Technologies and trends are coming and going. And they often clash. We’ve seen lots of them in the past – just think of the “DVD+R vs DVD-R” one in the early 2000s, and the “Blu-ray vs. HD-DVD” one later. If you thought these “standard wars” are a thing of the past, think again. The “participants” of the clashes might have moved online, but they are there, each of them supporting their own end of the rope.
Here are two of the biggest online dilemmas I hope to finally be settled in 2016.
Mobile websites vs. native apps
Smartphones have grown into the largest medium for companies to deliver their content to their consumers. And there are currently two ways to do it: either through a mobile-optimized website, or a native app that users can download and install on their phones and tablets.
As usual, both variants have their supporters and opponents. Except for a few exceptions – like the all slots free casino, which Google doesn’t allow to release a native Android app – both ways are open for companies. And it seems that the world has a hard time deciding which one is the better solution.
Mobile websites are instantly available to any user with an internet connection. They are not limited by compatibility – they can be accessed on any device, running any operating system. They are easier to upgrade, easier to find and share, and most importantly they can’t be deleted from phones and tablets.
Apps, in turn, are better when functions beyond deployment of content are needed. They offer a superior level of interactivity and personalization. They are making better use of the smartphone’s hardware, and they can run even without an internet connection (with a few exceptions, of course).
Which one of the two solutions is better? It depends… and only time will tell.
Responsive vs. Adaptive web design
Being a web designer was easy back in the day – you had a specific range of resolutions on which your website had to look good. Today things have changed a lot: now you have to build websites that have to look flashy on anything between a smartwatch and a smart TV. As usual, designers use two different approaches to the issue: adaptive and responsive design.
Responsive websites seem more flexible at first, constantly adapting to the size of the screen they are displayed on. Their goal is to stay readable and usable no matter how big or small the screen would be. Adaptive design, in turn, uses several layouts (instead of one that responds to the screen size), showing the one fit to the needs of the display. Adaptive design is less flexible, but responsive design is harder to build. A responsive design, in turn, will look good on any screen size, whereas adaptive can have issues on some not-so-standard monitors or smartphone screens.
Which one of the two will emerge as the winner? Only time will tell…