Alternatives to Direct Web Access
Alternatives to direct Web access
Other reasons that direct Web access no longer matters pertain to the interfaces, interpreters and mashups. Interfaces provide a local application on a PC or Mac and the user experiences something beneficial. The application may communicate with the Web but the user doesn't. One example is DropBox, which enables file sharing among groups of people. You put your file in the folder locally and it's stored on the Web.
Multiperson games run in a similar manner. You play the game using a local application that gives you a rich graphical experience, and the application connects the other users over the Web that you don't see. Mashups take content from many different places and present a unified set of information.
And finally, another major reason that direct Web access doesn't matter is that people are spending less time "on the Web." There are more choices available to people and, thus, they spend less and less of their time inside the Web browser. More time is spent on e-mail, posting to Facebook with the phone, playing games and reading material in digital publishing applications.
Sure, direct Web access is still important today. However, it is becoming less important all the time. There's a movement to put more applications "in the cloud" but people are not always online and it's my belief that local access (PC, tablet and smartphone) provides the best user experience. The local application can access more resources on the Web (cloud) to make my local experience better.
I think from this analysis you can see that my column's title this week is appropriate. The time spent directly accessing the Web no longer matters. What does matter is getting the job done, enjoying the game, or efficiently (and locally) reading the material that's important to you.
J. Gerry Purdy, Ph.D. is Principal Analyst of Mobile & Wireless at MobileTrax LLC. As a nationally recognized industry authority, Dr. Purdy focuses on monitoring and analyzing emerging trends, technologies and market behavior in the mobile computing and wireless data communications industry in North America. Dr. Purdy is an "edge of network" analyst looking at devices, applications and services, as well as wireless connectivity to those devices. Dr. Purdy provides critical insights regarding mobile and wireless devices, wireless data communications and connection to the infrastructure that powers the data in the wireless handheld. He is author of the column Inside Mobile & Wireless that provides industry insights and is read by over 100,000 people a month.
Dr. Purdy continues to be affiliated with the venture capital industry as well. He currently is Managing Director at Yosemite Ventures. And he spent five years as a Venture Advisor for Diamondhead Ventures in Menlo Park where he identified, attracted and recommended investments in emerging companies in mobile and wireless. He has had a prior affiliation with East Peak Advisors and, subsequently, following their acquisition, with FBR Capital Markets. For more than 16 years, Dr. Purdy has been consulting, speaking, researching, networking, writing and developing state-of-the-art concepts that challenge people's mind-sets, as well as developing new ways of thinking and forecasting in the mobile computing and wireless data arenas. Often quoted, Dr. Purdy's ideas and opinions are followed closely by thought leaders in the mobile and wireless industry. He is author of three books as well.
Dr. Purdy currently is a member of the Program Advisory Board of the Consumer Electronics Association (CEA) which produces CES, one of the largest trade shows in the world. He is a frequent moderator at CTIA conferences and GSM Mobile World Congress. He also is a member of the Board of the Atlanta Wireless Technology Forum. Dr. Purdy has a B.S. degree in Engineering Physics from University of Tennessee, a M.S. degree in Computer Science from UCLA, and a Ph.D. in Computer Science and Exercise Physiology from Stanford University. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Disclosure Statement: From time to time, I may have a direct or indirect equity position in a company that is mentioned in this column. If that situation happens, then I'll disclose it at that time.