To understand the role of apps and the web, look back at the relationship between film and television.
First there was a technical divide. You couldn’t charge for airwaves, so TV was ad-supported. You couldn’t rent movies, so they made all their money from a few weeks at the box office. TV was about quantity, and movies were about the spectacle you just had to go out and see.
They solved the technical limitations a generation ago, but cultural expectations still exist. Television is about variety, with sitcoms, news, sports and reality television. It’s a constant stream of fresh content– South Park can write, animate, and air a new episode in six days.
Yet people still go to a theater for concentrated, high quality content. Studios risk tens of millions of dollars if they stand to make hundreds of millions. Writers spend years perfecting 120 pages.
Film and television aren’t enemies. When a successful film is adapted into a show, nobody says television is winning.
Apps and the web are complimentary mediums, and neither are going away. The technical limitations of the web are improving, and app development is getting easier. As a company, rather than “betting” on a particular platform, start from the product and work backwards. As an engineer, rather than define your career with a laundry list of technology, pursue the type of product you’re happiest creating.