AT&T's annual developer conference at the Consumer Electronics Show delivered a heavy dose of HTML5 and ways to monetize them.
HTML5 apps are increasingly popular as publishers look to control their own destiny. In the mobile app world, publishers are controlled by gatekeepers---Apple, Google, Microsoft, RIM etc. HTML5 provides an escape from that reality and could eventually replace apps totally.
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The rub: HTML5 apps are tricky to monetize. If there's no monetization there are no developers. That's why AT&T's move to create an app store for HTML5 apps and a billing system could turn out to be important.
Rachel King noted that AT&T is courting developers. Verizon does the same. If both sides got on the HTML5 bandwagon you'd have some interesting possibilities. Jeff Bradley, senior vice president of AT&T's mobility and consumer unit, said the carrier is looking to developing a storefront that will be "a fresh approach."
If HTML5 apps can be surfaced well with monetization hooks it's possible that other venues could poach the app gatekeeping role.