2011 will see more of us accessing website content via our mobile devices as opposed to via PCs. That’s is a massive shift in the way we interact with the web.
What this illustrates, is that the web and how we use it is adapting. Most of that internet access will not be done via HTML 5, which may be a shock to many, rather we will see users opting for mobile apps to access web content.
HTML 5 may be the multi platform of choice, but it is reliant on a web browser to actually do anything, which means it faces the same problems that all websites have, that of working as expected in all the different browser flavours. It also places limitations on what the website can actually do / deliver. Just think, do people access Facebook on their mobile devices via HTML currently? (web browser) Or do they use their Facebook app on their device….That’s right, the Facebook app.
What does this mean for business?
This means that websites have to act differently depending on the device type they are being viewed on, that is a given, but it also means that those businesses that provide mobile apps will get ahead. Mobile apps deliver a far richer and satisfying end user experience, so if your business provides a mobile app, then you’re ahead of the game.
It doesn’t matter if you are selling directly to the customer, or using mobile apps as a form of communication (delivering customer services), the mobile app provides a better experience and service immediately to customers.
All of this means we are seeing a fragmentation in how to deliver web content, based on how the user is accessing the web. If on their PC then HTML 5 in a browser is a great option, if on a mobile device, then a mobile app specifically for that type of device (iPhone, iPad, Android, Win Mob 7) etc will be the best option, and one of choice for the end user.
Will we see this go further in the future
Perhaps. Just as we have seen a move away from Mainframe environments (everything carried out on the one machine), to distributed processing (server, and pcs) and then back towards a mainframe type environment in the form of cloud computing and HTML web apps. We probably will see a move away from web apps running in a browser to desktop apps distributed over the web, almost a carbon copy of using mobile apps instead of the browser and HTML on mobile devices….
It seems the web isn’t changing at all, rather it is us as consumers and individuals that are in flux regarding how we want to interact with web content. That’s something that may well go on for some time to come….