The end of the closed app store may be in sight. This year a number of new mobile operating systems are slated to come out—Firefox OS, Tizen and Ubuntu among them—and what is important is that they are all open source, allowing for HTML5 applications.
What exactly is the difference between HTML5 and native apps?
Well, HTML5 is a relatively new technology that allows companies to build Web-based apps that can be opened in a standard browser on any device, including smartphones and tablets. Native apps, on the other hand, can be found in Apple’s App Store or the Google Play Store, with each OS claiming to have a richer app ecosystem and more developers on its side.
As it stands, iOS and Android control 90 percent of the mobile OS market therefore developers mostly choose to create native apps for those two platforms. But with the introduction of Firefox, Tizen and Ubuntu—all of which provide for HTML5 apps—developers can easily port their apps between platforms without the approval of an app store, according to MIT’s Technology Review. This of course leads to quicker profits for developers and lower costs for users looking to create a mobile site.
Business Insider also predicts that HTML5 will eventually win out, and here’s why:
- It is cheaper to make HTML5 apps than native apps. Although it seems that native apps are better than HTML5 at a lot of things right now, HTML5 is improving. Over time, the newer, more cost-effective HTML5 technology will capture a bigger chunk of the market.
It is also significantly quicker to create a mobile HTML5-enabled site than a native app. In fact, it takes developers a whole 18 weeks to build an iOS or Android app, according to a study by Kinvey and AYTM. Building a mobile site, on the other hand, takes only a few weeks. bMobilized, for example, has a “We Do It For You” package with a turnaround time of two weeks, which costs just $199.
- Monetization. Existing Web-based ads—whether interactive or static—are already supported by HTML5-based mobile websites. This means there is a much larger pool of advertisers trying to pay for ad space. For example, bMobilized allows users to integrate their existing Web-based ad accounts, such as Google AdSense into their HTML5 sites, while ad systems for native apps are still struggling with getting enough advertisers.
bMobilized (http://bMobilized.com) pioneered DIY website-to-mobile conversion that offers small and medium businesses advanced, easy-to-use and cost-effective mobile site creation tools.
In December 2012, bMobilized accepted $2.5 million in Series A funding from Alliance Venture, Investinor and Alden AS, adding to the $1.5 million it raised earlier in the year.