Some of the largest corporations have made a lot of noise about the power of HTML5, including the likes of Apple and Google. Both companies are already working on HTML5-powered online services, and Google, in particular, has been aggressive about HTML5 mobile products.
There's just one problem. HTML5 isn't ready yet.
Speaking to InfoWorld, Philippe Le Hegaret, W3C interaction domain leader, said, "The problem we're facing right now is there is already a lot of excitement for HTML5, but it's a little too early to deploy it because we're running into interoperability issues."
The main problem outlined by Le Hegaret is that the W3C is running into issues with online video and having it work properly across different browsers.
"I don't think it's ready for production yet," said Le Hegaret. "The real problem is can we make [HTML5] work across browsers and at the moment, that is not the case."
The W3C is working to finalize the HTML5 standard, but it doesn't believe it will coalesce until the middle of 2011, after which it will still be in a testing phase. It needs to solve the interoperability issue, and it also may change some of the APIs.
The W3C, then, recommends that developers hold off on plans for creating HTML5-based online content. Will they listen? Not likely.
Apple has bet its iDevice farm on HTML5 as a replacement for Adobe's Flash technology. Apple has even published a web site that demonstrates HTML5's capabilities. Apples position is that HTML5 accomplishes all that Flash does, except better.
Google likely won't slow down its HTML5 efforts, either. It has been creating a slew of browser-based HTML5 services for the iOS and Android platforms. In fact, its most recent promise is to deliver a rich, HTML5-based version of Google Docs for the Apple iPad (due soon). It already has powerful HTML5 versions of Gmail for iOS and Android. At this point, users have come to rely on these products and are asking for more.
Finished or not, with demand already in place, HTML5 development is not likely to slow.