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Native Apps versus Mobile Websites

The debate about developing Native Apps versus developing Mobile Websites rages on. While moBistro is firmly in the corner of developing mobile websites, it is good to evaluate the pros and cons of each. Computerworld recently published an unbiased article on this (comparing Native Apps for iPhone development with Mobile Websites on an iPhone). This table is an excerpt from it, and provides good insight. One thing of note before you peruse the evaluation is that moBistro provides the tools to eliminate ALL the cons listed under 'Mobile Website.'

Pros Cons
Mobile Website
Fast development, easy deployment, rapid testing Limited development tools
No need for developer program membership Cannot access full range of iPhone OS and hardware features
Freedom from App Store restrictions and review Do not offer direct sales revenue or access to iAd
Most features can be adapted to other platforms Require web server hosting and related costs
Secure connections enable access to data without storing on device No full application data storage on device
Native App
Ability to showcase and monetize apps through App Store Must get Apple approval (for nonenterprise apps)
Access to iAd, in-app purchases, game center, and other Apple-provided methods for further monetizing apps Each new version must be approved again
Full range of Xcode development tools including testing/debugging Requires knowledge of Objective-C and Apple's Cocoa frameworks and related APIs as well as familiarity with Xcode development tools
For enterprise members, the ability to develop internal tools with full access to iPhone OS tools and APIs, and distribution without the App Store Development must be done on a Mac OS X computer
Cost of developer program membership

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