June 08, 2011

Financial Times Foregoes Apple's App Store, Offers HTML5 Web App

Sorry, Apple, but the Financial Times (News - Alert) is going HTML5.

In a rather bold move, and certainly a low blow to Apple’s iTunes, the Financial Times has decided to launch a HTML5 Web app to allow readers to access any content across tablet and smartphone devices.

Even better, the Financial Times is offering access completely free for the initial launch week.

After investing heavily in Apple’s (News - Alert) app store, which boasts around 250,000 apps, the Financial Times realized Apple was actually limiting the financial and business news organization from achieving its marketing goals. Meanwhile, it wasn’t too pleased with its search and discovery tools, thus pushing the Financial Times to ultimately shift to the Web, according to Rob Grimshaw, Financial Times’ online managing director

"Anything an iOS app can do, the Web can do better,” said Grimshaw. “…We started off not knowing what could be achieved (in HTML). But, one by one, we found that all the things that could be done in a native app actually could be done in a HTML5 app -- and we haven’t had to compromise on anything, though we were expecting to.”

With the Web-based app, readers will be able to access content even while offline through a saved shortcut, and gain access to tablet-exclusive content. In addition, users won’t need to download new versions of the app when an app requires an update.

Meanwhile, Apple is planning on charging publishers 30 percent of revenues while also forcing content subscribers to sign up through the iTunes App Store, instead of signing up directly with them, according to the Washington Post.

Perhaps more major companies and organizations will hop on the HTML5 bandwagon once they attend the DevCon5 Conference, scheduled for July 27 to 28, in New York City. Hosted by TMC (News - Alert) and Crossfire Media, the conference will educate Web developers, designers and architects on how to best use HTML5 to develop a dynamic user experience.

“With HTML5, we finally have a language which allows websites to deliver rich, multimedia experiences to users across platforms and devices. Moreover, the technology allows any developer or designer to create a user experience which is close to a locally running application,” stated Rich Tehrani (News - Alert), CEO and conference chairman for TMC. “This new standard, as it becomes more widely supported, has the potential to change the current app economy we live in meaning closed app ecosystems can be avoided for developers looking to produce cutting-edge products and solutions which may not get approval from the handful of companies controlling these stores.”

Click here to see an agenda and learn more.

Want to learn more about the latest in communications and technology? Then be sure to attend ITEXPO West 2011, taking place Sept. 13-15, 2011, in Austin, Texas. ITEXPO (News - Alert) offers an educational program to help corporate decision makers select the right IP-based voice, video, fax and unified communications solutions to improve their operations. It's also where service providers learn how to profitably roll out the services their subscribers are clamoring for – and where resellers can learn about new growth opportunities. To register, click here.

Tammy Wolf is a TMCnet web editor. She covers a wide range of topics, including IP communications and information technology. To read more of her articles, please visit her columnist page.

Edited by Jennifer Russell


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