The HTML5 speed tax

Adam Tinworth
Adam Tinworth

The Facebook native app

It’s odd, given how much HTML5 is celebrated as the grand panacea that will save us all from nasty native apps, that what should be the flagship example – the Facebook app – has just shifted from HTML5 to a native app on iOS:

This doesn’t mean that Facebook is abandoning HTML5, Johnson says. “The mobile web is still very important to us, as are all of our interfaces,” he said. Problem is, HTML5 is a technology that, while promising in the long run, isn’t able to deliver the type of speed and performance we expect right now. It’s a long bet, and something that Facebook aims to continue developing.

Sounds like pinning all you hopes on skirting round Apple with HTML5 web apps might not be a guaranteed solution. If Facebook can’t do it…

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Adam is a lecturer, trainer and writer. He's been a blogger for over 20 years, and a journalist for more than 30. He lectures on audience strategy and engagement at City, University of London.