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Definition: Web application

An application in which all or some parts of the software are downloaded from the Web every time it runs. There are essentially three types of Web applications.

Browser Based - Progressive Web App
Progressive Web apps are browser based, and the user simply goes to a website. All updates are automatic because the software is maintained at the server side, not the client side. See progressive Web app.

Local Install - Hybrid App
Hybrid apps are programmed like a Web page, but they are downloaded and updated from an app store. See hybrid mobile app.

Rich Client
The application is downloaded from a website and installed like a local program. Updates come from the website server. See rich client.

The Browser Advantage
The Internet and Web changed the software world forever. Instead of maintaining several locally installed programs, the support staff only has to keep the Web browser current. See cloud computing, JavaScript and Web application.