Unlike native mobile applications, Progressive Web Apps are websites which can be available on most mobile devices (with the exception of iOS at the time of writing), and adopt a set of app-like features or characteristics that contribute to a better experience for mobile device users. Some of these features are day-to-day best practise for any website, for example those related to speed and security, whereas other features are quite specific to Progressive Web Apps, for example service worker registration.
The full list of Progressive Web App features:
- Progressive – Works for every user, regardless of browser choice because it’s built with progressive enhancement as a core tenet.
- Responsive – Fits any form factor: desktop, mobile, tablet, or whatever is next.
- Connectivity independent – Enhanced with service workers to work offline or on low-quality networks.
- App-like – Feels like an app, because the app shell model separates the application functionality from application content.
- Fresh – Always up-to-date thanks to the service worker update process.
- Safe – Served via HTTPS to prevent snooping and to ensure content hasn’t been tampered with.
- Discoverable – Is identifiable as an “application” thanks to W3C manifest and service worker registration scope, allowing search engines to find it.
- Re-engageable – Makes re-engagement easy through features like push notifications.
- Installable – Allows users to add apps they find most useful to their home screen without the hassle of an app store.
- Linkable – Easily share the application via URL, does not require complex installation.