Mar. 15th, 2015

teradyneezeri: (Default)
These days, I wish the mobile app craze would die off. Being forced or harassed into using a mobile app instead of a website is not only inconvenient, but outright rude. I understand that it is a trend, but it is a trend of people who are effectively brainwashed by predatory marketing teams.

Now, I am somewhat biased due to my views in support of open standards and technology, but when I am told to 「download an app for iOS」 on a Firefox OS handset, or told that a website 「does not support」 a mobile platform, that tells me the people behind the app are either very elitist, or blind to the fact that their product would likely be better served as an HTML5 web app.

At the moment, I have DMOZ, DreamWidth, a text editor (Dillenger), a multi-protocol IM client (Trillian for XMPP, YIM, AIM, and ICQ), and an IRC client (Kiwi IRC), all open in my web browser. The only thing running that is not it it is my music player, Nightingale, but that could be run inside of it since it is just a XULRunner application. If I were using one of my handsets (iPhone 4 with iOS, HTC One with Android, Lumia 1020 with Windows Phone, ZTE Open C with Firefox OS) prior to the App Craze and just after the first iPhone launch, I could easily find web apps that would work on all four of them.

I find it so frustrating when I see someone talk about a 「great new service」, only to find that it requires an app for iOS or Android, and your mobile number as a log-in. I do not even give out my number unless I know the person will not give it to others, so to require it as a method to log in is simply stupid to me. It is even worse that finding a web app which requires Chrome and an app from the Chrome App Store. I see it as a sign of laziness at best, and a slap in the face to the open web at worst.

As far as the trigger for this minor rant, it was actually the fact that I was trying to find a good web IM client that supported Yahoo, as the IM+ Yahoo connection was broken. I had forgotten about Trillian at the time, and decided to look at some of the others that I had used. Of those that still remained, all but two were gone: eBuddy, and Both of these had become closed mobile-only networks with their own protocols, rather than sticking with the original multi-protocol client system. Sadly, my favourite, Meebo, was purchased by Google and promptly taken apart though an acquihire--where a company is bought solely for its employees. (As an aside, I see acquihire schemes as unethical, though that is simply my opinion.)

Aside: I really should put down the $60 for the lifetime Trillian Pro feature set, especially if it means they will continue developing the web client.

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