Not long ago, hobbsy, sent us a question just before the forum had problems, here is his questions:

“Hi there, would the guys behind Affjet consider making a desktop tool for Macs (maybe using your own PHP-OARA project)?
I’m looking for a desktop replacement for Affmeter (and mainly use Macs these days). I’d be happy to pay £xxx”

This question made me think about why potential customers would like a desktop app rather than a web-based, so here are my thoughts and I would love people to discuss them with me if possible:

At the beginning of this project we thought about the differences between a web-based or a desktop platform. The main problem with a desktop platform is that we can’t guarantee the correct functionality of the system as each computer, OS, driver and plug-in could make it crash. Also as you may know the Affiliate Networks change really often so we should be updating the application each two weeks at least, not having time to test it properly and finally having an application that would work only by chance because proper tests wouldn’t been carried. In my opinion, this is the problem that Affmeter and desktop application have.

Also all the data is stored in local giving you a feeling of security, but your computer is the one who is doing all the work making the request and storing it on your hard-drive. You would say that this is not a problem, even you may prefer this, but If you install a patch for a desktop program and someone has changed the code or it has not been tested properly, you may end up sending your credentials to someone else or damaging your computer, so is not as secure as you may think.

However, I am not saying that an app web-based is the only way. You also have some problems with browsers, styles, versions and OS , people may not think that is fully secure (but there is no system fully secure), but I think is secure enough to store your Affiliate Networks credentials and your statistics, our CatN servers have been tested and we have even applied to become part of the G-cloud (to host government applications) so we are really concerned about security.

Finally there is also another “down-side ?”, our servers are the ones who make the request to your Affiliates Networks so we have to include it on the pricing, also we are storing the data in our data bases so it’s available whenever you need.

I won’t post about the benefits of being web-based as most of you know already what they are, for us the best one is being able to fix your problems quickly and update the code in seconds.

After all this I would thank hobbsy for his interest in a desktop application of AffJet but we don’t think is a good option right now. Feel free to discuss with me!

ps: We are re-design AffJet right now, in about 1 month we will go live!