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  • The Difference Between a Web Application and a Desktop Application
Technology Articles > Software > Network & Internet > The Difference Between a Web Application and a Desktop Application

There are lots of apps floating around in the world today. Desktop applications are installed on a personal or work computer desktop. Web applications can be accessed through the Internet (or through an Intranet). While both types of applications are software-based, there are fundamental difference between desktop and web applications.

Some people argue that web applications are superior for various reasons. Other people argue that desktop applications will always reign supreme. A number of people use both types of applications. The truth is that both web apps and desktop apps have their place within the app world. The trick is knowing when to use one type of program versus the other.

Web Application Advantages

The biggest, and most obvious, advantage to using a web application is flexibility. A web application can be accessed from any computer no matter where you are. This is due to the fact that a web application only exists online. Some people believe that this advantage is one that can’t be passed up.

Of course, constant accessibility depends on your current Internet connection. Should you lose your connection, you won’t be able to access a web program. There are other disadvantages to web applications that we’ll get to in a few minutes. First, let’s talk about desktop applications.

Desktop Application Advantages

Desktop applications are reliable and trustworthy. You can access a desktop app as long as you have your computer within reach. These applications don’t rely on an Internet connection in most instances. One unfortunate drawback to a desktop application is that you can’t access this type of app if you don’t have your computer handy.

At the time of this writing, web applications have begun to eclipse desktop applications. However, desktop applications certainly offer users a securer software experience. While desktop applications still exist, most people have gravitated towards web applications.

Further Web Application Disadvantages

Safety and security is a huge problem when it comes to web applications. Since the Internet is not a secure place, any business conducted online is at risk for a security breech. This is also true when it comes to Intranet.
Some people also argue that web applications are slower than desktop applications. This is largely due to the fact that various web app sites gain heavy traffic on a frequent basis. Avoiding a slow web app is difficult to do, since users do not directly control these applications.

The Future of Apps

There’s no doubt that web applications serve some very interesting purposes. As more and more people gravitate towards web apps, desktop apps may become obsolete. Then again, the problems that web apps have (security, accessibility) are large ones. For this reason, desktop applications have not been wipe out completely. When selecting any type of application, it’s crucial that your own system is protected against any incoming or outgoing threats.

Further, all information, files, and data that is currently saved as part of a web app or desktop app should be backed-up. Relying on any application to keep data secure and safe is a mistake that many people make. In the end, all applications are simply programs, and programs contain errors.