Nearly half of small businesses now use apps to connect with customers or help their employees work smarter and faster. Is yours one of them?

A well-designed app can improve your sales and marketing strategies while enhancing the customer experience. Launch a “bad” app, though, and you’re looking at terrible, horrible, no good, very bad results, indeed, including:

  • Bugs that lead to customer frustration and bad reviews.
  • Reduced confidence in your expertise.
  • A damaged reputation.

If you want to build an app that people will actually use and really appreciate, start by choosing a language that’s not only flexible, scalable, and cost-efficient, but also secure and user-friendly.

Does such a beast exist? Yes, and its name is Python.

Why Use Python Frameworks?

Python may be one of the most popular programming languages, but its incompatibility with smartphones tended to hinder its use in building web and mobile apps. Fortunately, numerous frameworks have been developed to help engineers overcome this limitation.

Python might be one of the most popular programming languages, but its incompatibility with smartphones has hindered its use in building innovative apps. Fortunately, numerous frameworks have been developed to help engineers overcome this limitation.

Python app frameworks are a collection of modules and packages that allow developers to write applications faster and more efficiently. Dozens of frameworks exist, but some are more popular and in higher demand. In this post, we’re looking at what we consider to be the five best Python frameworks for app development.

There are three types of Python frameworks:

1. Full-stack. Also known as enterprise frameworks, these one-stop solutions include everything from form generators to template layouts and form validation.

2. Micro-frameworks. More lightweight than full-stack frameworks, microframeworks don’t offer features and functionalities like form validation, database abstraction layers,  or specific tools and libraries. But they do offer enough to build applications.

3. Asynchronous. Relative newcomers, asynchronous frameworks allow developers to handle large sets of concurrent connections.

Python’s easy learning curve and extensive library collection make it a go-to choice for app development. Before choosing your project’s framework, you need to consider, among other things:

  • The size of the project.
  • The framework’s scalability.
  • Learning resources.
  • The core library.
  • Documentation and requirements.

Generally, a full-stack framework is best if you’re developing a large, feature-packed system with advanced features. A microframework, on the other hand, might be best if you have a low-requirement app.

What does this mean for your business?

Choosing a popular and straightforward language like Python for your app means you can keep your development team small and your costs down. It also can mean getting to launch more quickly, letting you strike while the iron is hot. You get an efficient yet innovative app that can be used for a range of business purposes while becoming a critical component of your overall digital transformation.

Top 5 Python Frameworks for App Development

As with any language, each Python framework has distinct advantages and best use cases, and which you choose depends on your needs. Because of that, we don’t assign any one framework a “best” designation, though some are measurably better than others.

That said, here’s our list of what we believe to be five of the top Python frameworks based on popularity and ability to provide rapid app development:

1. Django

A full-stack framework with a large number of built-in libraries, Django is widely considered the most popular with engineers, mostly due to its pragmatic, clean design and rapid development capabilities. Deemed an excellent tool for creating an application’s back-end, features developers love include:

  • It follows the MVC (model, view controller) pattern which makes code more modular, readable, and reusable.
  • It allows them to quickly build robust applications.
  • Once an app’s created, it can be used with any other app development framework to create cross-platform applications.
  • Its excellent template system and other powerful, customizable features.

Ultimately, Django’s beauty lies in its simplicity, flexibility, and scalability which allow developers to deal with literally thousands of requests per second while the framework takes care of database connections, serializing data into cache, and manipulating app configurations.

Some developers consider Django’s monolithic size a drawback and believe its code-heavy functionalities make it a poor choice for smaller projects.

2. Web2Py

What makes Web2Py so well-liked is its platform independence, meaning it can run on all popular operating systems. Open-source and full-stack, the framework simplifies the app development process through its dedicated web-based IDE that includes a code editor, debugger, and one-click deployment. Other features include:

  • No installation and configuration prerequisites.
  • Ability to read multiple protocols.
  • Robust data security.
  • Error tracking mechanism.
  • Role-based access control.
  • Backward compatibility.

One downside to Web2Py is that it can’t use Python 3.

Top Python framework logos

3. CherryPy

Released over 20 years ago, CherryPy is an elder in the world of microframeworks. The open-source, object-oriented framework takes a minimalistic approach to developing apps, and products created with it are stand-alone apps with multithreaded servers embedded in them.

What do developers love about CherryPy?

  • They can use any technology to access data or create templates.
  • It can run multiple servers simultaneously.
  • Caching, encoding, and authentication are all built-in.
  • It runs on Android.
  • It provides a good configuration system.
  • Its built-in support for profiling, coverage, and testing.

Cons of CherryPy include a serious lack of documentation, which can slow down a project when developers need to stop and figure out a required feature.

4. Bottle

Bottle is a fast, simple, and lightweight microframework that’s ideal for prototyping and creating quick online services and apps. Distributed as a single file module, it has no dependencies outside the Python Standard Library.

Along with letting developers work closer to the hardware, Bottle’s key highlights include:

  • A built-in HTTP server.
  • Adapter support for third-party template engines.
  • Plugin support for various databases.
  • Easy metadata access.

Bottle’s biggest drawback is how difficult it can be to find online support. It’s also fairly challenging for developers to build projects broader than 1000 lines.

5. Flask

Great for any type or size of web application, Flask is a microframework that doesn’t need tools or libraries. Created by Pocoo member and open-source developer Armin Ronacher, the framework started out as an April Fool joke but became popular enough to make it a serious player.

While Flask doesn’t have advanced features like form validation and database abstraction layers, it does come with plenty of extensions. Developers typically choose Flask when they want a simple framework that’s fast enough to serve an uncomplicated project.

Pros include:

  • Less Python coding is required to get headers and other features working.
  • The speed at which it’s up and running.
  • Easy to learn and use.

Cons are typically slow MVPs (minimum viable product) and higher maintenance costs for complex systems.

Why Should I Hire a Python Developer?

While hiring in-house Python developers has advantages like on-site availability, internal business awareness, and in-depth knowledge of business systems, many companies find it more cost-effective and efficient to outsource their projects to a Python development company.

Benefits of doing so include:

  • Access to top-level talent.
  • Freeing you and your IT team to focus on more critical business functions.
  • Time and money saved by not having to find, interview, and onboard permanent employees.
  • Faster project delivery.

In most cases, outsourcing your Python development project gives you access to broader skills, top-notch professional experience, and expertise in the Python framework.

How Much Does It Cost to Hire a Python Developer?

Cost deciding factors of Python development vary according to features, duration, development, and maintenance. That means you can expect to pay more if your app requires integration of more complex features or has an intricate design. Rates for Python developers in the US average between $60 and $80 per hour, but rates do fluctuate depending on hiring models and project requirements.

Keep in mind that the most cost-effective projects are those that are simpler, while those that require more time to build will increase the bottom line. You’ll also need to factor in skills and expertise like:

1.     Problem-solving

2.     Data visualization

3.     Data analysis

4.     Automation scripting

5.     Implementing algorithms and organizing code.

Cost deciding factors of Python development vary according to features, duration, development, and maintenance. That means you can expect to pay more if your app requires integration of more complex features or has an intricate design. If you choose to hire a Python developer in-house, you can expect the total cost to be about $120,000 to $140,00 annually for someone with a minimum of two years experience.

For best results, the Python developer you select should have basic front-end and unit test and debugging capabilities as well as problem-solving, data visualization, and data analysis skills.

When choosing to hire a Python development company, think about criteria like rates, time zone differences, and communication skills. Zibtek has developed numerous mobile apps using Python frameworks, including Django, Web2Py, CherryPy, Bottle, and Flask, and our talented team is ready to do the same for you.
Ready to learn more? Get in touch to schedule a meeting.