When computers were the size of rooms, being “into computers” took a great deal of dedication; you had to learn how all the components fit together, how to diagnose problems on your own, and how to replace parts. Computers were not something to be taken lightly. But now that computers are literally lightweight, carried around in watches and tablets, the barrier to entry is much, much lower.

In days past, to share an internet video you had to download it, burn it to a CD, physically hand it to a friend, and hope they had the right software to read the CD and play the video. Now, sending a video takes about three taps, so simple a child could do it.

blog picAs tech becomes more ubiquitous, fewer people identify as a “techie”—and that’s going to result in better tech for everyone.

Back in the day of the nineties and early 2000′s, using an Apple product meant you were special; you chose something outside the mainstream. This special community bonded at events like Macworld and online at places like TUAW. After the advent of the iPod and, more importantly, the iPhone, the Apple community became less and less of a community as tech became a lifestyle auxiliary, not a lifestyle itself. People were content to merely be consumers rather than consumer-brand ambassadors; the teenagers who craved an iPhone wanted one because of its cultural status, not for its computing power.

The business side of this shift away from the tech lifestyle is finally becoming clear. IDG’s Macworld | iWorld Expo shut down after its 2014 show, citing lack of interest. More community-focuses sites like TUAW and Joystiq were rolled into the broader “tech” site of Engadget at the end of January; the parent company AOL said they were “simplifying the portfolio of brands.”

On the consumer side, App Annie’s 2014 retrospective had a great deal of insight into the kind of apps that experienced the most growth. Importantly, some of the apps that had the greatest success in 2014 were messaging apps, travel and transportation apps (many of which landed new partnerships and investments), and mobile streaming apps (which both increased downloads and increased in the number of new streaming options from content creators like the NFL and MLB).

blog pic 3People are downloading apps not just to have them and pass time, but to access real-world tools. Consumers want to send messages through WhatsApp, get a Lyft to their Airbnb, then watch Netflix, and they want it all to happen seamlessly.

blog pic 4

As tech moves away from a niche market and becomes integrated into every-day life for everyone—not just an elite few in Los Angeles, New York City, and San Francisco—the technology we choose will have to be higher-quality, with better user experiences. As tech becomes subsumed by overall consumer lifestyles, rather than being its own lifestyle, we’ll all benefit, but first we have to adapt.

Sara Kewin is an account executive at Appency. She is not wondering where her hoverboard is, because that sounds unstable and scary.

 

 

As a Communication major at UC Davis, I am exposed to definitions and theories in lecture and expected to regurgitate that information in midterms every few weeks. While all of the information I learn in the classroom is important, there are some things that I will need to know for the real world that I can’t learnatalien from the textbook. The experiences I gained during an internship allowed me to get a taste of what a typical day at work is like.

My winter internship with Appency was the first time I worked in a public relations and marketing agency in a start-up environment. I couldn’t have asked for a more awesome team to work with. From the first day of my internship, I was able to play with new apps before their release and work with the team to develop new strategies to market them better. In addition, I sat in on team meetings and participated in brainstorming sessions to pitch our clients’ apps to.

One of the main reasons why I chose Appency is because it’s a marketing firm that focuses on what most of us smartphone addicts use on a daily basis: mobile apps. With my interest in communications and technology, Appency was the perfect choice for me. The great thing about interning at Appency is that the staff members there really care about their teammates learning something new every day. I learned different strategies on how to find the best media outlets to reach out to, how to run Facebook ads, what tools I could use to search ratings on different apps, and more!

I had an amazing experience these past few months, and I certainly learned more about what it’s like to work at a marketing and public relations firm at Appency. If you’re looking for a fun internship where you are able to learn a lot about marketing in the technology sphere, Appency is the place for you!

 

Natalie Nguyen is graduating from UC Davis and pursuing a career in marketing and public relations.

Mobile video ads have always been a dream of digital marketers, but the timing has never seemed right: The internet connection is too slow, the targeting is off, they’re not as engaging when they’re not on television. For a hundred reasons, video ads have been slow to hit it big, but they’re gaining popularity now, and for good reason.

How it’s being done right

Some apps have been able to master video ads and prove—and improve—their effectiveness. Newer indie game Crossy Road has proven very profitable for developer Hipster Whale, and the industry has taken notice. Crossy Road made over a million dollars in revenue through incentivized video ads by organizing their in-game economy to strongly incentivize players to watch ads for in-game currency. Because of the nature of incentives, these views tend to be lower quality than other ads, but are very effective at extending reach. However, this method of incentivized video ads can be difficult to properly utilize outside of the context of mobile games.

For apps where an incentive isn’t readily available, there are “playable” ads, which let users “test drive” an app through a virtual emulation. These ads tell consumers about an app and its features, then hand control to the viewer, allowing them to try out the app directly on their phone without having to install anything. Thanks to the use of a virtual server, consumers get a feel for the product directly after viewing the ad, solidifying the link between the ad and the product. mNectar, a provider of virtual ad services, says these playable ads are much more effective than traditional ads.

How Facebook is catching up

With the introduction of video posts to Facebook comes a whole new avenue of engagement for users—between each other, and between users and advertisers. According to a blog post by Facebook, the number of videos posted to the platform has increased by 94 percent. Now Facebook records a massive three billion video views a day for videos uploaded by users. With this burgeoning influx of content and traffic, the news feed has now become much livelier than ever before. In fact, Facebook has begun to catch up to YouTube in terms of shared videos, and evidence shows that it may even be taking users from them.

Share of Facebook Video Posts

Given this huge increase, Facebook is set to become the new video advertising powerhouse. While users do see many sponsored video posts and video ads in their feeds, video ads have not yet realized their full potential. Facebook has not quite dialed in its formula for video ads yet, despite their commonality and proven effectiveness in other apps and games. Facebook’s task is to find a balance of organic content and premium ads that is both profitable for them and effective for advertisers, but does not overwhelm organic user content.

Facebook Video Posts

Some have questioned Facebook’s staggering video statistics—and for good reason. YouTube is primarily accessed through its own front page and interfaces with Google’s search algorithm, meaning video views do not often happen accidentally. Videos on Facebook, on the other hand, are primarily watched in the user’s news feed, and have not been actively selected by the user. (Any advertiser who has run a CPM campaign will be familiar with the problem of sorting interested eyeballs out from the chaff.) While the auto-play feature is generating views, they cannot all be counted as interested views, and in fact may be shown to users who don’t fit in the target demographics.

To help correct this problem, Facebook has revamped its video view metrics. Users can now see reporting on their videos’ average viewing time, unique views, audience retention, and more. This engagement data will help marketers decide how to structure their video ads, when and where to place critical messages, and track the efficacy of their campaigns. Additionally, Facebook has redefined a view: Now, a view only takes place if a user sees  three seconds or more of the video. Because videos are muted in auto-play, enticing visuals are important to getting users to actively view the video.

Just like any sponsored post on Facebook, users can optimize video ad campaign with a wide assortment of parameters and tools, depending on the campaign’s needs and budget. Using Interest targeting, marketers can focus their ads on groups that have liked specific activities or interests on Facebook, similar to the current targeting available for app install or like campaigns. Audience and Demographic tools help narrow the campaign’s focus to specified groups, like parents or college students. Using these tools can help give a video a wider reach, and track its effectiveness with their analytics tools. Using a fixed cost-per-thousand views style of campaign, marketers can tailor campaigns to any budget without sacrificing effectiveness.

Facebook is a great canvas for advertising, and the rapid growth of their video platform shows off opportunities to engage users in a different manner than YouTube does. The time is particularly ripe for app marketers: COO Sheryl Sandberg said at Facebook’s 2014 Q4 meeting that 65 percent of the site’s video views come from mobile devices. Implementing a video ad campaign and augmenting it with incentives and virtual trials where applicable makes the opportunity even more enticing.

Update: The deadline to sign up has been extended to March 10! Be sure to sign up now here!

Citi Mobile Challenge participants

Last year, I had the honor of being a judge at the second iteration of the Citi Mobile Challenge, a development contest put on by Citi where developers from all over the world compete in a hackathon-like competition to come up with the best banking-focused solutions to support the next generation of mobile-friendly consumers. Citi has already begun working with some of the 2014 winners to integrate their ideas into real world products and are supporting those teams with funding, resources, and consulting. The team here at Appency is donating consulting time to help some of the winners through mobile marketing tactics such as ASO and app launch best practices.

The Contest
While the American challenge winners were selected only a few months ago, Citi has already opened the challenge to Europe, the Middle East, and Asia (EMEA) with a brand new contest. Developers have until March 6, 2015 to register as participants. Once registered, developers must get their ideas on paper by March 13. After that, it’s go, go, go: Final concepts will be expected by March 27.

Once finalists are chosen they will be invited to present at one of four demo days at the end of April in London, Warsaw, Jerusalem, or Nairobi. Entries are being accepted from all over the world so developers don’t have to be located in an EMEA country to enter. Some of the best entries to the American challenge were international developers who traveled thousands of miles to pitch their ideas! It’s definitely worth the trip: There is $100,000 in cash prizes up for grabs, plus Citi and its partners like IBM, MasterCard, Uber, and even Appency will provide support and feedback to help hone the final product.

How to Win
As a past judge, here are a few tips on how to win that prize money. To start, you must understand that entries are being judged at every step by Citi employees. It’s only at the last step, the live demo, that the judges will be both Citi employees and outside consultants. To make it past those first hurdles you have to put yourself in the shoes of Citi and their consumers. How does your idea help Citi customers? How does it help Citi itself? If your idea cannot answer both sides of the question, then you need to head back to the drawing board.

Make sure you use the APIs that Citi provides. There are a number of data feeds to tap into that will allow your app to really become a part of the user’s banking life. Think about both consumer customers, and business customers — they expect less entries into the business customer area so the competition will be less fierce in that category.

Design is vital. If you do not have a quality designer on your team, get one. The presentation of an idea can by as vital to success as the idea itself. Both solid ideas and solid presentation are needed to convince the judges that your team and your app have what it takes.

Many entries come from experienced development shops, but I must caution them against shoe-horning banking or Citi-focused features into an existing project unless there is a clear, salient reason to do so. As a judge I saw — and, frankly, didn’t vote for — too many presentations that looked like a pre-existing app with Citi-specific features slapped on in hopes of sliding by and winning. Usefulness is rewarded in this competition.

Lastly, if you do make it to the finals, be sure to practice your presentation several times in front of real people who can give you good feedback. This will ensure your presentation flows well, anticipates questions or criticism, and fits in the limited amount of time allotted. Practicing your presentation in front of people outside your development team can also help prepare you for potential audience questions you may have to field after the presentation.

The chance to have a big brand get behind your work with this level of support does not come around very often so the competition will be brutal. Best of luck to all the entrants, and please feel free to reach out if you have any questions! I am more than happy to give tips to anyone who asks — just shoot us an email at contactus@appency.com.

 

Aaron Watkins is the founder and president of Appency and was a judge at the 2014 Citi Mobile Challenge. He’s a big fan of apps that work.

Yahoo’s first Mobile Developer Conference took place in San Francisco last week. Over 1,000 attendees—including Appency—gathered  to learn about Yahoo’s new and improved mobile offerings, and the results lived up to the hype. Yahoo launched of a new suite of products to help developers analyze, advertise, and monetize their apps. These products combine Yahoo’s years of advertising technology with the mobile expertise of Flurry and BrightRoll, which joined Yahoo in 2014.

Flurry’s been around since the launch of the iTunes App Store. They provide developers the data they need to understand their audience, benchmarked with data from over 630 billion apps. Partnering with Yahoo gives them access to an enormous audience across multiple device platforms and technologies. Appency has used Flurry analytics for years, and we find these new updates very exciting, providing plenty of opportunity for our clients.

BrightRoll provides solutions for the entire video ecosystem. Their partnership will help create a complete suite of solutions.

Yahoo's new suite of tools

Flurry Analytics Explorer
Flurry has updated their analytics and now allows users to ask even more complex questions about their data than before, and the platform shows insights immediately. Developers can create custom events relevant to their specific app and reference them against any other piece of data Flurry gathers, and see immediate results. For instance, Instagram could track engagement by monitoring when users upload a photo, then cross reference that even against time of day to see when users are most engaged. As we have come to expect from Flurry, these new features have an easy-to-use interface and provide in-depth graphs. Importantly, these new analytics tools are free and require no new codes or new SDKs.

Flurry Pulse
Flurry Pulse makes it easy for developers to share app signals with partners using their existing Flurry SDKs. Pulse shrinks the app’s size and saves developers time: With fewer SDK implementations, developers can get an app out the door faster and still work with a broad range of partners. A partnership with comScore helps make this possible.

Yahoo App Publishing
Yahoo announced that developers now have the ability to monetize their apps with video ads, display ads, and native ads using Yahoo Gemini, BrightRoll, and Flurry. These are the same tools that Yahoo used to revamp their apps and they have seen a huge increase in their click-through rate and engagement, so it will be interesting to see how these tools translate from web to mobile.

Yahoo Search in Apps
This feature allows developers to integrate Yahoo Search into their apps. It improves experience by allowing users to search in the app instead of leaving the app to search. During the past few months Yahoo’s has seen an increase in retention and engagement with Search in apps, so we may see Yahoo coming back as a mobile search competitor, especially after users shared concerns about privacy and Google Chrome.

Yahoo App Marketing
Developers can now buy targeted native and video advertising across Yahoo’s network of 75 million monthly users with Yahoo Gemini’s native and mobile search marketplace, which could be a good opportunity to easily reach a broad audience.

To learn more check out www.developer.yahoo.com, or contact us here at Appency to get help with your own mobile advertising campaign.

What South Park Got Right About Freemium Games

In 17 years and 18 seasons, South Park has scathingly satirized dozens of organizations and cultural trends. This season, they’ve turned their attention to Silicon Valley. They’ve skewered everything from Apple’s culture of adoration to Uber’s rise over taxicabs to freemium, or free-to-play games.

In case you missed it, the recent episode “Freemium Isn’t Free,” opens with the four main characters introduction to a free game, based on a popular television series from the South Park universe (like so many actual mobile games). The app’s gameplay is simple: Harvest “Canadian coins” to build virtual hospitals and parks, or pay with real-world money to get more “Canadough.”

The game is revealed to be a product of the Canadian Department of Mobile Gaming, which happens to be in cahoots with the Canadian devil, Beelzaboot. Profits from the game fund massive infrastructure improvement projects in the northern nation.

When one of the main characters gets so addicted, he spends thousands of dollars in microtransactions, the actual Devil gets involved.

To us mobile geeks, what’s particularly fascinating about the episode is the explanation of how freemium games work (explained, of course, by the terribly unsubtle Beelzaboot), and how well the South Park writers hit the nail on the head.

In the “outdated” method of gaming, players pay a lot for a game upfront, and enjoy it for as long as they’d like, improving their character and circumstances through hard work and time spent in the game.

South Park: Previous RPG play model

Beelzaboot and the Prince of Canada then reveal their updated RPG loop made for freemium games, infused with microtransactions wherever possible, gleefully shouting, “Money! Money, money, money, money, money!”

South Park: New RPG play model

There is a grain of truth in the joke: In days past, a small, but highly-engaged group of gamers consistently bought consoles and games, and high-quality games were rewarded by large profits. However, that niche group has been expanding for over a decade, with games becoming more popular to a much wider group of consumers since the turn of the millennium.

Gaming no longer requires an investment in a console or a high-end computer: Ever since Snake, mobile phones are also gaming consoles. As mobile phones expand their reach, mobile gaming expands too. However, while users expect high-quality games on their game-specific consoles, they do not necessarily expect them on their mobile device. Plus, simple, casual games (and gamers) are on the rise.

The South Park animators nailed the issue on the head. It is a well-known fact that successful games are those that effectively balance time and pleasure. Users are allowed to “try before you buy,” but don’t ever have enough time with the game to get their fix, effectively “[keeping] them buying forever.” Candy Crush is the perfect example—users only get to play five games before they have to either quit or pay money, and five lives don’t always last long.

Short play periods fit right into the “distraction” periods in which casual gamers play. As the Canadian Department of Mobile Gaming so succinctly put it, funding freemium games means trying to find out “how to make people spend money on the toilet.”

South Park: Secrets in the background

Relying on microtransactions is fine. It’s a real, acceptable strategy. The problems come when games that are very good at getting players addicted, and converting them into microtransactions intersects with games that are low-quality time-fillers.

As the Devil says, “if something’s addictive because it’s fun, that’s one thing, but this is just blatant Skinner Box manipulation. […] Temptation has to be nuanced.” This is true: Quality, enjoyable games can turn over in-app purchases easily and not suffer. Monument Valley is a highly-acclaimed app that charges $3.99 for the initial download. When they asked their users to pay $1.99 for new levels, a whopping 10 percent were willing to pay—a conversion rate to make many app developers jealous. Users are willing to pay money to get quality content.

South Park is right to criticize the app industry for their questionable promotion methods. Random chance and limited opportunities make games more addictive, and these can have terrible consequences for players who, like young Stan Marsh of South Park, get caught in the web of microtransactions. Even the young get addicted to freemium games, and not all of them have the financial resources of John Lyndon of the Sex Pistols to support their habit.

Freemium app developers can say South Park is being a bit extreme in comparing them to Beelzaboot, and for the most part, freemium games aren’t evil. If games can convince their users to give them money—either up-front or throughout the game—because they enjoy the content and want to support the creators, then they’ve created something good.

Just remember: “When the Prince of Canada agreed to make a freemium game, he apparently signed a deal with the Canadian Devil.”

You can watch the entire episode for free on South Park’s Comedy Central website. For more analysis, check out what Pocket Gamer’s Mobile Mavens had to say aboot the whole issue.

Sara Kewin is an Account Executive at Appency who has spent too much time on her iPhone. She stands with Sheila Broflovski and blames Canada.

The Kamino walking tour app launches a new, updated version of their mobile app and website, promising an enhanced travel experience for users

San Diego, CA – January 13, 2015 – Kamino Labs, the travel and urban exploration planning company, focused on changing the way people interact with cities through the use of mobile technology, rolls out a new version of their app and website with new and updated features, just in time for the new year.Kamino

Created by explorers, the Kamino walking tour app is the ultimate way for locals and tourists to embark on an urban adventure. With Kamino explorers can unlock an authentic city experience, fully equipped with user-generated information like detailed area descriptions, photos, GPS enabled maps, and recommendations from travel experts and locals. Currently, there are walking tours in over 90 cities around the world, providing fun things to do in each one.

The Kamino mobile app has been reinvented for 2015, making exploring cities around the world, easier than ever. With an all new look and feel, Kamino is also adding some new features to make exploring fun and convenient. Kamino now offers customized walking tours with suggestions from Kamino, so users can create their very own, unique tour—coming soon, Uber Integration, allowing users to call an Uber car directly from the Kamino app.

Kamino has also redesigned their website to help travelers find the best experience from planning to doing. The website has been augmented to provide tools for inspiration, planning and booking, like walking tour searches and featured blog posts, and will even offer travel booking to help streamline travel plans.

The new Kamino Experts Program showcases the most experienced travel experts, putting them front and center, while the city pages aggregate all the walking tours, posts and information so users can plan the best travel experience ever.

Kamino has also launched B2B services, including the Kamino API for travel brands that want to enhance existing websites and mobile apps.

One of the coolest additions to Kamino for the New Year is the White Label App Program for travel brands, allowing those brands and even travel experts to create their very own travel app powered by the Kamino platform. This program will allow users and guests to follow curated, walkable itineraries that ensure a positive experience and drive brand loyalty.

To kick off the launch of the new and improved Kamino app and platform, Kamino will be running a promotional contest for travel bloggers and writers to have a chance at winning their very own White Label app, in addition to other prizes for them and their readers, like an iPhone 6 and Amazon gift cards.

Travel bloggers and writers are invited to participate in this contest starting today, January 13, through January 23, 2015, based on creating best original travel recommendations in the form of walking tours within Kamino. Contestants are asked to sign into Kamino and create unique content in the form of walking tours. Once all participants have completed their walking tours and written content, they are asked to post an announcement/article along with a widget to their website or blog. From January 24-February 6, participants are to encourage readers, followers, friends and family to go onto the Kamino website or app to save/favorite the walking tour they created. The contestant with the most amount of saved “favorited walking tours” will win first prize. Second and third place prizes will also be given. Please note: voters must sign into Kamino in order to save/favorite walking tours.

Participants in the contest will be considered for the Kamino Expert Program, provided they meet Kamino guidelines and standards, usually by invitation only. The Kamino Expert Program allows writers to use the Kamino platform to showcase their travel brand, by increasing engagement and visibility as a travel industry leader with content marketing designed to complement existing communication platforms. In addition, it will allow writers to cross promote their travel brand to increase awareness and visibility within the industry, build customer engagement, create customized walking tours and drive awareness of their website, travel content and social media with customized profile, accessible contact information, and RSS feed from personal blog/website.

For more information on the contest and to see the full rules and regulations, go to: http://www.gokamino.com/contest012015.php

This year, Kamino promises and delivers a unique travel experience for its users, allowing them to explore international cities or their own backyards.

For more information on Kamino go to: https://www.gokamino.com/

Or download the app at: https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/kamino/id697881464

About Kamino
In 2012, Kamino Labs was founded in San Diego, Calif. as a travel planning and urban exploration company, developed to change the way people interact with cities through the use of mobile technology. Created by an eclectic group of travel enthusiasts, with an unyielding passion for exploring and discovering cities, Kamino provides tools and services to experience the urban landscape in an authentic way. Through the use of the latest technologies, Kamino’s interactive travel platform reinvents the walking tour into actionable content marketing to enrich the travel experience, promote tourism and drive customer care. For more information about Kamino Labs please visit www.GoKamino.com, or join them on Facebook and Twitter at @KaminoLabs.

Contact:
Jennifer Krosche
Appency for Kamino
516-353-6552
jennifer@appency.com

The most trusted name in password management unveils newly updated iOS and Android apps with enhanced features to keep personal data organized and secure.

Los Gatos, CA, November 13, 2014 — In recent months, news of data breaches with millions of passwords compromised, photos leaked, or financial data stolen have been all too common. Today online security is a top priority, but finding a simple and secure way to keep personal data safe isn’t always easy. Now it is with the newly updated SplashID apps for iOS and Android.

For over 12 years, SplashData’s SplashID has provided a seamless way to store and lock the confidential information of over 1 million users with smartphone and tablet apps, Mac and Windows desktop applications, and web access. Now with SplashID’s latest upgrade to version 8, the SplashData team has added additional security measures and convenient features to ensure SplashID users have access to their personal digital wallet whenever and wherever they are.

While individuals can always resort to keeping usernames, passwords and account numbers on a piece of paper hidden in their desk or on an Excel™ file saved to their computer, it’s easy for passwords to be forgotten, files to be erased, and hard copies of documents to be lost. With SplashID, data is quickly and easily accessible, private and customizable, but—most importantly—secure.

With the new version, SplashID is available as a free app for the first time. To use SplashID with multiple devices or browsers requires an easy upgrade to SplashID Pro.

“Now more than ever, people need simple and effective ways of keeping their personal information private and secure,” said Morgan Slain, SplashData’s CEO. “With version 8, we are excited to make SplashID’s combination of security and convenience free for a new generation of users and at the same time bring powerful new features to our advanced users with SplashID Pro.”

SplashID 8 offers a unique combination of features and benefits:

  • Access: Only SplashID provides free, native, secure apps for iOS, Android, Mac, Windows, and the web, plus a browser plugin for Chrome. Version 8 updates for SplashID’s native apps on Windows Phone, BlackBerry, other browsers, and USB drives are coming soon.
  • Choice of sync and storage: Users decide how to store and sync their records with convenient cloud sync, local network Wi-Fi sync, or on-device storage.
  • Touch ID login for iOS.
  • Customizable record types and categories keep information organized.
  • Photo capture feature quickly and easily stores credit card information.
  • File attachments: Upload photos, documents, and add notes to any record for reference.
  • Protection features include 256-bit encryption and 2-factor authentication.
  • Secure sharing: Safely share records with other SplashID users or even those who don’t use SplashID.
  • Automatic SplashID Backup service to ensure data never gets lost.
  • Security dashboard provides usage statistics and tools to monitor and fix weak, reused, and old passwords.
  • Web autofill saves typing in usernames, passwords, addresses, and credit card numbers and delivers the correct address from the secure data vault every time to prevent phishing.
  • Refer a friend to SplashID and both parties receive a 25% discount on a SplashID Pro subscription.

SplashID is available now for free on the iTunes App Store and Google Play. For access across multiple devices (for example, iOS and Mac) and additional services like sync and automated backup, upgrade to SplashID Pro for $1.99 per month or $19.99 per year.

About SplashData and SplashID
SplashData (http://www.splashdata.com) has been a leading provider of security applications and services for over 12 years. The company’s secure password and record management solution SplashID has over 1 million individual users worldwide as well as hundreds of business and enterprise clients. SplashData was founded in 2000 and is based in Los Gatos, CA. https://splashid.com/

The iOS educational app provides interactive learning components to encourage children to embrace individuality.

Cologne, Germany, November 12, 2014 — Discover the magic of bombardier beetles in Little Luna – Big Talent, Bastei Entertainment’s newest addition to their portfolio of mobile applications. Designed for children ages 4 to 8, this delightful interactive story teaches children about the importance of embracing their own individuality.

The story of Little Luna begins with a lesson on a bombardier beetle’s special talent – tooting! While typically bombardier beetles use tooting as a defense mechanism in the wild, for Luna and her family it is a way to express themselves. Children will enjoy following along with Luna as she introduces each of her family members and the unique ways in which they utilize their talents.

Through fun mini games like practicing toot target-shooting with her dad, doing yoga with her mom, and matching musical melodies with her brothers, the story of Little Luna and her family encourages children to pursue their own special talents even if it sets them apart from others. Additionally, the app’s interactive activities promote concentration, musical expression, and coordination.

“Little Luna was designed not only to teach children about bombardier beetles, but also to allow children to embrace and cherish the qualities that make them unique,” says Sabrina Glodde, project manager for Bastei Entertainment. “With the help of our entire team, we were able to make an engaging app to celebrate children for the individuals they are.”

Features of Little Luna – Big Talent include:

  •     Interactive storybook with games and more!
  •     Simple navigation for a smooth-running interface.
  •     Beautifully designed with delightful music to match.
  •     Timer for parents to monitor a child’s screen time.
  •     Designed for preschoolers and elementary school aged children.
  •     Narration in English, Mandarin Chinese, and German.
  •     No in-app purchases.

Little Luna – Big Talent is available for $2.99 in the iTunes App Store.

Video trailer: http://youtu.be/KRQrU_nCPqU

About Bastei Entertainment:
Founded in 2010, Bastei Entertainment is the digital department of parent company Bastei Lübbe AG, a leading German trade publisher home to famed authors David Baldacci, Dan Brown, Jeff Kinney, Ken Follett, Lesley Pearse and many more. Dedicated to the development of new innovative products and global digital entertainment, Bastei Entertainment’s in-house development team continuously creates unique multi-media content which translates the written world into digital works such as eBooks, mobile applications and other digitally enhanced products.

For additional information about Bastei Entertainment, please visit the company website at http://www.basteientertainment.com/.

The top-rated meal-planning app gets a fresh look and joins the Android platform just in time for the holiday season.

Garner, NC, November 3, 2014 — Butterball is proud to announce the release of its newly redesigned meal-planning app, Butterball Cookbook Plus, now for iOS and Android users. Previously only accessible on iOS devices, Butterball has completely transformed the look and feel of its top-rated cooking app to give Turketarians everywhere easy access to hundreds of recipes, tools and tips to make cooking a complete Thanksgiving feast, or a weeknight family meal, a breeze.

In addition to recipes for main dishes, salads, sides and desserts, the new Butterball Cookbook Plus app is an ideal kitchen companion. The app provides Turketarians with cooking tools like conversion charts and substitution lists; how-to videos including ones on how-to choose the right turkey, how-to roast it and carve it; and Butterball’s helpful cooking calculator to find out just how long it takes to thaw and cook that Thanksgiving Day turkey. Additionally, the new Butterball Cookbook Plus app features nutritional information and promotional offers from Butterball and its valued partners.

“Butterball consistently searches for ways to meet consumers where they are – and that means providing relevant information to an increasingly mobile society,” said Kimberley Metts, manager of consumer promotions for Butterball, LLC. “The redesigned Butterball app now allows consumers who use a variety of different operating systems to take advantage of our turkey expertise no matter what device they use.”

Features of Butterball Cookbook Plus include:

  • Hundreds of recipes: Recipes and tips for appetizers, salads, entrees and desserts are all in one place—ready for weeknight family dinners or Thanksgiving feasts.
  • Easy organization: Sort by ingredient, theme, product and more. Bookmark favorites for quick and easy access.
  • Simple sharing: Send recipes through Facebook and Twitter, or email recipes to friends, family and fellow turkey lovers.
  • Personalization: Bookmark, rate and leave notes for how to add a personal touch.
  • Eat smart: Easily access nutritional information and serving sizes.
  • Save money: Enjoy frequent promotional offers from Butterball and its trusted partners!

Butterball Cookbook Plus is available now on the iTunes App Store and Google Play for free for a limited time.

For more information on Butterball products, including nutritional details and recipe ideas, visit Butterball.com or find us on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest and Instagram.

About Butterball, LLC: 
Headquartered in Garner, N.C., Butterball is the largest producer of turkey products in the U.S. – producing more than 1 billion pounds of turkey each year. For 60 years, the company has provided foodservice and retail products to customers and consumers around the world. As an industry leader in quality, food safety and animal well-being, the company employs numerous processes to ensure the health of flocks and implements recognized prevention measures to exceed food safety standards. Butterball products are currently distributed throughout the U.S. and in more than 45 countries. Butterball operates six processing plants located in North Carolina, Arkansas, Illinois and Missouri.

For consumer questions or information, please visit Butterball.com or call 1-800-BUTTERBALL (1-800-288-8372). Visit ButterballCorp.com for corporate information about the company.

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