React Native is the future of hybrid app development. There are approximately 571,303 apps are built using this technology across the globe.

The fantastic news is here that the long-awaited version of React Native 0.56 is available now. Today I will highlight a few significant changes this new version have and how you can upgrade to this version.

React Native is an open-source mobile application framework for native app development using Javascript. It emerged in 2013 by Facebook as a comprehensive solution for the mobile app development to render better user experience as well as the ease of development. The prominent feature is that react native allows a hybrid app to execute natively due to its reusable components.

This framework offers various benefits such as faster development, and you can use it for building cross-platform apps, large community support, etc. It is a quicker way of building apps along with unbeatable performance, and that is the reason why react native app development is trending.

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If you want a scalable and custom app for both iOS as well as Android, React native is a perfect choice. Though it is still in improving phase and you can say that 0.56 is the first step towards it.

The latest version can be considered as a fundamental building block towards a more stable framework. According to the development team, the breaking changes will not be that easy as it is expected.

There are a few issues that still need to be resolved in this version, but if you got stuck at any time, you would get support from the team. Although, developers will take some time to adopt this latest version.

Let’s study the significant modifications.

Upgrading the Android Support

In Android, the notable changes have been made to the surrounding tools. There are some updates such as Gradle 3.5, Android SDK 26, fresco to 1.9.0, OKHttp to 3.10.0 and NDK API target to API 16. These changes will go without any issue and result in faster builds.

The team believes that it will help the developer comply with the newly released Play Store requirements.

Introducing Babel 7

With the release of React Native 0.56, the latest version of Babel, i.e., Babel 7 is also presented. It is a transpiler tool that enables developers to use the advanced and exceptional features of the Javascript.

Earlier Babel proved to be an asset in the development process that is why developers updated it. For example, the JavaScript bundler Metro will be authorized to power its developments. If you face any difficulties during the update procedure, you can check out the documentation section.

Latest Node, Xcode, React and Flow

React Native declared Node 8 as their standard version. It has already been tested and because Node 6 entered the maintenance phase. Also, React was also updated to 16.4 which comes with tons of enhancements and fixes.

It is also stated by the team that they will no longer support the iOS 8 in the latest version 0.56. The team is more focused on targeting iOS 9 as the earliest version to offer support. There will be no issue even if you have iOS 8 as it can be easily upgraded to iOS 9.

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Also, the team upgraded the constantly integrated toolchain to XCode 9.4 for rendering the best support to conduct iOS testing. It lets the developer run their apps on the latest developer tools provided by Apple.

Apart from this, the team has updated to Flow 0.75 for building several components and for the new error format. By the replacement of YellowBox with further implementation, the debugging is also made way simpler than ever. Just stay up-to-date with the latest updates.

In order to see other changes, you need to refer the changelog for full information on release notes.

Now Let’s Learn How to Upgrade to This Latest Version

Just a few steps needed to upgrade and they are surprisingly easy. This version is considered as the massive change as it targets Android version 26 according to the latest google play store requirement along with Node 8, iOS 9, etc.

Let’s start the upgrading process

1. Delete the Android and iOS directories.

2. Then, edit the package .json file and update the highlighted lines ‘react-native’ and ‘babel-preset-react-native’.edit the package .json file

3. Now run the npm install or yarn to update the package.
    NOTE: In case of Android you have to make some changes in Android Studio yo target Android 26.

4.(a) Start Android Studio > Select Preferences > Select SDK Tools Tab > Check Android SDK Tools version 26.x.x > Click Apply.

Android Studio GUI
4.(b) Now Select ‘SDK Platform’ tab > Open Android 8.0 (Oreo) > Check the highlighted option and Click Apply.

SDK Platform GUI

5. Finally, the last step is to Run react-native upgrade to recreate the Android and iOS directories with updated SDKs.

And it’s ready to compile again.

The react native core team also stated that they would conduct monthly meetings to let everyone know about the latest changes and to keep everyone up-to-date on what’s going on presently and what’s coming next.

Keep this also in mind that this update is still in the 0.x version and there are still changes undergoing, so you might face a few issues like crashes during the upgrade, etc. and do not forget to follow the enforced Code of Conduct.


React Native App Development Company

The release of the latest version is attracting most of the react native app development company. With the goal of simplifying the development process, the react native team launched the latest version 0.56. It came with a number of enhancements that will overcome a few hurdles that developers faced earlier.

Though this version is not perfect yet, the team ensures that developers will not find any issue in implementing the changes. So upgrade your project to 0.56 to relish the new advances. If you are looking for the perfect native app to kick-start your business, we have the top-notch react native app developers who stay updated and can give your business the wings to fly high.

About the Author

Milan Koradiya

Krunal Shah

As the Android Team Lead, Milan Koradiya possesses immense expertise in Android app development. He is a creative thinker and holds a great vision when it comes to planning a project. His management and technical skills have been a significant contribution to the company. He has an all-embracing hands-on experience in trending technology as well, such as Flutter, Kotlin, Xamarin, React Native, and Ionic.