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Cloud Apps Vs Web Apps- What Does Your Business Need!

Omji Mehrotra By Omji Mehrotra | July 2, 2020

Cloud apps vs web apps- both are neverending debatable topics. 

For any business, an app is a bridge between a brand and its customers, meanwhile, an app idea remains on the top. In order to turn your idea into reality, but where to get started with it is a challenge.

Having a great idea is not enough, choosing the right platform to launch it and design is also important. A right and leading mobile app development company can help here to let you understand the difference between cloud application and web application. 

Here in this blog, we will be explaining an in-depth meaning of both of these apps platforms. 

So, let’s get started with what is cloud-based application-

What is Cloud-based Application- a brief insight

The “cloud” in cloud apps means a computing architecture having a mechanism of storing and accessing data, software over the internet rather than storing the data into a computer’s hard drive. 

Now, talking about how cloud-based application works, a cloud app is an advanced form of the web application but it is not totally dependent upon web browsers. Its customization in software is only possible when it comes to the cloud whereas a web interface can be used in it to access the cloud wherever the online services on the cloud. 

As per research firm IDC estimated that 1/3rd out of the worldwide enterprise app market will be all about SaaS. In another research, it is already mentioned that 81% of all the enterprises have already switched to a multi-cloud strategy. 

Also, by the end of this year, 67% of the enterprise infrastructure will be all about cloud-based. Out of 100%, 82% of the workload will be shifted to the cloud. The average person currently uses around 36 cloud-based services every day. 

With it, let us now understand the features of cloud apps to understand how and why they are useful.

Features of Cloud Apps

  1. The data in cloud-based applications are simply stored in the cloud.
  2. The stored data can be accessed offline & cached locally.
  3. These can be used as used from either- web browsers and custom-built apps like mobile phones.
  4. It can further be used to access like- on-demand computing cycle, application development platforms, and is entirely used for storage.
  5. Different user requirements are also supported here.
  6. These cloud-based applications are user-friendly and it supports various customer’s prerequisites that involve security, compression of data, and the backup schedule. 

Benefits of Cloud apps

Cloud apps serve the purpose of offering great opportunities to let businesses and organizations work conveniently. Starting from on-demand services to the availability of network or accessibility to shared pooled resources, the cloud serves all the purposes. 

So, here are the benefits of cloud apps- 

  1. With the help of cloud apps, management efforts are required less along with the elimination of service provider interaction. 
  2. Users, who are more into on-demand services can match their personal needs and requirements using Cloud. Here, location independence, along with access to information from any place or device is also offered via it. 
  3. Types of cloud applications also render broad computing capabilities in both ways- online and offline.
  4. With types of cloud applications, users are not required to go for specific software but to pay for the services only. This helps in offering them quick access to the necessary applications through the cloud server.
  5. Without even installing software on the servers, users can still use the app’s functionalities fully. 
  6. The availability and performance of cloud services can charge the work processes while enhancing profitability too.
  7. These cloud apps can serve multiple users at the same time with different physical and virtual needs. 
  8. Using cloud apps, it is easy to monitor, report, and control used resources. This results in offering transparency for both the resource providers and consumers. 

For a shoulder to shoulder comparison between Cloud apps vs Web apps, it is crucial to understand the aura of web apps also. This will help you to understand whether to pick cloud apps for the next project or staying with the web apps. 

Let’s understand what is a web application now, 

What is a Web Application- A brief insight

Web apps as the name suggests are the apps that are designed to be used on a web browser. They are the combination of a server-side script and a client-side script. 

Furthermore, when it comes to how web-based application works, the browsers rely on the web server components that are further supported by backend infrastructure systems for heavy lifting. 

Web apps also provide one the convenience of accessing the app from anywhere due to its computing model.

However, one thing that differentiates cloud apps vs web apps is the former offers limited customization options to the users. Also, they are not designed in such a way that they can support varying requirements of consumers. 

Here are what the benefits of web apps are- 

Benefits of web apps 

  1. Web apps are accessible from any location and that too from any web browser.
  2. They can run on multiple platforms irrespective of the operating system or device, making cross-platform development more compatible. 
  3. If the browser is compatible enough, the web apps can be accessed easily through users. This also reduces the chances of even compatibility issues.
  4. The next benefit of the web app is that it requires less support and maintenance from the developer’s side. Hence, it simply reduces the app development cost while offering ease to customers. 
  5. The app does not require downloads.
  6. Here, the information about the client is not stored eliminating issues like piracy or data leak. 
  7. Also, web apps do not require updation as they get updated on their own without the need to reinstall apps on devices. 

Till now, we have reached the point, where making comparisons between cloud-based application vs web application has to be done before understanding more about these technologies. 

The difference between Cloud Apps vs Web Apps

1.Origin

The first difference between both cloud apps vs web apps is their origin. Both the terms often misinterpreted refers to any type of web-based application connecting brands to its users. 

Once, when the iOS, Android app developers started using the front end framework, it also is used to differentiate the upcoming applications with new generation features. 

2.Technology

The next difference is the difference between cloud application and web application. Web apps are used and associated with early web technologies that were built with back end languages like Ruby vs Python, PHP, .NET along with databases like PostgreSQL, MySQL, SQL Server, and others. 

Web apps can only be connected when one is having decent internet connectivity. 

On the other hand, we have types of cloud applications that might require back end frameworks but they also use powerful javascript based frameworks for performance. With HTML5 offline caching features, one can visit the app even without the need to have an internet connection. 

This is the difference between cloud application and web application. 

Read also- Top cloud computing trends you cannot miss for the coming years

3.Use cases

The next difference between cloud application and web application is that the former one can fully or partially work even without a full internet connection. They are called evolved web applications as compared to web apps. These apps work wonders when it comes to high computations or places where there is low internet connectivity. 

Also, they are the most preferred choice for collaborating heavy processes. Now, on the other hand, web apps only work in the browser with internet connectivity. They are said to be great for transactional applications like eCommerce sites, cab applications, information sharing portals, and others. 

4.Costing

Starting from how much does it cost to develop a mobile app or a web app to designing, the costing factors play an important role. 

Even here, creating a reliable and robust web application that can work online and offline both is expensive as compared with the traditional browser-based app. 

Whereas, if you look at types of cloud applications, the team size here is bigger than the team size recruited for web app development. 

Hence, cloud apps automatically become a little more expensive than that of web applications. 

5.Services

Now, services are last but certainly not the least difference between cloud apps vs web apps. Apps are the tool that connects users with the brand and this is the reason, a maximum number of brands are investing in it. Startups are no different. 

Similarly, web apps are quite in demand as these apps are used for making a continuous connection with the people. Take for example- Airbnb, Amazon, Youtube, whereas when it comes to cloud-based apps, they are made to work offline exclusively and automatically sync with internet restoration. The examples for it are- Evernote, Gmail, Slack, Dropbox, and many others. 

The difference between cloud apps vs web apps have been shown, but this is not the end. Both apps are made to perform their specific role for the enterprises and also for the users. And this is the reason, one is the advanced version. 

The difference between cloud application and web application is proof that both the technologies are required to make the process easier in terms of connecting users, or offering them solutions instantly, or working without internet connectivity. 

Keeping all these thoughts in mind, there are various companies and examples of both cloud apps vs web apps in use today. 

So, let’s understand them a little deeper as the basics of both have been shown already. 

Types of Cloud Applications

Software as a Service (SaaS)

One of the most famous cloud-based apps SaaS is a way through which users can get access to apps as fully functioning apps. However, it is provided as a technology service or product by the technology providers. 

Get a look at- an exclusive guide to SaaS development for a deeper understanding.

The basic purpose of SaaS is to target large scale enterprises, SMBs, or freelance service providers. Its payment models are filled with free, subscription, pay-for-use, and are also based on quotes.  

SaaS’s major types are CRM, ERP, HR, business intelligence, Accounting applications, help desk to name a few. Meanwhile, the leading SaaS examples include Freshsales, HubSpot CRM, Wrike, Wix, Sisense.

Know also- the dire need of Customer relationship management in 2020

Platform as a Service (PaaS)

PaaS is said to be the advanced types of cloud applications that provide infrastructure, computing platforms, solutions on which users can also build their own solutions. 

These apps generally come into play for businesses that are into the process of testing, collaboration, development, and deployment, related to cloud solutions.

The PaaS is a made platform configured with a sandbox and deployment environment- it simply involves top programming languages, operating systems, run time system libraries, graphic UI, and much more. 

Take for example- Microsoft Azure, Google App Engine, and Rackspace Cloud Sites are a few known names when it comes to PaaS cloud apps. 

Recovery as a service (RaaS)

Businesses for any loss of data or files use RaaS, a cloud-based solution. The solution is exclusively used for recovering files, databases, servers, and the whole data centers too.  

The system offers integrated solutions for switching from existing solutions for business continuation, archiving, disaster recovery along with backup requirements. 

It’s another subside called DRaas (Disaster Recovery as a Service) that helps in minimizing the downtime effects. A few known RaaS includes WindStream Business, nScaled, and Geminare.

Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS)

IaaS is called an outsourced cloud-based computing infrastructure service with a virtualized interface, helping businesses to receive pre-configured and built-in software or hardware.

It is presented either as a managed hosting or development environment. A few known IaaS apps are Google Cloud, IBM Cloud, and Amazon WorkSpaces.

Companies who are using Cloud Services

  1. Slack

It is a tool for teams and companies. The channels in-built in it are group messages, individual, topic, project, or team-based easing the path of communication. 

Apart from that, Slack, Cloud SaaS company features PDF file sharing, video chatting, and can be integrated with other cloud companies like Salesforce, and DropBox. 

Appventurez also uses Slack for streamlined and smooth communication with the team. 

2.Zoom

Another in the list is Zoom, a cloud-based software platform that enables audio and video conferencing meetings along with saving options for saving the meeting. These saved meetings can be further accessed anytime anywhere. 

Check out- An insight into the difference between Google Meet vs Zoom. 

3.DigitalOcean

DigitalOcean platform helps the organizational team to manage, scale, and deploy new products. It is an IaaS platform that also makes users create multiple virtual machines in seconds while enabling them to scale data storage and incoming traffic. 

4.DropBox

Dropbox is a cloud-based solution that lets users share large files that also facilitate collaboration. Dropbox lets one share PowerPoint presentations, photoshop, or sketching projects. 

Also, Dropbox now allows integration of collaborative apps like Vimeo, Docusign for letting users upload videos, contracts, and others. 

5.Google Drive

Google Drive is a presentation platform that allows documents, spreadsheets, and others for making one view or edit documents on the go anytime anywhere. 

It is also used for storing photos and videos that can be viewed or downloaded. By signing in to the Google Account, one can access the app and views all the data stored. And there is a lot about it.

6.Salesforce

The next is the Salesforce, a known SaaS provider is a CRM tool helping businesses to manage their customer relations along with letting them generate sales leads. 

It is the combination of AI and customer data that makes the processes of the sales team identify potential leads along with closing sales faster. Salesforce also has separate clouds for marketing and customer service. 

7.Amazon Web Services

AWS helps developers to run code for applications or backend services without managing servers or provisioning. It enables businesses to accommodate real-time shifts in data storage and usage. 

Read also- An essential mobile app backend development guide

Cloud-based Service Providers helping Businesses

  1. Microsoft Azure

Microsoft Azure offers integrated tools, serverless computing support, DevOps to professionals globally. These together help them to build and manage both mobile applications and web-based solutions. 

Azure is specifically designed for developing open-source software, multiple operating systems, programming languages, databases, devices, mobile platforms- Android vs iOS, and frameworks also. Its on-premises and hybrid cloud models are just meant for maximizing security while offering management ease for app developments. 

2.Google Cloud Platform (GCP)

GCP offers both public and private hosted cloud services for Big data solutions, Machine learning, Storage, app development, networking, security, software development, and many more. 

Read also- Impact of Big Data on Mobile app development

Furthermore, its services do include IaaS, PaaS, Google Container Engine, Google Cloud Storage, Big Data processing, AI cloud Machine Learning Engine, Google Cloud IoT Core, and others. 

Check also- Top Big Data Trends that are going to rule the coming years. 

3.Oracle Cloud

It is an enterprise-grade IaaS, SaaS, and PaaS cloud services via data centers. Also, it has a range of integrated digital solutions that include platforms, servers, intelligent business applications, storage networks, and data offered as a service.

With its help, businesses can pay attention to customer-centricity, customer behavior while analyzing market trends and take advantage of new and evolving opportunities, better expense management, advanced security, and data protection. 

4.Salesforce.com

Also known as Customer Relationship Management, Salesforce.com is a cloud-based software empowering businesses with automation services. 

Other than streamlining business processes, Salesforce.com allows better management and execution of sales and marketing strategies.

5.IBM cloud

One of the well-known players of IaaS and PaaS, IBM services and solutions include storage, computing, networking, cloud app development, and deployment management, data management, analytics, security, AI solutions, mobile tools, Blockchain for businesses and so on. 

This is all done about Cloud apps, its service providers, and everything. Now, it is the time to quickly look at the web apps side too. 

Prominent list of web-based applications

  1. Static Web Apps

Static web apps are not flexible and are created using CSS and HTML. The apps display a few contents along with showing animated objects like Videos, banners, GIFs, etc. 

However, with Static Web Apps, it is difficult to make changes in the static web apps, as it first requires the need to download HTML code, modification, and uploading it back to the servers. These things can be done by site webmasters or the providers. 

2.Dynamic Web Apps

Dynamic web apps, the next in the list of web-based applications are complex in nature and are based upon client-server solutions. These apps showcase diverse content whenever it is accessed. 

ASP, PHP is the language being used for such kinds of web apps allowing users either to modify the content or structuring them in terms of images, videos, and text. 

Here, a content management system is used for modifying and creating content for the web app’s content. Facebook, Twitter, Google, Amazon are a few web apps. 

3.Portal Web App

With features of web apps, these can let users access and use the categories or sections given on the home page. Email, Chats, Forums, are a few examples of the Portal Web App.

4.Web apps with CMS

Web apps with CMS integrated administrators are made to implement updates, changes, and others. 

A few known names include Joomla, Drupal, WordPress making businesses, and personal blogs, quite a good thing. 

5.E-commerce store

It is quite a dynamic web browser used for electronic payment modalities like credit cards, and PayPal e-commerce store offering the capability to support online shopping demands like shopping carts, online product displays, etc. 

Also, eCommerce apps now are being used for both desktop and mobile browsing for achieving better results. 

 Volution, Shopify, Bigcommerce, 3dcart, are a few examples. 

6.Animated Web apps

FLASH & JavaScript along with innovative designs are a few features of animation technology. Developers use CSS animations and transitions, WebGL, or JavaScript in order to create animated web pages. 

Web Applications Examples for Businesses

  1. AliExpress

AliExpress is one of the known eCommerce sites that has been converted into a PWA app from a mobile site. 

Their decision of turning their mobile app into a PWA has significantly enhanced the user experience and the overall performance of the app. 

Meanwhile, what they have achieved are- 

  • 74% increase in user time spent
  • 104% increase in conversions rate
  • 2x more pages visits 

Read also- Things you need to know about Progressive Web Applications

2.Twitter Lite

One of the next web applications example twitter now has a Progressive Web App called “Twitter Lite” as their mobile web experience used by users globally. 

Twitter Lite loads pages instantly along with lowering data usage by optimizing images while relying on cached data. 

The app also re-engages users with push notifications, also, allowing users to add PWA to their home screens. 

Get to know- Progressive Web Apps future in the coming years

A few things Twitter Lite got- 

  • 20% decrease in bounce rate
  • 65% increase in pages per session
  • 75% increase in Tweets sentF

3.Forbes

Forbes is a well known U.S based Business magazine meant for publishing articles on investment, finance, marketing, and industry topics. 

However, they opted for PWA for improving their mobile web user experience. 

These PWAs with benefits of web apps can increase loading timing while doubling the engagement rates using the Push notifications. They added their PWA to the home screens. 

And this is what they got- 

  • 100% increase in engagement rates
  • 43% of sessions increase
  • 20% impressions increase per page
  • 6x increase in the reader’s number

4.Pinterest

Pinterest is an application for “virtual corkboard”. Through it, users can easily find and curate images about anything they want be it everyday images, videos, products, recipes, and so on. 

Due to a less active user base, Pinterest switched to PWA app development. PWA app resulted in faster performance and higher user engagement on the mobile web along with a great number of click-throughs and time spent by users.  

This is what they found after PWA- 

  • 50% increase in ad click-throughs
  • 40% increase in mobile web time spent
  • 44% increase in user-generated ads revenue
  • 60% engagement increased 

Check out- the in-depth difference between PWA vs Native 

5.Settled

A real-estate firm Settled helps users to buy or sell homes. For a more engaging, robust, and reliable experience for the users, they invested in the PWA application. 

The PWA they invested in saw a growth in terms of increased conversions offering users easy to use, fast, and hassle-free enhanced mobile experience. 

Here is what was the results from PWA app-

  • 13% decrease in bounce rates
  • 23% conversions increase
  • 8% mobile transactions increase
  • 14% decrease in total cost per conversion

These are a few names listed in the web apps and there is a never-ending list waiting. And this is the reason, businesses and startups are also shifting their focus towards web apps. However, a few among them are moving towards the higher version of apps- Cloud Apps. 

types of cloud application

So, what to choose –  cloud apps vs web apps.

What to choose between Cloud Apps vs Web Apps?

Well, the choice of the app depends upon the types of applications you are investing in along with the idea and purpose of it. Many organizations are switching their app to PWA based applications to gain better use engagement, active users, enhanced experience, revenue, and much more. 

Meanwhile, many other organizations are opting for one step ahead- i.e., the advanced version of web apps called cloud applications. Cloud applications are always seen as safe and store large amounts of data without the dire need of internet connectivity. 

So, the choice of apps between cloud apps vs web apps is all about the ideology and the requirement behind it.

Meanwhile, to let you gain great success through the app, we are here to help you!

Let’s see how can we help you- 

How can Appventurez help you with the app idea?

Appventurez, the leading mobile app development company is a team of experts who can transform your idea into a digital reality. 

We provide web development along with cloud app development services using the best of technologies, techniques along with keeping a close watch on market trends and user requirements. 

Also, while running business with a distributed agile team, we always ensure offering every detail of the app development phases and NDA

Till now, we have delivered the best of projects, and we are in a position to offer great results. If you still have doubts or questions regarding cloud apps vs web apps, connect with our experts today!

Omji Mehrotra
Omji Mehrotra

Co-Founder and AVP Technology at Appventurez. An accomplished Android and React Native developer who is a fan of clean and optimized code, he is a passionate team builder having smart project managerial skills and has a deep love to provide end to end solution.

⚡️ by Appventurez

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