Mobile optimization is becoming more and more trendy these days. So if you don’t want to lose your piece of the pie, it’s time to step into the mobile world. What is the best way for your particular business to go mobile and have great mobile apps?
The following are three popular choices of mobile apps:
- Responsive Web Design
- Web App
- Native App
Let’s take a closer look at each before we compare them.
Responsive websites allow you to have a single website that automatically fits the screen size of the device on which it is being viewed. So, whether you’re accessing it from your PC, iPhone, Android or tablet, your website will format perfectly. The website automatically adapts to accommodate for resolution, image size and scripting abilities. This eliminates the need for resizing, panning and scrolling by the user in order to view the website on any device.
Web apps (mobile websites) are designed specifically for mobile devices considering all the limitations and opportunities of the platform. While developing a mobile website you should keep in mind the small screen size, interaction methods (touch) and limited connection speed. Content must be easily accessible, fast-loading and readable. As there are a bunch of mobile devices with different screen sizes and interaction types, it is impossible to create a website per device type. So even your mobile website has to be a little responsive to fit every screen.
There are also a few principles to follow when developing a web app (mobile website), like organizing your content into one column layout for a more user-friendly interface. Web apps look and feel very much like native apps – they even store data in your browser’s cache, so much of the app can be accessed offline.
The most common option for companies looking for a mobile version of their website is to build a mobile site. This is a separate version of your website that users are redirected to when they access your website via a mobile phone or tablet.
Native apps are some software specifically developed for mobile devices. Native apps are not common among all devices, because they are made for a particular operating system. Users have to download the app mostly from a specific OS store, like Google Play or the Apple Store and install it on the mobile device.
The greatest thing about apps is that they are flexible and let you have not only the same stuff that is on desktop website, but also have some great mobile-specific features such as use of camera, click-to-call buttons, GPS data or NFC, contacts or galleries, push notifications, etc.
Next post, we will go over the pros and cons of each of the mobile apps mentioned here.