Thursday, September 15, 2011

Of Apps and Browsers. . .

This isn't a rant, and I'm going to surprise a few Flash dudes by not bashing on Flash for once (yes, I've been pretty hard on my roots lately).

Today Microsoft announced that there will be a plugin-less experience in their IE10 Metro browser.  And yes, the Flash hate squad instantly jumped on the "Flash is Dead" train and drove it to Link bait land.  Whatever, it's a typical response.

Here's what I see the news as:  a Paradigm Shift.  We have to look at the browser in a different light, and maybe look at it in the same light as it's hated Plugin children.  The browser is being limited, and it's role is changing in the age of Mobile domination.  And guess what?  That doesn't mean the death of Flash, they have just turned the browser holy land into yet another "App".

So what am I getting at?  Move on Flash dudes, move onto AIR.  Don't hinder your awesome experiences by encasing them in a box.  A box that doesn't even want them in the first place at this point.  Am I the only one that has noticed a correlation to how bad Flash runs and the Iteration of Browser?  Maybe I'm a conspiracy dork (and I'm running a MacBook Pro as well, lol), but a lot of people have been noticing.

But I've also been noticing how much every single browser has sucked terribly when trying to view something that would've made the FWA's any other year.  Hell, even HTML5 sucks balls on the browsers.

I moved into Native Mobile Application development for a reason.  I believe that browsers have their place as a renderer.  But for a real experience I've been looking to Native Apps more and more lately.  And with new App Stores popping up on every OS everyday, I think your viewers/clients are being trained to do the same thing.

Maybe I'm wrong, and I'm sure I'll hear about it if you disagree with me.  That's cool.  Let's discuss.


felix said...

I've Got to disagree! Web apps beat desktop apps every time.

Why? Because people are lazy. If someone has to install your app to see your content, you have already lost 95% of your viewers.

Of course web apps are not as powerful as desktop apps, but they are as powerful enough for most needs beyond hi-end 3D gaming (and that is coming soon via Unity and WebGL).

The other reason is that developers are lazy (or smart). No single developer can be an expert at building native apps for Mac, PC, iOS, android etc. Whereas if you build a modern web-app using HTML5 + LAMP, chances are it will run everywhere (except IE6).

Of course it's not an either/or debate, there is room for both. But as a developer you have to make the choice of what to focus on.

Seantron said...

Well you could be good at all of those if you learned C++, but that's a different debate for another day. And I think that you are looking at things in the old "Plugin Penetration Rate" paradigm. But it's all good. Good luck to you.