Using Apple Tool to Create an Android App

phonegap.gifI came across an interesting PDF today on how to use Apple Dashcode and PhoneGap to create an Android application. The author, Dave Prochnow, observes the…

"…popularity of the iPhone, the Apple portion of the (PhoneGap) wiki is flourishing, while the less popular DROID section doesn’t seem to be receiving the same level of lovin"

While this is partly due to the popularity of the iPhone, I’d also say that some people are using PhoneGap on iPhone because it’s a lot easier than Objective-C development.

I personally find Android Java development much easier than Objective-C. The productivity gains you get with using PhoneGap instead of Objective-C are much greater than PhoneGap vs Android Java. If you are programming for Android, it’s often the case that you might as well just use Android Java.

My personal experience of PhoneGap is that, while it’s easy to create an application, it’s less easy to give it the look and feel of native iPhone and Android applications. You end up having to use 3rd party Javascript libraries that have their own learning curves and nuances (bugs). Also, the end result always end up having a slightly different look and feel to an equivalent native app.

Changing the subject slightly – The iPad is particularly interesting because many, what I call ‘brand ware’, apps are being developed that look better because they don’t use the iOS look and feel. These tend to be graphically rich and include images, galleries, videos etc. PhoneGap is ideal for these.