Html5 vs Native Applications
A topic that we discuss today with our clients, partners and friends is on the debate between Native Mobile Application and HTML5 Applications. Which approach is better? Which has more functionality? And Which option should I go for if I’m to develop a Mobile Application?
The answers to these common questions are not straight forward. Many of which is highly dependent on situational as well as organizational factors. However, we can take generalistic look at the topic of HTML5 vs Native Applications.
- These are applications that need to be installed in your device and can be downloaded via a relevant App Marketplace – e.g.: iTunes App Store for iPhone or iPad
- Developing these Applications need to be done using specific SDKs provided by the OS provider – e.g. – iOS Apps need to be developed using the Cocoa Touch SDK provided by Apple. This also means that Developers need to be conversant in the Objective C language.
- OS/Device specific functions can be developed using these SDKs, resulting in a rich user experience.
- The standard way of distributing Native Apps is via a platform specific marketplace i.e. – iTunes AppStore, Google Play etc.
- As such, any updates need to happen via the App Stores – can be quite cumbersome
- By HTML5 Apps, we refer to mobile-web applications that are built using HTML5 technologies, optimized for viewing on Mobile devices. HTML5 Apps can mimic the same familiar look and feel of a native application.
- One great feature about HTML5 is that these Apps, can be viewed and used across devices and platforms. This cross platform compatibility enables you to develop platform agnostic apps.
- HTML5 is a great option for an enterprise that opts for a BYOD (Bring your own device) policy
- Doing updates to an Application can be easily managed
- One drawback when it comes to developing on HTML5 is in utilizing the device’s hardware capabilities such as the camera. However this can be overcome by using a tool such as PhoneGap to develop a hybrid application.
In deciding which approach you should take for your mobile strategy, consider the above factors and how it relates to your business or organization’s need. A useful tool you can use to evaluate the options and develop a clear strategy is our Mobile Solution Blueprinting process.