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Payment is kicking off again.
London buses are now cashless. CaixaBank and Barclaycard have both launched contactless payment wristbands.
This begs the question – can mobile muscle in further on in-store payment and loyalty, or is the opportunity disappearing?
Voxel places mobile apps in the cloud, enabling users to try them within ads, before they choose to install.
Mobile and customer experience are perhaps the hottest topics in digital at the moment.
Deep linking allows a user to click a link on the mobile web and be served content from within a native app. John Milinovich is CEO of URX, a company providing deep linking technology.
We caught up with him to ask him a few questions about the project and its goals.
The freemium model is in the ascendancy when it comes to apps.
Paid apps peaked in 2013 according to Jon Reynolds, CEO of SwiftKey. SwiftKey provides an app bringing smart prediction technology to your mobile keyboard and, indeed, has itself gone down the freemium route.
The app used to cost $4 and was consistently in the paid charts, now it's free to download, with in-app purchases available.
So, what are the reasons for and consequences of the rise of freemium apps?
A few years ago, there was much debate around the best mobile solution for businesses: native apps or stand alone mobile sites.
To summarise the argument, apps allowed more functionality (geo-location, barcode scanners etc), while mobile sites had the advantage of appealing to the casual mobile searcher, and across a range of devices.
As iOS devices dominated the mobile web back then, an app was often the best solution, but this is no longer the case.
Now, thanks to responsive and adaptive design, as well as HTML5, mobile sites can offer many of the same features as apps.
So does this mean apps and stand-alone mobile sites are no longer needed?
Conference calls are boring and what almost makes them interesting is how painful they are. Except it doesn't make them interesting, it makes them painful.
Pain is not interesting. That's why I thought it would be good to feature a conference call app in Start Me Up.
The app calls participants, it isn't VoIP, gives you local numbers and can be used on your network minutes or as PAYG with the platform. That makes it worth taking a look at.
It's called BLAP, and you can read on for more info, or to find out what it's like working in a startup in this competitive arena.
If you are looking solely at Western countries for new mobile innovations, you are looking in the wrong place.
Asia is where to look for new and interesting insights into our mobile future.
China and India, in particular, with their large populations and geographies are seeing new mobile innovations take off. We can learn a lot from Asia, which is the largest mobile market in the world.
Here are just a few examples...
Make internet browsing an entirely customisable experience with these helpful (and only occasionally distracting) Chrome extensions.
Save time, increase productivity, block keywords from your social media channels, improve your internet security, measure stuff you never knew you wanted to measure, add doges everywhere!… There are thousands of apps and extensions that can enhance your use of the internet.
These are just a handful available right now that may improve your experience...
Generally, people’s impressions of banks aren’t too positive. The credit crunch, banker’s bonuses, overdraft fees and call centre queues are some common negative associations in people’s minds.
However, digital does offer some opportunities for banks to improve the way they are perceived, by helping them to improve the overall customer experience.
Clothing retailer Threadless has unveiled a new iPhone app, giving its customers another way to shop and interact with the brand.
Threadless is a community website that specialises in unique designs for t-shirts, hoodies and other items. It is built around social media and allows users to follow their favourite designers, submit their own ideas, and vote for designs that they want the website to sell.
Alongside the standard ecommerce functions, the app includes a voting tool so users can rate new designs and a never-ending feed of original products.
Mobile apps are now a key part of the mobile marketing armory.
And as Facebook has become an increasingly mobile company it has invested in developing its mobile app ad format which is designed to drive app downloads from Apple’s App Store and Google Play.
Apps are an important part of many multichannel marketing strategies, whether it be for a big retailer, a travel company or a not-for-profit.
Although users are more and more accustomed to smartphones and tablets, that brings with it hundreds of hours of learning that shouldn't be contradicted. Designing an app that just works is a difficult task and aside from determining the way to platform your app, perfecting the user experience (UX) is the next priority.
There are many UX companies out there. Appsee is a new player in the market, providing software to put an app through its paces. They're the latest company to feature in this, our Start Me Up feature.