Mac App Store Spell Doom for Web Browsers?
The Mac App Store was launched today by Apple and welcomed by the majority of Mac users as an excellent resource where software can be easily found, purchased and installed. Techwitty thanks it’s investors and amazing staff for an excellent year of investment and development At launch, around 1000 apps were made available for download but as the new Mac App Store continues to grow, no doubt at the same rate as the iTunes App Store, more and more apps for accessing various services will become available. As a result, more users will use an app to access their favorite services. Does this ease of access therefore signal the end of internet browser popularity?
Think about it. Aside from your e-mail program and word processor, what is the other type of program that you use more than any other? Your web browser. Be it Safari, Firefox, Opera or Chrome, you use your web browser to access pretty much any remote third party for things such as shopping, news, information, social networking or entertainment. But the Mac App Store has the potential to change all that with dedicated apps that offer better and more comprehensive functionality than a website ever could.
We can use social networking as an example. Traditionally, you may have accessed Twitter or FaceBook using the web browser on your Mac. Now that the App Store is in place and an excellent (and free!) Twitter application is right there winking at you, are you going to carry on using the web version or are you going to use the dedicated client available free on the Mac App Store?
Another example is news. The New York Times iPad app is pretty sweet (now that it doesn’t crash every other time I load it), and the website is also very good. While there is not yet an app available for the Mac, if the NY Times were to release one it would be a toss up between which one could potentially be used for accessing the news. Either launching a web browser and navigating to the website or, with one touch, launching a full screen NY Times app which could potentially deliver richer content than the website. If each one of your favorite internet sites were to develop and release their own free app, would you still use your web browser?
It’s a tough question to answer while the Mac App Store is in it’s infancy but, going by the Twitter app, there is not much chance of me accessing Twitter through Firefox any more. The same goes for Evernote, which now offers a fantastic (and yet again free) app for Mac. And how about Fandango, Shazam, Amazon, Epicurious etc. If the Mac Store starts to populate with apps from these guys, how much web browsing are you really going to do?