Facebook tool cuts through React complexity

From InfoWorld: Facebook attempts to make it easier to get started with its React Native framework, launching the CRNA (Create React Native App) tool for building mobile apps with no build configuration.

Introduced Monday, CRNA was co-developed by Facebook and Expo, formerly Exponent. The tool, deemed stable for general use, was inspired by the design of Create React App for building React JavaScript apps sans build configuration.

"Many developers struggle with installing and configuring React Native's current native build dependencies, especially for Android," said Adam Perry, Expo software engineer. "With Create React Native App, there's no need to use Xcode or Android Studio and you can develop for your iOS device using Linux or Windows." The tool works with the Expo open source mobile development tool, which builds atop React Native. Expo loads and runs CRNA projects written in JavaScript without compiling native code.

Noting that many React Native apps must compile Java or Objective-C/Swift dependencies, Perry said the Expo app includes APIs for camera, video, contracts, and other uses while bundling libraries like Facebook authentication. If developers require a native code dependency not bundled by Expo, they will likely need their own build configuration for it.

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