to reach out to KrishaWeb. Our experts can understand your needs and provide the most appropriate solutions.


1. When should I use React Native?

React Native is an excellent choice for mobile app development when you want to build cross-platform applications that offer native-like performance and user experience. It’s suitable for projects where you need to target both iOS and Android platforms with a single codebase, streamline development efforts, and leverage device-specific features.

2. When should I use ReactJS?

ReactJS is ideal for building dynamic and interactive user interfaces for web applications. It’s suitable for projects where you want to create single-page applications (SPAs), complex UIs with reusable components, and applications that require frequent data updates without full-page reloads.

3. Which one should I choose: ReactJS vs React Native?

The choice between ReactJS and React Native depends on your project requirements. Choose ReactJS for web development projects targeting browsers and SPAs, and React Native for mobile app development targeting iOS and Android platforms. If you need to support both web and mobile platforms, you may consider using both technologies in combination.

4. Which platform is suitable for enterprise-based apps: ReactJS or React Native?

Both ReactJS and React Native can be suitable for enterprise-based apps, depending on the specific needs of the project. ReactJS is commonly used for building internal dashboards, admin panels, and data-driven web applications within enterprises. React Native, on the other hand, is preferred for developing customer-facing mobile apps that offer native experiences and access to device features.

5. Are JavaScript and React JS the same thing?

No, JavaScript and React JS are not the same. Whereas JavaScript is a programming language used to create web applications, ReactJS is a JavaScript-based library used to create application user interfaces. Modern web browsers feature JavaScript, which is a high-level, interpreted programming language.

Nirav Panchal
Lead – Custom Development

Lead of the Custom Development team at KrishaWeb, holds AWS certification and excels as a Team Leader. Renowned for his expertise in Laravel and React development. With expertise in cloud solutions, he leads with innovation and technical excellence.


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