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Amazon Embraces HTML5 Web Apps 2

Amazon announced that it is now accepting HTML5 web apps. Spil Games is one of its first partners and applauds the Amazon move since it will help shape the industry

Amazon announced last week that it is now accepting HTML5 web apps into Amazon’s Mobile App Distribution Program.  Joining native apps in the Amazon Appstore, HTML5 games will reach Kindle Fire and Android device owners in nearly 200 countries. This move is an important milestone as the industry continues to become more open-minded, and to some degree, enthusiastic about the HTML5 format.  

Spil Games is among the first in the game industry to partner with Amazon on this. We applaud Amazon’s decision as we are seeing increasing growth from consumers using the mobile web.  

The road to this point hasn’t been easy.  We’ve seen great games not quite work exactly as planned on some devices. We’ve seen skeptics of the format in general who aren’t yet ready to take the chance. As a game publisher, we have experienced numerous hiccups as we have worked to meticulously create our own HTML5 sites which are still in beta form.

Amazon too has seen similar issues and has created solutions for developers. Vice president of Amazon Appstore, Games and Cloud Drive, Mike George, said “We’ve heard from developers that making their web apps available for mobile devices is hard because many times it means rewriting their app, which takes extra time and often requires third party tools. By launching support for HTML5 web apps in the Mobile App Distribution Program, we’re giving web developers the tools they need and all the benefits that native apps already enjoy in the Amazon Appstore and on Kindle Fire. This opens up new possibilities—starting with faster discovery, access to tools for increased monetization, and the ability to reach new customers for greater exposure.” 

Much is changing in the industry, and it’s changing quickly. As a publisher, we’re working with other developers to help simplify HTML5 development and bring our audiences to their games. With our beta HTML5 platforms, we’re seeing steady growth in terms of audience and revenue for developers such as Absolute Hero, SMERC and Raccoon Games.

With more publishers and the entire ecosystem supporting and encouraging the format, the industry will shift even more quickly. Native apps have their place among consumers who have been trained to go to their app stores for content. However with the proliferation of tablets, we see more consumers going to their browser for apps.  There will be 1.4 billion mobile devices with HTML5-compatible browsers by the end of the year, ABI Research has forecast. This represents an annual increase of 87 percent. Despite the fact that most devs continue to work with native apps, our prediction is that these browser-based games will equal the game play time of native apps within three years.  

The promise of HTML5 is “write once, deploy anywhere” and while the reality has been markedly different so far, Amazon’s announcement is a big step bringing that reality closer for web and app developers alike. Another barrier falls, what’s holding you back?  Let us know what you think.

Peter Driessen, Founder, Spil Games

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