Many technology pundits think that app is increasingly an important factor for the success of a mobile platform beside the hardware and the OS. After the runaway success of Apple app store, the rest of the industry seems to mimic the experience in the hope to lure developers to their ecosystem.
The new crop of high-end device will emerge with similar features and the new mobile OS such Windows 7, Android 3 codenamed Gingerbread will follow the iOS footsteps by not allowing customized UI add-on. So the differentiators reside mainly in their apps.
The newcomer Android is catching up to iOS platform at a promising pace and in the next few months, the software giant Microsoft will put all its effort behind its new mobile OS, Windows Phone 7. The new OS will not support the vast legacy apps built for the the previous OS, Windows Mobile. RIM blackberry,Nokia also announced a major overhaul is coming,..
The future of mobile app development is bright, however developer will face to major hurdle of platform fragmentation and many have started developed their app on a cross platform, which is the Web by adopting the very capable HTML5 standard.
Ever since, Apple rejected Google Voice app from its app universe, Google converted the app to run on the browser and has proven the user experience does not diminish when compared to the native app. Thanks to Apple iOS that allows to create the app bookmark as an icon on the device home screen.. Furthermore the recent release of YouTube Web based app, Google has shown the capabilities (speed, video quality,..) have been pushed way beyond the counterpart iOS native YouTube app.
When app runs on the browser, app developers are freed from the scrutiny control and revenue sharing plan of the vendor, the controls could be draconian and arbitrary at time. But developers have to figure a different way to publicize and monetize their effort.
The video below (thanks to Robert Scoble!), the developer of NextStop app proves why HTML5 is his platform of choice.
As you might know Nextstop, the location-based providing recommendation for travelers has been acquired by Facebook, which, despite of having an iPhone app, has proven that its Web based counterpart m.facebook.com offers very compelling capabilities.
While Steve Jobs heavily favors HTML5 standard, he might think it again!