Cool Tech Reviews

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September 7, 2006

Best Web applications for small business

After a false start during the late 90′s, the idea of Web applications replacing desktop (and server) applications is back with a vengeance with increasingly pervasive broadband access making Web applications useful for more than just big business and Ajax (Asynchronous JavaScript and XML) Web programming providing user interfaces of nearly desktop quality. Today, Forbes has a article on The Best Web-Based Computer Applications For Small Business that reviews of the state of play for Web applications in the categories of:

I won’t spoil the ending, but let’s just say that Google walks away with the honors in every category where they compete except for word processors where Google’s recently acquired Writely comes in second to Zoho Writer (a product of AdventNet).

Knowing the best of the crop is nice, but the big question is always, “Are they good enough?” Forbes’ answer:

But don’t throw away your desktop applications just yet. As a general rule, Ajax sites simply aren’t as powerful or as useful as their desktop counterparts. Spreadsheet jockeys, for example, will want to stick with Excel for the foreseeable future.

But we also found surprising power and features in these sites. For example, Zoho Writer is in some ways superior to Microsoft Word, because it automatically creates an HTML version of your document on the fly and handles images better. And Gmail can give any desktop e-mail program a run for its money.

In general, if you’re looking to collaborate on documents, or share calendars, these sites can’t be beat. Nothing on your desktop compares with them.

Also, keep in mind that most of these applications are still in beta mode (in fact, a couple insist they’re alpha), and so they may change radically over the coming months.

The sharing advantage of Web applications is a refrain you will frequently hear repeated.

Posted at 8:22 pm. Filed under Brands, Companies, Google, Internet, Web Applications, Zoho

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