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The question is: why even bother, when they have the mobile HTML version?

Probably just to cross a bullet point somewhere. Still, with their warchest, they could easily dump money on a small company and get it over with. At least something basic, but usable.

Say, timeline plus chat.

As far as I know, you still can't upload pictures from the web browser, so you need a native app to interact with photos.

They have a very well hidden email upload feature.

push notification and uploading photos are probably the only reasons I use the facebook app. I also think they have a nice UI ideas in the app, it just doesn't work that well. but for example Twitter app is far more superior than the mobile site (I think)

Really? The Twitter app on Android is a webview as well and it also sucks.

What? No I really don't think it is. If you are right though, they've done a great job to make it seem like it's not.

Webview can be done quite well if it is done correctly. Did you know that most everything in individual messages in the Gmail app on Android is done with a webview?

The reason it is fast though, is it is not loading that webview from a website, but building it from data locally. That gives it a native app speed.

On the other hand, the original Google+ release for the iPhone was bad because it was pretty much a webview downloaded on demand too.

Facebook is just loading it on demand basically as a webpage.

So it's possible Twitter is using a webview, but downloading the data separately for speed.

People prefer one-click launch versus typing URLs on mobile. And no, most do not know that you can add a bookmark to the home screen.

Photo uploading, push notifications...

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