Mobile app development is the hot buzz sweeping over the IT industry right now. Businesses can’t afford not to venture into this ever-expanding field of software development.
The unmatchable advantages of the mobile app have revolutionized every big and small company. And the increasing popularity of mobile applications has led to the question of Python's feasibility as a top choice for mobile app development.
In this article, we will explore why Python has become a popular choice and is emerging as a top programming language for mobile app development.
Without any further ado, let’s get started.
An Introduction to Python
Python is an extremely popular programming language that has been growing steadily and continuously over time. According to a TIOBE Programming Community index, Python is getting closer to becoming the second most popular programming language after C.
See the graph below to get an idea of the growing fame of Python across the world.
The programming language is a general-purpose, interpreted, and high-level language whose design philosophy emphasizes code readability with notable use of significant whitespace. It has a broad variety of libraries that are very well established.
As such, Python is widely used in a variety of fields, such as web development, mobile app development, machine learning, and much more.
Benefits of Using Python for Mobile App Development
Some of the top reasons why Python is a top programming language for mobile app development around the world include:
1. Extensive libraries
As already mentioned, Python comes with an extensive set of libraries and has in-built code for various purposes, such as regular expressions, documentation-generation, unit-testing, web browsers, threading, databases, CGI, email, image manipulation, and more.
That means developers need not to write the complete code manually to build mobile applications faster.
2. Perfect for building prototypes
Every thought is usually less than novel. Do you know why? Because totally new and unique ideas are a myth.
Those out-of-the-world thoughts that people think have hit their mind alone may also have already come into someone else’s mind. In today’s interconnected world, continuously evolving and adapting ideas is the key. This is where Python plays a crucial role.
Python is faster and needs lesser lines of code. That makes it an excellent language for building prototypes and executing your ideas with others. It will provide you with higher chances of hitting the market early.
3. Integration with other languages
Python’s integration libraries such as Cython and Jython have made it easier to integrate with C/C++ and Java for cross-platform development. This feature has made Python even more powerful since it is complete on its own.
With the help of Python’s libraries, developers can enjoy powerful mobile application development.
4. It’s free
Python is an open-source language and does not need any particular subscription or a specific platform. Therefore, it is compatible with any desktop and laptop of all specifications.
Moreover, tools such as modules and libraries are also free to use. It's IDE (Integrated Development Environment) is PTVS (Pydev with Eclipse Spyder) and can be easily downloaded for free.
Reduced costs are always beneficial for cost-effective mobile app development.
5. Memory management
Python has a vast library that includes memory management capabilities. This feature of Python makes it stand out from other programming languages in the market.
In addition to that, it also comes with a private heap containing all Python objects and data structures and a built-in memory manager to maintain this private heap.
6. A large and supportive community
The large and active community of developers using Python is one of the most inclusive in the industry. A newbie will never feel alone and lost when he comes to Python development.
Answers to most of the solutions to bugs and issues you may encounter when using Python can be found in the developer forums. There are also thousands of expert blogs on the internet guiding people to become super-proficient in the language.
Popular Mobile Apps Built Using Python
Let’s find out some of the top mobile apps that are built with the help of the Python programming language.
We all know Instagram has revolutionized the digital world as a very popular visual social network. But what you may not know is that Instagram is built using Python.
According to Instagram engineer Hui Ding, Instagram’s engineering motto is “Do the simple things first.” This is exactly what Python allows them to do with its user-friendly and simple syntax.
Uber, the international car hail and ride-sharing service is among the pioneers of the shared economy. By the fourth quarter of 2019, the service reported it had managed 1,907 million rides worldwide, generating a revenue of $4.1 billion, growing 37% year-over-year or 39% on a constant currency basis.
On the company’s engineering blog, Uber said:
“At the lower levels, Uber’s engineers primarily write in Python, Node.js, Go, and Java. We started with two main languages: Node.js for the Marketplace team, and Python for everyone else.”
Who doesn’t love Netflix and chill? Netflix is one of the most loved streaming platforms for binge-watching TV series or movies.
Netflix is built over Python. What’s more, so too is the streaming platform’s recommendation and analytics engine.
Needless to say, Netflix is highly efficient in predicting the films to watch and the nature of the content you are consuming.
Spotify, another extremely popular app for streaming music and other audio content, is build on Python. Thanks to this app, long gone are the days of tracking down mp3s on torrents and ad-filled websites.
Spotify has said the reasons for choosing Python as their preferred language is they wanted faster development speed and advanced data analytics, which Python offers.
Pinterest, another one of the web’s most-used apps has used Python since day one, allowing users to bookmark images, collect and share them with other users.
The social network relies on Python and Django to rapidly deal with very large amounts of content generated by its 442 million monthly active users worldwide.
Other apps that are built using Python include Dropbox, Reddit, Quora, Bit Torrent, Disqus, and many more, attesting to the power of its frameworks and features for building mobile apps.