This is the eighth post in our mobile blog series. Throughout the month of April we'll be featuring posts from some of Boston's most expert thought leaders, answering these questions: "What's happening in mobile right now? What's coming soon?” This post is by Ash Nadkarni, MD. Ash is a physician in the specialty of Psychiatry, with a research background in the adoption of social media technologies. She is the co-founder of Appguppy, an online tool that makes it ridiculously easy to create and distribute beautiful, cross-platform mobile apps.
“It’s a mobile solution that’s cross-platform.”
“Oh… so then it’s just HTML5.”
So goes the classic scenario for more and more developers offering cross-platform mobile solutions. The minute you broach the topic of an answer to platform fragmentation, you get accused of utilizing HTML5. But does HTML5 really have a bad rap anymore? And how might it offer the ability for organizations to position themselves competitively in the mobile marketing space?
HTML5 offers app sophistication
With HTML5, the web has evolved. Higher quality graphics, video, data storage, geo-location and interactivity are all part of the HTML5 app experience.
And lets be honest, most brands are looking for information-based features in their app – blogs, social media, product descriptions and about sections –all of which can be beautifully captured by HTML5, without the cost or complexity of native development.
HTML5 offers app beauty
With the right user interface, HTML5 apps can provide the look and feel of native apps. Tabs at the base of your device screen, check. Corresponding content or functionalities above, check. Scrolling capabilities, check. Taps and holds, check, check
Technology that harnesses the power of HTML5 with the downloadability of native apps can also produce the same interactivity of an app downloaded directly from stores. So the entirety of the user experience is preserved even with an HTML5 app.
HTML5 offers app discoverability
You’ve hired a developer to code a native app for your brand and now it’s in the iPhone and Android stores. Okay, great. Now what?
Most brands don’t have the budgets to promote their mobile strategy the way that Geico or Staples might. Just like native apps, HTML5 apps can be sent to vast social networks or email contact lists simply via links. Additionally, for those brands with international customers, HTML5 provides a simple way for links to be sent through SMS. And since the download process work just as simply as if a customer went through the app stores, at the end of the day, brands still get that valuable piece of real estate across a customer’s mobile home screen, with their app icon
Thinking you have to go native to go mobile? Think again. Like most dichotomies in life, the HTML5 v. native dichotomy is a falsely polarized one because the distinction between the two technologies will only continue to be blurred.