Comparison of Mobile and Native Technologies for Mobile MES Applications
Fatimi, Muhammad Omair
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The MES (manufacturing execution system) is mostly used from desktop based terminals in a factory. These terminals are distant from the machines and materials used on the factory floor. To access the information available through MES from anywhere in the factory floor, use of mobile terminal instead of desktop computers has been proposed. To evaluate two alternative implementation technologies, Web and native, we have de-veloped and compared two prototypes of the MES application. In addition, we have studied the advantages of native and Web approaches through the literature and survey. Mobile devices are categorized by its different platforms and screen sizes. Android, iOS, and Windows phone are most common among them. Mobile applications are platform dependent and an application made for one platform does not work on others. Web ap-plications are platform independent that work on all devices. HTML5 has introduced some APIs through which a Web app can behave like a native app and can compete with the native app. So, in this thesis we have tried to compare Web and native app and tried to find out which is better for MES applications. A general answer to this question is native because of its better performance. In this thesis, we have analyzed some of the factors that are responsible for the performance difference between a Web app and native app. In addition to this, we have had an online survey to find out what developers think about the development, testing, maintenance and deployment of Web and native technologies. Based on all the data, i.e. literature review, some experiments, feedback from participants and online survey, we made a conclusion that native app is the best solution for mobile MES because native app is more responsive and more secure. However, native apps require more time, effort, cost and skills to be developed and maintained.