PhoneGap performance measurement results

I was wondering how much is loss in performance is one would write application in PhoneGap and javascript instead of native code. I wrote 2 very basic programs one in android and second in PhoneGap. This program did standard busy looping and common string operation indexOf in the for loop. One interesting issue i found is that when you use body onload and do not finish in time then you will get error “Application Error: The connection to the server was unsuccessful. (file:///android_asset/www/index.html)”

3 different loop times were measured in javascript and native android java. Examlpe Code in Android  was :

package com.marguspala.perftest;

import android.os.Bundle;
import android.widget.TextView;

public class PerfTestAndroidActivity extends Activity {
    /** Called when the activity is first created. */
    public void onCreate(Bundle savedInstanceState) {
        String text="1234567890";
        long start = System.currentTimeMillis();
        for(int i = 1; i<100000;i++){
        long end= System.currentTimeMillis();
        TextView tv = (TextView)findViewById(;
        tv.setText("It took: "+(end-start)+"ms.");

Phoneap and javascript was:

<!DOCTYPE html PUBLIC "-//W3C//DTD HTML 4.01 Transitional//EN" "">
<meta http-equiv="Content-Type" content="text/html; charset=UTF-8">
<title>Insert title here</title>
<script type="text/javascript" charset="utf-8" src="phonegap-1.3.0.js">

<script type="text/javascript">
    function calculate() {
        var text = "1234567890";
        var start = new Date().getTime();
        for ( var i = 0; i < 10000000; i++) {
        var end = new Date().getTime();
        var div = document.getElementById("text");
        div.innerHTML = "It took: " + (end - start) + "ms";
    <div id="text">Hello phonegap</div>
    <a href="#" onclick="calculate()">calculate</a>

It turns out that javascript is roughly 3 times slower than android 2.3.5

100 000 cycles:
Android: 0,1s
PhoneGap: 0,3s

1 000 000 cycles:
Android: 0,8s
PhoneGap: 3s

10 000 000 cycles:
Android: 7,5s
PhoneGap: 26s

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