Gartner Says by 2016, More Than 50 Percent of Mobile Apps Will be Hybrid
February 04, 2013
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With enterprises under extreme pressure from management and employees to develop and deploy mobile applications to accommodate mobile work styles and increase customer engagement, Gartner, Inc. predicts that more than 50 percent of mobile apps deployed by 2016 will be hybrid.

"Mobility has always been a separate topic for IT professionals, but it is now influencing mainstream strategies and tactics in the wider areas of technology enablement and enterprise architectures," said Ken Dulaney, vice president and distinguished analyst at Gartner. "Increasingly, enterprises are finding that they need to support multiple platforms, especially as the [bring your own device] BYOD trend gains momentum."

To address the need for mobile applications, enterprises are looking to leverage applications across multiple platforms. The advantages of the hybrid architecture, which combines the portability of HTML5 Web apps with a native container that facilitates access to native device features, will appeal to many enterprises.

The need for context awareness in mobile applications has increased with the capabilities of mobile devices, causing developers to consider both hybrid and native architectures. For applications to leverage location information, notification systems, mapping capabilities and even on-device hardware such as the camera, the applications need to be developed using either hybrid or native architectures. This has caused enterprise developers to consider alternatives to Web application development.

"Our advice would be to assume the enterprise will have to manage a large and diverse set of mobile applications that will span all major architectures," said Van Baker, research vice president at Gartner. "Enterprises should consider how applications can be enriched or improved by the addition of native device capabilities and evaluate development frameworks that offer the ability to develop native, hybrid and Web applications using the same code base. Where possible, development activities should be consolidated via cross-platform frameworks."

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