28 March 2011

Cross-Platform Mobile App Development

Retrospection: Cross-Platform Mobile Development at EclipseCon - Heiko Behrens (Blog)

I met Heiko recently in Kiel, Germany, where we were both presenting our own visions of cross-platform mobile app development to a local chapter of the ACM. I was very impressed with his bredth of knowledge and his analysis of the field.

This blog post covers his most recent session at EclipseCon this month.

Now, in my view, the hybrid approach of using web technologies for the user interface, and generating local code to integrate into the features of the mobile device (camera, local storage, contacts list, accelerometer, compass, GPS, and so on), as FeedHenry does, is the best medium to long term bet. Web technologies have proved again and again that they can solve cross-platform UI issues, and they must be the safest bet. I'd much rather learn standard JavaScript, CSS, and HTML/HTML5, with a few extra local API calls to get at the local device's features, than learn a limited subset of JavaSCript or some new invented DSL language, when developing mobile apps.

2011-03-28 @ 15:42 Heiko Behrens responds:

Thank you for the reference, Mícheál.

I fully agree on the long term: As with the desktop mobile web technology eventually will be able to do real time rendering and tight integration with the host system. At the moment though, neither desktop browsers nor their mobile counter parts can even access a webcam or the built-in camera with pure web technology. It will take some time to catch up with native capabilities. And as we go, a significant amount of outdated browsers (such as WP7) ask for compromises.

We'll see what the future holds...

Posted by mofoghlu at March 28, 2011 11:24 AM | TrackBack
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