A couple weeks ago, I suggested that mobile Web apps and “hybrid” apps are good for the businesses that produce them but that, with few exceptions, a native app delivers a better, more compelling experience for users. Some recent data from Zokem indicate that users do indeed prefer native apps to the Web, for now at least. The study found that people spent an average of 667 minutes using native apps versus 422 minutes in the browser in a given month.

According to Zokem’s research, one of the most fundamental aspects is perceived usability and overall user experience – Zokem CEO, Hannu Verkasalo

The native app marketplace is huge and continues to grow with Apple’s ecosystem representing over 80% of a $2 billion market. But one has to wonder if the shine is coming off of native applications, at least in the eyes of those who develop apps. There are many different platforms and device types to support and with Apple applying some questionable rules to in-app purchases, it seems that the golden age of native app development may be in jeopardy. While native apps make a lot of sense from a user experience perspective, they also have to make business sense and  that seems to be getting harder and harder.