The RouteYou app is technically a PWA
"PWA" stands for Progressive Web App.
PWA's have many advantages.
Especially if you compare it with the classic (native) apps.
- As a user you don't really have to install anything anymore. You actually just link to mobile sites that contain a specific code to favor ease of use.
- Your application an all its features are available on all your devices (computer, telephone, tablet, ...). All you need is a browser.
- The features of the Web Apps work the same way, whether you are in the Apple or Android world.
- Developers have to develop only once. This is a huge difference compared to the classic native apps with a specific development per platform (iOS, Android, ...). That makes it cheaper and especially faster for providers to offer new things.
- The application is way less sensitive to changes from iOS and Android. Just check how many native apps are still working on your 3-year-old device.
- Apple and Android determine what can be offered via their Store. It needs to fit into their business model, otherwise you will not get in.
Are there no advantages to Native Apps anymore?
There certainly are. Because you are closer to the Operating System of the device, you can do more specific things. However, they come with a considerable development cost. Browser technology increasingly adopts communication with your device via standards. For example, in the past you could not communicate with your smartphone via a browser about the input from GPS, camera, accelerometers, digital compass, and so on. In the meantime, that is all possible.
One of the most important aspects of native apps was "working offline". This is also changing thanks to PWA.
The trend on your phone is simular to the trend that you have gone through on your desktop in the past. Before 2005, we were almost all active through applications running on your computer. Think of writing documents (Word), spreadsheets (Lotus 1-2-3, Excel, ...), reading e-mail, ... For each of those things you had to install a specific program. We occasionally used a browser but that was to consult information from a website. In the period 2005-2010, more functionality was offered via those websites, and thus via browsers. It was part of the Web 2.0 revolution. Many of us now use a website to write documents, to do calculations, or to read emails.
Technically those applications run in a browser. You don't have to install a thing!
This trend occurs on phones as well. We do less and less via a specific app that we install, but go directly via a website/browser.