That’s for sure.
But what is HTML5 and why is it so important for the future of the Web and the basis for user interfaces even for business applications?
I’ll get to that, but let’s start a bit earlier in history to understand the outline of what happened and where we are now. In its early days, the Internet was only a connection between many universities around the globe so it was built to exchange data and information between these institutes to enable researchers to access those information. This is when it became clear it was easier to exchange information when there is one joint format to structure, format and link to similar information. This was 1989. Tim Berners-Lee working in Switzerland specified a hypertext language, and HTML was born.
Thirty years later and HTML is still the foundation of our well know browsers and fundamental for our access to the internet.
But of course HTML was enhanced many times. To give HTML a standardized basis the World Wide Web Consortium (W3C) was founded 1994. In the meantime there was much progress to enhance HTML to add more formats, allowing embedding graphics, videos and much more. Those definitions of the W3C are the basis for software manufactures of modern browsers, even each browser still has his own character how to handle the rendering of the described information to make it visible to the user.
More than ten years ago Business Software companies hesitantly started to build client user interfaces running in the browsers to allow easy access, benefit from not requiring local installations. To extend Browser capabilities and increase user experience, companies began developing add-ons. For example, some well-known add-ons include Adobe Flash or Microsoft Silverlight.
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As the expectations for better graphical representation of data and interaction with the site directly increased there was a gap between those expectations and the possibilities within HTML-browsers. This spawned the evolution where Web-browsers became the standard interfaces for many purposes, even for graphic intensive games or business software. This is cloud computing – Lightweight and easy to use interfaces that deliver deep functionality in a beautiful way.
As the demand for high quality interfaces increased, the new standard of the web and for state-of-the-art business software became HTML5
HTML5 is best known from when Steve Jobs decided to stop supporting Adobe Flash on Apple devices in 2010. He claimed to only focus on the new Web-Standard HTML5 because it is more effective, running in new browsers without add-ons and saving battery because of higher efficiency.
Today we can say that Steve was right once gain and now HTML5 is supported by all modern browsers. Countless websites switched to this new technology (even HTML5 definition from W3C is still not final yet, hopefully finally passed in 2014).
Some software manufactures, for example SAP, is not only building UI’s based on HTLM5 now but focuses on HTML5 as their primary UI technology.
This smart move brings a lot of benefits to the users of SAP software:
- Runs in modern browsers – no add-ons required
- Simplified rollout – no local installation
- Lightweight interface – easy to learn – effective to use
- Runs across multiple operating systems
For example SAP Cloud for Travel and Expense, a travel and expense management solution running in the cloud is available now with a new HTML5 User Interface. This combines all the benefits with using newest browsers across operating systems.
See here for some examples of the user Interfaces
HTML5 is available on mobile devices as well, which are controlled with help of a touch sensitive display instead of a computer mouse. But currently native applications built for each mobile platform individually are still more effective for the users and allow easier and faster processes with less touch-point.
HTML5 is definitely the future, for up-to-date business software this is already reality.
Start today with using modern software by SAP:
Hungry to see more? SAP Cloud for Travel and Expense 1402 with enhanced User Experience and Mobility