For my final year project, I have done a web application on the concept of replacing traditional web applications. I picked an area I was deeply interested in, smart phones. I am an avid iPhone user and I have bought Android phones also, they are great devices I can’t imagine not having now that they are here. As part of my thesis I touched on the old way to develop apps, using Symbian C++ or J2ME and we’ve come a long, long way since then.

For those interested, I will publish copy of my thesis after November 2011. I won’t publish it here just yet, as the examiners have yet to pour over the contents and grade it.

Some of Summary Conclusions:

  • Web Apps are definitely desirable, in some cases preferable

  • Limited API access in the browser (only Geo-location API possible) really hampers good quality applications

  • Web Apps for the moment should stick to being “Magazine” -type applications, with intelligent and innovative display of information

  • The tool-kits/libraries and IDE’s really aren’t up to scratch just yet. Things are improving, very slowly though. This area needs a lot more work from stake holders.

  • Prediction: WebGL (an effort to bring 3D) will really drive the push of web apps in next few years (as it did with PC’s)

It’s going to be interesting over the next few years to see how this space evolves. Will it just be iOS and Android with native apps for each? Will we see the market heavily fragmented and thus give web apps the opportunity to shine?