A way of computing that dates back to DOS networks where the client PC first downloaded the application from the server, then ran the application while updating databases located on the server. Although DOS fat-client applications worked fine in the location where the server was located, they used too much network bandwidth to be practical for remote users.
Unlike DOS, fat-client applications are not dead yet. Apps, often written in Java, are the modern version of fat-client architecture. These days the app stays on a device until a newer version is released, which saves time and bandwidth over the DOS method of loading the program each time the PC was booted. However, a thin-client architecture, like a conventional web page, avoids the issues altogether.