Web application alternatives - claim your device freedom
Can traditional desktop applications keep up with their web-based counterparts? We live in a world where more and more people have daily routines that involve more and more devices. Not just a computer and a phone, but increasingly a computer, phone, tablet, laptop, television... fridge?!
Fortunately there are great new web applications being released all the time, with many being designed with a responsive, multi device experience as part of their core architecture.
If you've got an inkling that there must be a better alternative to some of your current day to day applications, often there is - and somebody else has already done the hard work! But when is enough... enough?
Stop poking me!
Persisting with a multi-device application comes down to a simple question: how much are you repeating yourself?
Repeating yourself slows you down, and can result in confining you to fewer devices. Nobody likes repeating themselves whether it's having to sign in, apply a patch, mark messages as read or clearing notifications.
Seeking out web application alternatives to some of our beloved (or perhaps 'tolerated') desktop counterparts can reveal a wealth of great alternatives, some of them free. Of course all applications have their quirks, so it's best to give them a trial to see if something stands out as a major improvement for you.
Making the move
Case in point is Skype, long infamous for it's multi-device problems, primarily with notifications coming back to haunt users long after they've been read elsewhere. Skype has been working on solutions, and have recently made some progress, but it has been enough for many users to dump the popular application from their daily routine. Including us.
For our internal real-time messaging we've recently made the move away from Skype to newcomer Slack, which features a solid multi device experience across desktop, iOS and Android devices.
Not only does Slack deal well with synchronising your status, it features a highly flexible notifications system. Every user can set different types of notifications to appear on your mobile devices, or restrict them to your desktop. Slack's mutli device applications are part of it's core design, featuring a well crafted, consistent experience with the desktop web application. Needless to say, we're impressed.
Go everywhere, not just mobile.
It's exciting and inspiring to see great web applications taking shape and getting smarter at understanding this new age of multi devices. Not only that, but smarter about realising there is more to the web than just themselves - a truer 'web'.
Take a break from your routine and check out the latest web application alternatives, you might be surprised with what you can do in a web browser.
Posted by Brett Daniels on 2 October, 2014