A Comparison on the Uses of Desktop Application and Web Application

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Published: 24th July 2015
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Almost every individual, either as a seasoned IT professional or as a mere web surfer makes use of computer and its multiple applications that are floating around the world today to make due comparison between desktop and web applications.

Desktop Application is an application that is being installed on standalone machines like a desktop or a laptop to perform some specific tasks either by a single user or by multiple users in a networked environment. These applications run using the resources of the computer such as processing power, hard disk drive and computer memory. Word processors, media players are typical examples of desktop applications.

Web application is an application that is assessed by the end user through a web browser such as internet or intranet. This application has its resources over the internet and works with the storage and the processing power of the CPU. Since this application could be assessed by any user from any computer it has attracted more users towards it to prefer over desktop applications. Online shopping carts and eCommerce web sites are good examples of web applications.

Here are some pros and cons of both Desktop and Web applications.

Accessibility: Web applications offer increased accessibility to the user since it could be run by the user anytime and anywhere through any device with its connectivity over the internet. Whereas Desktop Applications Development on the other hand are confined to a single computer so offers limited accessibility to the user of the application.

Reliability: Desktop applications do not require any connection to the internet for its operations and hence considered to be more reliable. Web Applications Development on the other hand rely on persistent connectivity to the internet and therefore it is hardly reliable for time sensitive businesses and critical applications. Power outages interrupt their operations to deny its services to access sensitive data to affects its reliability.

Cost: Desktop applications are cost effective to the users since it is purchased and installed at once and hardly recurs any expenses towards its maintenance and up gradation in the future except for a few. Whereas web application involves higher costs towards its development and much more recurring costs of monthly nature as subscription fees to ensure a continued access to the data stored in the web application.

Security: A desktop application being installed in standalone desktops and laptops provides high range of security in operation to the users. Web applications are open to multiple users on the internet which is prone to various threats and risks reduce the security of the application.

Installation: Applications developer do exist online provides accessibility to the end user in any device with the help of a browser. Comparatively desktop applications need to be installed in each and every stand-alone machine which involves more cost and labor.

Compatibility: Web services provider have a significant advantage of compatibility over Desktop applications. Although a company buys the same brand of desktop applications for all its computers compatibility issue arises. This is because upgrading of the software takes place in phases in different departments resulting in confusion while collaborating with different versions of the software.

Collaboration: Web applications are considered to be collaborative software as it allows multiple people to work on it at the same time. Since the users save the files to a database on the web, collaborators could work on any files from any device connected to the internet. But for desktop applications files need to be saved to the network disk drives to be accessed by the collaborators.

To conclude, understanding the pros and cons of both of these applications needs determine the choice of its selection.

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