One billion HTML5-friendly mobiles coming in 2013

And 15 per cent of mobile apps to be HTML5 web apps next year, research finds...
Written by Natasha Lomas, Contributor on

And 15 per cent of mobile apps to be HTML5 web apps next year, research finds...

HTML5 will continue its upward trajectory in the mobile arena, analysts are predicting - with 15 per cent of apps launched in 2012 set to be HTML5 web apps, rather than native mobile apps, according to IDC.


HTML5: 'One billion compatible mobiles to ship in 2013'Photo: W3C under Creative Commons

The analyst house predicts HTML5 will have a big year next year, giving app makers a way to compete against the two dominant mobile platforms - Google's Android and Apple's iOS.

IDC says the primary driver for HTML5 uptake is developers seeking to bypass native OS fragmentation and exploit distribution channels outside of OS-affiliated mobile app stores - "two very powerful motivators", IDC said.

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Growth is being driven by robust demand from multiple hardware vendors and software developers seeking to create rich media services across multiple platforms, including giants such as Adobe, Google and Microsoft.

Adobe last month announced it was ending development of its Flash Player on mobile devices to concentrate its mobile efforts on HTML5 instead.

HTML5's impact will be felt far beyond mobile handsets, according to Strategy Analytics, which says the technology will enable smartphones, feature phones, tablets, notebooks, desktop PCs, TVs and vehicles to converge through cloud services.

"HTML5 will be a pivotal technology in the growth of a multiscreen, 4G LTE cloud that is emerging for mobile operators, device makers, car manufacturers, component vendors and web app developers," said Neil Mawston, executive director at Strategy Analytics, in a statement.

"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."

Despite soaring growth, HTML5 is still some years from maturity. Strategy Analytics describes it as a "relatively immature technology", noting its limited APIs and feature-sets compared to native mobile platforms such as Android and iOS.

"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," Thomas Kang, director at Strategy Analytics, added in a statement.

In related news, freelance website Elance noted a 238 per cent year-on-year rise in demand for HTML5 skills this year, among the 650,000 jobs posted on the site.

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