Will the App Store Revamp Affect Mobile App Marketing?

Post By Hannah Downing

Last week, Apple announced that it would be revamping the App Store for the first time since its opening in July of 2008. The revamping is mainly going to concern the layout of the store, as they are creating four tabs for organization, rather than sticking with their original format of sorting apps by category.

These tabs are Games, Apps, Today, and Search. The Games and Apps tabs will recommend and highlight different games and apps. The Search tab will function in just this way, for users to search for specific apps while showing the current trending searches. There will also be a few additions to the Search tab, mostly pertaining to what the Today tab will hold, which is where the biggest changes seem to be.

The Today tab will focus on a few specifically-picked apps that Apple is recommending to users, along with much more. As ironSource wrote,"The today tab updates daily, and features exclusive premiers; new app releases; inspiring developer features and interviews; an App of the Day, a Game of the Day; tips and how-to guides to show users how to make the most of their app experience; a space for influencers and celebrities to share their favorite apps."

Many of these additions, specifically the developer features, are to help both users look for a specific kind of app and the developers of apps find quality users. As ironSource wrote, "...Apple is redesigning the App Store to boost discoverability and help iOS developers get their apps in front of eager, relevant users."

These additions and their purpose sound like they have great potential, but the question mobile app marketing companies, like Oplytic, should be asking is what this revamp of the app store will do for mobile app downloads and popularity. For instance, if this layout works the way it sounds like it will, popularity and reviews of apps will still surely matter, but so will glowing recommendations from famous people and features in the App of the Day portion of the store.

Similarly, with additions like developer spotlights and interviews, users may also take these into account when considering whether to download an app or not. What this means is that many mobile marketing companies will probably consider how to get the apps they are working with into the App of the Day spotlight or how to get the developers of their apps interviewed and highlighted. Keep checking back to our blog to stay tuned as to how the new App Store affects app downloads and how Oplytic adjusts.

HomePod opens up the possibility for a Smart Device App Store

Post By Hannah Downing

On June 5th, Apple announced a new product that many people probably wondered if and/or when Apple would unveil it: the HomePod. This product is an in-home speaker, created primarily to sync up with a user’s phone and apps, allowing them to play from “…over 40 million songs” and it “…provides deep knowledge of personal music preferences and tastes and helps users discover new music.”

This access to such a large selection of music comes from the assumption that many of the users would use Apple Music with the HomePod, even though an Apple Music subscription costs money, which some people may opt out of, especially if they prefer free music-streaming services, such as Spotify. When it comes to potential competitors, there are multiple to consider. Will people who prefer their free Spotify account, but are loyal Apple users, want to use the HomePod if Spotify is not supported? There are plenty of other Bluetooth speakers out there that let you play anything you’d like, but this is unclear about the HomePod, as Apple’s press release mentions using Apple Music, but does not specify whether other mobile applications for music will also be supported. It is also worth mentioning that prices are very similar between Spotify and Apple Music, but Apple Music does NOT offer a free version. At the very most, Apple Music offers a free three-month trial, while Spotify’s version is free for as long as the user would like, widening the gap between Spotify-preferring Apple users who may not go for the HomePod if it doesn’t support their music-streaming preferences.

The other aspect of the HomePod worth noting is that it will be an all-around smart in-home device, just like Amazon’s Echo. Apple even uses the phrase “Hey Siri…” to get Siri’s attention, just like the Echo does with Alexa. This is worth noting because, with multiple products like the Echo and the HomePod allowing for in-home integration with users’ devices, it begs the question, what will happen to the mobile app? How will its usage start to change if devices like the Echo and HomePod continue being popular with consumers? Similarly, how will companies, like Oplytic, who take part in mobile app marketing, change to integrate these new systems and the preferences of the people using the mobile apps? Systems like the HomePod may create a space for apps to be used in even more ways than they already are, which means advertising could happen in more ways, as well. This is an exciting and varying time for apps and mobile marketing. Keep in touch to see not only how Oplytic innovates, but also how we continue to help our advertisers and publishing partners.

It’s Mid-Year, Do You Know Where Your Mobile App Trends Are?

Post By Janet Arvia

Half the year is down and so are the number of apps regularly used by American adults. That’s because mobile users are allocating more of their time to a select group of messaging apps within social media.

This trend, revealed in a study by eMarketer, is akin to findings overseas by Verto Analytics which reports communications/social media is the fastest growing app category among adults in the United Kingdom. Popular platforms such as Facebook, Instagram, and WhatsApp account for 44% of the time nearly 5,000 users surveyed spend on mobile apps.

The global boom in video consumption helps explain why mobile app users are lingering on Facebook. The social media giant boasts its members watch 100 million hours of video everyday. With affordable data, accessible WiFi and all those adorable animal uploads, the digital video trend means Americans will engage with mobile apps for about two and half hours a day throughout 2017. This number is up by more than 10% from 2016 and is projected to continue climbing in the coming years.

Yet as more time is devoted to specific mobile apps, competing ones are getting shut out. Enter the ongoing trend for big data analytics and mobile marketing engagement which helps brands create strategies to hang onto their mobile app users and grab the attention of new ones by tracking the effectiveness of in-app conversion activity and cross-app promotions including deep links and push notifications.

Not only is the latter cost-effective and time-efficient (you can reach millions in minutes), it’s more secure than Signalling System 7 (SS7) and Short Message Service (SMS). Universally speaking, the encrypted messaging that push notifications offer is crucial in a time when hacking is unfortunately also on-trend.