Angular Native

NOTE: In this article wherever I say “Angular”, I am referring to “Angular 2”. When I am talking about Angular 1.x, I explicitly say “Angular 1”

I am just starting to dive deep into NativeScript with Angular and I realized the one thing that really bothers me about it. No, it is not the single thread limitation (that will be resolved very shortly). It’s the name. I know this may sound silly, but despite recent growth, I just think it would greatly benefit the adoption of both NativeScript and Angular if the integration between the two was renamed “Angular Native”.

Here are my reasons for suggesting this change:

  1. Short and sweet — “NativeScript with Angular 2” is a mouthful and not necessarily intuitive. I know this is non-scientific, but “Angular Native” just sounds and feels better to me. After some quick polling of the community, many others seem to feel the same way.
  2. Juxtaposes React Native — Let’s be honest here. NativeScript is not competing that much for mindshare with Ionic or other Cordova-based technology. Ionic has a completely different approach, feature set and goals (perhaps the subject of a separate blog post). NativeScript is, however, going directly head-to-head with React Native. As such, why not just simplify things for developers. React Native is to React as Angular Native is to Angular. See? Simple.
  3. Helps NativeScript adoption — Did you notice how much bigger the TypeScript community got when it became the de facto language of choice for Angular moving forward? The name “Angular Native” implies a similar de facto choice and would likely lead to the same uptick in NativeScript adoption.
  4. Helps Angular adoption — There a number of local organizations I know of in Boston that initially chose to adopt React because of React Native. They wanted to build a native mobile app with JavaScript and React Native seemed like the only viable choice. Once they started using React Native, then it made sense to start using React in other places as well. I have no problem whatsoever with anyone using React. I really like React. The thing I don’t like is when developers or organizations make decisions based on hype. The reality is that NativeScript is just as good as React Native. The difference between them (just like the different between Angular and React) is more a matter of philosophy and approach than capabilities. By using the term “Angular Native” what we are implying is that you can do the same type of thing with Angular as you can with React. This focuses the decision of React vs Angular more on what fits in best with their team rather than whether or not one capability exists. When that happens, it is my belief that Angular adoption increases (another topic for its own blog post in the future).

In one sense, it’s just a silly name. Who cares? It is my experience, however, that names really do matter when it comes to perception and the ease at which ideas can be spread. The impetus for this article really came from my desire to have an easier way to convey what I am talking about to other developers. I have already started reaching out to people on the NativeScript and Angular sides to see if we can gain consensus about this so we can do an official re-brand. However, even if that doesn’t work for whatever reason, I am going to just start unofficially calling it “Angular Native” and I encourage you to do the same.