February 22, 2012
HTML5 is Developer’s Darling

In follow up to my post on the mobile OS wars last week I want to share some more thoughts on HTML5.  

This is likely to be a redundant stance among many opinion leaders in the Valley, when every day another supportive report is coming out, but nevertheless I think I can weigh in and provide a view additional points to help people evaluate the chances and speed of adoption.

Last week I argued that HTML5 is here to stay and win mostly because

  • HTML5 vs native apps has become more and more indifferent to end users (Facebook, FT), but
  • HTML5 apps have massive benefits for app developers

Let me introduce a framework I use to determine why developers (which I consider the pivotal stakeholders for the establishment of an ecosystem, or failure thereof) choose one development platform over the other:

1.  Installed Base <- This is really the proxy measurement for #2-10

2.  Easy Distribution (Access, Discoverability, Wide Reach) 

3.  Monetization (Payments, low %age rev share, different revenue sources) 

4.  Portability (No fragmentation, version compatibility, ideally only one) 

5.  Easily deployable (Immediacy, no approval/censorship) 

6.  Rich APIs (access to device functions, inter-app communication) 

7.  Stable platform (not buggy, infrequent updates) 

8.  Free Tools, Good Support (Productivity) 

9.  Trained workforce (ease to hire someone) 

10.  A Platform with future (Career)

If you use this framework on the native OSs you can see why iOS is the winner, with Android a close second in terms of developer preference.  You can also see, on a side note, why I think MSFT will have a hard time, because it looks much more like the failed WebOS than the native winners to app developers:

A developers evaluation of a native mobile OS

Now, how does this compare to HTML5?

An app developer's evaluation of HTML5 vs a popular native OS

HTML wins over iOS.

So if my thesis holds that app developers are pivotal for the success of an ecosystem, user experience of HTML5 is equal for most apps (not games, but most, including heavyweight Facebook), then my money is clearly going to be on HTML5.

What that means for investors I am going to write about in my next post.

11:41pm  |   URL: http://tmblr.co/ZTlN9wGu80vq
Filed under: HTML5 
  1. christofwittig posted this