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Progressive web app

Use our solutions as normal websites or download them to mobile devices just like normal apps - with no obligation either way.

One codebase, two choices for users: website or app.

Web browser or app, desktop or mobile device – we design our digital solutions as progressive web apps to give users the choice of how they want to access them, providing the same intuitive experience whatever they choose.

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What is a progressive web app?

Progressive web apps (PWAs) are websites that have been designed with ‘app like’ qualities. They look and act like an app and they can be downloaded to a mobile’s home screen like an app.

The main difference between PWAs and ‘normal’ dedicated apps is that users are not obligated to download them in order to use them. Plus, they enable you to provide exactly the same experience to users across the website and “app”, with new features and functionality automatically available.

Crucially, having a PWA instead of a website and separate dedicated app means that you don’t need to maintain two different codebases, helping you to keep costs down without compromising on service delivery.

Benefits of progressive web apps

We know that some of our local authority and public sector clients like to be able to offer citizens an app to download to access their services, in addition to a mobile-friendly website. PWAs provide the ideal solution; a smart, cost-effective way to provide the best of both worlds.

Freedom to choose

According to research we carried out in 2022, only 22% of citizens want to use an app they have to download to contact their local authority. PWAs mean no one is forced to download an app they don’t want.

Complete consistency

With everything running from one codebase, everyone enjoys the same user experience and benefits from the same functionality no matter how they use the service, without needing to download any updates.

Cost effective

Maintaining a website in addition to a separate dedicated app can be expensive. With a PWA there is only one codebase to maintain, which means we can offer you a much more cost-effective service.

Offline functionality

PWAs permit offline capability to your website, by downloading a bit of JavaScript (called a service worker) to your device. This means citizens can, for example, start reports on-the-go without internet connection, and finish them later when back online.

How do progressive web apps work?

When your SocietyWorks service is launched, you will be able to offer your residents the chance to use a website, or download the PWA if they prefer. Your PWA will be branded to look exactly like your website, and will work just the same.

Unlike dedicated apps, PWAs aren’t downloaded from an app store. Instead, you will encourage your residents to load the website from a browser on their chosen device and save it to their home screen.

Each council’s version of FixMyStreet Pro has its own instructions on how to download the PWA. See an example for Brent Council’s version of FixMyStreet Pro.

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