I was chatting to Tom today about the all things iPad/iPhone etc and he mentioned an article on the Guardian where they mentioned being hard pushed to create an iPad app that offered anything over their website.
We have often thought this about many apps that litter the app store that could easily have been done in HTML 5. With a target of the iPhone there is a lot of support and it’s often hard to tell if something is a native app or a web app (pie guy is a great example). In many ways it’s a better idea to do this, as you can then use the same “app” on any device, the BBC mobile news site is a great example, and I’m unsure what valuable extras they could add by creating a native app…
Obviously we quickly created one and it works a treat. Basically you click the bookmarklet on a site of your choice, and when it loads it won’t open in normal Safari and won’t show you an address bar. This is great for apps like Gmail, Google Tasks, Latitude, BBC news, etc etc
Step by step
- First drag this link to your safari bookmark bar. Convert to WebApp
- Sync your iPhone (with bookmark sync turned on)
- Browse to a website you want to make a web clip of through Safari on your iPhone
- Open your bookmarks and tap the one you just added to bookmark bar (nothing will appear to happen)
- Then tap the + at the bottom of the screen
- Select, “Add to Home Screen” and give it a sensible name.
You can see here the diference between the BBC sport website with and without using the bookmarklet:
Saved as WebApp
UPDATE It seems standard links on the first page open in Safari :( Still works well for Google web apps!