When analysing customer feedback, blog comments and through discussions with Mark from Stackideas we realised that the feature gap between the site and the app is a deal breaker for some of our clients. While for the existing Easysocial app we will continue with the philosophy of pushing in only mobile relevant features, we have been toying with the idea of a parallel semi-web app.
The new approach is not simply about wrapping the web URL in a hybrid app. The idea is to creatively use some of the native features to improve the web experience. At this point we are experimenting with the footer and navbar being rendered by the app, and the content within coming straight from your website. In spite of the approach, the app will be "navigation aware" which will also mean that push notifications with deep links will work. The fact that people name their menus differently will make this a little tricky, but we are already exploring ways to overcome this.
At this point, we're only in the POC stage so we don't have any more information about dates and roadmap. However we're quite certain that this approach will help us quicken the pace to a considerable extent, since we do not need to deal with APIs and re-building the features.
Let me leave you with a few screenshots of the new app ! Stay tuned for more :)
The development of the existing Easysocial app will of course continue. We will in fact make a minor release very soon, before moving into a new version to add more features.