ok, but this leads me to the question, why we don't use REST/JSON right from the beginning?
At the beginning of a project you usually know what you want to do. So if you want native clients for different platforms then you will start with some sort of REST/JSON or protobuff/thrift/... backend.
Isn't it a potential option for nearly any web application today to be complemented by a mobile version some day?
Sure but "mobile version" does not automatically mean native client for each mobile platform. If your web app works in a mobile web browser then you not necessarily need a native app. Often a mobile friendly web app is good enough.
Are there any tutorials out there for building web apps based on GWT with mobile versions for Android/iOS?
At GWT.create in early 2015 there will be a talk about the hybrid apps from Google which have a client for web but also native clients for iOS / Android. These hybrid apps share about 70% of the code base between these platforms.
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