SaaS: Zoho Launches Docs iPhone App
Zoho , a SaaS application provider that competes with Google Apps, has launched a Zoho Docs Applie iPhone application. Ironically, Google has yet to make a similar move. Here’s a quick update on Zoho’s strategy.
The Zoho blog post claims the Zoho Docs iPhone-native app is fairly simple — it lets you access any document that lives in Zoho Writer, Sheet, Show or Docs, allowing you to search and view your spreadsheets, presentations, images, PDFs or any text file. The catch is that it doesn’t appear to allow users to actually edit those documents, though it’s probably a safe bet that functionality is coming.
The really important part of this announcement is that it represents a break in philosophy from Google. In previous conversations with The VAR Guy, Google has confirmed their real focus is on building strong web-native apps, rather than spend time developing for every specific mobile platform. It’s a logical choice, given Google’s advocacy for open web standards — and Zoho does offer a mobile site with a relatively full feature set.
But that raises questions about the future of the cloud. Do resellers and their customers prefer SaaS to come wrapped in native, local applications, or is the industry leaning back towards the browser? We have a hunch we’ll hear more on this at this week’s VMworld, so stay tuned.