HTML5 is a new technology that allows developers to build rich web-based apps that run on any device via a standard web browser.
Many think it will save the web, rendering native platform-dependent apps obsolete.
So, which will win? Native apps or HTML5?
Here’s the pros and cons of each that matters:
- Features: This is a big problem with HTML5 right now. There are some things HTML5 simply can’t do. This should change as HTML5 evolves. Advantage: Apps
- User experience: On this score, so far, native apps win. This is because HTML5 technology still isn’t evolved enough, and also because you can do more with native code. Advantage: Apps
- Monetization: With app stores and native apps hooked into services like iTunes that have your credit card, native apps are just much easier to monetise than HTML5. Advantage: Apps
- Cost: HTML5 apps are cheaper to make because they’re cross-platform. If you want to build an app on every platform, you need to build it almost from scratch. Advantage: HTML5
- Distribution: This could be a wash, but we’ll award it to HTML5. Some people are very happy with the native/app store distribution model. But ultimately the more open web model will let more people have distribution. It will also reduce the power of gatekeepers like Apple. Advantage: HTML5
In full, the special report analyses:
- What HTML5 is, giving an overview of how it is a technology done by committee
- Why the HTML5-vs-Apps debate matters, breaking down its impact on distribution, monetization, platform power and network effects, and functionality.
- The pluses and minuses of HTML5 vs. native apps, comparing each by cost, user experience, features, distribution, and monetization.
- How and when HTML5 will take over, laying out how it has all the hallmarks of a disruptive technology.
- The success of an HTML5 pioneer, The Financial Times.
- What an HTML5 future will look like, with the promise of richer and more interactive experiences.