Single page web applications – or SPAs, as they are commonly referred to – are quickly becoming the de facto standard for web app development. The fact that a major part of the app runs inside a single web page makes it very interesting and appealing, and the accelerated growth of browser capabilities pushes us closer to the day, when all apps run entirely in the browser.
Technically, most web pages already are SPAs; it’s the complexity of a page that differentiates a web page from a web app. In my opinion, a page becomes an app when you incorporate workflows, CRUD operations, and state management around certain tasks. You’re working with a SPA when each of these tasks take place on the same page (using AJAX for client/server communication, of course).
Let’s start with this common understanding, and dive into some of the more important things that should be considered when building SPAs.