HTML5 vs native app – simple checklist to help your business decide

Whilst some mobile and enterprise experts reckon that this hot topic debate is done and truly over, our clients tend to frequently ask us this question. Which option is better for their business and why? HTML5 vs native app: let’s go back to basics.

Native app

Native apps are written and optimised for a specific platform (Apple, Android, Windows) and are installed through an application store (Google Play or Apple’s App Store etc.). They can interact with and take advantage of operating system and default device features such as camera, GPS or contact directory.
Source: searchsoftwarequality.com

HTML5 app

An HTML5 mobile app is a web application developed with that version of the web content standard and compatible not only with mobile devices but also desktop and notebook browsers, for a seamless experience across all a user’s device.
Source: searchmobilecomputing.com

So what do your business need to consider to make a choice?

  1. Existing content – type, format and size

Content is key – we all know it. But what if your company uses paper-based documents only? What if they could be presented in a digital format and easily available for your mobile-first customers or employees?
Take a first step and start reviewing your archives, servers and even filing cabinets. What do you find? PDFs, PPTs, word doc or maybe videos, images or 3D files. Now it’s time to decide what documents you need to share and why? If you think that you simply need to offer access to small and mainly text-based files, HTML5 app is a better solution for you. It is fast, cross-mobile accessible and require less testing. Your end users will be able to read content digitally no matter what browsers they use. However don’t forget that it might offer a lower quality reading experience than the native solution.
“Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg has acknowledged that betting on HTML5 was his biggest mistake with mobile.” We’ll tell you later why. (https://www.mobilesmith.com/html5-vs-native-debate-is-over/)

  1. Availability – offline or online

Ok your business has done their content audit. But have you considered where your audiences are? Do they benefit from always-on Internet access or are they often stuck offline wishing they could use this time productively?
We have a good example for you. One of our clients – a leading recruitment company Adecco – wanted to equip better their sales reps. They knew that they often work on the go: sometime with a wifi access but very often on a plane, tube or any other offline only location. Therefore they decided to help them being more productive and created a native app with Aquafadas tools – watch our video to find out more. They knew that HTML5 solution requires consistent Internet connection but a native app can work offline too. And their key objective was to increase sales teams productivity. That’s where Aquafadas publishing tools came handy allowing users to download the content once only, even if it’s heavy, and then benefit from using it in an offline environment.

  1. Reading experience

Now it’s time to think about the key application objective. Do you need to engage and interact with users providing a stunning visual experience, access to latest features supported by a fast performance? Let’s go back to an example of a mobile app from Facebook – we all know it and use it.
Facebook was one of the first major companies to embrace HTML5. They needed an easy way to develop for multiple platforms and screen sizes at one time. But the benefits of cross-platform development weren’t enough to outweigh the downsides of HTML5, which pulls in data much more slowly than native code, and is much less stable. Hence today they fully stand for the native solution. (mashable.com)
So if you need fast performance without concerns about memory and processors types, native app is an answer for you. It also allows to benefit from all the latest functionality of each respective device and operating system.

  1. Security

You might work for a bank or simply have lots of confidential data. Your key requirement is to share it digitally but in a secure way. Native app wins over HTML5 solution. It allows you to encrypt your content and stop worrying about data breach.

  1. Time availability – testing and costs

And the final but key question. What is your budget and timings? Are you able to afford expensive native app build skills? This is one of the most defining differences between HTML5 and native apps. To develop a native solution you need to build and test for each separate platform. You need to consider different functionalities and requirements. It takes precious time.
This is not to say that the HTML5 solution can be pushed live with no testing. It still requires cross platform check to take into account platform specific differences.

Is it really so simple then?

We wish we could say yes. There are multiple different scenarios and options. Making the choice is not always clear. Especially when you start digging deeper and see that the app choices don’t stop with HTML5 or native. Anybody mentioned hybrids? What about the latest catch word Progressive Web App? Do not hesitate to contact Aquafadas if you need help with your mobile app strategy.

Hybrid app: 

it’s a mix between two types as it combines the best of both the native and HTML5 worlds. It is a web app, primarily built using HTML5 and JavaScript, then wrapped inside a thin native container that provides access to native platform features.
Source: Developer.salesforce.com

Progressive Web App:

it is a new standard in building mobile websites. It allows building a site that can perform super-fast and behaves just like an app. Its experience gets progressively better depending on the device technology. It is dynamic and learns from the user behaviour.
Source: Digiday.com

If you like our column you can check our latest article about the dominance of mobile over desktop and why Progressive Web App should be in the medium term good solution for businesses. Alors que les experts en mobile considèrent le débat comme clos, nos clients continuent à nous poser cette même question. Quelle est la meilleure option pour leur business ? Retournons aux bases.

Les applications natives

Les applications natives sont conçues et optimisées pour un type spécifique de plateforme (Apple, Android, Windows) et sont ensuite mises dans un magasin d’applications (Google Play ou Apple’s App Store etc.). Elles peuvent interagir avec les systèmes d’exploitation et les différentes fonctionnalités de base comme la caméra, l’appareil photo, le GPS et le carnet d’adresses.
Source: searchsoftwarequality.com

Les applications HTML5

Une application mobile HTML5 est une application web conçue et développée selon la version actuelle du web et les standards de contenus qu’il peut héberger.  Cette application est compatible sur plusieurs devices allant du mobile à l’ordinateur portable et aux notebooks tout en permettant d’offrir la même expérience utilisateur sur chaque.
Source: searchmobilecomputing.com

Qu’est ce que vous devez prendre en compte pour faire le bon choix en fonction de votre business ?

  1. Le contenu existant – type, format et taille

Le contenu est la clé – tout le monde le sait. Mais que faire si votre entreprise n’utilise que des supports papiers ? Imaginez si vos contenus pouvaient être digitalisés et facilement accessibles par vos employés et vos clients.
Faites un premier pas en jetant un coup d’oeil à toutes vos archives, vos serveurs et même vos classeurs. Qu’est ce que vous dénichez ? Des PDFs, des PPTs, des documents word, des vidéos, des images ou des fichiers 3D ? Il est temps que vous décidiez lesquels de ces documents sont intéressants à partager et pourquoi. Si vous voulez seulement donner l’accès à des fichiers textes, alors l’application HTML5 est la meilleure solution. C’est rapide, accessible sur n’importe quel mobile et les tests de verification sont minimes. Vos clients vont pouvoir lire vos contenus quelque soit l’appareil ou le navigateur web qu’ils utilisent. Cependant gardez bien à l’esprit que cette solution n’offre pas une aussi bonne expérience utilisateur que l’application native.
“Mark Zuckerberg, le PDG de Facebook a reconnu qu’avoir parié sur les applications HTML5 a été sa plus grosse erreur pour le mobile” On vous expliquera la raison plus tard.
(https://www.mobilesmith.com/html5-vs-native-debate-is-over/)

  1. Disponible online et offline

Votre business a fini son audit sur les contenus. Mais connaissez-vous votre audience?  Est-ce qu’ils ont un accès continu à internet. Si la réponse est non, comment peuvent-ils avoir accès à vos contenus en offline et ainsi optimiser leur temps? Nous avons un bon exemple. Un de nos clients – Adecco, le leader mondial des solutions en ressources humaines – souhaitait mieux équiper ses responsables de ventes. Notre client était conscient que les déplacements rythmaient beaucoup les missions de leur commerciaux. Ils jouissent parfois d’un accès Wifi mais la grande majorité du temps, ils sont dans des avions, des métros, ou d’autres endroits ne fournissant aucune connexion internet. C’est pourquoi Adecco a décidé de leur venir en aide avec la création d’une application native mise à leur disposition grâce à nos outils Rakuten Aquafadas – lien vers la video si vous désirez des informations supplémentaires. L’application HTML5 n’était pas une solution pertinente étant donné qu’une connexion internet est requise pour y avoir accès. Les outils Rakuten Aquafadas permettent au contenu de n’être téléchargé qu’une seule fois et ensuite d’être accessible en offline.

  1. L’expérience lecture

Il faut se concentrer sur le but premier de l’application. Vous voulez que vos utilisateurs soient bluffés par vos visuels, qu’il aient accès au dernières options tout en bénéficiant d’une performance de qualité?
Prenons en exemple l’application mobile de Facebook que nous avons tous.
Facebook a été l’une des grosse entreprise à avoir choisi HTML5. Ils voulaient une solution simple leur permettant de développer et diffuser du contenu sur n’importe quelle plateforme et sur n’importe quel écran en une seule fois. Mais les bénéfices tirés de l’HTML5 ne contrebalançaient pas ses inconvénients: les données sont chargées plus lentement que sur une application native, et sont souvent moins stables. Aujourd’hui ils ne jurent plus que par l’autre forme d’application: la native. (mashable.com)
Donc si vous souhaitez avoir une bonne et une rapide performance sans problèmes de mémoire et de processeurs, l’application native est faite pour vous. Cette solution permet également de bénéficier des dernières fonctionnalités de chaque device et de chaque système d’exploitation.

  1.  Sécurité

Vous travaillez peut-être dans une banque avec son lot de données confidentielles. Vous souhaitez à tout prix les partager digitalement mais avoir la certitude que le process est sécurisé. L’application native l’emporte sur l’application HTML5. En effet, elle s’assure que vos donnés soient cryptées. Ainsi vous n’aurez plus à vous inquiéter sur une potentielle fuite ou infraction.

  1. Timing – les coûts et les tests

La dernière question à vous poser est la suivante: quel est votre budget et votre timing?
Êtes-vous prêt à consacrer du temps à la construction d’une application en terme de ressources et de compétences? C’est une des plus grosses différences entre l’application native et l’application HTML5. Si vous décidez de construire une application native, vous allez devoir la développer et la tester sur chaque plateforme. Vous devez prendre en compte chaque critère et fonctionnalité et cela prend un temps qui peut s’avérer précieux. Il ne faut pas croire cependant que l’application HTML5 n’a pas besoin de tests pour être opérationnelle: il faut quand même prendre en compte les spécificités de chaque plateforme car elles sont différentes.

Est-ce donc aussi simple alors?

Nous aimerions dire oui. Il y a une multitude de scénarios. S’arrêter sur un choix n’est pas toujours facile. Et plus spécialement quand on commence à creuser le sujet et qu’on se rend compte qu’il existe d’autres formes d’applications: comme par exemple l’application hybride et la progressive web app. Si vous avez des questions sur votre stratégie d’application, n’hésitez pas à contacter nos équipes Rakuten Aquafadas.

Application hybride:

C’est un mix entre les deux applications HTML5 et native tout en réunissant les meilleurs fonctionnalités de chacune. C’est une application web, construite avec l’HTML5 et le JavaScript, mais ensuite intégrée dans la structure d’une application native permettant d’avoir ainsi accès à toutes les fonctionnalités d’une plateforme native.
Source: Developer.salesforce.com

Progressive Web App:

C’est un nouveau modèle de sites mobiles. La manière dont ils sont créés leur confère une performance optimale. Ils se comportent comme une application. L’expérience qu’ils fournissent s’améliore en fonction des évolutions de la technologie. Leur stratégie s’articule énormément autour du comportement de l’utilisateur.
Source: Digiday.com

Les mobiles sont plus utilisés que les ordinateurs c’est officiel d’après les dernières statistiques. Lisez notre article à ce propos car il se peut que les Progressive Web App deviennent à moyen-terme la meilleure des solutions pour les entreprises. [:es]Whilst some mobile and enterprise experts reckon that this hot topic debate is done and truly over, our clients tend to frequently ask us this question. Which option is better for their business and why? Let’s go back to basics.
Native app
Native apps are written and optimised for a specific platform (Apple, Android, Windows) and are installed through an application store (Google Play or Apple’s App Store etc.). They can interact with and take advantage of operating system and default device features such as camera, GPS or contact directory.
Source: searchsoftwarequality.com
HTML5 app
An HTML5 mobile app is a web application developed with that version of the web content standard and compatible not only with mobile devices but also desktop and notebook browsers, for a seamless experience across all a user’s device.
Source: searchmobilecomputing.com
So what do your business need to consider to make a choice?

  1. Existing content – type, format and size

Content is key – we all know it. But what if your company uses paper-based documents only? What if they could be presented in a digital format and easily available for your mobile-first customers or employees?
Take a first step and start reviewing your archives, servers and even filing cabinets. What do you find? PDFs, PPTs, word doc or maybe videos, images or 3D files. Now it’s time to decide what documents you need to share and why? If you think that you simply need to offer access to small and mainly text-based files, HTML5 app is a better solution for you. It is fast, cross-mobile accessible and require less testing. Your end users will be able to read content digitally no matter what browsers they use. However don’t forget that it might offer a lower quality reading experience than the native solution.
“Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg has acknowledged that betting on HTML5 was his biggest mistake with mobile.” We’ll tell you later why. (https://www.mobilesmith.com/html5-vs-native-debate-is-over/)

  1. Availability – offline or online

Ok your business has done their content audit. But have you considered where your audiences are? Do they benefit from always-on Internet access or are they often stuck offline wishing they could use this time productively?
We have a good example for you. One of our clients – a leading recruitment company Adecco – wanted to equip better their sales reps. They knew that they often work on the go: sometime with a wifi access but very often on a plane, tube or any other offline only location. Therefore they decided to help them being more productive and created a native app with Aquafadas tools – watch our video to find out more. They knew that HTML5 solution requires consistent Internet connection but a native app can work offline too. And their key objective was to increase sales teams productivity. That’s where Aquafadas publishing tools came handy allowing users to download the content once only, even if it’s heavy, and then benefit from using it in an offline environment.

  1. Reading experience

Now it’s time to think about the key application objective. Do you need to engage and interact with users providing a stunning visual experience, access to latest features supported by a fast performance? Let’s go back to an example of a mobile app from Facebook – we all know it and use it.
Facebook was one of the first major companies to embrace HTML5. They needed an easy way to develop for multiple platforms and screen sizes at one time. But the benefits of cross-platform development weren’t enough to outweigh the downsides of HTML5, which pulls in data much more slowly than native code, and is much less stable. Hence today they fully stand for the native solution. (mashable.com)
So if you need fast performance without concerns about memory and processors types, native app is an answer for you. It also allows to benefit from all the latest functionality of each respective device and operating system.

  1. Security

You might work for a bank or simply have lots of confidential data. Your key requirement is to share it digitally but in a secure way. Native app wins over HTML5 solution. It allows you to encrypt your content and stop worrying about data breach.

  1. Time availability – testing and costs

And the final but key question. What is your budget and timings? Are you able to afford expensive native app build skills? This is one of the most defining differences between HTML5 and native apps. To develop a native solution you need to build and test for each separate platform. You need to consider different functionalities and requirements. It takes precious time.
This is not to say that the HTML5 solution can be pushed live with no testing. It still requires cross platform check to take into account platform specific differences.
Is it really so simple then?
We wish we could say yes. There are multiple different scenarios and options. Making the choice is not always clear. Especially when you start digging deeper and see that the app choices don’t stop with HTML5 or native. Anybody mentioned hybrids? What about the latest catch word Progressive Web App? Do not hesitate to contact Aquafadas if you need help with your mobile app strategy.
Hybrid app: it’s a mix between two types as it combines the best of both the native and HTML5 worlds. It is a web app, primarily built using HTML5 and JavaScript, then wrapped inside a thin native container that provides access to native platform features.
Source: Developer.salesforce.com
Progressive Web App: it is a new standard in building mobile websites. It allows building a site that can perform super-fast and behaves just like an app. Its experience gets progressively better depending on the device technology. It is dynamic and learns from the user behaviour.
Source: Digiday.com

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