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Flotato is an interesting way to use web apps on your Mac



  Flotato takes on the use of web apps outside the browser

If you find yourself with many tabs in Safari, Chrome or Firefox but have been searching for a potentially better option, a new app can do the trick. It's a quick and easy way to use web apps on your Mac without relying on a bunch of tables in your chosen browser.

Dieter Bohn at The Verge has a nice look at an app called Flotato. This is an interesting way to use web apps on Mac, the type of app you traditionally use in your browser. It includes things like Twitter, Instagram, and maybe even Slack or other services. Flotato is lightweight and easy to use, and is designed to relieve the stress of your browser.

Flotato takes a web app and separates it from the tab and creates its own floating window. When you start the Mac app for the first time, you will see a number of web apps that you can launch just by clicking on the "get" option. When you select it, Flotato will then launch an app for that option in the Applications folder. If you select an app in the Applications folder, it opens, lets you sign in and then launch a window for you to interact with.

To create a new Flotato app, copy the Flotato app into the Mac Finder and rename it copy. So instead of using Flotato's launcher, you can just make your own. When you open the app you have renamed, Flotato guesses which web page you want to open, based on the app's name, and opens it. (You can manually put it into preferences if you need it.) It's just a super smart way to create new web apps, and it's much easier than other methods.

One of the more interesting elements of Flotato is its icon work. When you enter the web app you want to use (Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, etc.), the app icon will change automatically based on what you are running. Then you will see the Twitter icon, or Facebook's logo. Often it will upload a high-resolution favicon. It even supports brands for unread messages.

In addition, the icons can also be used to view a live clip of an app you use. In one example, if you follow the Bitcoin progress, you can actually use it as your web app's icon, so you can track the change number in real time without actually having to keep the app open in front of you.

Metaphorically using Flotato Mac's native WebKit engine, so in theory it should be much less stressful on processor and RAM than Electron apps or in some cases Chrome tabs. There are some additional software tricks on top of just using the OS thread engine, but it's still much easier than Electron. Flotato is developer Morten Just tells me it's faster because there aren't any plugins, no combined browser renderer, no javascript bridges, no bookmark background sync, just a Webkit 2 web view with outgoing customizations.

Flotato also has an interesting pay structure. If you only use a few apps, it's free to use. However, there is a $ 14.99 option that allows you to create an unlimited number of apps if you feel you might need it.

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It sounds like an interesting idea. One worth checking out if you use many tabs regularly.


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