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Last week, Microsoft finally unveiled the latest version of its operating system, Windows 8.
Any release of the software giant's flagship product is a big deal for Microsoft, but Windows 8 is arguably the biggest product launch in the company's history. Why? Windows 8 is the company's attempt to successfully shift to world in which computing is increasingly touch-driven. And it might very well be be the company's only opportunity to make the shift.
As mobile's prominence has grown, so too have the myths about what it takes to create and execute on a successful mobile strategy.
Given the size of the mobile opportunity, the size of the challenges and the speed with which mobile ecosystems are evolving, it's not surprising that many of these myths are accepted at face value. Unfortunately for companies trying to make mobile progress, some of these myths are detrimental.
There has been a lot of talk about Facebook and its monetization of mobile, but before the company can monetize its rapidly-growing mobile audience, it needs to make sure it's providing a quality mobile experience.
Unfortunately for the world's largest social network, the Facebook iOS app, which was built using HTML5 to more easily support development across multiple mobile platforms, has historically been considered a poor effort. A frequent complaint: it's too slow.
Industry observers and analysts have been predicting that mobile commerce would have a bright future for nearly a decade, but it wasn't until recently that those predictions started to look like they might be accurate, if still poorly timed.
The latest source of confirmation that mobile commerce is real: eBay's CEO John Donahoe.
While the native versus mobile web apps debate continues to rage, one thing is for sure: mobile browsers are going to get a lot more capable, and that means there will be more development of mobile web apps.
Developers of mobile web apps will face numerous challenges, from performance to monetization. But one challenge stands out perhaps more than the rest: building an app that functions and looks good across multiple devices.
The past year hasn't exactly been easy for Mozilla.
The organization's popular web browser, Firefox, has become a bit less popular thanks in large part to the rise of Google's Chrome web browser. Once a solid number two in the browser market, Chrome, according to some sources, has surpassed Firefox in usage.
In a world where technology changes rapidly and businesses that don't keep up often perish, it's no surprise that many companies keep one eye on the present and one eye on the future as they develop their strategies.
On the surface, it seems sensible. After all, not paying attention to the future seems like a dangerous if not potentially fatal mistake.
But is this really the case? Or can focusing too much attention to the future be equally dangerous?
Native mobile apps may still be the best way to deliver mobile applications that provide rich, enjoyable experiences, but there is a place for the mobile web, and in many cases, it is increasingly promising.
Technically, however, many challenges remain. The number of mobile devices and platforms grows by the day, and capabilities often differ significantly.
Should you build a native app or a mobile website? The answer depends on who you ask, and there's a very good chance that the person you ask will have very strong feelings one way or the other.
Yes, the native versus web debate is still alive and well, and those on both sides are still ready to throw down over their beliefs.
The holidays are nearing, and even though we all know that they'll be here sooner than later, many of us will procrastinate and wait until the last minute before we burst into a frantic last minute shopping drive.
Fortunately, rushing to buy gifts at the last minute isn't as difficult as it used to be thanks to the smartphone.
With one in hand, it's possible to remain relatively sane while zig-zagging around town looking for the most elusive of gifts -- the day before it's needed.
Will the future of mobile apps be controlled by native apps, or web apps? Or will both share the spotlight?
Today, there's little doubt that native apps are winning the hearts and minds of consumers and developers alike. And for good reason: if you want a great experience that takes full advantage of the capabilities of today's most advanced mobile phones, you need a native app.
When it comes to tablets, traditional publishers have a dilemma: the numbers make it clear that the money is currently in native apps, but for publishers struggling to survive, giving up 30% of revenue to Apple, along with valuable subscriber data, is a tough pill to swallow.
So many publishers are trying to have their cake and eat it too. How? By building web apps that look and feel like native apps.