November 15, 2012

Are Hybrid Apps the Future of HTML5?

Anytime there is a technological advancement, there is always a rush for dominance as different technologies and platforms fight to position themselves at the top of the heap. Whether it was VHS vs. Betamax or Nintendo vs. Sega, one technology is bound to come out ahead. But on rare occasions, it’s not a winner-take-all situation, and there are opportunities for compromise and collaboration. In the case of the future of mobile apps, there is a competition between HTML5 and native apps but, according to some industry experts, the future of the space actually sits with hybrid applications.

In the mobile application space, it seems that every major player is backing a particular horse in the race. Steve Jobs (News Alert) was famously against the proliferation of Flash, keeping it far away from Apple devices. Recently, Mark Zuckerberg made negative comments about HTML5, and companies from Microsoft to RIM to Google (News Alert) have promoted their own operating systems and native apps. It makes for a confusing jumble of options for developers, and complicates matters unnecessarily.

Ever since Apple’s launch of the iPhone (NewsAlert) and the creation of its App Store, the debate over native apps vs. HTML5 has raged. The argument only became more complicated with the advent of the Android (NewsAlert) operating system. Suddenly, developers were faced with the option of making several versions of an app for each operating system or working within the HTML5 platform.

But some experts, like Jeremy Allaire (NewsAlert) from Brightcove, feel that the compromise of the hybrid app is the future. He points out that HTML5 is suited for fast, iterative and cross-platform user experiences and native apps give users power, performance and access to device features. A hybrid app gives you all of the above benefits.

Experts and people interested in the topic of HTML5 will soon be descending on San Francisco, California for the DevCon5 event, to be held from November 27-29. At the event, the topic of hybrid apps and the future of HTML5 will be discussed at the “Zuckerberg – Lost in Translation” panel. Scheduled for 9:30-10:30am on Thursday, November 29, the panel will bring together Dave Balmer, senior developer evangelist from RIM, Jeff Burtoft, HTML5 evangelist for Microsoft, and Charles Mason from For more information on this event and more, click here.

Edited by Rachel Ramsey


HTML 5 Demos and Examples

HTML 5 experimentation and demos I've hacked together. Click on the browser support icon or the technology tag to filter the demos.... Learn More

HTML5 GAMES is the largest and most comprehensive directory of HTML5 games on the internet... Learn More

The HTML5 test

How well does your browser support HTML5?... Learn More

Working Draft (WHATWG)

This is the Editor’s Draft from WHATWG. You can use it online or print the available PDF version... Learn More

HTML5 Flip Book

Free jQuery and HTML5 flip book maker for PDF to online page turning book conversion... Learn More