Is it good or bad for user to give a feel and look of native apps to Website for mobile?

  • Transition effects on page change
  • Fixed floating footer or header
  • Hide address bar
  • Native app like UI

or website should be like a website?

Some Key differences of Native apps and Websites

  • Native application works fast but website speed depends on internet speed
  • Not all people use iPhone or Android
  • Not all people use Touch screen mobile

When it's good to give feeling of Native Apps UI and Behaviour to Website and when not?

2 Answers 2


A website should be like a website.

There is a clear distinction between using a web app and a native app and it should be that way. Connection speed can definitely hinder performance, and give the perception that the OS is what is causing the performance issue if styled to look like a native app. Also you don't want to confuse people. No matter how hard you try, chances are that without using the OS's native application framework, your application will never quite be exactly right, and users will notice.

  • +1 You are right and when we try to mimic the Native behavior in Website. We use hacks, JavaScript which makes the website slower. Aug 17, 2011 at 12:43

I would say that it depends.

What are you trying to achieve? Are you trying to make something that people will use in a particular way (and probably regularly) from their mobile device, with particular functions, like an app, or that people will browse like a website?

Website-style tend to be "I'm using this website, it happens to now have a version of it optimised for mobile usage". You're producing the same content, it's just optimised for mobile usage.

Things that may be better done in app style tend to be things that are used regularly and where the workflow tends to be different on a mobile device to what it would be on the normal version of the website, or providing a different set of functionality.

What Matt says about the importance of user perception is true, but I don't agree entirely with what he says about never being able to get it exactly right; with care (and leaving a good deal of it to web-based mobile app frameworks like jQuery Mobile or Sencha Touch), you can make it act like a native app in a convincing way.

My advice is to review your goals and decide from them which is more appropriate based upon what you are trying to achieve.

  • But speed is issue with Web Aug 17, 2011 at 12:59
  • @Jitendra: it can be, but with a bit of care and intelligence it's actually quite surprising where you can "cheat" and make the interface respond more rapidly. Submitting a form, for example, can be made instant if you submit the form asynchronously. (This will depend slightly upon the possibility of extra errors; it's good if you can apply all the validation checks in JavaScript so that the probability that the form submission will fail is minimised.) And you can cache or store things locally. In the end, for most things I don't believe there's any reason why a web version should be slow. Aug 17, 2011 at 14:43

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