Market analysts and enterprise mobile strategists keep telling us that the never-ending debate of HTML5 vs Native apps is hugely overstated. What’s more important is the overall strategy, they say. The readiness of your enterprise systems for mobile. The availability of mobile skills. The preferences of your development teams. The cost/benefit analysis… et cetera.
From what we observe on the market, the HTML5 vs Native debate is pretty much over. While HTML5 has made good progress in the past few years, and while app developers still cite HTML5 as their most-used mobile platform (understandably, given their prevalent skill sets!), the market clearly dictates the choice of native mobile platforms for customer-facing and employee apps.
Customers Prefer Native Apps
Research shows that mobile experience has a huge impact on how consumers view a brand and interact with it. A recent Oracle study has found that more than half (55%) of surveyed users said a poor app experience would put them off using a company’s products or services.
If you are a customer-focused, market-driven organization, chances are, your customers have already spoken, and you have taken notice. What we see, time and again, is organizations opting for an HTML5 or hybrid app and getting bitterly disappointed with their customers’ response. The companies who put out native apps, on the contrary, gain an instant competitive advantage.
Case in point: Delta’s native Fly Delta app and its superior performance vs. its competitors’ web-based apps. Customers who fly frequently rely on user-friendly, native functions to quickly get information, submit itinerary changes, check in, or perform other actions. Web (HTML5) apps simply do not provide the smooth experience native apps are famous for. Domino Pizza, likewise, managed to dazzle users with its overhauled native app, leaving its competitors to play catch-up.
Why do Native Apps Stand Out?
Let’s look at some differences between the dominant mobile strategies currently in play in enterprises.
- A quick option for making existing content available via a mobile device.
- Only needs to be built once and would be usable for every device.