A billion HTML5 enabled phones by 2013 – Is the technology maturing?
The latest research from Strategy Analytics (published 7th Dec 2011) indicates that the sale of HTML5 compatible phone will cross 1 billion marks by 2013. Multi-device compatibility, support of interactive multi-media features without additional plug-ins, ease of app development and freedom from fragmentation has made HTML5 highly popular among mobile device manufacturers, app developers as well as consumers. It is today one of the fastest growing technologies and an increasing number of companies are shifting their focus to HTML5, the latest being Microsoft and Adobe.
According to Neil Mawston, Executive Director at Strategy Analytics, “HTML5 has quickly become a high-growth technology that will help smartphones, feature phones, tablets, notebooks, desktop PCs, televisions and vehicles to converge in the future. HTML5 will be a pivotal technology in the growth of a multi-screen, 4G LTE cloud that is emerging for mobile operators, device makers, car manufacturers, component vendors and Web app developers. With its potential to transcend some of the barriers faced by native apps, such as cross-platform usability, HTML5 is a market that no mobile stakeholder can afford to ignore”
It is expected that by 2013, all smart phones including iOS and Andriod phones will be HTML5 enabled. According to the analyst firm, HTML5 will not be confined only to smartphones, but will eventually trickle down to mass-market feature phones in the longer-term.
HTML5 has all the potential to transform the mobile space, especially mobile app market. But it is still evolving and is not yet approved by the World Web Consortium (www). When compared to native apps, HTML5 offers limited API and feature sets, and according to Strategy Analytics director Thomas Kang, “”It will require several years of further development and standards-setting before HTML5 can fully mature to reach its potential as a unified, multi-platform content-enabler.”
Yet another challenge HTML5 will have to deal with before it successfully establishes is security threats. Unlike HTML4, HTML5 lets the users to store large chunk of information on their browsers. This will give hackers easy access to information via browsers.
Until the time HTML5 fully matures into a standard, we believe that native apps will continue to co-exist in the mobile app space. While HTML5 will drive the future of in the web/cloud intensive enterprise mobile applications space, native applications would still play a significant role in computation-intensive contexts. Essentially, a hybrid of HTML5 and native apps will be the key driver especially in enterprise apps space.