Mobile site or mobile app?

Published on Nov 3, 2010 by Paul Baker | Category: design, mobile

Many people ask us, should we build a mobile website or an app? We generally suggest that clients build a mobile site first, unless there are compelling reasons to have an app.

Mobile site advantages:

  • Build it once and deploy to all devices (reach large audiences quickly)
  • Costs a lot less money
  • Backward compatibility is less complex
  • Design revisions are easy and don't require installing updates
  • Audience penetration doesn't depend on the success of particular devices
  • No Apple approval process

Think about creating an app(s) if you:

  • need to store data locally when a connection to the web is not available
  • require seamless GPS integration
  • need seamless integration of audio and video
  • are delivering products such as games
  • want a slicker look and feel
  • can productively make use of a wider variety of controls built in tothe device
  • have a board member who just purchased an iPhone

To see an example of a mobile site with quite a bit of functionality that looks and functions well, and was created on a limited budget, take a look at our Children's Memorial site,

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