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Is Safari the new IE?

Duct Tape, fixer of all things!Nolan Lawson: “It’s tempting to interpret this as a deliberate effort by Apple to sabotage any threats to their App Store business model, but a conspiracy seems unlikely, since that part of the business mostly breaks even. Another possibility is that they’re just responding to the demands of iOS developers, which largely amount to 1) more native APIs and 2) Swift, Swift, Swift. But since Apple is pretty good at keeping a lid on their internal process, it’s anyone’s guess.”

The web is ever changing and evolving as is the mobile development community. Here we have a web developer that’s dying to take advantage of new technologies but is stymied by Apple’s lack of support for a set of open standards. Do I think this is deliberate on Apple’s part? Well, yes and no, but I don’t think it’s malicious. I think it’s a matter of priorities.

Compare and contrast Apple and Google. Apple is about creating and selling hardware with the best user experience it can possibly provide. That means investing in the native experience. On the other hand we have Google who is all about the web and web technologies. They spend their time investing in the web. It makes complete sense for both companies to invest in the thing they believe in. It’s part of their DNA. They can’t help but do what’s right for their respective platforms.

It is interesting to note Google forked WebKit into Blink a couple years back. You gotta wonder if Google believed Apple was moving too slowly when it came to standards adoption. It seems a reasonable conclusion.

I’d love to hear from Don Melton on the subject. Don was the guy that started the Safari and WebKit projects at Apple. He would know better than anyone why Apple is doing what they’re doing. Having worked on some large projects in my past life I feel pretty confident in saying it’s a matter of company priorities. Pretty simple really. You have to put resources where it makes sense for your company.

Apple will come around. They have to. The web will eventually mature to the point that it can compete with native applications. When that happens the browser will have to become the new operating system.

By Rob Fahrni

Husband / Father / Developer

One reply on “Is Safari the new IE?”

Interesting subject. Enjoyed the discussion we had about it yesterday. The only differing view I have is on whether or not Apple is doing this out of malice, which I wholeheartedly believe they are. Someday I think you’ll see that, but for now we simply disagree.

However, you and I are in agreement regarding the need for a better web experience before the world can cut ties with “the desktop”. I prefer to work with native applications and allow the cloud/web/sync/etc do its thing in the background. I just can’t get the same look and feel out of web-based applications. This is why I still prefer using Office 365 over Google Apps. I get the native Office applications via 365 with the web-based functionality in the background. When I need the web-based Office apps they’re there. Until Google can give me the same native feel I’m inclined to continue using 365, even if I have to pay for it.

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