Native apps have overtaken the web as the main place where smartphone users go for entertainment, information and more. So it should come as no surprise that one of the companies that profits the most from our use of the web is looking for ways to get us to use the it more again. According to [Amir Efrati at] The Information, Google last year secretly acquired a startup called Agawi, which had developed technology to use and stream mobile apps over the web without downloading them first, used in applications like in-app adds to preview and promote gaming apps.
Cool. The ability to try an app without downloading it is great. There’s speculation, too, that Google might want to apply Agawi technology to make better web apps. Or, in hyperbolic terms, that Google is trying to “kill native apps”. The key question to answer will be: how will web apps deliver a better user experience than native apps? I’m biased toward native apps, for all the known and obvious reasons to-date, but open to the benefit of another approach, too.