What Is a DApp and How Is It Different From a Normal Application? by@invoblox

What Is a DApp and How Is It Different From a Normal Application?

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Ryan Jason

Ryan is a passionate technical writer with expertise in blockchain technology and its emerging trends in digital world.

With the rise of DApps, there is some confusion about how DApps function differently from regular mobile or desktop apps. To start off first, the word app is abbreviated from the application. In 1997, the very first mobile was when Nokia 6110 introduced the built-in version of the basic “Snake” game. Since the 2000s, new trends have emerged for both mobile and desktop applications.

DApp development, on the other hand, came into play with the emergence of blockchain technology and Peer to Peer (P2P) file sharing. Most startups today are coming up with decentralized software that utilizes the native properties of blockchain and offers a secure and transparent operational environment for businesses.

What are DApps, & How Are They Different From Apps?

DApps, also called decentralized applications, are digital applications that are built on blockchain. It combines the graphical user interface (GUI) with smart contracts (a computer program). A major difference between apps and DApps is that DApps run on decentralized P2P blockchain networks. Conversely, an app runs on one or more centralized servers. Moreover, DApps are not controlled by any third-party entity or authority. It does not have a single point of failure, therefore is considered highly secure as all data is secured on the blockchain which is immutable.

Originally, DApps first appeared on Ethereum. DApps developed based on Ethereum do not need to be built from scratch. Instead, DApp developers can build it on top of an existing blockchain. Custom DApp developers however build DApps on a new blockchain. Some popular DApps include Uniswap, Yearn Finance, Opensea, Curve, and PancakeSwap.

With the prevalence of smart contracts, DApps are becoming more common. Every industry, whether it be supply chain, healthcare, real estate, or finance, is looking forward to developing DApp for its customized organizational needs and to remain competitive in a highly dense market.

DApps over Apps

Let’s look at some of the key differences between a normal app and a DApp.

Centralized vs. Decentralized

The biggest difference between an app and DApp is that DApp is decentralized and the app is centralized. Apps are controlled by developers, support teams, central authorities, or any third-party entity. DApp on the other hand runs on a peer-to-peer blockchain model where there is no central authority to monitor or control the activities. Consequently, DApp does not have a single point of failure, whereas an app has.


DApps are reliable and considered trustable among all participants of blockchain. The reason is that DApp gives equal ownership and control to each participant.


As we all know, blockchain-based apps are more secure than others. DApps similarly offer first-class security against unauthorized access and various attempts of cyber attacks. Since DApps are decentralized and records are unalterable, it is almost impossible to breach the blockchain network. However regular apps have certain loopholes and require additional considerations to protect from hacking or potential cyber-attacks.

Development Cost

An app has various development needs and costs. For instance the cost of separate cloud servers, third-party tools, and maintenance. However, DApp development is quite cost-effective.

Usage Fee

Mobile or desktop apps are mostly free. Only some apps charge for additional features or assets. DApp on the other hand charges a small fee every time users use the app. The charges depend on the scalability and complexity of a decentralization app.


When it comes to the speed comparison of DApps and normal apps, DApps are slow. According to developers, DApps can process only 15 transactions per second. However, in the near future, DApps would be scalable and hence the concern of speed will be resolved. Normal apps are quite fast and have high processing speed.

Benefits of DApps Development

  • Censorship resistance - As no third-party or single entity controls DApp, authorized access ensures that no organization or government could alter transactions on the blockchain
  • Secure - Once a smart contract is deployed, the service is enabled with participants of the blockchain. No malicious entity could launch a cyberattack on individual DApps
  • Open source - DApps are open source that allows faster ecosystem development
  • Integrity - DApps are immutable due to strong cryptographic security
  • Privacy - DApps do not need your real-world identity to interact, therefore, privacy remains intact
  • Compatibility - DApps are compatible with crypto platforms and can accept cryptocurrencies as payments
  • Versatility - Platforms like Ethereum bring opportunities for developers to focus on innovative ideas. DApps could be deployed easily in various industries transforming real-world applications in gaming, social media, finance, trade, and eCommerce

Future of DApps

DApps have the potential for self-sustainability. In the coming years, we can expect more stablecoins using advanced price-stability methods for cryptocurrencies. Leading DApp development companies are expected to develop more sophisticated apps around stablecoins.

Decentralized Exchanges (DEXs) will also be seen in full swing in the future. DApp development services will create more DEXs to address the issue of compatibility of different blockchain technologies.

Similarly, another potential future use case of DApps would be in crypto lending. DeFi DApp development services will revolutionize lending for borrowers who had to go through the traditional and cumbersome application processes in several financial institutions. In a nutshell, there are endless possibilities for DApps in the near future that we can expect to witness.


Tech giants are enthusiastic to adopt decentralization apps suitable for their organizational use cases. DApps have some interesting possibilities such as DeFi, a new financial ecosystem that does not revolve around any central authority. Autonomous financial institutions run on a trusted distributed ledger. It means communities will have access to secure and less restricted financial services.

Other than DeFi, DApps have a huge capacity to reform P2P marketplaces and cloud services. In the future, they are expected to be more streamlined with potential investors. Apps, on the other hand, are already mature and now we have solutions to every problem available in the form of a mobile or desktop app.

I hope you’ve got to know the clear difference between a normal app and DApp!

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Ryan Jason HackerNoon profile picture
by Ryan Jason @invoblox.Ryan is a passionate technical writer with expertise in blockchain technology and its emerging trends in digital world.
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