Is Reading Your New Resolution? 6 Books Every Techie Must Read in 2016

An interesting discussion was going on at a forum. Techies were discussing books they loved reading. They talked about how some of them started looking at the whole discipline of software development and technology in a new way after reading particular books. Some listed their favourite books and insisted that others read them.

I researched a bit more and soon had a list of quite a few books that are interesting and should be on the reading list of professionals who love to work with technology. It is a good list for tech entrepreneurs, developers, designers, marketers and others who are keen to know the insights technologists and other visionaries worked with earlier. Some authors give a thorough account of the tech-landscape as they saw it and as they are seeing it. It is interesting to look at the journey and hazard guesses about where we are heading in future, by using our achievements till date as guiding light. In short, these are good books and in this new year you should try to read some of them – if not all. Here they are in no particular order:

Source: Is Reading Your New Resolution? 6 Books Every Techie Must Read in 2016

10 Internet Trends Of 2017 You Must Know About – OpenXcell

Mary Meeker’s Internet Trends 2017 report is here – straight from Silicon Valley. Internet Guru Mary Meeker is an investor and a partner at Kleiner Perkins Caulfield & Byers. Her well-researched and analysed slide decks are much awaited by the industry to understand the trends of the year. Her slides provide relevant data which helps internet marketers, tech giants, media companies and start-ups et al make sense of their business in a better way.

Let’s find out about a few trends she picked up this year.

Source: 10 Internet Trends Of 2017 You Must Know About – OpenXcell

Make your App A Brand With These Useful Tips

The desktop and computer days have gone. These are replaced with pocket-sized devices which are easy to access and use. Smartphones have changed the game of businesses and increased the significance of mobile apps. Considering only America, Pew Research Center records that smartphones are ubiquitous among the people and roughly 77% of them owe it.

California has a huge app economy as many startups are opting the app route to expand their businesses. Wherewithal, various mobile app development companies in California are helping startups achieve their goals and success in the business world. But the question here is, how to make an app a brand that creates a boom in the app market?

As we know, a brand represents a company’s products and services. And, with the immense use of smartphones, the startups and enterprises have opted mobile as a brahmastra to entice users to use their services. Therefore, the above asked question is feasible.

Here is the solution to the question.

1. Clear Vision: This point defines clients’ goal. Before starting the discussion you should be clear with what you are selling to the audience.

Once the vision and mission are clear, it becomes easy to explain it further. This brings out fresh and innovative ideas for implementation and pre development research becomes easy.

With the millions of apps rolling in the market, it is impossible to come up with new concepts. But yes, one thing is possible. The USP. No business uses the same approach. For instance; Airbnb has a number of clones but most of the users have this app installed only in their smartphones. The reason is simple. Its unique selling point and the information it provides to the users.

2. Logo, A Must: How logo helps in branding? Logo is a graphical symbol that promotes business services. And, branding is a practice to create a unique presence of the company in the market in order to attract and retain loyal customers.

For instance; the Nike logo indicates the motion and speed. The logo is embedded on the shoes and is used in various promotional activities.

Hence, using a logo in mobile application builds a trust factor among the app users and it becomes easy for the company to sell their services.

3. End-User Is the King: The days are gone when we focused only on development and the design was not in the count. With the passing time, things have changed. User Experience and User Interface is as important as the app functioning.

It’s not the UI/UX designers who decide the app UI. It’s the users. They look for the unique things that is enticing and at the same time simple. Hence, the main concern of the designer should be what components to add to design an app?

Instagram is the epitome of simple UI. The team has designed the UI nicely considering the points users want in the app.

4. Responsive App Design: It’s good that you are investing your time in developing a mobile app. But prior to this step, it is important to have a mobile optimized website that promotes your app.

Here is the example of the responsive website specially designed for promoting the app.

Source

Having responsive website increase the visibility and drives users to install your mobile as they get a complete knowledge of what the app does, how it works and why to download.

5. Soothing Visuals: Visuals captivates users attention. If your app has awesome user experience but is not visually appealing, the possibility of download decreases. Hence, your app should contain appealing visuals that entice users to download the app.

Zomato app is visually appealing and it is wrapped with exciting features that resonate the foodies. Touring the app you will feel like ordering the food and enjoy the pleasure.

6. Keep it Simple and Spacious: You may have heard “A designer knows he has achieved perfection not when there is nothing left to add, but when there is nothing left to take away.”

If you go on adding the UI components, you ended up messing it. No space for users to click, read the content or add. However, the UI should be simple with fewer UI components that give users a space to perform required action and enjoy the simplicity of the app.

The UI of Flipboard is simple with a grid layout that features the recent article at the top followed by the rest in the separate columns. Still, the UI does not look messy. What’s unique about Flipboard is, each page layout is like a magazine. Flip and read.

7. Social Connection: Users have become social by using apps like Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and a few to name. Users get influenced by the designs and the simplicity but what holds them for long is the social connection.

Make sure that when you think of designing an app, it should be integrated with Facebook, Twitter or popular social media app. This is actually a good way of promotion.

For instance; When any user registers your app with the integrated social media apps, a welcome message gets displayed in their social feed which is an indirect way of promotion.

8. Personalization: As said above millions of apps are rolling in the app store and not every app is successful with a great number of downloads. Personalization is the feature that differentiates your app from the crowd. “Just For You” concept is fascinating users and has garnered good attention.

Hence, personalizing your app will increase the likelihood and users will use it regularly. Further, to gauge the tactics like discoverability, performance testing, app personalization is the best way. This helps app developers to develop an app that users love to harness.

Zomato is a personalised app where foodies have their own space that lists their followers, counts of visiting a particular restaurant, photo collection, reviews and more.

Microsoft Azure: Cloud Services To Build, Deploy & Manage Your Applications – OpenXcell

Cloud technology has slowly and steadily taken over the tech world. Businesses constantly try to find the most sustaining business model. They have now adopted cloud technology which helps them accomplish things more innovatively, more reliably and more securely – on a much larger scale at the right cost.

According to a study conducted in May 2017, by Cowen and Altman Vilandrie & Company, Public Cloud spending is predicted to grow quickly at about 16% in year-over-year growth in 2017. This study is based on a survey sample of 551 respondents distributed across small, medium businesses and enterprises which use public cloud platforms and services.

Source: Microsoft Azure: Cloud Services To Build, Deploy & Manage Your Applications – OpenXcell

New Version, New Features. This is what Android Oreo is All About

Android Oreo

Google recently launched the beta version of Android O in the Google I/O 2017 developer conference. This time it is planning to give a complete new look to this upcoming version. The navigation, the experience, the app icons, new emojis, Oh Gosh! Isn’t that amazing?

It seems Google is all set to make people fall in love with this Android Operating System. So, what’s there in the bag? Of course, Yes! The discussion is about features.

Here they are… The enthralling, the elated and what else which word is that Umm… The jubilant. The writer herself is so excited that she is expressing her excitement using the synonyms of fun and happy.

Anyways, back to the point. The Features.

Fluid Experiences: With the launch of this new version, Google has come up with a new way of being more productive in our daily routine. No single tasking, It’s multi-tasking. Yes, you heard it right… Now, our fingers will move on our favourite apps at a single time long pressing the home screen.  For instance; while watching a video on youtube you can click on another app of your interest and enjoy the view of both.

Have you heard of Tensor Flow? Tensor Flow is an open source library for machine learning developed by Google Brain. It was developed for internal use before it got released in Apache 2.0 open source library.

Tensor Flow Lite is a new scaled down tool by Google which uses LSTM (Long Short Term Memory) to enhance the experience. Android O has a new framework from Android which comprises some components of AI and its hardware accelerates the features of the neural network.

There are a few refreshing tools within this category which include picture-in-picture [PIP], navigation dots, smart text selection and auto-fill.

Picture-in-Picture [PIP]: This feature allows users to go to the homescreen and tap on another app while watching a movie or playing a game on your Android device. This is how it works.

Android O Picture-In-Picture Feature

Tapping on the home screen while watching the video will place the video in the small popover. This enables your second task for instance; doing Whatsapp in parallel with your first one.

Notification Dots: It seems the users will get to know the next step when the notification pops up on the device. Notification dots is a new feature. With the release of the final version of Android O, the Android app developers can notify users about the availability of action. Long pressing the notification will display the action in detail.

Android O Notification-Dots

Smart Text Selection: Google Team has done an amazing research work. And, this feature is the proof. It will bring a relief to users adaptive to copy and paste scenario. As per the research, the task of text selection is cumbersome. This magnifying new version has made the life of users simpler and smarter with the use of AI components.

Android O Smart Text Selection

Autofill: Forget memo, forget message, forget gmail where you used to save your credentials as a cache memory. This new feature remembers your username and password in some cases to quickly sign-in to the apps on your device.

Vitals: A Guard to protect your phone and enhance your user experience. This feature will improve the battery life, security and OS optimization. Besides, there is no need of Antivirus software as Google Play Protect will scan all the apps you install from the play store.

Wrapping Up

This is going to be a much awaited version of Android not only for users but also for mobile app development companies. This is for sure. GoodBye Nougat, Welcome Oreo. There is a lot more wrapped in this new version of Android. Don’t miss the read.

6 Best Strategies To Crack The South Korean Mobile Game Market – OpenXcell

China? Of course! Done and dusted.

U.S.? Obviously, taken care of. 

Japan? Goes without saying.   

South Korea? … Umm…

Are you indolent with indecision as to which game market should figure next on your radar for game monetization purposes? Try South Korea.

Why? Because, after China, U.S., and Japan, it’s the South Korean game market where things are really hotting up, both in terms of game downloads and revenues. In fact, according to industry sources, the mobile app market here has grown by 795% since 2013.

Source: 6 Best Strategies To Crack The South Korean Mobile Game Market – OpenXcell

Is Hiring Custom Software Development Company A Problem?

Is Hiring Custom Software Development Company A ProblemHiring a custom software development company is like solving a mathematics problem. You don’t believe it? But it is. However, you can solve it by avoiding these common mistakes and turn your dream into reality.

1. Low Cost, High Quality: Price is the biggest factor that service seekers look into while hiring a custom software development company. It is worthless to hire a company quoting less price and assuring high-quality software solution.

You are paying for the efforts they have put in to implement a remarkable solution that increases the efficiency of your business. Then why you want to pay less?

It is impossible to get high quality software solution at less price. Thus, if you want to develop a remarkable solution from your concept, the deal should be fair.

2. Company’s culture: The second factor in the list. It is obvious that you won’t work with the stranger. No company has the same working culture. It is just that how you adapt and walk.

If you cannot adapt the culture, it’s better not to proceed further. But if you still go with the company and regret working with the team, it’s you who is at fault.

3. Not Clear with the Goal: This can lead to chaos and confusion.It becomes difficult to deal with the business having unclear goals. What they want and are expecting is like a roller coaster ride. You require patience and a lot of research work to understand their requirements.

Thus, it’s indeed important for a company to be crystal clear with the goals and objectives. This helps the partner company to bring out innovative ideas to achieve them and develop productive solution efficiently.

4. Inferior Contract: Penning down each and every detail in the contract is a tedious task. This actually contains the dos and don’ts of the development partner. There may be possibilities that a) the app cost may increase with the additional features. b) The development is not completed on time. Therefore, maintaining a contract make things transparent between both the parties.

Today, with the advancements in technology, we come across with the new trends and techniques. This makes it critical to manage contract that lists the minute details to avoid hassles in the future.

5. No Signing Of Non-Disclosure Agreement: Before even signing the contract, NDA is a must. This ensures the client that whatever discussion is taking place and will take place will be confidential. Further, it also includes the software rights to the client. Not signing NDA can cause you trouble in future. The choice is yours.

6. Not the Owner of the Source Code: Definitely you owe the license of your software but it is also required for you to have the source code of your product. What if, a ) you don’t want to assign your project to the same development company? b) you want to hire an in-house developer and re-design your product? c) the development company steals your idea. There may be various possibilities.

An agreement granting the rights of the source code keeps your app idea safe and allows you to further develop it with other IT company in the near future

So, What’s Your Favorite App?

They are around us. You see them everywhere – in restaurants, buses, tubes, shopping malls, and cinemas. People glued to their smartphones. Oblivious to everything else that happens around them.  According to digital trends, an average American spends 4.7 hours per day with his smartphone. Major chunk of his time is spent using the apps installed on his smartphone.

In 2009, worldwide mobile app downloads amounted to approximately 2.52 billion and the number is expected to reach 268.69 billion in 2017.

Source: So, What’s Your Favorite App?

How Did They Do It: Temple Run’s Endless Dash

“Temple Run illustrates the best marketing strategy for the App Store: Make an awesome game that everyone wants to tell their friends about.”- Ian Marsh

Would you even believe if I said, that an enormously successful game like Temple Run had a mere total of three individuals working behind the stage AKA the ever-so-popular game! Indeed yes, as the development team comprised of only the husband and wife along with an artist who fought all odds for months to create a distinctive running game, now profoundly known as, Temple Run. Well, Temple Run, just like many other successful games, is not an overnight success story. Rather it was a journey on a rough road to a Runway Success Story.

Source: How Did They Do It: Temple Run’s Endless Dash

How can you increase app downloads with these simple hacks

Knock! Knock! Is your app ready to take a smooth landing at the app stores?

If yes, what is your next step? Are you planning some tactful strategies to make an appeal of your app across the web besides app stores?

Why not! It’s your app and to promote it is the foremost thing you do after or before the launch? Am, I right?

What unique strategies you plan and execute, can you share? Would love to hear from you.

Well! I also have a few unique hacks to share which can help you increase your app downloads.

But before that would like to say, do check the USP of your app. You know about USP, isn’t it?

Source: How can you increase app downloads with these simple hacks