Software over the Web vs. Operating System

by Ian Rosenwach on 7.31.2009

There’s been some discussion lately about software distribution via the web (over the browser) vs. on a platform (Mac OS, Windows, Symbian, app stores, etc).

The web can fit a ton more apps than a platform. On my iPhone I have 25 or so apps. The web does not have the same boundaries that platform apps do.

Here’s how I see it – there’s a short tail of “must have” apps that will run on a platform. Examples of these are MS Office, Personal Music Players like iTunes, and any software that uses a lot of processing power, like music software for Macs.

However, the Web is naturally the more scalable distribution medium. There are millions of web apps, all accessible through the browser. You could not fit a million apps on your phone or your desktop.

Or is it that the platform to house a million apps has yet to be invented?

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