Emerging Tech

ReactJS for IoT Apps in 2023 and Beyond

November 16, 2022
React’s compositional structure, lifestyle methods, and separation of concerns make it effective for developing UI’s and smaller IoT projects. But it’s not preferable for complex IIoT systems!

JavaScript frameworks like React, Angular, Vue, Svelte and JS templating engines like Template 7, Squirrelly, JSRender, Jade Language, Marko, Hogan, Webix, Pug, Underscore, Nunjucks, EJS, doT, Handlebars, and Mustache offer simple templates to give developers a starting point and let them go over that first bump of getting something, anything in the browser. Once that is marked, you may focus on business problems, building useful tools, code compilation, the server on the right port, and binding event handlers to the clicks in the DOM.

What is React?

ReactJS is an open-source JavaScript Framework/library that is mostly used to develop application frontend. It allows the inclusion of interactive elements and stores all the necessary data to create stable interfaces for the web or mobile applications. React Developer Tools are component-based and can enable connecting a variety of devices over the internet. All these devices get unique identifiers (UIDs) that ease data transferring.

The presence of packages like React Native, React Art, React Canvas, and React Three crystalizes the fact that the essence of React has got nothing to do with the browsers or the Document Object Model (DOM). Upcoming ReactVR makes it suitable to be used without the DOM. React component runs through react-test-renderer in Node.js which makes it easier to watch state changes, re-render if required and trigger life cycle methods.

Why is it Used for Electronic App Development?

The Internet of Things (IoT) makes use of unique identifiers through which it exchanges data packets over a network of interconnected devices. where does React fit in? It is an open-source Javascript-based library that is used to build user interfaces for single-page applications. It sits on the presentation (view layer) of the OSI model for web and mobile applications. React makes reusable UI components, which makes it easier to change states in large applications easier without reloading the entire page. For example: Changing the value in a drop-down, or submitting the value in a text box, a multi-line text box within the form will not refresh the entire page, but will be handled by AJAX applied within the content placeholder.

React is stuffed with libraries, components, One-way Data Binding, Virtual DOM, and JSX-JavaScript Syntax Extension which makes it flexible and expands its horizon to create cross-platform web and mobile applications.

React developers can easily switch from JS to native for mobile app development. Electronic sensors in real-world IoT applications update the React Component’s state as soon as they receive a new array of data readings. The LED component in the render function, uses the newly updated state and works out for on or off power states.

Developers try two different approaches to standardize IoT Projects with React. In the first approach, they apply the principle of separation of concerns from web development of IoT projects by using XML. In another approach, they use React’s most powerful features to organize hardware project components, state, lifecycle methods, and props.

How Do ReactJS Development Companies Accelerate IoT?

There is very little to learn before configuring many build tools. Instant reloads help you focus on development. When it’s time to deploy, your bundles are optimized automatically.

Secondly, there is just one dependency. Your app only needs one build dependency. Testing the React App to ensure that all of its underlying pieces work together seamlessly – no complicated version mismatches.

There is no lock-in. Under the hood, we use webpack, Babel, ESLint, and other amazing projects to power the app. If you ever want an advanced configuration, you can eject it from “Create React App” and edit their config files directly.

Create React App is React’s quick start template that takes care of the hard stuff so we can get to the fun stuff faster.

The Internet of Things (IoT) has become our present. It is no more used in pilot programs only. Now even mid-size companies without a million budget can afford IoT.

What Makes React Suitable for IoT Application Development?

React Native/JS should be used to develop IoT applications as it assists in code handling, handling various classes, handling large coding structures, and handling complex apps. While there is no perfect explanation for this, there are 8 discernible points here: 

  • Composition – React is based on composing components instead of inheritance. It makes it easier to create small – lean components, which can be leveraged to include more functionality. It allows putting code systematically, class by class. It allows you to create one component and embed more components within it. There are two types of components – One that receives, processes and passes data to children components while the second that communicates with IoT sensors. And second, that is accessed as much as it is required. Companies like Walmart, LinkedIn, PayPal, and Netflix used React for their IoT applications. Code elements in an IoT project ease version management and installation. Component reusability and code maintenance positively impact the developer’s productivity.
  • Lifecycle Methods – These ensure that all the components upgrade with changing data requirements. A series of lifecycle methods are launched when any update in the component appears. For example: If there is a temperature change, React will trigger a new lifecycle. If the temperature crosses 25 degrees Celcius In a smart home, the user will be notified. Lifecycle methods ease application management in React. Real-world data is checked to if it is passable and React components are updated accordingly.
  • Separates Concerns – An IoT app consists of components, objects, classes and many different layers. Each component has different coding needs. As an example – AC has many components, which are automated to enable proper functioning. Every component is independently handled in React. Separation of concerns reveals only what is required. This helps in easily managing data in one place and forwarding or passing the components when required. React makes use of props or objects to pass and carry the information. It also says that you may segregate parent-child components from one another. E.g.: You can utilize React.js as a framework for a component-based IoT app.
  • Fast Rendering – React is used to develop high-load applications and undergo a relatively tedious task. Components do not affect rendering and thus accentuate the application performance. Also, the presence of Virtual DOM makes the application render fast without consuming much time.
  • Stable Codebase – Data moves downwards in react. So that changes in children’s components do not affect the parent components and the application remains stable. Only the application state needs to be revised and a few specific components will be updated. This improves code strength, facilitates app performance, and enhances application execution.
  • HTML Code More Resistant – ReactJS reduces any risk with malicious code that may pose any threat to the app’s performance. React depends upon HTML for loading. HTML code is immutable and developers cannot submit that element while using the form. They can apply certain validation and activate the segment if it adheres to the criteria.
  • Presence of JSX – With ReactJS, JSX detects HTML citations and simplifies the representation of the subcomponents. This JSX helps in making custom IoT apps by preventing errors that might occur in the coding phase.
  • Easy to Maintain – React framework is easy to use and scalable. Its design framework, coding structure and other features ease the process of app development, help in writing new code easily, changing the existing code and updating the app when required.

What Are the Challenges Faced by IoT App Development Companies While Implementing React?

Even if React is equipped with the best features, it strings along a few challenges while making IoT applications:

  • Open-Source – Being open-source new frameworks and libraries are frequently updated within React. This might make IoT applications unpredictable. For this reason, ReactJS is not as reliable as Node.js.
  • Not Standard For IoT – React happily integrates with other libraries but it further complicates the coding process. This calls for developers’ creativity.

Illustrative Technology Stack To Implement IoT with React, Redux and Amplify

  • Most popular cloud platforms – AWS IoT analytics, Google cloud platforms, Azure
  • Low-code IoT Platforms – Ubidots, ThingSpeak, InitialState
  • For simple, clean and engaging HTML5-based JavaScript charts – Chart.js
  • To internationalize React apps – React-intl
  • To parse, validate, manipulate, and display dates and times in JavaScript – Moment.js
  • To build responsive, mobile-first projects – Bootstrap

Sum and Wrap: Choosing ReactJS for IoT Apps

Very importantly, currently, React IoT components reckon Johnny-Five which is an I/O library that communicates with Arduino microcontroller. It is boarded directly via a USB port. Such LED components have to be initialized and work along with moisture, light and smoke detectors. Johnny Five object instance is created in the constructor. An event listener is set up where the passed-in update function is called each time the component receives new sensor data.

These views are only proof of concept and not set in stone yet. All the considerable points work in progress. We appreciate your feedback, suggestions, and comments. Let us know what you think, and if you would like us to get our hands around IoT App Development!

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