Our recent HTML5 app for The Atlantic Wire app has been getting some great press lately and I wanted to share some of the thinking at Modus on what to expect for HTML5 as we enter the new year.
Customer traction is validation enough
Modus Create has experienced phenomenal growth in Q2 and Q3 2012. In less than two years, we’ve become a 20+ person firm with presence in four countries, Fortune 500 client list AND we expect to almost double in size again this year. Last year we anticipated enterprise demand for HTML5 and mobile design expertise and our bets paid off big.
Let’s take a look at why.
The old, tired arguments against HTML5 don’t hold up anymore
App Stores are essentially a low bandwidth play that gives too much power to the store owner. To those that posture that HTML5 will never replace native, we ask, “Did Java ever replace .Net?”
IT portfolio management is about aligning tech to capability, it’s not religion (for most of us) and the market reality for HTML5 adoption is additive and adaptive as firms look to branch out from pure play iOS to support device-as-market-share strategies.
The native app advantage was typically characterized by better user experience primary due to full device integration (camera, gps, etc.), offline experience, and better performance as compared to pure play mobile web apps. With the exception of 3D heavy gaming, “Hybrid apps” have more than bridged the gap in those regards and allow firms to benefit from any perceived marketing lift gained through native store delivery.
While HTML5 gets a lot of buzz related to mobile, don’t forget the desktop web. The contraints of web 2.0 are all but gone in key demographics and rich web experiences are transcending consumer focused concerns and having a renaissance in the enterprise.
We’ve Reached the ‘Inflection Point’
Enterprise Mobile Strategies are shifting to optimize for high bandwidth availability and low cost cpu’s. Environmental factors are now conducive for web-based experiences.
Bandwidth is Ready
4G coverage and consumer adoption rates went through the roof in 2012.
Hardware is Ready
Android device performance has drastically improved and better Webkit builds on Android devices have greatly improved the user experience of mobile web apps.
7” tablets have really been the leader here, with the right price point an form factor for quick adoption, the Kindle Fire HD and Nexus 7 are redefining the reader experience and 2012 ended with Apple following the trend with launch of the iPad Mini. Smart TV’s and in car docking/infotainment systems are also loosening Apple’s grip on the store as primary delivery channel.
HTML5 Frameworks are Ready
Version 2.x of HTML5 frameworks show drastic performance improvements. There are light-weight MVC frameworks, content-focused responsive design frameworks, and app focused UI frameworks and server side JS frameworks all making web developers and engineers more apt to explore mobile development through tools and languages with which they are already familiar.
People are Ready
Engineers are no longer wary of front end development. New career paths are being defined for creative techies and the talent land-grab is happening. HTML5 is the #1 job trend according to indeed.com.
All the Big Players are in the Game
Amazon is coming on strong with a hardware and delivery channel play with Kindle Fire/HD and the Kindle App Store. Windows Mobile/ IE8 support HTML5 apps as first class citizens. With their touch screen desktops are even blurring the line between mobile and traditional UI.
The only question that remains for firms still on the fence in 2013 is, “Can you afford to ignore HTML5 any longer?”