With virtually everyone these days walking around with a smartphone in their pockets or purses, marketers are eager to engage with this growing audience of consumers. Appency helps them do just that!

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Appency is a global leader in marketing and public relations for the mobile application space. We’ve built a loyal following since we launched our firm in 2009. Recently, we were happy to have been identified as a leading mobile and app marketing company by Clutch, a B2B research firm based in Washington, D.C. Below is a quote from one of our reviews.

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We’re proud to say that our clients have glowing things to say about us as well. Clutch evaluates and analyzes the top digital marketing firms around the globe. Their analysis is based on both qualitative and quantitative factors that include direct conversations with agency clients. We’re extremely happy to have been included in Clutch’s recent release, but we’re even more gratified by the glowing feedback we receive from our clients.

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Another client of ours said in their interview that:

“Appency is an amazing partner. I can’t say enough great stuff about them. As a startup and an entrepreneur, it’s great to work with an agency that has the same sense of urgency that you do when dealing with things as important as marketing and user growth.”

Check out Appency’s profile on Clutch. There you can see what services we provide and read all of our reviews.

The Future of Apps

To say that apps play a big role in our everyday lives would be an understatement. After surpassing desktop in 2011, eclipsing television in 2014, this year, mobile has cemented its position as the top media channel. According to Flurry’s annual report, an average consumer now spends more than three and a half hours every day on mobile apps. That is a 35% increase in time spent from a year ago, which means that in just 12 short months, the average time each consumer spend on their phone, increased by more than 40 minutes. To put things in perspective, that is nearly twice as much time as the average parent spends taking care of a child.

The industry has grown immensely over last couple of years, and it is likely that it will continue to do so. But what does the future of app development hold? Two of the biggest companies have vastly different ideas about the future. Apple is trying to the make personal computing devices even more personal. It presents itself as a company that combines software, hardware and services into one all-encompassing package. On the other hand, Microsoft is trying to extend its apps to software other than Windows, in order to provide the users with a mobile experience that transcends devices.

Cross-Platform Development

When it comes to platforms, we tend to default Android, iOS, and to a lesser extent, Windows Mobile. Apple has its grip on the high-end market, with no signs of letting go in the near future; Android is seeking “world domination” through devices available at lower prices and Windows mobile simply isn’t growing fast enough. Although developing apps that work easily on multiple devices and platform is not an easy job, and there is no one-size-fits-all approach, we will be seeing a rise cross-platform when it comes to mobile development tools. As a matter of fact, earlier this year, Microsoft purchased the software startup Xamarin, in order to let the developers design app that could run on iOS, Android and Windows platforms.

The Rise of Enterprise Apps

At the end of the decade, we are probably going to see a big shift toward the development of enterprise apps rather than consumer apps. The reason is simple – most consumers are accustomed to free apps, while businesses are a lot more willing to pay up for a product if it promises reduced overall costs and greater productivity. In addition, the enterprise app market is very lucrative; according to a 2015 Vision Mobile study, almost 50% of enterprise app developers earn over $10.000 per month, compared to less than 20% of developers who only work on consumer applications. One more thing enterprises need for success of their app is app marketing. Appency, for example, is covering all aspects of mobile marketing in one holistic service crucial for apps success in today’s oversaturated app markets.

Developing Apps for the Internet of Things

The future is not just about our smartphones and tablets anymore, we are heading into an era of the Internet of Things. Even though current efforts by the developer are not paying off yet, mobile development for the IoT is getting bigger. With the introduction of the Apple Watch and the rising popularity of Android Wear, we are only now starting to see the true potential of wearable technology. At this year’s WWDC, Apple announced a major update to their IoT platform HomeKit – they have built a dedicated app that enables a user to control all devices in his or her home. Now, all HomeKit-enabled devices, from lights to garage doors, can be controlled with a single application.

Global Development

Driven by lower costs and the improved quality of service offered by international developers, global outsourcing will definitely rise in the next couple of years. According to ContractIQ, developers from the US charge $150 per hour, on average; app developer from Eastern Europe or South America charges only $35; while an app maker is even more cost effective. Most people think that lower cost could imply poorer quality; however, offshore developers are more than capable of producing quality work. Furthermore, as smartphones and tablets became a part of everyday life in third-world countries, the technology will surely change the social and economic aspects of life in those countries. Moreover, a recent UNESCO study suggests that new technology could tackle illiteracy and enrich education in developing countries.

Beyond Apps

While many people predict that smartphones will superseded by the evolution of wearable devices and the IoT, some researchers suggest that the  smartphone will become a “central choreographer” in a blended ecosystem of experiences across any connectable device.  This April, Forrester Research published a study, which suggests that in the next ten years, smartphone users will be able to get everything they want immediately upon picking up the phone, without using an app. The information will be brought to users automatically; for example, if you walk in an airport terminal, the device will recognize the environment, and then present you with special deals and ads. Forrester analyst Michael Facemire explains, as smartphones take on more tasks for consumer without the need for apps, the market will become less app-centered.

Nate Vickery is a business technology expert and futurist mostly engaged finding latest technology trends and implementing them into SMB and startups management and marketing processes. Nate is also the editor-in-chief at business oriented blog- Bizzmarkblog.com.

The new mobile apps are coming out every single day. Most of them fail within the first few months when the maker finds out that it’s not going to work because it’s a massive pool of millions of apps and new ones are coming every single day.

We decided to create a brief checklist of five main culprit reasons that make this happen and end up many founders’ dreams of building something out of their entrepreneurship passion. Interestingly, there are a few things which are common in many of the mobile apps that never make it and end up somewhere in the middle.

The viral app isn’t a success. It’s a hype. Once it goes up, then it goes down. Who plays Flappy Bird anymore? The problem with viral content is that it comes quickly and seizes everything, then it goes away. Today, Pokemon Go is a viral mobile game that is everywhere in the U.S and Europe. The question here is that, would it same or bigger after 2 years from now. It’s not even released in most of the countries yet.

Take a look at the 5 reasons why most of the new apps fail:

  1. The Core Concept

When the core idea of the app isn’t that strong or inspiring, it doesn’t do very well on the market. The core concept means the value proposition that makes the app stand out from the crowd. Before processing the raw idea of an app, if a founder does a little bit of analysis based on the target audience, territories, and demographics in order to make a fit between the core concept and the relevant audience. For instance, you won’t find elder people pursuing Pokemon on the roads, but young people would be everywhere in the public places playing the same game.

  1. The Weak Branding

Branding does have a huge role in any app’s success. The branding isn’t just about presenting the app in front of the people using the right name, logo, and color scheme, in fact, it also consists of the marketing plan of the app. If the founder of an app does understand the basics of branding, not only does he focus on the appearance of the app, but he also emphasizes on how to bring it in front of the target audience. The weak branding approach could end up many helpful apps that have the potential to grow and become bigger, but they end up without doing much on the market.   

  1. Marketing Budget

Having no marketing budget could end the game before it begins. In fact, having the budget and using it wrongly might bring the same kind of results. So, it shows that only budget doesn’t matter, the allocation of budget does too. Now, marketing has a various areas to invest the money in, for instance, in search ads, Facebook ads, Twitter ads, in-app advertising, so keeping all the eggs in the same bucket won’t help here, instead, try testing out the advertising models turn by turn, then compare the outputs of all the campaigns. Once you figure out the best ROI method of marketing, try to emphasize on that to grow. Once the startup founders and app makers put their whole marketing budget on one platform, they risk the whole marketing campaign, therefore, many apps don’t make it further.

  1. Storytelling

Storytelling is a way of engaging, entertaining, and attaching the audience towards the certain brand. The smart companies try to share the stories behind the apps or products they’re about to release. It shouldn’t be a concern that how they do it. Now we have the internet, social media, search engines, and lots of peer-to-peer messaging tools. Things actually go viral if they’re supposed to be and worth it. If a brand comes out and launches their apps on Google Play and App Store, and along the way, they add up a startup story of founders that how they started off or how the idea of the app came into existence. For instance, the story of Angry Birds that the founding company had launched 51 games before Angry Birds, but all failed and this one got huge success. Now everybody knows the story of Angry Birds.

  1. PR and Media Relations

One of the most important reasons of why an app fail is having no access to the mainstream online media, editorial staffs, and news publications. When you do have the relations on such level, it becomes easier for you to provide the information and news about your upcoming app. This is an untold reality of being successful in the mobile apps arena. Once an app founder or brand has this privilege which can’t be purchased, but can only be built over the course of time, then he can utilize it at the launches, and the odds are, when the high-profile and main stream publications publish a story of a newly born app that could potentially go huge, it actually gets closer to the success.

How to avoid it?

The purpose of this article was to help guide new startup owners and founders about taking the initial steps wisely because once they set up the base, it becomes harder to actually reinforce a whole new plan afterward. Choosing the right hands to get the job done would ultimately be the righteous thing to do.

About the Writer: Malik Usman works as a Content strategist and Internet Marketing expert with Citrusbits a mobile app development company based in San Francisco, USA. Reach out to him for mobile app development services.

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Unless you’ve been living in a fallout shelter (an actual one, not the game app) and cut off from all internet access for the past week, you’ve no doubt heard about or seen people playing Pokémon Go. (Appency got so into it they made an app that maps out all of the nests called PokeNet! Check it out on iOS and Android). Millions of users are now glued to their little screens trying to fulfill their dream of being a master.

Yet you’ve already seen this phenomenon before. A considerable number of smartphone users are glued to their apps for most of their waking hours, whether they’re enjoying time off or “working” at their jobs. This presents a real danger both to the users of these apps and the people around them.

A Wild Lake Appears!

Apps that require the user’s full attention and also require the user to travel are some of the most dangerous. While the most obvious reference might be the new Pokémon app, you might be surprised to know that even GPS has been shown to create potentially life threatening situations. A woman recently drove her car off a boat launch into a lake because her GPS told her she was going the right way.

It’s also no surprise that cellphones in general can be distracting; the AAA Foundation did a study and found that the number two cause for teenage vehicle accidents was related to using the phone. My personal experience has been that younger drivers are more likely to do things other than talk or text while driving.

Pokémon Go presents issues for pedestrians who are just trying to catch their latest prey. For those who haven’t tried the app, it requires you to physically visit a location and then catch a Pokémon by throwing Pokéballs at it. The whole process means looking at the screen no matter where the target is (and it can be anywhere). This can lead to some dangerous situations for those who aren’t paying attention.

Compromised Privacy

If big hacks have shown us anything, it’s that services you access through apps can potentially be deadly. One man killed himself over the data breach of Ashley Madison, which was perhaps also a lesson about the dangers of “looking for someone other than my wife.” Celebrities suffered a similar humiliation over the “leak” of their nude photos in 2014.

If there’s any lesson to be taken from that, it’s that security apps shouldn’t be considered optional. People using Virtual Private Networks (VPNs) and security apps are much less likely to be hacked. Both help protect user accounts and private data by encrypting internet traffic and removing malicious software.

Having an account hacked can be a devastating experience, especially for young people. Embarrassing incidents on popular social media apps such as Facebook can lead to bullying, depression or worse.

Apps can do a lot of great things and be great tools for anyone. People just need to remember that improper usage can have serious ramifications. Go catch some Pokémon if you’d like, but make sure you’re not sneaking into private yards or walking out into traffic!

What do you think about the safety of apps? Tell us what you think and leave a comment below.

About the Author: Cassie is an internet security specialist and entertainment blogger. If you’d like to read more of her work, visit Culture Coverage for regular updates.