The web is dead. Long live the app?

Don’t worry, this article isn’t (entirely) about blockchain and AI taking over the world.

Humble beginnings

Before the world wide web, was the internet. A large set of fundamental protocols that connects devices together, allowing one computer to communicate with another. With roots spanning back to the 1960’s, early scientific communications and even the cold war, the internet revolutionised real time data and transport of information. The issue with the internet has always been that there is no seamless way for one device to communicate to others, no common interface – enter the word wide web. The web provided a standard for information to be shared and interpreted, meaning that users could publish and read web pages between any device and any individual, consumed through a web browser.

Obvious Shortcomings

An apparent issue with the web is its disorganisation. Content quickly spread everywhere and at varying quality. Search engines such as Google have tried to tackle this issue but have been blindsided by pay per click advertisement revenue, meaning that content doesn’t necessarily get indexed by best priority, but by those websites with the deepest pockets. Another issue is the informations authenticity. The web is a self regulating system, making it difficult to verify the information within it and the sources of such information. Finally, security is an ever present thorn in the side of content creators, website vendors and search engines. The introduction of technologies such as SSL to serve pages via encryption have helped these concerns, but have by no means irradiated them.

Behavioural Shift

With the advent of mobile devices in recent years and the growing demand for consumer information, native mobile apps have massively risen in popularity. Mobile apps solve some of our web problems, such as the organisation of data and the authenticity of information, but have created new ones such as the visibility of the information available. With a clear split in the users of these two technologies, vendors have exploited both and new business models such as software as a service (where customers pay monthly for app/web access) have been born.

The solution

In recent years generative AI has risen in popularity – effectively replacing the world wide web as the means to consume and interpret the information available via the internet. GenAI offers itself as the new standard, eliminating many of the organisational and security issues that the web has presented over the years. Couple this technology with mobile apps as the end users productivity services, and there is becoming a detachment between the consumer and the web, the individual and the desktop.

“There is becoming a detachment between the consumer and the web”

Apps will adapt to encompass more text to speech functionality and have their own GenAI standards within, giving the users more power within their native device and negating the need to trawl through pages of (largely sponsored) web hyperlinks to find relevant information. As apps have done with standards such as push notifications, this creates a “push” method of communications and actions, rather than the web’s “pull” method of accessing data. There will be technical challenges and risks involved just as in any evolution, but this is the trajectory big tech is currently on. When will we finally put the web to bed? Who knows – the difference between a futurist and a millionaire is that the millionaire knows when changes are going to happen, the futurists (like us) just know that they are.


If you’re still relying heavily on the web for sales, publishing information and new leads, it may be time to start changing strategy – know a good software company that can help?