Many of the apps on the iPhone are clients for websites. Facebook, Twitter, MySpace, Yahoo!, Google, the list goes on and on. What’s great about these applications is that no data is stored on the iPhone, it’s all synced up to “the cloud.” When you move to your computer or another device, all your changes are already there.
Would there be a market for such apps on the computer in general? Sure, there’s Safari, and various web-apps such as GMail or Google Docs. But they don’t really feel like applications because of the fact that they are running in the browser and they don’t match the rest of the operating system interface-wise. Often, we hear talk about the day when the only software that will be on a computer is a web browser; everything else will run inside of that browser as web apps. They will be accessible from anywhere.
What makes more sense to me is to make more apps for the computer; apps that serve as an interface for data stored in the cloud. Like IMAP in Mail, notifications can be pushed in real time, and the same data would be available on any computer with the program installed, on the iPhone, and, as now, on any browser as a web-interface.
I know I’d love to have a Facebook app in my dock. A true Facebook application, not just a bookmarked webpage or web-app. What do you think? Will web apps be enough, or should web-based programs still be based on the computer itself? Sound off in the comments.