Fans of Flipboard, a mobile-specific social reader, might be surprised to learn that the company unveiled its new website today – surprised, either because Flipboard was launching a website when its mobile app had worked well for so long, or because it didn’t already have a website. It’s up and running right now, though, and it signifies the idea that perhaps the web itself isn’t quite as irrelevant as some tech critics have said.
A post on GigaOm offers up some comments from Flipboard’s CEO, Mike McCue, who explains that Flipboard was actually going to launch on the web at first, but the initiative was initially held back because of lackluster powers on the part of web browsers. It was the impending arrival of the first iPad, however, that instigated the company’s decision to launch as an app:
“Originally, we were going to build Flipboard on the web. Having been at Netscape for a while, I had a passion for the web, but when I thought about it, the web just wasn’t as capable — browsers weren’t as capable, they didn’t have as much horsepower. But we had heard rumors about the tablet coming from Apple, and we realized that would be the right first-launch platform for us.”
It should be interesting to see what kind of effect the new website has on Flipboard’s user base. Will it grow with the new point of access and entry? Will mobile and tablet users decide to take their Flipboarding to their laptops and desktops as well? All in all, however, this move proves that there’s plenty more life left in the web, no matter what some tech gurus might say – and then un-say a few years later.