We continue to debate if mobile apps are here to stay and Google continues to improve their mobile services. Over the past couple of months, the Gmail team has been able to speed up their mobile site 2-3x.
They shared a lot of interesting information in relation to web apps on Android.
So yes, HTML5 and the mobile web are clearly up to the task of building rich and powerful apps. But speed is arguably the most important feature of any application. And we’ve remained unsatisfied with Gmail’s performance on the mobile web. Until now.
As of today, and thanks to numerous optimizations, I’m happy to report that Gmail for mobile loads 2-3x faster than it did in April (see chart below). In fact on newer iPhone and Android devices, the app now loads in under 3 seconds. So yes, the mobile web can deliver really responsive applications.
Looking ahead, it’s also worth noting that as a worldwide mobile team, we’ll continue to build native apps where it makes sense. But we’re incredibly optimistic about the future of the mobile web — both for developers and for the users we serve.Alex NicolaouGoogle Engineering Manager
Phones will continue to get faster in 2010 along with the carrier networks that power them. We are weeks away from T-Mobile flipping the switch on HSPA 7.2 which promises lower latency. The combination of faster processors and lower network response times will make web apps more enjoyable, but it is nice to hear Google say they will “build native apps where it makes sense”.
Speaking of native apps, I really hope the Gmail gets a major update in Android 2.1.