ToDesktop

Convert your web app to a desktop app in 2 minutes.

#2 Product of the DayApril 12, 2019
With ToDesktop you can convert your web app into a desktop app. A desktop app provides a much cleaner and less cluttered user interface. Users can download and install your app to their computer and launch it from the same place as other desktop apps
Discussion
Would you recommend this product?
14 Reviews4.3/5
Well done, @davej. Feature request: Ability to turn these apps into a Mac menubar app (vs. the dock).
@rrhoover Wow, you read my mind. That's literally the product I'm working on right now. Should be ready by early May but please shush! ๐Ÿ˜œ My last startup (which failed because I couldn't find enough paying customers) was a menubar app built with Electron too (so I have a bit of experience): https://pin.gy/
๐Ÿ‘‹ Hello PH! I'm Dave, the solo maker of ToDesktop. ๐ŸŽ‰ Today, after months of beta and refinement, I'm really excited to launch ToDesktop! With ToDesktop your users can install your web app to their computer and launch it from the same place as other desktop apps on Windows, Mac and Linux. โ“Why does this make sense? * Dropping the URL bar and tab bar makes your app's UI look much cleaner and less cluttered * One-click launch from the start menu, desktop or dock * Having a native feel is important to users. It gives them confidence that your app is solid ๐Ÿ’ช I'd like to think that it's a super friendly and easy-to-use product, but it packs some punch too with advanced features like code signing and auto-update. ๐Ÿค—A huge thanks to everyone who has helped along the way. Particularly Michael from Interplay (https://interplayapp.com) and the rest of the folks at Teamwork Catalyst for the support and advice.
Congrats on the launch @davej - ToDesktop looks incredible, we'll definitely be moving our cobbled-together Electron wrapper over to this. The seamless update experience is magic - this has been a big pain point for us, having such a straightforward solution will save us a lot of headaches. Including EV code signing is a nice touch - we had to jump through a lot of hoops (and spend more than the annual cost of ToDesktop) to get this in place ourselves. One question - so I see that autoupdates for Electron itself are managed through ToDesktop (๐ŸŽ‰) which is great news. I was just wondering if ToDesktop manages when these updates are distributed or if the app owner needs to login to ToDesktop and action the update manually?
@joelennon Wow, thanks Joe ๐Ÿ™‡ Auto-updates happen automatically, our last update was 18 days ago and I'd expect updates will happen monthly-ish going forward but it depends a bit on the Electron release schedule. Security updates are prioritised so if there's a security fix released to Chrome or Electron then you can expect to see an auto-update release in less than 24 hours. We will offer more control over auto-updates in the future so you can scale back the regularity of auto-updates if desired. One addition to this. If you change any of your app settings (for example, if you change your app's icon) and do a re-build then that will automatically release a new build to auto-update. The final thing to say about updates is version numbers. At the moment, every new update increments the minor version number. So your initial build will be `1.0.0`, if you do a re-build or we do an automated platform update then the updated version will be `1.1.0`.
@davej Fantastic. What you've described there fits the bill perfectly - the monthly-ish schedule sounds on point and good to know security updates are pushed out almost immediately. Just saw you have options for multiple apps too - this will be amazing for us as we get asked by customers all the time if they can brand the app with their own icon and name but we usually say no due to the extra maintenance this would lead to. ๐Ÿ”ฅ๐Ÿ”ฅ๐Ÿ”ฅ
@davej @joelennon got the same question, thanks for asking and answering before I started typing haha
@davej congratulations on the launch! I think your product can be very useful!

HANDS DOWN ๐Ÿ™Œ๐Ÿผ THE BEST DECISION I MADE not to waste time building this myself ๐Ÿ’ฏ I've been using this in private beta and can't emphasize enough how impressed I am with it. Even from v0.1, the app was simple to use and fully functional. But auto-updates and more customization options are icing on the cake. This has saved me so much time so I can concentrate on my apps core functionality. Delighted to see this launch to the world - Congrats Dave! ๐ŸŽ‰

Pros:

Create your desktop app in minutes. Tons of customization options. Auto-updating means one less thing to worry about.

Cons:

What will I do with all the time I saved?... ๐Ÿค”

I almost wish I needed a desktop version of our app right now! I've considered side-projects in the past and kinda baulked at them because they'd be better with a desktop version. Now I'd just use this ๐Ÿ˜Š
Looks interesting! Congrats on the launch @davej.. Will definitely keep this in the list. I'm curious now that Google is coming up with DPWA: https://developers.google.com/we... .. What would be the benefit of paying $49 per month vs their solution.
@owenfar1 You need to meet a few requirements (both technical and engagement) to get DPWAs working on Chrome. You're also left in the lurch if your users are using Firefox for example. With ToDesktop you can just have a download button. DPWAs are awesome though! :)
@davej Yeah, there's quite a few benefits when using your solution. Really cool project! Keep it up and wish you all the best with this :)
@davej @owenfar1 one more thing, on MacOS Chrome always open its own window if you launch any DPWA which isn't always ideal.