Break the tyranny of native mobile apps

Once freedom reigned in the form of Web apps that worked across every platform. Mobile apps have taken a big step back with platform lock-in -- but there's hope

If like me you're a Windows Phone user it can be painful to re-enter the United States after an overseas trip. At certain airports, including SFO, people with Apple and Android phones get to skip passport control. Not me -- I had to line up at a kiosk with the hoi polloi, jam my passport into the machine, and take a 20th-century selfie.

I see this (admittedly) first-world problem in two ways. As an owner of a minority smartphone with an uncertain future I wonder if I should bite the bullet and switch. But as a citizen of both the United States and the Web, I instead wonder why mobile passport control should have anything to do with the Apple and Google app stores. Can't a mobile Web app handle this relatively simple chore?

Copyright © 2015 IDG Communications, Inc.

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