How to choose the best mobile development environment

Native vs web apps vs hybrid. If you're still engaged in this debate, this guide will get you up to speed quick

How to choose the best mobile development environment
ITworld/Stephen Sauer

It's a mobile-crazed world, and companies and developers are struggling to keep up with the demand for consumer-facing mobile apps, and for mobilizing enterprise services and data. It's a particularly difficult problem for businesses -- Gartner says that by the end of 2017, the demand for mobile apps in enterprises will grow at least five times faster than IT can deliver them.

The problem is not just skyrocketing demand. It's that developers need to choose the right technologies for building mobile apps. Today, there are three broad choices: building native apps for each platform (iOS, Android, and Windows Phone); building a mobile Web app that can run on browsers, using HTML 5, CSS, and JavaScript; or taking a hybrid approach by building mobile Web apps, and then putting them in native wrappers so they'll run on devices like native apps do.

Each approach has benefits and drawbacks. So Let's start off with a look at each technology, and then move on to how to choose among them.

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