Definition for common business applications

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Applications can be categorized by the business functionality from an enterprise perspective and it can also be categorized based on how and where they run.

Application categorization based on the business functionality

Business to Customer(B2C) Applications These are in general customer facing applications. Most of these are web/browser based applications. It includes dynamic content based web sites. Some of these applications can be client based application that needs to be installed on customer's computing device (laptop/desktop).


  • Ordering System
  • Customer Support System
  • Web sites providing product information
  • Applets/Active-X lightweight clients
  • Clients that gets installed on customer devices

Business to Business (B2B) Applications These applications are used between business partners like suppliers, resellers etc. Traditionally these applications are accessed using dedicated lines between business partners. Lately many of these applications directly use Internet with security features such as VPNs. Many of these applications are based on SOA (Service oriented architecture) and leverage web-services.


  • Parts ordering and status system
  • Bulk Order submission web service

Internal Applications These applications are used within the organization (Intranet) and are not exposed/available outside the enterprise. These include web based applications as well as desktop applications such as email/IM.


  • HR Systems
  • Internal Financial and ERP System
  • IT Desktop support system
  • Email clients

Application categorization based on on how and where they run

Front-End Applications These are the applications that interact with users through GUI such as browser, desktop client etc.


  • Order status checking system
  • Email clients

Background Applications These applications does not directly interact with the user. These are typically background processes and jobs.


  • Background Order validation Job
  • Nightly data Synchronization scripts

Services based Applications/Interfaces Provides an integration point to other applications and systems. Web Services is widely used standard.


  • customer data retrieval web service
  • Google's SOAP Search API
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