The Death Of The Web Browser – Coming To A Desktop Near You

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Have you taken a step back and thought about what your online experience looks and feels like?

I bet it’s nothing like the days of firing up the old Web browser and clicking through your Bookmarks. Things are changing at such a rapid pace that I’m not sure Marketers understand how big the changes are… or will be.

I was watching as a couple of people at Twist Image played with their iPhones, then noticed a couple of widgets on someone else’s desktop, and from there I caught myself floating through a bunch of news items in Google Reader at which point it hit me (square between the eyes): the death of the Web Browser is imminent.

Nielsen BuzzMetrics has already lauded that the Pageview – as a measurement metric – is on its way out, and Web Analytic experts are desperately helping us Online Marketers better understand what a metric means in a world of Ajax-enabled Web pages. In this flurry it seems blatantly obvious that we’re moving towards an always connected experience that will transcend the desktop versus mobile convergence discussion. It will also obliterate the need (or desire) to go from a computer (or device) “on to” the Internet. It will, simply, always be there… always be on.

It does seem simple and realistic. The idea that all of your data is stored in the “cloud” and that the concept of having anything stored locally seems insane (one place, where it can be lost or destroyed… why?).

Yup, I’m feeling a little Geeky with a Techy edge at the moment. Maybe it has to do with the new Sony Vaio ultra portable laptop that I just ordered… or maybe it has to do with the seemingly silly task of having to reinstall software that could just as easily be a Web-based (and driven) application.

I’m thinking about a bigger picture for Marketers, Digital Marketing and Online Advertising. This picture is completed by a theme of “connectedness.” No Web to log on to, but rather a Digital environment that’s driven by a connected desktop.

Dare to dream.


  1. Hey Mitch,
    Great post. I made the leap back in April to a virtual office and put it to the test this week when I went to Toronto for a couple of days.
    Essentially, all of the tools I use to manage my feeds, podcasts, email, appointments, calendars, contacts, projects, billing and banking are online. I didn’t bring a laptop with me and found that I was just as easily able to handle my work from the internet cafe I stopped at, or the laptop I borrowed from a friend, or even those public internet pedestal things.
    It was a neat experience.

  2. Maybe it’s me but what I see around me is the birth of the browser as an OS. Email, online storage, Google reader (as you mentioned) and a plethora of other applications are now online. You can do your taxes online and even handle your SMB accounting online.
    The death of the OS as we know it? Definitively. People won’t know (or care) if their terminal runs Windows, Linux or MacOS. They will care about their online applications in my opinion. The browser will evolve but I don’t think it will die. It’s just starting…

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