Recently, the popularity of native mobile apps has surpassed all expectations. Next Generation Progressive Web Apps (PWAs) have collected the best user experience information and implemented it in mobile apps. In fact, the technology is not new, as PWAs appeared back in 2015. However, it took developers two years to turn PWA into one of the mainstream web programming trends.

PWAs are web apps that have a feel and user experience similar to mobile apps. They collect the latest web technologies in a user-friendly way that the user can access at any time through bookmarks or the browser extensions bar. To better understand the essence of progressive web applications, we have compiled a list of their main features:

  • First, PWAs don’t require installation. Users can open the PWA in a browser by simply entering the URL.
  • Second, PWAs are up to the latest interoperability standards and work in all modern browsers.

Thanks to the work of the service providers, PWAs are independent of the network state. With pre-caching, PWAs are available to users even in offline mode (which is simply a lifesaver in the event of a temporary lack of the Internet network, for example).

Most importantly, PWAs are similar to apps in every way, and this will make your users spend a lot more time on your site.

In addition, the HTTPS protocol serves PWAs, ensuring secure data transfer.

Last but not least, users can connect PWAs and display partial information about them on the desktop or smartphone home page.

Thus, PWA is the golden mean between websites and mobile applications. They have collected all the best and bring you double benefits. Similar to sites, PWAs have URLs for each page. You can access them in any modern browser by a simple search, without installing the application itself. Moreover, search engines index PWA content. And also, PWAs provide visitors with the ability to use full-fledged full-screen mode, regardless of the viewing area.

Similar to mobile apps, PWAs are loaded when the network connection is poor or missing. Users can add PWAs shortcuts to smartphone screens to go back with a single tap. In addition, Progressive Web Apps are capable of sending push notifications (toast notifications) to users and redirecting them to pages. Last but not least, PWA pages are fast, reliable and attractive thanks to UI and UX borrowed from mobile apps.

At the same time, PWAs bring significant benefits to their owners, such as interaction with visitors, higher conversions and reliability. For example, using PWAs, AliExpress doubled conversions across all browsers. EXtra Electronics quadrupled its user base.

Currently, PWAs have not yet become a mainstream technology. This predetermines the high cost of PWA development and the lot of effort that goes into creating them. If you want to learn how to build and run a PWA, you can check out the beginner’s guide to building Progressive Web Apps.