Application Software: What It Is, Types, Characteristics

In this tutorial, we will learn about the application software, its types, and characteristics. By Monika Jha Last updated : May 08, 2023

Application Software

These are also end-user programs. Through these programs, users can complete their tasks. Tasks include creation and modification of documents, spreadsheets, databases and also doing online research, sending emails, designing graphics, and running businesses, even playing games.

It is a programming tool by which computer programs are created. Computer programs depend on the activity for which they were designed. An application can manipulate text, numbers, audio, video, graphics and a combination of these elements such as MS word.

Characteristics of Application Software

  • It is an end-user application so close to the user and easy to design.
  • The programming language of the application is high-level language.
  • Easy to understand and manipulate and also it is more interactive.

Types of Application Software

Application software is mainly classified in the following basis,

  1. Based on property and use rights
  2. Based on programming language
  3. Based on output and purpose

1. Based on property and use rights

  • They are usually classified into two main categories: first is closed source and open source software applications, and the second one is free or proprietary software applications.
  • Some software applications are owned under copyright. End users can buy or license proprietary applications through the vendor providing the software and a software license grants limited usage rights, such as Adobe Photoshop.
  • They cannot modify these applications; they are customizable software by third parties.
  • Open-source applications provide the source code for end-users and developers to use and modify it. Developers and companies make open-source software applications freely available under a generic or public license, such as GNU.
  • These types of applications customized by third parties, such as Word press.

2. Based on programming language

  • The programming language is used to write the source code is or execute, application users access a web application through a web browser, such as Google Chrome.
  • A developer can write a source code of web applications in many languages, including JavaScript, CSS, and HTML. But they cannot access the hardware on which the application is installed. APIs that can access device resources used in Hybrid applications. Developers code specific mobile applications that work on a specific device platform.

3. Based on output and purpose

  • These can also be either horizontal or vertical. General-purpose applications are more popular and widespread, in the category of horizontal just like word processors or databases.
  • Vertical applications designed for a particular type of industry or business, or department within an organization. For example, a software suite is a group of software applications with related functionality such as Railways Reservation Software.

Types of application software based on purposes or the needs of the user

1. Presentation Software

In Presentation software, we can show the information in the form of slides and also we can add text, graphics video and images to slides to make them more informative and interactive. For example Microsoft's PowerPoint.

2. Spreadsheet Software

In Spreadsheet software, we can perform modifications and calculations. In spreadsheet software data is stored in table format. The intersecting area of row and column is called a cell. we can define the type of data going to enter that field such as text, date, time, number. Also, it provides many formulas and functions to perform calculations like arithmetic operations, logical operations, text operations. For example Microsoft Excel, lotus 1-2-3 for windows.

3. Database Software

The database is a collection of files. It contains related data. Applications have some database. Whenever we operate the application, data is fetched from the database, and after modification, it is stored back in the database. Database Management System (DBMS) software tool is used for storing, modifying extracting and searching for information within a database. For example MySQL, MS Access, and Oracle.

4. Multimedia Software

Multimedia software is used in the editing of video, audio, and text. Multimedia software is used in business, educations, information, remote system and entertainment.

5. Word Processing Software

It is used to format and also manipulate the text, to create memos, letters, faxes, and documents. It provides many features such as find and replaces, checking spelling and grammar, synonyms and antonyms, different Font options and word art options.

6. Simulation Software

To represent the similar behavior, function and key nature of the real world, it provides a physical environment. It is a technology for education, engineering, testing, video games, etc. It is used in the real world where the real system cannot be accessible or maybe dangerous or unacceptable. For example in the area of flight system, economics, Robotics, Space Shuttle Navigation, and weather forecasting, etc.

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