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The Battle over How to Build Mobile Apps Continues

By Josh Galde | June 1, 2013

CATEGORIES: Mobile Quality
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Recently, Zend, an Israeli world wide web infrastructure software company relating to the development, deployment and management of PHP-based web application, released the results of its annual developer survey. In this report several conclusions are made based on the developer current trend in app development. Should we build a native app, hyrid, web (HTML5), open source, etc. "The poll of 5,000 developers revealed important information about the adoption of open standards, along with key trends in DevOps, mobile development and cloud. Due to massive takeup of smartphones, tablets and the general consumerization of IT, they say we now live in an “App Economy,” where applications have become the new face of a business to customers, employees and partners.

It appears that open standards and HTML5 are becoming the typical way to develop mobile apps, which are then, more often than not, deployed to the cloud.

A recent subject of some debate has been the relative adoption of HTML5 and open standards for the development of mobile applications, as compared to native development on the iOS, Android and Windows platforms. Open standards enable companies to easily target multiple devices with their in-house Web developers.

A native development approach, on the other hand, presents the challenge of needing to develop to multiple OS platforms. There is a point of view in the market that open Web standards like HTML5 and JavaScript have the opportunity to unify mobile application development, just like they unified Web development for the desktop. In fact, this year's survey proved that open standards are already the developers' first choice. Our survey found that 79% of developers said they are already using HTML5 and open Web standards.

HTML5 is also a popular choice for companies needing multiple-platform support. Another recent developer study by Kendo uI found that only 15 percent of developers would go native when building an app that must perform on multiple platforms. It would appear that the debate over whether or not HTML5 will become standard is just about over, particularly in the PHP community."

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We have heard similar stories from our customers who are saying that they are actually having success developing on more than one platform. For example they will develop a true 100% native app for iOS, but then develop an open-source version downloaded from the internet for the Android platform. Regardless of how it's developed this struggle to determine the best way will always continue, as apps get more complex and diversified for each platform, this is bound to continue. As a testing platform we continue to strive to meet those ever-changing needs for developers and QA departments alike. We look forward to those challenges ahead.

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