Mobile Web vs. Apps: Five Reasons Web Wins

August 4, 2012

As an event professional, you probably have a few tips and tricks to surviving a large amount of travel. My trick is to not leave home without my iPhone and iPad.

Basically, they’re the electronic Swiss army knife that can provide immediate information or entertain me while on a flight or in the taxi. There are plenty of hi-tech options to improve your traveling experience, but the question is – what’s better, Websites formatted for mobile devices or apps?

Here is my opinion on these simple and portable technologies:

Mobile sites are best for quick updates on information that changes on a regular basis such as the status of a flight, the London tube schedule, scores of my teams’ games that I can’t attend in real time or when empties will be returned.

Here are my top five mobile Web sites:

  1. Marriott - Easy for finding somewhere to stay for my last minute business trip.
  2.  
  3.  
  4. Restaurant Row - Great for finding somewhere to eat when you’re out of town. It also lets you leave a review.
  5.  
  6.  
  7. Answers-   I love being right and can look up great information while on the go. The mobile version lets Smartphone users input quick questions and read the answers.
  1. Twitter - I actually like this version better than the app, it runs smoother in real time.
  1. London Tube - Their live travel feed lets me know if there’s anything I should be avoiding.

Apps, on the other hand, are best for holding content that I want to review often and contain unique functionality such as a game or GPS feature.

My top five iPhone and iPad apps are:

  1. Facebook - I really don’t need to explain why.
  1. MLB – Did the Cardinals beat the Cubs again?
  1. USA TODAY -My solution to not cluttering the airplane seat bin.
  1. MotionX -GPS on your phone, no more rental car charges!
  1. Netflix -In case my kids are with me and need to catch an episode of SpongeBob.

Mobile Web is the clear winner.

Why?

1. Immediacy – Mobile Web is instantly available. Users don’t have to download anything.

2. Compatibility – Mobile Web is compatible across devices. All smart phones can take advantage of the site, not just Android or iPhone users.  What if an exhibitor needs to check their empty return notification or freight status on the go? They’ll be able to easily see that on our Expresso mobile Web site on any device soon.

3. Find-ability – Mobile sites can be found easier. Users of online engines will see mobile optimized sites in their search results first.

4. Upgrade-ability – Mobile sites can be updated instantly. It doesn’t require multiple updates and downloads by users.

5. Share-ability – Mobile sites can be shared easily between users by simply sharing a link.

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