Apple goes back to the future with web apps

“Apple’s about to introduce Service Workers in Safari 11.1,” Jonny Evans writes for Computerworld. “First introduced in Safari Technology Preview 46, Service Workers allow background scripts to power offline web applications and should make it possible (for example) for developers to build Web apps that can work even when offline.”

“This may mean web services you can save to your Home screen like any other app, use of the camera from within a web page, background sync and other ways to make web apps that will work on, or off-line. They are part of an industry-wide initiative to enable developers to build Progressive Web Apps [PWAs], browser-based apps that can also work offline, thanks to Service Workers which cache data for offline use,” Evans writes. “There are some who argue that by introducing such support Apple is changing the politics of iOS development by raising the status of web apps above that of those sold through the App Store.

“I don’t really agree with that analysis,” Evans writes. “While I do think we’ll find web apps will replace many of the single-function, relatively simple iOS apps, I also think doing so will raise the status of those apps that are made available via the App Store.”

Read more in the full article here.

MacDailyNews Take: Expect widespread adoption of PWAs once Apple delivers support for Service Workers and related tech to Safari.

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