Sunday, April 10, 2011

What difference does an app make?

Is it Facebook web or app you are using?
I asked my wife, one of my focus group users, when she was busy facebooking something on her windows mobile phone.

Web. But what difference does that make?
Very good question I thought. I immediately checked facebook on my android browser and I didnt think i missed anything. Ya ok just one thing, I cant upload a picture. Other than that the web app worked exactly like the native app... well better than that.

So whats this app hullabaloo?

I dont know. I can understand a utility app which extensively uses the phone's native features and its need to run in the background etc, or a game that is animation heavy being an app. I can also understand a big brand ticking off its "namesake presence" on app stores.

Services that dont fall into the above 2 categories, what you need is a good web app (read html5) which is easier to make and maintain, which also ensures cross browser compatibility.

On my desktop comp, Google chrome is the only app i use (other than adobe photoshop) for all my needs. There is an operating system getting ready in Google which wholly depends on the web app idea. Then why is it different on a phone?

OK may be its just a matter of time. I strongly believe that this phase will pass and web will win eventually.

All you internet services out there, what you need to do is to get a mobile web app done well and not run behind apps to be future proof. App are just a fad and it will fade. Web apps will make your product usable in any smartphone out there. Oh ok not Windows Phone 7 for now but it is getting a better browser soon. It should otherwise the phone has no future. Are you worried about the camera access and photo upload feature? Its coming. I truly appreciate Cleartrip in taking this bold decision of the mobile web app direction. Is bookmyshow listening?

The first thing i'm going to do now is to uninstall all the apps from my phone that has a web presence and free up some space.


Ramprakash said...

Wifey uses WP7?! Nice. There are lots of new Android phones coming out in Flipkart. Get another one!!

Also, why are you *really* uninstalling Facebook? :D

Unknown said...

Not wp7. Just wp6.
And why should I get another phone?

Jai said...

Agree with you there Umesh.

I'd junked the Gmail app and had started using the website/app via Opera Mini. Granted there's no email push, but hey I'm wired enuf to check mails as often as I can.

Plus with Opera supporting multiple tabs, I get to access all the web apps I want - gDocs, gReader et al with one browser on my phone.