Mobile Apps

20 Best Mobile App Development Languages in 2024


Choosing the right programming language for developing mobile apps is crucial yet challenging. With new languages and frameworks launching each year, how do you decide which mobile app development languages work best for your app and target users?

The programming language determines what platforms you can build for, what features you can integrate, the speed and performance of your app, how easy it is to maintain over time, and even how quickly you can develop the app. Picking incorrectly can waste time and resources.

This blog analyzes the top options for 2024 based on adoption, demand, ease of use, capabilities, and other vital factors. Whether you’re building apps for Android, iOS, cross-platform, or multi-experience, reviewing this guide will help you determine the right language for your needs.

1. Android App Development Languages


Java has been the backbone of Android app development ever since Android was introduced in 2007. With over 15 years of community adoption, learning resources, stable tooling in Android Studio, and a robust framework, Java remains the most popular and safe choice for building Android apps even in 2024.

Java allows developers to write Android apps with confidence that their skills and code will continue working for years to come. Especially for apps that require compatibility across a wide range of Android devices and OS versions, Java is an excellent choice. Its maturity makes Java extremely well-suited for business apps and enterprise mobile development.

However, Java’s syntax can seem a bit verbose at times compared to modern languages. There are also recurring issues like null pointer exceptions and boilerplate code that developers have to work around.


As an alternative JVM language, Kotlin offers full interoperability with Java while addressing some drawbacks. The syntax is more concise, supporting both object-oriented and functional styles. Kotlin has first-class null safety, sensible defaults, and other features that help write safer code minimizing bugs.

With Google adopting Kotlin as an official Android language in 2017, it has seen meteoric growth. Kotlin fixes focus specifically on Android pain points like crashes. Kotlin Android Extensions eliminate findViewById boilerplate code too. As Kotlin works seamlessly with new and existing Java code, adding Kotlin incrementally is easy.

Kotlin is future-proof for Android with a strong roadmap and Language Committee stewardship. With extensive IDE support, Kotlin makes Android development more productive and enjoyable. It is an excellent choice for new apps to use the latest language capabilities on Android.


For certain advanced application types like 3D games, VR, and machine learning, C/C++ is a good option for Android. Native C/C++ code helps achieve high graphics performance for complex visual apps. Being closer to hardware access, it can significantly outperform Java/Kotlin implementations.

C/C++ is commonly used by game engines like Unity and Unreal which allow Android game development using C/C++ behind the scenes, while developers use C# and Blueprints. For any compute or ML intensive tasks, C/C++ Android Native Development Kit (NDK) integration proves very valuable. Mathematics-heavy algorithms and simulations also benefit from native languages.

The downside is that C/C++ app code requires more complex memory management. Tooling support for debugging and analytics is weaker compared to Java/Kotlin too. Regardless, all three languages form a powerful Android technology spectrum depending on app needs – Java for general use, Kotlin as a modern upgrade, and C/C++ for specialized high-performance use cases.

2. iOS App Development Languages


Introduced in 2014, Swift is a modern, secure, high-performance language explicitly designed for iOS, macOS, watchOS, and tvOS app development. It aims to improve developer productivity with an easy-to-learn syntax while unlocking faster app performance closer to the metal.

Swift has rapidly become the standard for building iOS apps with Apple’s strong backing and constant evolution via new Swift releases. Swift syntax is intuitive, with a shallow learning curve for new programmers. Interactive playgrounds make prototyping ideas quick. Modern language features like type safety, conciseness, and memory safety prevent all bugs.

Swift offers seamless access to Apple frameworks like UIKit, Core ML, RealityKit, and native system components. It performs efficiently without garbage collection delays. Native Swift apps achieve smoother animations and load faster compared to even Objective-C.

As Swift caters specifically to Apple platforms with tight integration, it is undoubtedly the best choice for iOS development now and for the foreseeable future.


Objective-C preceded Swift as the core language for iOS development ever since the first iPhone SDK launch. It is an object-oriented, general-purpose language that offers good portability across Apple platforms.

Even in the Swift era, Objective-C is still used for maintaining legacy codebases on older iOS versions. Some complex apps may contain Objective-C components for compatibility reasons too. Objective-C provides C/C++ level control which is occasionally useful for low-level hardware tuning. Being a dynamic language, it supports more flexible coding patterns as well.

But for new apps, Swift is typically a better choice, according to App Store data. Swift adoption exceeds 80% now. Except for niche use cases, Objective-C usage keeps declining as older apps eventually upgrade to Swift too.

3. Cross-Platform App Development Languages

React Native 

For writing app logic once and reusing it across iOS and Android apps, React Native has emerged as the most popular framework. It uses JavaScript to build mobile app UIs that feel fluid and native. React Native app development has native capabilities like smooth animations, gestures, navigation, and platform API access.

React Native uses React’s excellent abstraction of UI components and the flexible JavaScript language. With a vast community and ecosystem, developers can build apps quickly. There is no need to context switch between separate codebases in different languages either. Responsive hot reloading aids in faster iterations too.

While best suited for app UI layers, React Native can integrate with any platform-specific language for custom modules and optimizations. For teams already using JavaScript and web development, React Native is easy to get started with.


Flutter is a modern portable SDK using the Dart language for building visually rich, high-performance mobile apps with custom UIs, 2D game graphics, device-specific interactions, and more. Apps made with Flutter compile to native ARM code rather than JavaScript bridges, allowing exceptionally smooth performance and fluid visuals.

Dart is an easy-to-learn language with familiar OOP concepts. The Flutter framework enables extensive customization beyond platform defaults by rendering widgets and Skia graphics. With Google-backed momentum, Flutter caters exceptionally well to branded experiences across mobile, desktop, and embedded devices.


For .NET teams with C# skills, Xamarin is a solid cross-platform development option. Xamarin.Forms provide UI abstraction across Android and iOS using XAML for defining layouts. C# business logic can integrate platform APIs in a shared .NET codebase.

With Microsoft’s acquisition and integration with Visual Studio, Xamarin works beautifully for building mobile apps using existing in-house talent. There is access to native performance and capabilities as Xamarin compiles down to native binaries behind the scenes. Xamarin also enables code sharing across Windows apps.

4. Backend App Development Languages


Node.js has completely transformed server-side development using JavaScript. It offers excellent scalability and performance, leveraging Chrome’s lightning-fast V8 engine and an event-driven, non-blocking I/O model. Node.js makes building real-time web apps very efficient and has become the standard for modern web APIs.

With JavaScript shared from front-end to the back-end, entire web stacks can be built and maintained in one language. Vast module support enables rapid prototyping and agile development for early stage startups. Easy containerization has also made Node.js ubiquitous in cloud and serverless deployments.

For mobile app development, Node.js enables server-side capabilities, including data storage, analytics, messaging, social integration, predictions, user management, and more. Top frameworks like Express, Nest, and Sails result in clean architectures supporting mobile needs at scale.


As an interpreted, versatile, and easy-to-learn language, Python is the top choice for data science and machine learning today. Python’s extensive libraries like NumPy, SciPy, Pandas, scikit-learn, TensorFlow, and PyTorch accelerate the development of intelligent backends.

Full-fledged web frameworks like Django and Flask make Python suitable for developing search engines, social networks, web analytics, and content management systems. Python also works beautifully for ingesting big data, processing via tools like Spark, and orchestrating ML modeling pipelines.

With Python’s flexibility, it integrates well with languages like R and JavaScript. Python backend services help unlock innovative AI capabilities for mobile apps via prediction and personalization APIs.


Java is a robust, mature enterprise ecosystem that offers rock-solid frameworks for building large-scale web APIs and mobile backends. Popular stacks like Spring Boot, Quarkus, Micronaut, and Jakarta EE handle app complexities allowing developers to focus on business logic.

With decades of optimization, Java achieves excellent performance and scalability, leveraging compiled bytecode and JIT compilation. Java also prioritizes security with constant vigilance from enterprises relying on it for mission-critical systems. This makes Java suitable for developing fintech, healthcare, and IoT mobile backends.

Java allows the usage of existing business data objects and logic across Android mobile clients. It also streamlines integration with legacy systems written in Java. Automated monitoring, alerting, and analytics capabilities provided by Java ops tools result in robust, enterprise-ready services.


Originally designed for server-side website development, PHP remains a practical language choice for content-focused web APIs and mobile backends. Developers can leverage various CMS integrations with solutions like WordPress and Drupal to build community platforms.

PHP has lightweight frameworks like Laravel and Symfony for quickly standing up web apps. Broad hosting support and an abundance of PHP developers make prototypes very affordable. PHP also handles common web app capabilities like sessions and authentication very efficiently out of the box.

For apps not needing complex data processing but wanting rapid iterations, reusable components and scalable databases, PHP strikes a good balance. It is especially common among agencies building mobile-friendly websites and tools across various domains.

5. Other Key Languages


As a statically typed language with clear syntax, C# offers excellent code readability, which minimizes bugs. Robust tooling in Visual Studio accelerates developer productivity. For mobile backends, C# works well for accessing data across SQL Server, PostgreSQL, and more.

The .NET ecosystem enables building web APIs with ASP.NET Core, microservices architecture through .NET Microservices and deploying to containers and Kubernetes through .NET. For teams already using C# with Xamarin cross-platform app development, shared .NET code proves very useful.

C# also shines in high-performance scenarios like real-time gaming backends. It is a top choice for developing on Xbox, PlayStation and Windows platforms. Cross-platform game servers can be written in .NET Core to support multiplayer mobile games.


Ruby on Rails pioneered conventions over configuration and rapid prototyping principles. Ruby’s developer happiness and simplicity allow spinning up web apps and APIs very quickly. With Rails handling mundane plumbing code, developers focus on app capabilities and business needs.

Dynamic Ruby fits nicely with agile workflows, perfect for experimentation. hundreds of thousands of libraries aid common web dev tasks. For startups aiming for quick iterations, Ruby on Rails is a pragmatic choice to substantiate ideas with actual products early.

While performance and scalability are not Ruby’s strengths, apps needing those qualities can integrate services written in other languages. Ruby on Rails makes a great frontend layer to stitch microservices and data pipelines together.


Go is a statically typed language developed by Google focused on networking, operations, and large-scale concurrency needs. goroutines and channels provide elegant asynchronous event processing. It achieves excellent throughput performance with minimal resource usage making it ideal for microservices, web, and mobile backends.

Go deploys quickly to cloud platforms and Docker containers, especially for Kubernetes orchestration. Go tooling emphasizes automation, monitoring, and analytics with built-in debugging and profiling. These capabilities help build resilient backends and platforms rapidly.

Lightning-fast JSON handling also makes Go suitable for modern APIs supporting mobile apps at scale. Go works nicely for building accompaniments to JavaScript, Python, or Java ecosystems.

Final Tips

Here are additional tips when deciding on mobile app development languages:

  • Prioritize native languages for each target platform, like Swift for iOS, for best usability.
  • Evaluate language popularity and support longevity for maintenance.
  • Consider the framework and tooling ecosystem around the language too.
  • Use languages aligning with available or hiring talent skills in your team.
  • Assess language capabilities to meet current and potential future app features.
  • Estimate language learning curves for your developers.
  • Perform small spikes in new languages to validate technology risk.

We hope this guide to top mobile app development languages in 2024 helps pick the right technology mix for your app vision! Share your thoughts or questions in the comments section below.

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