How to convert your Native Android & iOS app to React Native?

React Native, an open-source platform built and maintained by Facebook, has started getting traction since its release in February 2015. Today, React Native developers use this platform for developing cross-platform apps by writing native code in Java or Objective-C. Higher scalability and less complexity of this framework attract many developers to building React Native apps. What’s more, a thriving React Native community keeps on improving this platform.

Let’s give the topic a little twist. How about adding native app development in our discussion? Though React Native has gained a lot of popularity worldwide, many mobile app development companies still consider that native apps can be the right way to start. Considering both these aspects, employers can opt for either native or cross-platform apps by following a systematic approach for mobile application development. Here are the steps they can follow-

  1. Define business goals and target audience
  2. Make a list of necessary features and functionality
  3. Do extensive research on market trends and your competitors’ apps
  4. Create use cases and wireframes
  5. Select an app development path


Building a customized mobile app needs a lot of money, effort, and time. But then, a feature-rich, customized mobile app can help your business in many ways while giving a high ROI over the period. You can increase revenue by improving sales and engagement. A tailored app enables you to connect with your customers on a 24/7 basis and you can reach a huge audience with ease. Also, an app can increase brand awareness significantly.

Now, another question arises- can we convert an existing Android or iOS app into a cross-platform app? Well, a reliable cross-platform app development company that also offers Android app development and iOS app development can do so. Let’s understand it by taking an example of converting a native app into a React Native app.

How to Convert Existing Native App to React Native App?

React Native is written in JavaScript, Java, Objective-C, Objective-C++, Python, and C++. It acts as an umbrella option either for cross-platform app development or to convert native apps in Android or iOS platforms to React Native.

Building React Native apps need to write the code in the framework, but if you want to come up with two versions of the app for Android and iOS, then you can either opt for writing the code in React Native or consider adding a single view to existing native apps. React Native platform enables developers to add new features, screens, views, etc. by following a few steps.

Key Factors to Consider for Integrating React Native Components into iOS App

  1. Configure directory structure and React Native dependencies
  2. Select the right components that you will use in your existing iOS app
  3. Add these components as dependencies in your app using CocoaPods
  4. Build other React Native components in JS (JavaScript)
  5. Add RCTRootView to an existing iOS app
  6. Start the React Native server
  7. Execute the React Native app
  8. Test the functionality of the app


You need to consider other aspects like app workflow, design, interaction, performance, JavaScript runtime, Native Components, and connectivity as prerequisites while converting your existing native app into the React Native app. If CocoaPods is not installed in your system, you need to install it before initiating the process.

You can set Command Line Tools for Xcode and configure CocoaPods dependencies before integrating the code. Let’s go through a step-by-step process for converting an iOS app to React Native.

Step 1. If you want to convert an existing Android app into iOS using React Native, you need to add a splash screen with an app icon.

Step 2. Start with cloning and install all necessary libraries. Then you may be able to command it as React Native-based Android to deploy to an emulator or an attached Android phone. (It is better to hire React Native developers from these steps onward)

Step 3. You can proceed with configuring authentication for React Native-based iOS app

Step 4. Run your app on iOS Simulator

Step 5. Adjust styling in your app

Step 6. Set the Icon, Display Name before running on a device

Step 7. Create a Splash Screen

Step 8. Submit your app to Apple App Store

Similarly, if you want to build an Android app with React Native, you need to configure maven first. After that, you can enable auto-linking of native modules and configure permissions. Before integrating the code, it is necessary to clear text traffic. Finally, you can test integration and create an app in Android Studio.

You can also opt for building React Native apps as usual. You can convert an Android React Native app to iOS or vice versa before publishing it to the Google Play Store or Apple App Store. Again, it is advisable to consult a renowned mobile app development company before moving ahead with your app idea or app conversion.

Concluding Lines

Building React Native apps from scratch and converting the existing native apps into React Native apps are two viable options to make the most from this highly popular and scalable framework. React Native is capable of offering better results in the future as well. What’s more, as Facebook has updated its MIT license, we can get a better version of this framework.

We have just given an outline to convert your existing native app into a React Native app in this article without discussing the technical aspects. It is always advisable to consult a well-established cross-platform app development company to convert your existing Android or iOS app into a React Native app with the same user experience.

Suria International is a Singapore-based leading mobile app development company. We provide the best-in-class, customized app solutions for Android and iOS to our esteemed corporate clientele globally. Just drop us a line at to know more about our native and cross-platform app development services. We are happy to assist you!