Comparing mobile apps platforms from a provider perspective


This is a draft, work-in-progress analysis derived from the “Closing the Gap with Native” Headlight task force.


To compare the various existing mobile apps development approaches, two main perspectives can be taken:

This document proposes a model to analyze a give mobile app development approach from provider perspective. To that end, it identifies the various high level operations a provider will be confronted to create, deploy and maintain a mobile application on the market.

See also:

A Framework for comparing mobile apps approaches from a provider perspective

To make it sustainable to provide a given application, content and service providers need an environment that reduces as much as possible the costs of developing, deploying and maintaining a given application, and maximizes the expected outcome, which can be, but is not necessarily, of monetary nature.

The following parameters are taken into account to assess the costs:

Development cost
  • Hiring / training developers
  • Writing code
  • Finding documentation and guidance
  • Finding libraries
  • Reporting platform bugs
  • Debugging and diagnostics
  • Testing
Deployment cost
  • Getting authorization to deploy
  • Uploading the app
  • Advertising the app
  • Protecting the app code
Maintenance cost
  • Getting user input and feedback
  • Keeping up to date with changes (in particular incompatible ones) in the platform
  • Getting visibility into future evolutions of the platform
Expected outcomes
  • Reaching out to as many users as possible
  • Getting paid
  • Getting recognition
  • Enabling social change
Expected outcomes is a bit hand-wavy: is there another better way to phrase this? Are there other high level outcomes we should include?