It may be used to create applications in a web browser: for example to ease navigation, to create interactive forms or to create interactive exercises to use in e-learning. DHTML applications that are entirely self-contained in the browser, without server-side support such as a database, are sometimes referred to as Single Page Applications, or SPA.
Competing techniques include Macromedia Flash for animation, Java, Ajax, applets and Scalable Vector Graphics (SVG), though SVG is not yet well-supported by the major web browsers.
Some disadvantages of DHTML are that it is difficult to develop and debug due to varying degrees of support among web browsers of the aforementioned technologies and that the variety of screen sizes means the end look can only be fine-tuned on a limited number of browser and screen-size combinations. Development for recent browsers, such as Internet Explorer 5.0+, Netscape 6.0+, and Opera 7.0+, is aided by a shared Document Object Model.
S5 is a presentation application of DHTML which works in modern browsers (IE 6 included): A single XHTML file contains a slideshow which may be viewed in projector mode slide by slide (browser window set to full screen), as a single web document or printed out as a handout. With DHTML a navigation is built dynamically. Simple animations are possible. Formatting is done with CSS.