Why PhoneGap? Mobile development is a mess. Building applications for each device--iPhone, Android, Windows Mobile and more--requires different frameworks and languages. One day, the big players in mobile may decide to work together and unify third-party app development processes. Till then, PhoneGap will use standards-based web technologies to bridge web applications and mobile devices. Plus, because PhoneGap apps are standards compliant, they're future-proofed to work with browsers as they evolve.
PhoneGap is an open source implementation of open standards. That means developers and companies can use PhoneGap for mobile applications that are free, commercial, open source, or any combination of these. The PhoneGap project will always remain free and open source under an MIT license.