W3C home > Mailing lists > Public > public-web-mobile@w3.org > September 2013

Re: Mobile, Web and Multi-device

From: Marcos Caceres <w3c@marcosc.com>
Date: Fri, 20 Sep 2013 09:11:48 +0100
To: "Patrick H. Lauke" <redux@splintered.co.uk>
Cc: public-web-mobile@w3.org
Message-ID: <92B46AA644204BB080423DB24E42ED4A@marcosc.com>

On Friday, 20 September 2013 at 08:55, Patrick H. Lauke wrote:

> On 20/09/2013 04:19, Satoru Takagi wrote:
> > Moreover, what differs between "apps" and "web apps"? What is the reason that we expect that "web apps" attracts everyone (not only developer but also consumer)?
> I'll bring my own view out on this one point: I may be generalising, but 
> I'd hazard a guess that consumers actually do not care one bit whether 
> an "app" is native, a hybrid (phonegap style native wrapper around a web 
> view), or completely based on web standards and running in the browser 
> (though on this last point, consumers will have a general idea of an app 
> taking over the entire screen, so having browser controls show up - with 
> URL bar etc - may in fact confuse them...again, purely subjective 
> thought here, can't back it up with real evidence).

I can also only provide anecdotal evidence from FxOS. In FxOS, when a web page is installed as a "hosted app" (i.e., fancy term for putting something on the home screen), the browser chrome is removed. This lead to problem in that developers are expecting browser chrome (or access to a HW back-button) to be around the application to make that app functional - like in iOS, in FxOS there is no HW back button and no browser chrome available. FxOS developer guidelines asked developers to provide the navigation controls themselves, but some sites refused to do so (specially large sites that already work well on Android, and don't want to have a specific FireFox OS app). As such, Mozilla had to introduce a "chrome" option into the application manifest, which allows developers to state what bits of browser chrome (nav bar, address bar, etc.) they want FxOS to show with their app.   
> Sure, we could argue that consumers should care that they can get the 
> same app running when they switch from one mobile platform to another 
> (android to iOS, for instance), but how often do consumers actually 
> switch like that? (bigger discussion about platform lock-in with things 
> like iTunes/Google Play, but I'll leave that for another day).

Don't know.  
> In short, and just in my humble opinion, this is the same story as "web 
> standards": consumers themselves don't really care (they only care when 
> something doesn't work), unless you try to appeal to a more nebulous 
> "it's built on an open platform" discussion which for the majority of 
> end users and consumers means nothing at all.

Received on Friday, 20 September 2013 08:12:30 UTC

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