Quick Summary:

When it comes to deciding whether to use React Native or Swift in 2024, there is a dilemma amongst the iOS developers. Suppose you are wondering what to choose for your native app development.

In that case, this blog post about React Native vs Swift will help you select the best fit by analyzing varied essential questions compulsory before starting your iOS native app development.

Table of Contents


React Native is a cross-platform app-development framework mostly using javascript and JSX. Whereas Swift is a programming language for developing iOS native applications; it uses Objective C code.

React Native and iOS Swift are the two most popular choices for iOS development. If you go with a native iOS application for development, you may have to invest separately for your android app development in the future. Your choice is crucial and a difficult one.

We have laid out a detailed comparison of React Native vs Swift based on their performance, development, costs, and community support. Let’s begin!

Below are the most popular companies which have used React Native and Swift for iOS native app development.

React Native Swift
Facebook Slideshare
Walmart Airbnb
Bloomberg Twitter
Instagram American Airlines
SoundCloud Lyft
Wix Test Center

React Native vs Swift: Framework Overview

React Native Swift
User Interface Uses APIs cross-platform and native components. iOS Native
Performance Provides fast performance, great user experience, and smooth navigation Offers great performance in complex applications, and graphic-sensitive computation applications
Community Support Strong community support on Github with 103K Star and 22.2K Fork Active Community on Github with 9.9K Fork and 59.9K Star
Programming Language Framework based on JavaScript Alternate to objective-C
Syntax JSX Syntax Trulyexpressive Syntax
Platform Support Windows, iOS, Android Apple’s all operating system
Release Date 26 March 2015 2 June 2014

React Native vs Swift - Comparison

It is time you come up with your power missile, an iOS native application that will help you future-proof your business requirements. Here are the top 7 parameters you shouldn’t overlook before choosing the right platform for your iOS native app development

React native vs swift


We had calculated the React Native vs Swift performance parameters based on the memory usage, CPU consumption, and graphics processing units GPU in iOS applications built using Swift and React Native.

Measuring the performance while various CPU intensive and heavy-graphic loading scenarios like scrolling, below is our observation:

React Native Vs Swift Performance

It is evident from the above results that React Native is slightly better for CPU consumption. React Native allows the developers to ingrain the native code into the app to tackle this challenge.

Hence, performance-wise, we can sum up that React Native is a better choice for developing iOS native applications.

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Development Comparison

When developing an application using React Native for iOS has a comparatively speedier development than Swift, and the development cycle is shorter. In contrast, the iOS app development time with Swift is relatively slow and has a longer development cycle.

However, with React Native framework, you can develop a heavy-weight iOS application, and instead, with Swift iOS programming language, you can build a lightweight application.

Apple does not avail of OTA updates, and hence with Swift, you can not come up with a new version update of your iOS application but only can build a new application for the app store. With React Native, you can update minor changes and enhancements in your application with CodePush or Electrode frameworks.

Bitrise, Nevercode, Fastlane, and CircleCl are third-party CI/CD support solutions with React Native. Here are several CI/CD are pipelines available for Swift, such as BuddyBuild, Travis, Bitrise, CircleCl, etc.

Maintaining an iOS app built with React Native is comparatively troublesome because you need to check if all your project libraries are working with the latest version of the framework. Whereas, in the case of the Swift iOS application, the maintenance is the easier.

Development Comparison

Maturity & Stability

Both React Native, and Swift are newer technologies. React Native launched in 2015 and Swift in 2014; we can say they are both young. However, with every version update, we are welcoming robustness in each.

Despite being a native app builder, React Native is not completely native, like Swift iOS app development language. React Native acts as a mediator between the code and the iOS platform. Swift has excellent results when dealing with heavy computational and graphic tasks.

Maturity & Stability

Learning Curve

It becomes easy to learn and understand React Native if you are familiar with JavaScript. However, if that the not the case it becomes a bit difficult to work on a mobile app development framework in comparison to a web development framework.

Swift is relatively a modern programming language that’s why Apple offers a variety of fundamental courses to understand more precisely about Swift for application development.

React Native vs Swift – User Interface

Swift is a better option if you want to build a graphics-intensive iOS application than React Native.

React Native provides native components from the Javascript bridge when building an iOS app, whereas a Swift iOS application integrates with the platform seamlessly.

User Interface

Developer Costs

When it comes to React Native vs Swift development cost of an iOS application, React Native developer cost is comparatively lower and budget-friendly for your developer needs than Swift iOS developer cost.

Developer Costs

Development Speed

When it comes to the development code speed of an iOS application, React Native has a low-speed for iOS application and is faster for iOS and Android than Swift. In contrast, for iOS applications, Swift is faster and easy.

development speed

Community Support & Documentation

React Native is an open-source framework that enables several contributions from developers worldwide, and Swift developers can get technical support from the public platform and forums. React Native provides accurate, concise, and helpful documentation. Swift programming language has a consistent documentation update and is helpful.

Community Support

Advantages and Disadvantages: Swift vs React Native

Advantages of Swift

  • Ease of coding: Issued under Apache License, Swift is an open-source iOS native app language.
  • Precise error handling: The strong error handling and typing system of Swift prevents code crashes and errors during production.
  • Flexible Scalability: You can future-proof your app using Swift and can extend it with new features as required. Such apps are typically easier to scale.
  • Concise coding: Swift is very concise, which means you need less code to perform the same task than React Native.
  • Faster coding: Swift was built with the objective of fast performance. It has a simple syntax that allows faster app development.

Disadvantages of Swift:

  • Exclusive for Apple devices: Swift can be used exclusively for native iOS devices only. Thus, you will have to develop a separate app for both Android and iOS.
  • Poor support for previous iOS versions: Swift can’t be used for long-term business projects executed in the older versions of the iOS.
  • Poor interoperability with third-party tools and IDEs: Due to frequent updates, developers often report issues with syntax highlighting, autocomplete, refactoring tools, and compilers.
  • Lesser Talent Pool: As per the StackOverflow developer survey, only 5.1 percent of the 83,053 respondents use Swift which makes it difficult for businesses to acquire the right talents.

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Advantages of React Native

  • Faster development: React Native is equipped with JavaScript. About 90% of the code for your mobile app may be taken from web applications. Building iOS native apps with React Native is 33% faster than Swift and takes between 1 to 5 months.
  • Lesser debugging: With React Native, tracing the bugs requires lesser time and effort.
  • Less budgeting: You can execute the project with smaller teams, thus reducing the operational cost.
  • Hot reloading: Developers can visualize the code created using this feature. Hot reloading boosts the productivity of the entire development process.
  • Feature expanding: You can extend your app functionality with existing or custom JavaScript modules.

Disadvantages of React Native

  • Lack of wrappers: In some cases, developers need to create custom wrappers to empower the app with native modules, components, and APIs, which takes time.
  • Complex design: Both Android and iOS have different design guidelines for apps. For this reason, it is tough to develop high-quality custom UI for React Native apps.
  • Frequent updates: React Native updates its components regularly. Thus, be ready to release your app updates more often.

Use Cases: Swift vs React Native

React Native - Use Cases

The React Native iOS App platform is employed in the following scenarios:
1. Suitable framework for almost every customer-facing application.
2. Faster to develop and offers enough support and modules to build a stable application.
3. Easier to build a React Native mobile app with reusable components.

Swift - Use Cases

Swift as an iOS App platform is mostly used in the scenarios depicted below:

1. Subtle for apps with intricacies and with slightly complex user interfaces.
2. Premium apps with advanced security features.
3. Applications that require continuous maintenance and long-term updates.

Wrapping Up

We saw how React Native and Swift iOS application development could vary based on varied factors of performance, development costs, learning & community, testing, and user experience.

We would recommend the following,

Choose React Native framework for iOS app development if:
➡ You want to develop an application with fewer resources and time availability
➡ Your project needs features like hot reloading, fast building time, and live reloading
➡ You want a consistent cross-platform app that works identically on both platforms.

And choose Swift iOS application development if:
➡ You want to develop a complex iOS-only application that uses platform-specific code
➡ You need long-term app maintenance
➡ You need to build a graphically-interactive gaming app or an app that requires memory footprint.

It ultimately depends on your project requirements which of the two Swift vs React Native is beneficial for your iOS application development.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

React Native is powered by JavaScript. Thus, up to 90% of the code for your mobile app may be taken from web applications. Building iOS apps with React Native is 33% faster than Swift and takes 1 to 5 months.

React Native uses JavaScript for app development, which is one of the most used programming languages. Therefore, it becomes easy to use React Native to complete projects successfully. However, Swift is also easy to use for complex and scalable development.

Facebook used React Native to develop its Ads Manager app, creating both an iOS and an Android version. The same team of developers created both versions. Facebook uses Swift to make it easier for developers to build their iOS-based apps and improve user experience.

The main difference between React Native and Swift is that React Native is best for cross-platform development, while Swift is for building iOS apps.

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