5 applications that are better on the desktop than in your browser

Many of us use browser tabs to launch our most common applications: media players, instant messaging, office suites, and more. But while this often means we can take our favorite services anywhere without installing anything, the web version of the app isn’t necessarily better. Here are five programs that are just as good – or better – in their desktop incarnations.

For starters, each application mentioned here reduces the pressure on your web browser, which probably already takes up significant system resources (we have some tab management tips for you here).

Using a desktop application also means that you can manage its notifications as part of Windows or macOS settings, instead of messing with the same options in your web browser. It’s easier to manage your Do Not Disturb mode without distraction, for example, when running programs installed outside of your web browser.

This is not an exhaustive list of apps that are so good or better on the desktop, but it should give you where to start.


Spotify via David Nild

You can run Spotify in the network good enough, but if you download desktop application for Windows or macOS, you generally get a more sophisticated and stable experience. Some of the differences between the two are not immediately obvious, but they are there: You can stream higher quality music to a desktop program, for example, and this applies whether you are a paying Spotify Premium subscriber or not.

One of the main advantages of the desktop application for Premium users is the ability to save music locally so you can listen to it offline. There are also minor benefits, including easier management of playlists and queues (you can select multiple songs at once in the desktop app, but not online). The Spotify desktop app also has support for sending audio to Chromecast devices and is compatible with a wider range of keyboard shortcuts.

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Slack through David Neald

If you are used to living in Slack your web browser for corporate communications purposes you may want to consider installing desktop application instead for Windows or macOS. Many of the features are the same on the web and on the desktop, and you’ll be able to seamlessly sync your channels and messages across both platforms – so you won’t miss important updates if you make the change.

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