This article is addressed to React developers. Of course, if you are looking for a framework to learn React Native is also for you, but basic React knowledge is required. So here are the reasons why most React developers should learn React Native.
It is the next step
React is a library for building UI. It is growing and with new releases we gain new abilities but it is still a library that is not too big. As a React developer, at first, you learn the library itself then, most likely, you will have to learn at least one of the state management libraries. Then some form builders and so on. There is a moment when you have your patterns established for most of the cases that you face when building a web app. But in this industry, you have to improve all the time. So the next most obvious step is React Native. If you know React at the very beginning, learning React Native is like adopting a new package.
Lower entry point
If you know all the patterns in the React world, for example: props, components, lifecycle, render props, hoc’s etc. you are really well prepared to start working with React Native. The core rules are the same for both. All differences come from the target - React targets browser and React Native runs on Android and iOS environment. Next advantage is that you can use a lot of tools the same way you do with React. State management like Redux works the same for both. Form builders like Redux Form or Formik require minimal adjustments. The same is with tons of tools that you use with React.
A lot of companies that hire developers to build an app prefer full stacks. One person is cheaper than having two devs or even separating work to a few dev houses. The same is when a client wants to build a mobile app to extend functionalities that live in his web app. As a React developer who also knows React Native, you have the higher ground than others who are just React guys. With React and React Native you can deliver a complex product which contains a React web app that runs on all modern browsers and a mobile React Native app that is cross-platform and is a real mobile app.
At the very end, React is a great tool. It expands every year giving developers new opportunities like React Native. I think it is a perfect choice if you want to grow as a developer and be more valuable for a client. It has a lower entry point for React devs and allows to deliver a complex product faster and cheaper.