The explosion of the mobile Web has sparked a debate over the best approach for developing applications that give consumers and employees what they have come to expect: access to whatever form of content they want, whenever and wherever they want it. In fact, 2012 may be remembered as the year HTML5 – the catch-all term used for the latest protocols that define the content, layout, and navigation of Web pages through browsers – took the Internet by storm. Yet concerns surrounding HTML5’s architecture linger, along with a debate concerning the use of native mobile apps versus apps developed for the mobile Web.
Why should anyone care? Because as consumers spend more time on their smartphones surfing the Web, downloading apps, playing games and streaming movies, app creators must determine how best to create richer and more functional experiences across an ever-growing number of device platforms. The wrong choice can result in considerable extra expense, or in users being dissatisfied with poor quality and lack-luster performance.
Compared to previous versions of HTML, HTML5 makes it easier to create feature-rich Web-based applications that can be updated remotely with new functionality without requiring users to download and install an update each time. Generally speaking, HTML5 helps reduce the functionality gap between mobile websites and apps.