In the battle between HTML5 and native apps, HTML5 is starting to become a strong contender. While native app approaches have been a top choice in the past, a recent survey revealed that 57% of participants believe HTML5 is enterprise-ready, or will be in within the next year.
The survey, “The HTML5 vs. Native Debate is Over. The Winner is…,” was conducted by Telerik in October 2013 and polled 3,500 respondents from around the world.
“Not only can HTML5 be a powerful technology for unlocking more you can do via the Web, but done right, HTML5 could be one of the valid approaches for solving some of the challenges that mobile is creating,” said Todd Anglin, vice president of cross-platform products and solutions for Telerik.
According to the company, the survey indicates that the lines between developer preferences for mobile app development approaches are blurring, not only in terms of the end-user experience, but also the app development experience.
“Developers are taking the time to really understand the advantages and best practices for hybrid and native development, and are quickly realizing that there is no ‘one-size-fits-all’ solution for their mobile development process,” said Anglin.
But not everyone is convinced HTML5 stands up to native. Vision Mobile recently said in a research report, “How Can HTML5 Compete with Native?” there are five areas where HTML5 falls short when compared to native SDKs: APIs, performance, education, tools and marketing.
Telerik believes these gaps will close as the market for HTML5 matures, and that the perceived “lags” in HTML5 are a result of assumptions rather than the technology itself.
To prove its theory, Telerik conducted an HTML5 Mobile App Challenge to see how much perception can play into a developer’s opinion of an app’s performance. Developers were presented with two identical phones and two seemingly identical applications. After looking at the apps, they were asked to identify which one was built with native or hybrid applications. A majority of the developers picked the apps with better loading time as native, but in actuality both apps were Kendo UI HTML5/Hybrid apps.
“Many developers are finding that the choice between native and hybrid approaches is dependent on business needs, app requirements, developer skill, development timeline and other factors,” said Anglin. “When considered in context, we’re seeing plenty of cases where hybrid is the right choice for a given app, and others where native still makes the most sense. What developers need, then, are tools that can help them be effective, regardless of the chosen approach.”