Since literally the beginning of mobile, web vs. native app has been an ongoing debate. This author is clearly on team web, and there aren't any especially novel arguments here — in fact, he seems a little bit blind to exactly how far the momentum has already shifted to toward apps.
But my real reason for including the article is that it inspired this thread in response, which contains some true gems of historical context about how the web vs. app dichotomy developed in mobile in the first place.
If we take the web vs. app argument above and drill down one layer, the derivative version within apps is 'true' native vs. cross-platform framework (such as React Native on mobile, or Electron on desktop).
This is also not a new discussion, and companies often go back and forth between various options (Airbnb, rather famously flip-flopped on React Native a few years back).
In this case, the author's team felt that even maintaining React Native was too much work, and decided to make their apps nothing more than their mobile website behind a simple webview wrapper.
Simpler development, perhaps…but of course, it's always a tradeoff: all one needs to do is read the Hacker News comment thread for this article to see that yes, users definitely notice when things in apps work 'worse' than they expect.
Mobile apps aren't just self-contained destinations anymore…they're critical (and typically very cost-effective!) components of much broader customer relationships.
With that in mind, notice the parallels here?
[…] in 2023, DTC retail will evolve into a new, more resilient iteration which I call connect-to-consumer (CTC). This new approach is about taking many pathways to reach customers simultaneously: From social media to Web3, from online shopping to the high-street stores.