Application software

With application software (also application program, short application or application, english application software, short app ) are called computer programs that are used to edit a useful or desired non- technical system functionality or support, that is, they serve to " solve users' problems ". Examples of applications are: image editing, video editing, word processing, spreadsheets, computer games, certain business functions such as financial accounting, goods issue etc.

From the English term application has in everyday language the term application, short app, naturalized. In German-speaking countries, the abbreviation app is almost exclusively equated since the appearance of the iOS App Store (2008) with a mobile app, so application software for mobile devices such as smartphones and tablet computers. However, now app is also partially desktop application software called, eg when the operating system Microsoft Windows 8 ( Windows App ), which is used on both desktop PCs and tablet PCs, or in Apple's operating system Mac OS X with the Mac App Store.

A special form of application software are web applications. These are accessed from the workstation or mobile device via a web browser and they run in the browser.


Function as opposed to system-related software

Application software is available (according to ISO / IEC 2382 ) as opposed to system software and system-related support software. These " are the programs that are necessary for the correct functioning of a computer system, as well as all programs that support the programming, such as translators and test tools and general services provide [ ... formatting, file management, data transfer ... ] ", but no user -related ' benefits ' bring. Examples are the operating system, compilers for several languages ​​, or backup utilities.

Application software can be used both locally on a workstation ( desktop application ) or on a mobile device (mobile application) be installed or run on a server that is accessible to the workstation or mobile device ( client-server or Web application ). You can, depending performed by the technical implementation, in batch mode or interactive mode (with direct user interaction ). These two distinctions are but of all programming languages ​​, in principle, also for system software.

The dividing line between application software and system software runs out of focus. So you can consider, for example, program libraries, both as part of an operating system, as part of an application or as a layer between the application and the operating system. The same is true for web browsers. Rather, the technical side of the middleware systems are attributed, but which may also have application-specific functionality. Also, there are numerous ways to use software for both application development and for normal user functions, for example, systems for the spreadsheet, text editors or end-user appropriate database systems. Finally, about a programmer could understand his tools as well as ' application software ' as an accountant its balance sheet software.

Application software on mobile devices ( Mobile Apps )

Native mobile apps can quickly and easily based on a built- in operating system Online Store and installed directly on the portable device. Mobile web apps are accessed via the browser of your mobile device and need not be installed.

Application software over a network in a Web Browser (Web Apps )

Web applications require unlike desktop applications, no special operating system, but some specific runtime environments.


Application software is used in large quantities to support the management in government agencies and companies. Application software is partly standard software, largely tailored to the particular application industry solutions are used as individual solutions. Currently significant is the use of mobile apps in the enterprise context.

In the area of ​​strategic and business application software within a company ( such as ERP systems or portal software ) also referred to as business applications or business software.