Amazon Web Services - A pleasant surprise
Posted by Jonathan Clarke - 20 June 2016
The success of application marketplaces such as the iOS App Store and Android’s Google Play has been unprecedented. At the recent WWDC 2016, Apple announced that the iOS App Store now has over 2 million apps and has had 130 billion downloads, that has resulted in over USD$50 billion being paid directly to developers. Google has similarly impressive statistics for its Google Play service.
Services such as Siri and Google Now are disintermediating search, websites and apps.
Sounds great, right? We need to build an app, any app, right? Not so fast! There is an increasing consensus that app store popularity may have peaked. Customers aren’t visiting the app stores to find apps the way they once did, and even if they were it’s very difficult for you to have your new and unique app easily discoverable. This phenomenon is becoming known as “app fatigue.”
There are many factors, but key reasons for increasing app fatigue include:
Users are generally looking for some kind of utility that will give an enhanced experience.
Consider this scenario: you’re travelling, you’re exploring the area in your favourite maps application, it knows where you are, and you know where you want to go. You don’t want to leave the app to book a taxi or an Uber. The future of apps of this kind is to provide a slick integrated end-to-end experience from within apps like Maps, Messaging, Siri, or Google Now. Google has offered limited integration with Uber in Google Maps for over a year, but this is far from open, and not an opportunity that other developers have been able to take advantage of.
New opportunities are soon to be available, particularly on iOS. At WWDC 2016 Apple announced a significant opening of three key services within iOS 10: Siri, iMessage, and Maps. This will mean that you can embed your app experience directly within these key apps, for example, you can be in Apple Maps, select a location, request a service directly from the maps app, pay for it, and continue on without leaving a built-in Apple supplied app. A similar experience can be had with Siri and iMessage. Google has similar capability to Siri with Google Now voice integration, and we expect Google Maps to offer an app ecosystem at some stage too.
Having these hooks exposed is providing a great opportunity to integrate with the built-in apps shipped with the mobile device. Analysis also shows these are the most popular apps and now you can benefit from their popularity. Our recommendation is to jump on this bandwagon early before this app space becomes crowded too.
Finally, before developing any app - ensure it has genuine utility and provides benefits for your users. Be sure to check our post Mobile site or app? Or both? Ask yourself these 12 key questions before you leap in.