If there’s one main advantage native apps have over web apps – it’s the ability to receive push notifications for getting new messages or updates on mobile devices. Well it looks like all that might change in the future. It has been reported that Mozilla is working on a push notification system for the Firefox web browser, which will allow users to receive notifications from websites without having to keep the sites open in their browser. Theoretically, it will also be able to relay push notifications to mobile devices (via Google’s Cloud-to-Device messaging or Apple’s Push Notification Service).
At the moment, we already have push notifications for web browsers like in Gmail for Chrome, but it will only work if the website is opened in a tab. Mozilla’s push notification system is supposed to be able to work around that limitation.
It is currently in its planning stages, and a lot of work still has yet to be done, but it looks like the gears are set in motion. If Mozilla’s push notification system gets adopted as a standard for all mobile browsers, it looks like people are going to have fewer reasons to use native apps over web apps; and let’s not forget this would mean less coding for developers who create multi-platform apps. One web app could probably suffice.