Tag Archives: Apps
Welcome to the latest edition of the Carnival of the Mobilists, a recurring showcase of the best recent blog posts on mobile topics. This month's Carnival offers a fine selection of posts from all areas of the mobile ecosystem.
In The End of Cross-Platform Mobile Operating Systems Richard Monson-Haefel at Ambient Strategic Mobility argues that tightly integrated mobile ecosystems à la iOS are the key to success for mobile platforms. Agree or disagree?
Sachendra Yadav at Technology, Mobility, Usability and other Musings analyzes UX issues in a popular iPhone RSS reader app and offers suggestions for fixing them in How NOT to design for multiple screens: Pulse iPhone App Usability issues.
Which world city makes the greatest and most sophisticated use of mobile technology? The mobile city project – the blueprint of a truly mobilized city by mobiThinking's Andy looks for the answer.
Helen also alerts us that the Vodafone Smart Accessibility Awards are open for entries. Prizes totalling €200k will be awarded to the apps that best enable social participation, independent living, mobility and well-being for disabled and elderly individuals.
MediaNama's Nikhil Pahwa presents some ideas for encouraging India's mobile services ecosystem to government regulators in MediaNama’s Final Recommendations To TRAI On Regulation Of MVAS.
At MobileGrove Peggy Anne Salz interviews Ogilvy's Rory Sutherland who tells marketers that the best way to get consumer's attention is by providing real value. Peggy's Rory Sutherland Tells Mobile Marketers: Focus On Value Exchange & Consumer Experience is a must read for mobile marketers.
Also at MobileGroove, Charles Knight looks at recently acquired Goby, an app that helps you find things to do nearby and interviews Goby's CEO in Mobile Search App Goby Finds Fun Stuff Nearby; Acquired By TeleNav.
At SmartMobs Judy Breck explores the unlikely reason that Martha's Vineyard residents warmly welcome the president of the United States when he vacations there. It's because Obama brings cell power to the Vineyard.
WapReview's contribution to the Carnival is GetGlue's Mobile Webapp Lets you Check-in to Books, Movies, Music, Baseball Games and More, my review of the trending mobile media check in service GetGlue.
Mark Bridge at the TheFoneCast presents an Interview with Neal Fullman, CEO of Get Taxi about the startup's plans to use an app running on a dedicated mobile device to revolutionize the way London cabs are dispatched and booked.
My Post of the Month pick goes to ppk for his suggestions for saving WebOS. I hope someone does pick up HP's cast off mobile OS and that they take the suggestions to heart. We need more, not less mobile ecosystem diversity and WebOS is arguably the most interesting and innovative of the current crop of mobile operating systems and too good to die.
The Best Post by a New Carnival Participant honors go to Richard Monson-Haefel for his well reasoned analysis of the relative merits of a closed, integrated mobile ecosystem like the iPhone vs. the Windows PC/Linux/Android approach of supplying a platform to multiple hardware vendors.
Watch for a new Carnival of the Mobiliists next month a site to be announced. If you write about mobile topics of any type consider submitting you best post to the next Carnival. It's easy and will bring new readers to your blog. Just send your entry to: firstname.lastname@example.org. Anyone writing about mobile is welcome. For more about the Carnival visit mobili.st.
Appcelerate lets developers place their apps in the Opera Mobile Store, a web based app store at mobilestore.opera.com/ that works in all browsers. The Opera Mobile Store is a featured Speed Dial link on the start page in Opera Mini, the world most popular mobile browser with over 100,000 users. The Opera Mobile Store is available in over 200 countries.
I spoke with Mahi de Silva, EVP, Consumer Mobile, Opera Software about Appcelerate. According him, Appcelerate helps developers promote content and applications to a global audience with:
- Featured promotion of select apps within the Opera Mini and Opera Mobile browsers including geographically target daily and weekly featured apps.
- Targeted pay-per-download campaign pricing that gives your app a featured listing in the Opera Mobile Store for specific countries, handsets and operating systems. You only pay for successful downloads.
- Matching pay-per-download marketing funds for all qualified applications
The Opera Mobile Store directly supports app and content downloads for Android, Java, Symbian and Blackberry devices. It's also available in Opera Mini on the Phone and iPad. On the Apple devices download links take the user to iTunes to complete the download.
Paid apps in the Opera Mobile store are distributed on a 70/30 revenus share basis. Free apps, including add-supported ones are distributed at no charge to the developer. Opera offers an ad-wrap API but devlopers are free to use other ad networks
Developers can learn more about the Opera Mobile Store and join Appcelerate by visiting opera.com/portal/appcelerate/.
One of the recurring themes at this week's Mobile 2.0 conference was how exactly do you make money in mobile? It was the topic of a couple of panels but no clear answer emerged. In talking with other attendees during breaks I found a fairly high level of frustration about revenue opportunities in mobile. It's not easy for free lance app developers and mobile web publishers to make a living from their work.
Most of the success stories seem to be with iPhone apps. With a block buster iPhone game like "Angry Birds", which has sold over four million copies, you can do quite well even with the ubiquitous $0.99 App store pricing. As can a high quality app, especially one that fills an enterprise need, like iTeleport, a $25 iPhone/iPad app for remotely controlling Windows and Apple PCs that generates over a million dollars in annual revenues.
But those results are atypical. Tomi Ahonen crunched the numbers and calculated the the average iPhone paid app or game returns a mere $682 per year to its developer. It's worse on Android where paid apps are only available in 13 countries. Android apps tend to be offered as a free ad-supported version with a paid upgrade that removes the ads and includes an additional feature or two. Mobile web publishers generally rely on mobile advertising as well.
To make any decent amount of money with mobile advertising you need volume, a whole lot of volume. Cost per click (CPC), the average payout to the publisher when a user clicks on a mobile ad, is about 4 cents in the US. Click Through Rate (CTR) for mobile ads varies widely but most reports, including these from Mobiclix and Chitika,put it at well under 1%. Assuming that you are lucky enough to get a 1% CTR you need about a quarter of a million daily ad impressions or 7.5 million ad impressions per month to make $100 a day! And that's assuming a 100% fill rate. However, Smaato reports that the average mobile ad fill rate last month was a mere 21% worldwide and only slightly better in the US and Europe at 29% and 30% respectively. So at the average fill rate, you would need 37 million monthly impressions to earn $100 day. As mobile sites and apps typically only carry one or two adds per page so that equates to at least 18 million monthly page views.
Why is it so hard to make money with mobile advertising? The biggest problem is inventory. There simply aren't enough ads to go around. That's reflected by the low fill rate, which in turn makes in a buyer's market and drives down CPC. Ad agencies don't seem to "get" mobile. They either don't consider it at all or don't find mobile ad formats, typically static banners or text links very compelling.
So what's the answer? Possibly something like Apple's iAd. With it's rich content and interactivity, iAd is generating a lot of buzz in the advertising industry. Hopefully this will get the agencies thinking about mobile and also lead to the development of similar rich formats for other mobile platforms.
Participants in Mobile 2.0's panel on mobile advertising suggested that Cost Per Action (CPA) ads like affiliate ads where the publisher gets a commission for sales made through the ad or ads for local merchants with a click to call number were formats that would be a good fit for mobile. Video ads are another possibility provided that don't interfere with the user's content experience.
Mobile is growing at an astounding pace. In Japan, where personal income is high, fixed broadband cheap and mobile data pricey, mobile page views last year surpassed desktop web pages views. And in some markets mobile advertising seems to be doing better than in the US. Smaato CEO Ragnar Kruse noted that CPC in mobile obsessed Indonesia at is as high as in the US. Considering that the average purchasing power of a US resident is 11 times that of the average Indonesian, agencies targeting Indonesia appear to value mobile clicks much more highly than their US counterparts. Maybe someday the rest of the world will catch up with Indonesia in CPC relative to purchasing power. If US CPC were to rise eleven times that would put on par with the average $0.50 CPC for a desktop web ad. I think we are a long way from seeing that however. AT&T Interactive's Michael Rubin predicted that mobile CPC will in fact rise, but not until 2012.
My own mobile advertising advice is to run A-B tests with different ad networks and ad placements. I recently trialled five networks on 3 different mobile sites and saw widely varying performance between networks in both fill rate and CPM. On all three sites, the best network paid five to six times as well as the worst. There was no one best network either, a different one did best on each site. The best network on one site was actually the worst on the other two. Also, in my experience ad network performance is cyclical, this month's best network may be next months worse. To deal with that I re-run my A-B tests for a couple of days every month or so to be sure I'm using the most effective network for each site. If that sounds like too much trouble, consider using an advertising aggregator like Smaato, which automates the process and tries to deliver the best paying ad for a given request from over 50 ad networks. Of course aggregators take a cut of your earnings. I've experimented with aggregators and believe that I do better with manually picking and choosing ad networks based on testing.
Found on the Mobile Web is a weekly WAP Review feature listing newly added and updated sites on the YesWAP.com mobile portal and WapReview mobile site directory. With these latest additions the directory and portal now list 2328 mobile sites.
Yahoo! Fantasy Football m.yahoo.com/fantasy Yahoo has updated their Fantasy Football Android, iPhone and mobile web apps for the 2010 NFL season with a new design and improved usability. All three versions of Yahoo! Fantasy Football are free. Features include: real-time fantasy match up scoring, roster management, player stats and news, in-app alerts when one of your players has an injury or is on a bye week and Fantasy Football videos. Source: Yahoo Mobile Blog
MobileGeekInc. m.MobileGeekInc.com Lively and frequently updated blog from two Polish mobile geeks. Features mobile news and rumors along with device un-boxings and phone and app reviews and how-to articles. Mobile version was created with MobStac, a free RSS to mobile service.
SmartphoneCorner www.smartphonecorner.mobi A news blog covering iPhone, Android, Windows Mobile, and Blackberry devices and software. Mobile version is powered by the WordPress Mobile Pack.
MTR Hong Kong mtr.com.hk/mobile/eng/ Interactive trip planner for Hong Kong's Mass Transit Railway. Covers all MTR light and heavy rail and bus lines including the Airport Express. The site also has tourist information and pages covering handicapped access, station facilities and the railway's MTR Club rewards program. Source: Oh! Mobile Directory
Mannuforall mannuforall.mobify.me Manojr Tiwari's blog features tech news, tips, tricks and mods for mobile phones, mobile apps and Microsoft Windows. Manojr is one of India's top tech bloggers and is well known for his English translations of UC Browser Betas. Mobile view by Mobify
Tales of a New Yorker www.talesofanewyorker.com An "Insiders Guide" showcasing what New York has to offer to residents and visitors. Covers news, events and all the things going on in New York City (and surrounding areas).
Mobilerated mobilerated.com/wap/ Freeware, ad-supported and demo game and app downloads from Mobilerated, one of the largest distributors of free and ad-supported mobile games on the web.
Ratings: Content Usability
Yedwik m.yedwik.com A new Meme Tracker that gathers the top news stories from around the web based on their popularity on Facebook. Uses the Google transcoder to display mobile formatted versions of the original articles.
ApniEYESP wap.apnieyesp.com/ The (mostly) WML mobile edition of "Pakistan's biggest entertainment portal". The English language site contains a large collection of Pakistani & Indian music with downloadable mp3s and ringtones, Pakistani mobile videos, concert listings, Bollywood movie reviews and mobile game and wallpaper downloads.
Coldtags Places places.linkstore.ru Crowd-sourced location sharing service that uses Foursquare as a POI database. Locates you using the HTML5 Geolocation API of your iPhone, Opera Mobile 10.1 or Android browser and presents a list of nearby locations where Fourquare users have historically checked in. Click a location to see a menu allowing you to share your location (name of the place and a short link to a Google Map) by email, SMS or as a Facebook or Twitter status