Paul Knittel

App vs Web

August 2014

There’s been lots of talk on the interweb discussing if Apps will take over the Browser one day. I’ve got a few very strong opinions in this regard:

  1. Short term apps will win. Even as were approaching 2015 there is still a huge gap in the experience between the different platforms. Native apps have far superior performance and itegration with the operating system. You just can’t beat that right now. However…

  2. Long term there probably won’t even be a difference. We’ve seen some really cool technology of application being streamed from the cloud. Why can’t we just get our application on demand. For example services like Onlive where you can stream HD gaming have shown some real potential. Streaming or not. At the end of the day you can use any application in seconds. Sounds a lot like what a web browser does. Only that you App Store acts like your URL bar, and apps pined to your homescreen as you bookmarks. Apps are really just a proprietary web browser that performs better and happens to be written in a different programming language than javascript (in most cases anyway ;). It does change the core nature of the open web as we’re back at a system that is tied to proprietary sytems from big companies.

In conclusion I think this discussion is getting pretty silly, as I think it’s more about terminology that substance. What’s the difference between a web browser and an app anyway? Let’s just find a better way to make the web more integrated & faster on mobile and we won’t have to worry about this app craziness :O