Impact of HTML5 based browsers on the Mobile Applications eco-system and marketplace
The proliferation of HTML 5-based browsers in 2011 will likely change the way content providers approach the mobile application marketplace.
Content providers today are spending too much of their resources building specific mobile apps for different platforms on different devices. Every time there is a new platform and a new device introduced to the market, a content provider needs to build a new app using different specifications to fit the operating system (OS) and device screensize. This is not an efficient way forward for content providers as there are hundreds of phones in the market with different form factors, making it time consuming and resource-intensive. The tide is expected to change for content providers with the wider use of HTML 5.
Interoperability across devices, platforms
With HTML 5, content providers need not build an app for each different OS and each different screen-size. Instead, developers will only need to build a ‘smart bookmark’, which is a link that will effectively call out a device’s browser and direct it to a content provider’s Web site. Because a HTML 5-enabled browser can access a device’s features through APIs (application programming interfaces) and can call out features, such as geo-location to contextualize the content, the browser can now have the same features available in the mobile app
For example, a mobile user can click on a smart bookmark and activate his device’s HTML-enabled browser, which can then provide localized news and weather reports, emulating what specific mobile apps can do today. This will fundamentally change the game for content providers as there is no need to rebuild an app over and over again just because a new device with a new operating system has come into the market.
With the use of smart bookmarks, purchased apps will no longer be locked into a specific platform. If a user buys an app meant for an Apple iPhone, he would need to buy it again if I had a Google Android phone. With HTML 5 and smart bookmarks, users can have access to my content regardless of the platform because access to content [will be] based on a subscription and not a download model. However, the business model will require Content providers and operators will need to work out details regarding revenue-sharing.