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Is React Native the Same as React.js? A Comprehensive Comparison

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Is React Native the Same as React.js? A Comprehensive Comparison

React.js and React Native are both popular technologies in the world of web and mobile app development. They share a similar name, and they are both associated with Facebook. However, they serve different purposes and have distinct characteristics. In this comprehensive comparison, we'll explore React.js and React Native, their similarities, differences, use cases, and when to choose one over the other.


React.js and React Native, despite their shared name and Facebook origins, serve different purposes in the world of app development. React.js, often referred to simply as React, is a JavaScript library for building user interfaces primarily for web applications. React Native, on the other hand, is a framework for developing native mobile applications using JavaScript and React principles.

Is React Native same as React JS? In this comparison, we'll explore each technology in depth, highlighting their unique features, use cases, and key differences.

React.js: The Web Framework

What is React.js?

React.js, commonly known as React, is an open-source JavaScript library developed by Facebook. It was first released in 2013 and has since gained immense popularity in the web development community. React is used for building user interfaces (UIs) for web applications.

How React.js Works

React.js works by allowing developers to create reusable UI components. These components are composed together to build the entire user interface. React uses a virtual DOM (Document Object Model) to efficiently update and render changes to the UI. This virtual DOM minimizes direct manipulation of the actual DOM, resulting in better performance and a smoother user experience.

Benefits of React.js

  • Component-Based: React promotes a component-based architecture, making it easy to create, reuse, and maintain UI components.
  • Virtual DOM: The virtual DOM helps improve performance by minimizing the number of real DOM updates.
  • Declarative: React uses a declarative approach to define how the UI should look based on the application's state, making it easier to reason about.
  • Large Ecosystem: React has a vast ecosystem of libraries, tools, and community support.

React Native: The Mobile Framework

What is React Native?

React Native is also an open-source framework developed by Facebook, designed for building native mobile applications using JavaScript and React principles. It was introduced in 2015 and has since gained popularity as a cross-platform mobile development solution.

How React Native Works

React Native allows developers to write mobile applications using JavaScript and React components. These components are compiled to native code, allowing them to run on iOS, Android, and other platforms. React Native provides access to native APIs, enabling developers to create truly native mobile experiences.

Benefits of React Native

  • Cross-Platform: Write code once and run it on multiple platforms, reducing development time and effort.
  • Native Performance: React Native apps offer native-like performance because they compile to native code.
  • Hot Reloading: Instantly view code changes on a simulator or device, speeding up development and debugging.
  • Large Community: React Native has a strong community and a wide range of third-party libraries and modules.

Key Differences Between React.js and React Native

While React and React Native share similarities due to their use of React principles, they also have fundamental differences.


  • React.js: Primarily used for web applications, React.js is focused on building user interfaces for web browsers.
  • React Native: Designed for mobile app development, React Native targets iOS, Android, and other platforms, allowing you to create truly native mobile apps.


  • React.js: Components in React.js are designed for web UIs. They consist of HTML elements and can be styled with CSS.
  • React Native: React Native components are specifically tailored for mobile app UIs and map to native UI components on each platform. Styling is done using JavaScript and a subset of CSS.


  • React.js: Styling in React.js is typically achieved using CSS stylesheets, CSS-in-JS solutions, or CSS modules.
  • React Native: Styling in React Native is done using JavaScript and a limited subset of CSS. It uses a unique styling system based on flexbox and platform-specific styling.

API Access

  • React.js: React.js primarily interacts with the browser's DOM and relies on web APIs for additional functionality.
  • React Native: React Native provides direct access to native APIs on mobile devices, allowing you to access device features like the camera, GPS, and sensors.

Development Environment

  • React.js: Development for React.js can be done using a simple text editor and web browser. Tools like create-react-app simplify project setup.
  • React Native: Developing for React Native typically requires setting up native development environments for iOS and Android, which can be more complex.

When to Choose React.js

Web Applications

React.js is the ideal choice when developing web applications. If your goal is to create a web-based user interface for desktop or mobile browsers, React.js provides all the necessary tools and libraries for building interactive web applications.

Complex UI

For complex user interfaces with a rich set of interactive elements, React.js excels. It allows you to break down the UI into manageable components, making it easier to maintain and scale.

SEO Optimization

If SEO (Search Engine Optimization) is a critical concern, React.js is a better choice. React.js applications can be server-side rendered (SSR), which is crucial for search engines to crawl and index content effectively.

When to Choose React Native

Mobile App Development

React Native is the clear choice when your primary goal is to develop mobile applications. It allows you to write a single codebase that can run on both iOS and Android platforms, saving time and effort.

Cross-Platform Development

When targeting multiple platforms, such as iOS and Android, React Native shines. It enables you to achieve a high level of code reuse while still delivering a native user experience.

Native-Like Performance

For mobile apps that require high performance and responsiveness, React Native is the preferred option. It compiles to native code, ensuring that your app performs as if it were built using platform-specific languages.

Hybrid Solutions: React.js and React Native Together

In some cases, you may find it beneficial to use both React.js and React Native in a single project. This hybrid approach is suitable for applications that require both web and mobile versions. By sharing business logic and components between the two, you can maximize code reuse and maintainability.


In conclusion, React.js and React Native are related technologies, but they serve distinct purposes in the world of app development. React.js is primarily used for building web user interfaces, while React Native is designed for creating native mobile applications. Understanding the differences between the two is crucial for choosing the right technology for your project.

  • Choose React.js for web applications, complex web UIs, and SEO optimization.
  • Choose React Native for mobile app development, cross-platform solutions, and native-like performance.

Ultimately, the choice between React.js and React Native depends on your project's requirements, target platforms, and development goals. By leveraging the strengths of each technology, you can create exceptional web and mobile experiences for your users. When it comes to hiring experienced React.js developers, CronJ is your trusted partner. With a team of skilled and hire reactjs developer india, CronJ offers top-tier development services for web applications.

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