May 17, 2012

The Ultimate Mobile Web Infographic

This is the second of a two-part series on the mobile Web. Also see:
3 steps to a successful mobile website

Target audience: Mid-size and small businesses, online marketers, Web publishers, mobile developers, entrepreneurs, educators, journalists, general public.

Deltina HayWe sometime don’t appreciate how fast things are moving, but the mobile Web is exploding.

In celebration of the release of my new book, The Bootstrapper’s Guide to the Mobile Web, I offer you this mobile Web infographic to use as your guide to preparing for these sweeping changes, whether you’re an online marketer, publisher or a one of the users of 5.6 billion mobile phones worldwide today (over 327 million in the United States). The infographic explains the difference between native apps and Web apps (big difference), and points out the numbers:

There will be 788 million mobile-only Internet users by 2015, driving $20.6 billion in mobile ad revenue and $119 billion in merchandise spent by mobile shoppers by 2015. And it’s just getting started.

You’re welcome to share and re-post the infographic as long as the header and credits sections remain intact. A larger version of the graphic can be downloaded from TheBootstrappersGuide.com.

Mobile web infographic

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May 10, 2012

UppSite: Turn your website into an app in minutes

JD LasicaAfew days ago I sat down with Gal Brill, the founder and CEO of UppSite, an Israel-based start-up that can turn your website into an app in just minutes. At top is a video UppSite produced about their service, and at bottom is my interview with Gal.

As the Web turns increasingly mobile — with a majority of online Americans set to access the Internet through their mobile devices rather than their desktop or laptop computers within a couple of years — any sensible Web publisher should be thinking about how to optimize his or her site for mobile users.

“We’re democratizing the mobile era for any publisher.”
— CEO Gal Brill

I’ve written about a few such services, including WPTouch Pro (Have you made your site mobile-ready?) and OnSwipe (Make your site ‘swipeable’ on the iPad). But UppSite is the first service to come along that can turn any website or blog into an app — on the iPhone or Android — for free, in a matter of minutes. That’s pretty cool. (A Windows Mobile version is coming in a few months.)

Watch, download or embed our video interview on YouTube.

CEO Brill likens UppSite’s entry into the marketplace as akin to WordPress’s disruption of the blogging world, when it make it drop-dead simple to get a blog up and running in 5 minutes. UppSite’s mission is to help you enter the mobile era “in a truly easy way,” he says. In the coming years, he hopes and expects millions of sites — particularly small or mid-size publications — to do so.

“We’re democratizing the mobile era for any publisher,” he says.

A cross-platform solution that actually works

Up until now, online publishers have had to deal with the nightmare of developing and maintaining applications for each separate operating system: iOS (iPhone and iPad), Android, Windows Phone 7 and so on. Not only that, you’d be out of luck in some cases, depending on whether your site runs on WordPress, Blogger, Drupal, etc. While other services often offer little more than a prettified version of an RSS feed, UppSite promises native apps that offer a complete version of your site, with all of the important content and functionality. Continue reading

May 25, 2011

Red Heart leads field of Apps for Change winners

donation-drive

JD LasicaOver the past few weeks, Nokia held the first Apps for Change contest, inviting people from around the world to suggest a mobile application to benefit society — which Nokia has agreed to develop. The winners also get to steer a $10,000 contribution to a nonprofit organization.

Some 302 submissions were fielded from people in 53 countries. I was one of the judges in the contest (along with Jussi Hinkkanen, Peter Hirshberg, John M. Jordan and Juliette Powell), and we’re now announcing the winners.

The winning entry was Red Heart, submitted by Sana Refai and Kamel Seghaeir of Tunisia. The entry put it this way:

This application will help you to generate your blood donor’s networks. In case of emergency, you (or someone else) activates the search of your nearest person in your blood donor’s connection (GPS Localization) and contacts him to come give you help. By installing the application, you precise your blood group. When you add a new entry, the application decides whether your connection can be a donor or not according to her/his blood group. The application can be extends from a private network to a public community by creating a website gathering all blood donors worldwide …

We liked the idea of a mobile app being at the center of a process that brings together hospital or emergency workers and volunteers in the community in a way that benefits accident victims through the use of geolocation services. Such an app could allow a wide range of individuals in desperate need of a blood transfusion to find compatible donors in their geographical area. While Kamel and Sana’s app could be useful in developed countries, perhaps its greatest value could be found in developing economies, where mobile phones are ubiquitous – but advanced blood transfusion services are not.

Honorable mentions: Using the crowd to carpool — & more

The judges also singled out three other entries for special recognition:

• Seamus Maguire from Ireland submitted an idea for an app designed to increase the use of carpools, and thereby reduce an individual’s carbon footprint. Using such a mobile app, the user could view other nearby users in need of a ride. Continue reading

September 15, 2010

What do you wish you knew about mobile app development?

Even looking back most people still can’t figure out the mobile app market

David SparkAt the opening night party at the APPNATION conference where I was reporting for Dice, I asked the attendees, “What do you wish you knew a year ago that you know today about mobile app development?” Their answers are fast, impulsive, and conflicting.

Also from APPNATION is this Amazing example of augmented reality on top of a print magazine. Check out this new way of cheating at crossword puzzles.