A comparison between Appcelerator Titanium and PhoneGap

PhoneGap was developed by Nitobi Software and it quickly became very popular because of its usefulness. It helps in building apps in HTML and JavaScript and makes the best use of iPhone/iPod touch features too along with features of many other mobile platforms including Android, Palm, Symbian and even the Blackberry OS. This is what a mobile developer would need to create apps easily, isn’t it?

PhoneGap projects require the installed SDKs for building the applications and the coding is done through Xcode. PhoneGap then renders files during the building process inside a native WebView Objective-C or Java. Access is provided to native features including the contacts list and the Accelerometer and even the camera functions and list notifications through its API.

The actual interface uses HTML and CSS which gives an altogether different look to the interface elements including buttons and the performance will differ from that of the native elements.

PhoneGap app is basically a web app which is encapsulated by WebView. It is rendered by HTML, CSS and JavaScript in mobiles and . It currently supports development for the iPhone, Google Android, Symbian OS, BlackBerry and Palm operating systems.

Appcelerator Titanium
Appcelerator Titanium is alike PhoneGap, to develop apps for the mobile operating systems with the help of HTML, CSS and JavaScript. It resembles J2ME Polish which is actually a library for Java Development for creating native UI elements. Titanium is good at providing a binding layer that maps JavaScript function calls to APIs which are available natively. Here are some of the main differences between Appcelerator Titanium and PhoneGap:

Compared to PhoneGap, Titanium can convert the code into native application code. The app code is being interpreted and written in JS. It runs during runtime through bridge layer too. 

Titanium now supports only Javascript and no support has been extended to HTML and CSS. Titanium followed the strategy set by PhoneGap before version 1.0 and hence the app code consisted of the regular elements including HTML, CSS and JavaScript. But after version 1.5 and beyond, the native device services are now connected to a unique and specific JavaScript API. After version 1.0, one cannot find HTML and CSS in the codeset. The code is now purely in JavaScript which functions to run Titanium. It can even access the special platform features including the camera options but the developer is given the choice to render native UI elements like buttons and maps along with tables.

The native application has one primary advantage which is performance and efficiency. The UI is expected to do much better only if native OS elements are used compared to the performance delivered by the combined trinity of HTML, CSS and JavaScript in a browser instance. Additionally, the native look-and-feel can easily be maintained.

In Titanium, building and packaging does not happen within the IDE unlike PhoneGap but through Titanium Developer, the software. The tool can set up the new projects and even test them or package them. Any IDE of the developer’s choice can be used for writing the codes.

The leading Titanium Development company providing Appcelerator Development by certified and experienced Applicator Titanium Programmer who creates great apps for open source mobile frameworks.


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