Weekly Poll: Do You Download Native Apps for Your Favorite Web Apps?

As the editor of a site about web apps, and as a guy who happens to be fascinated by web apps in the first place, I’m often torn between using native apps and web apps. There’s so many great great web apps that work so nice with native apps, it’s often easier to use the web app with a native app by default.

One great example is Google Reader. It’s a great service for reading RSS feeds, and with some Greasemonkey tweaking, it can even look nice. But odds are there’s some very nice apps for your favorite platforms – OS X and iOS, in my case – that work with Google Reader too. That’s what I’ve ended up doing. I rely on Google Reader, but only for its service, and seldom use the online app itself in a browser.

Evernote and Simplenote are two other great examples. They have top-notch web apps, but also have their own native apps that make the service work nicer on your favorite devices. With Evernote especially, you’ll get more out of the service by using it along with one of their native apps, so it seems like a no-brainer.

How about you? Do you use your favorite web apps with native apps, or do you prefer to use web apps online-only?


  • Rado

    I guess it really depends on the target device, and the poll above is not really clear on this. I never download native apps when I’m at work, or at home, working on my PC (so I voted for “never”). Be it GMail, RSS reader, Google Drive, whatever.

    But on a tablet or a phone, a native app almost always improves the experience by being optimized for the device (small screen, controls, etc) so I end up always downloading the native counterpart. Even for the local weather forecast service, it is more comfortable than visiting the website, since it can store my favorite locations or get the location from the phone. But I would never even think of using a native app for this on a PC.

  • Tim

    I have yet to find a good web app.

  • Jeremy

    Twitter only.

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