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The death of the website

Mobile Apps

The buzz around the social web is that soon mobile phones will outnumber people on our planet. While this is undoubtedly great news for telecom operators and phone companies, what does it really mean for the good old website?

Think about it. When was the last time you actually typed in a URL into your mobile phone browser to access something? For search, you probably used an app as you did for social networks like Facebook and Twitter. A built-in app brought YouTube content streaming to you while foursquare located your presence on maps. Your contacts are searchable through specific apps and you can Skype them, post on their walls, instant message them and even connect with them; all without ever having to go to a website. Each time you wanted to morph a friend’s face on a quirky image, you probably used an app. You even shared the end result through apps. Your email is pushed (or pulled) to your phone as is your news. If you are the sort, you even read and edit your documents and presentations on the move.

More and more sites are releasing companion apps with (or even before) they actually launch on the www. What you read, whom you follow and what content you consume is already decided by major players in the social network world. The interesting part is that they are able to do this without your ever having to visit a website. Any website. Everything was facilitated through apps resident right on your mobile device. With near field communication becoming popular, you can soon even buy and sell stuff without going through websites!

Think about what that means the next time your client asks you to build a website. Really. Or else, you’ll find your business going the same way as the good old dodo.