Stefan Weitz challenges the conventional wisdom of the app. as the dominant form of the (mobile) web.
…A few months ago I gave a talk on the future of mobile apps. I was basically arguing that we are rapidly approaching the “Appocalypse” as users are overwhelmed with 300k apps on in their mobile marketplace, no real way to find the one they want when they need it, and a pretty outmoded concept in general that will result in massive user abandonment of all but a few head apps and the entire marketplace for developers – from a financial perspective – will rapidly erode.
My core contention was this: why the hell should I have to install an app to figure out what time the subway comes to the 2ndAve/LES stop in NYC? Or to know what constellation I’m looking at in the sky? Or to calculate the tip at a restaurant? All these ‘applications’ are really nothing more than a query to one or more structured data sources often wrapped in a (crappy) UI. Think about it: there is nothing as inelegant as me having to say “I wish I could take the subway to Rockefeller Plaza, so I think I’ll hang out here on the corner in 21 degree weather and search an application marketplace on my teeny little keyboard and small screen using a keyword search from 1994 and hopefully stumble across some piece of code I can download over a congested 3G network and install in my limited local storage that, by the way, will consume battery life as it turns itself on to receive push notifications I don’t need, all so I can figure out if its the F or D line I need to take up north.” Insane.