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What are apps?
App, which has become an extremely popular buzz word that was made famous by Apple's slogan “there is an app for that,” is an abbreviation for the term application software.
Apps are computer software applications that are developed to help users execute a specific function or task. For example, they can help users perform a calculation or help them track a specific action.
Apps are widely available in two ways. They are either with a computer and embedded in is system software or they are published separately and available for download through the Internet, which is now the most popular option when it comes to adding apps.
Apps versus traditional software programs
Apps are different from traditional software and middleware in the sense that they are meant to help the user perform a very targeted and specific task while software programs are more comprehensive and meant to serve a number of more general functions.
Types of apps
In most cases, apps are commonly referred to as the software that is used on a mobile device; however, apps are available for use via the Internet. Here is a breakdown of the two main types of apps:
Also referred to as online apps, the type of app is software that users can access while they are online, rather then it being downloaded onto your computer. These apps are advantageous for a number of reasons:
- Cost: Purchasing online access to Web apps is typically more cost-effective and users can sign up for a monthly access fee, rather than to pay upfront.
- Convenience: Rather than having to take the time to download software and purchase a software licence, users can simply sign up for an account and have access to the apps from anywhere by signing into their account.
Mobile apps are the most popular form of app. They are typically used on the following devices:
- Smartphones such as the Blackberry, iPhone, and Android
- Mobile devices such as the Playbook and iPad
Mobile apps help to expand a person’s productivity because of its ability to import functionality that was previously confined to your personal or office computer. Once the apps are installed, you can use it any time through your mobile device.
While there are thousands of apps available for virtually any device you can think of, the following are some of the most popular app categories:
- News apps: These apps send current news from users' favourite sources directly to the apps interface so they can stay up to date in real time.
- Productivity apps: These apps allow users to be more productive by helping them track or perform tasks.
- Social networking apps: These apps are specific to the many social media platforms online. They allow you to access sites such as Facebook and Twitter from their mobile device.
- Games apps: These apps allow users to play some of their favorite and classic games such as solitaire, poker, and Sudoku, as well as graphically intense, interactive games
- Utility apps: These apps allow users perform calculations and other functions that will help them in many aspects of their life.
- Search apps: These apps allow users to find information through the apps search interface on their mobile devices.
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