What do we really know about HTML5? It is a Web based standard with the potential to create cross-platform apps that can run anywhere, everywhere. The key word here is potential. HTML5 is evolving and there is little doubt that it will be a major component of the future. That does not yet mean that developers have wholly embraced it.
The native frameworks and (gasp) Flash still dominate much of what is run on Web and mobile applications. Flash is on its last legs but the fact of the matter is that it is still one of the prime standards for many of the applications we interact with on a daily basis. It is not like we flip a switch and all of a sudden everything is HTML5 based. Below we take a look at an infographic that examines some of the facts around HTML5 hype versus the current real world landscape.
For faithful ReadWriteMobile readers that are used to checking in here to see the latest developments on what is happening with the HTML5 ecosystem, this infographic is going to make you a little angry. Even though I, as am objective reporter, am relatively platform and standards agnostic, it even angered me a little bit.
Anybody that knows my opinion on infographics, I diligently fact check them to make sure they are not misleading or blatantly lying. While some of the information on this particular infographic is a little dated, the general theme is spot on: yes, HTML5 is still in adoption phase and is outpaced by the native frameworks.
While this is true, the signs of change are in the air. Even Adobe admitted that mobile Flash is a dead fish and the last instance of it to be released will be run on Android Ice Cream Sandwich devices. Adobe itself is moving to create HTML5 and other Web-based tools for desktop and mobile applications.
The source of the infographic is a Washington-state based Zipline Games, makers of the Moai Cloud service for games. Moai Cloud 1.0 will be released March 23rd. The CEO of Zipline is Todd Hooper who has been fairly outspoken that HTML5 will not be the future for Web or mobile games.
"HTML5 was not created with games in mind and the working group ...had no members from game companies." Bingo.— Todd Hooper (@toddhooper) November 2, 2011
Hooper does have a point. When it comes to performance of applications, games set the benchmark. At this point, HTML5 is just not ready for games. Does that mean it is not the future? That is difficult to ascertain. Say what you want about standards bodies and their actual usefulness, but HTML5 is certainly not ready for the official stamp of approval. Layered sound is a major issue and frame rates tend to lag behind other standards. While Sencha and appMobi among others attempt to improve HTML5 performance, game developers struggle to make do with what the standard allows.
Check out the infographic below and let us know what you think about the future of HTML5 in games in the comments. Also stay tuned for a Q&A with Hooper coming early next week.
The full high resolution image can be found here.