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Evaluating Best App Development Tools in 2022

by Emily Iwankovitsch Social Media Marketing Manager

When building a next-generation application or game, it’s important to invest in the best tools and resources – these often make for the best results. This is true whether you’re building a house or developing a next-generation application or game.

If you’re a new app developer or an experienced veteran interested in trying something new, selecting the right app development tool is critical to the successful development, implementation, and adoption of the application. For this reason, careful research into available tools is required.

From fine-tuning digital ecosystems or building brilliant audio-visual experiences, relying on the right tools means improving efficiencies while saving valuable time, energy, and money.

What App Development Tools Should You Prioritize This Year?

Before we begin, a point of clarification – what is an application development tool exactly?

An app development tool assists in the development of digital applications. There are many different kinds of tools available to developers, including coding tools, visual tools, audio tools, and more. In most cases, a developer will leverage a combination of different types of tools to build a simple application or immersive in-game voice chat experience. 

In this article, we’ll provide a look at some of the most popular and well-liked app development tools. This list includes information gathered from trusted third-party review sites like G2, Capterra, and TrustPilot. The items on this list are ranked in no particular order, and pricing is from the company websites. With this information, we hope to help you make the best decision possible when choosing app development tools for your projects.

Ionic 

Ionic is an open source mobile user interface toolkit purpose-built to develop high quality, cross-platform native and web applications. Ionic offers a library of mobile-optimized user interface components, gestures, and tools for building next-generation applications.

Capterra Rating: Not available.
Price: Starts at $42/month. Plans start at 10K live updates per month.

“Ionic has effectively become an extension of our team. They’ve assisted us through numerous releases and assisted with several bug fixes. They’ve proven to be much more supportive and willing to help than other software vendors we’ve worked with.” - Devil Vail, Lead Mobile Developer at Amtrak

BuildFire

BuildFire is an application development system that enables teams to create custom plugins or leverage inbuilt plugins to build mobile applications. BuildFire offers a simple and intuitive app builder with little to no code required. As an app development turnkey solution, BuildFire is appropriate for anyone needing a mobile application, including startups and enterprises.

Capterra Rating: 4.5/5
Price: Starts at $189/month. Apps are free to build, with hosting requiring a monthly payment.

“The ease and quick ability to design, build, and publish an app is second to none. They have all of the needed tools, support, and UX to build not just any old app, but a great looking app!” - Capterra Review

Kendo UI

Kendo UI is a JavaScript library developed by Progress Telerik. The library includes a wide set of user interface components, including grids, text boxes, charts, and more. Kendo UI delivers all the resources you need to build a modern and responsive application in less time.

Capterra Rating: 4.8/5
Price: Starts at $999/developer.

“Kendo UI makes it easy to quickly develop many applications using their blocks. Good support from multiple languages and platforms.” - Capterra Review

NativeScript

NativeScript is an open source framework for developing mobile applications with Angular, Vue.js, Typescript or JavaScript. Easily write and deploy native mobile applications from a single codebase. Additionally, use Angular, or Vue.js to share web-based code.

Capterra Rating: Not available.
Price: Free and open source.

“If you know Angular, you can very easily learn NativeScript to build iOS and Android applications. In one project, you can build web and native mobile applications.” - G2 Review

React Native

React Native is an open-source mobile application framework created by Facebook, Inc. It is used to develop applications for Android, Android TV, iOS, macOS, tvOS, Web, Windows and UWP by enabling developers to use React's framework along with native platform capabilities. 

Capterra Rating: Not available.
Price: Free and open source.

“React Native is a fast way to help developers start creating applications for mobile phones. iOS and Android are both supported and a web front engineer can help and learn to work with mobile development with ease.” - G2 Review

Flutter

Flutter is an open-source UI software development kit created by Google. It is used to develop applications for Android, iOS, Linux, Mac, Windows, Google Fuchsia, and the web from a single codebase. The first version of Flutter was known as codename "Sky" and ran on the Android operating system.

Capterra Rating: Not available.
Price: Free and open source.

“We recently did quick experimentation with the integration of flutter in our iOS and Android apps. it was smooth and we realized dev effort went to half. There was a little learning curve involved.” - G2 Review

Firebase

Firebase accelerates app development with a fully managed backend. Firebase enables teams to monitor app performance through testing, troubleshooting, and feature rollout. Additionally, the framework integrates with Google Analytics, enabling teams to monitor user acquisition and feature adoption. Get insight into your app’s performance quickly and efficiently.

Capterra Rating: Not available.
Price: Pay as you go pricing. 

“My favorite part about Firebase is the sheer range of available features. The toolkit appears to include a tool for everything. The way in which the tools integrate with each other seamlessly allows for a rapid workflow which is ridiculously easy to get started with.” - G2 Review

Vuforia Engine

Vuforia Engine empowers teams to create immersive augmented reality experiences. Today, more than 800,000 developers utilize Vuforia Engine to create high-performance and cross-platform immersive environments. From 3D product demonstrations and interactive brand campaigns to applications that allow customers to view products in their own homes, there are thousands of different use cases for Vuforia Engine.

Capterra Rating: Not available.
Price: Not available.

“Vuforia is one of the best engines for those using Unity, as it is now integrated and full of examples and plugins that make different types of integration possible even for newbies.” - G2 Review

ARCore

ARCore allows teams to build augmented reality experiences that integrate seamlessly with the physical world. ARCore is Google’s platform for building augmented experiences and uses various APIs across both iOS and Android devices. The product has three core features, including motion tracking, environmental understanding, and light estimation.

Capterra Rating: Not available.
Price: Free.

“One of the best in the current AR framework to use, with an extensive set of features to make a realistic AR app like anchoring to placing objects in a 3D world, scaling based on changing environments, and adapting to lighting conditions.” - G2 Review

ARKit

ARKit is Apple's software development kit that enables app developers to incorporate augmented reality into their apps. ARKit handles many of the tough tasks associated with AR, including detecting movement and the local environment, simplifying the process for developers to place virtual objects in an everyday scene.

Capterra Rating: Not available.
Price: Free to download. For store distribution, an annual Developer Program account (US$99) is needed.

“ARKit is a very robust system with continuous performance updates and very integrated with Unity3D which is the framework I use to develop our apps. Excellent system that allows you to track plans and calculate ambient lighting.” - G2 Review

High Fidelity

High Fidelity offers real-time spatial audio, either via API for web apps, or on-premise licensing for native apps (via the Local Spatializer). Our immersive audio delivers crisp, clean, and realistic sound to both app and game developers. Another great use case is Clubhouse, the social audio app that has 10+ million weekly active users: They recently integrated the Local Spatializer. From deep sound effects to character chat, spatial audio allows users to hear sounds from all directions – near and far.

 

Experience spatial audio for yourself. Put your headphones on and play the video above. Feel what it’s like to experience sound from different directions. 

Capterra Rating: Not available.
Price: for API, $0.0035/per min/per user (free, unlimited use for development); for the Local Spatializer, get in touch.

“This is amazing. Spatial audio for video calls. Insane how much easier it is to differentiate between speakers!” - Twitter Review

“Here’s a fantastic demo of one of my favorite technologies. They say it’s better with headphones, but I was actually more impressed by the way it sounded via desktop and speakers. In either case, it’s a zillion percent better than a standard Zoom call.” - Twitter Review

Create Full Audio Immersion With High Fidelity

Did you know that getting started with High Fidelity only takes a few simple lines of code? 

High Fidelity’s Spatial Audio API is easy to use and flexible for almost any digital application, including in-game voice chat and virtual reality experiences. It’s the only way to spatialize and mix hundreds of sources at low latency and bandwidth via the web. And if you're working on a native app, it's possible to spatialize audio in real-time on the client with the Local Spatializer.

Developers can get started building a simple web app from the guides page. Within a few minutes, you can create a web application where two or more people can talk to each other in a virtual 3D environment.

Published by Emily Iwankovitsch May 31, 2021

Which spatial audio solution should you use?

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Spatial Audio API

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Local Spatializer

Ideal for Native Applications

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