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This is a hand-curated newsletter with the week’s best reading on the mobile app ecosystem — everything on designing, building, distributing and monetizing mobile apps. Please help us spread the word by sharing this newsletter!
1. App Of The Week: Travel AI (iOS | Android is releasing soon). Their pitch: “TravelAI lets apps react to you and your situation by automatically detecting how you are moving. So whether you’re watching TV on the sofa at home, or driving to work, your phone can give you what you need at exactly the right time.” We think context-aware apps are becoming a big trend — intelligent apps that will give us the right information at the right time and tell us what to do.
2. Users expect apps to feel snappy. This isn’t easy, but is critical to mobile UX nowadays. Apps are rich clients with plenty of back-and-forth with a server on a network that may not be the most reliable. This is a great read: What tricks make an iOS app feel responsive?
3. 52% of US laptop owners have a smartphone, and 31% of smartphone owners have a tablet. Considering cross-device usage for your app has become critical. This 4 min video by ace designer Luke Wroblewski tells you How to Design for Cross Device Use
4. Microsoft’s Office Apps for iPad now supports In-App Purchases for subscriptions. We’ve encountered many apps that try to get around IAPs to avoid Apple’s 30% fee, and it simply doesn’t make business sense. Even Microsoft agrees. Microsoft Office Apps for iPad Gain Support for Monthly Subscription Purchases
5. Deep-linking is often compared with hyperlinks in enabling a PageRank equivalent for mobile apps and helping app discovery. But that is wrong. An excellent article correcting various notions around deep linking: Mobile deep linking will not improve app discovery
6. A deep-linking provider (URX) on the mechanics of deep-linking and why it is important. This set of slides from URX presents their case while not stressing on app discovery. Have deep-links in your app, but for the right reasons. Deep linking – a fundamental change in the mobile app ecosystem
7. The 3 use-cases of Push Notifications and how to use them to drive app engagement. We recently covered Push Notifications and their impact extensively in this newsletter, and this article makes a great follow-through if you are considering what information you want to push to your users. 3 Types of Notifications
8. In a first, Apple has put out the top 10 reasons apps get rejected. This is going to be very useful in making sure your apps go smoothly through the submission process. Common App Rejections
9. On OS ecosystems, and why it makes sense for Apple to participate in the Android ecosystem. Part analysis, part thought experiment, the notion may sound a little far-fetched, but we whole-heartedly agree. We see plenty of opportunities for players other than Apple or Google to gain substantial footing in the smartphone ecosystem. Apple Should Make Android Apps & SDKs
10. iOS game revenue grew by 70% YoY in Q2, and Google Play more than doubled. The size and growth both of mobile game revenue is beating all estimates. Great data from AppAnnie: Portable Gaming Report Q2 2014 (direct link: pdf)
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