White Paper:Build an App that Gets Used:7 Necessities of Successful Mobile Applications                                   ...
Build an App that Gets Used: 7 Necessities of Successful Mobile ApplicationsTable of ContentsIntroduction …………………………………………...
Build an App that Gets Used: 7 Necessities of Successful Mobile ApplicationsIntroductionYour company made the decision to ...
Build an App that Gets Used: 7 Necessities of Successful Mobile ApplicationsI. NavigationEvery application has a home page...
Build an App that Gets Used: 7 Necessities of Successful Mobile ApplicationsTile DisplaysOn the iPhone, Android, and Black...
Build an App that Gets Used: 7 Necessities of Successful Mobile ApplicationsMenu Footer and HeaderMenu footers and headers...
Build an App that Gets Used: 7 Necessities of Successful Mobile ApplicationsInnovative Home ScreensIf your application has...
Build an App that Gets Used: 7 Necessities of Successful Mobile ApplicationsLaying Out a Tile DisplayTile displays look gr...
Build an App that Gets Used: 7 Necessities of Successful Mobile ApplicationsIn certain situations, you will want to use th...
Build an App that Gets Used: 7 Necessities of Successful Mobile ApplicationsDesign Advantages – ScrollingFor both trackpad...
Build an App that Gets Used: 7 Necessities of Successful Mobile ApplicationsUsing the BlackBerryBoth BlackBerry models—tra...
Build an App that Gets Used: 7 Necessities of Successful Mobile ApplicationsAn Alternative to ScrollingEvery mobile device...
Build an App that Gets Used: 7 Necessities of Successful Mobile ApplicationsII. Application Features Your UsersWill LoveKe...
Build an App that Gets Used: 7 Necessities of Successful Mobile ApplicationsiPhoneiPhone push is not as robust as BlackBer...
Build an App that Gets Used: 7 Necessities of Successful Mobile ApplicationsBlackBerryBlackberry offers more creative meth...
Build an App that Gets Used: 7 Necessities of Successful Mobile ApplicationsAndroidFor now, you need to have direct approv...
Build an App that Gets Used: 7 Necessities of Successful Mobile ApplicationsSocial MediaYour application delivers value an...
Build an App that Gets Used: 7 Necessities of Successful Mobile ApplicationsGPSEvery platform offers GPS functionality.iPh...
Build an App that Gets Used: 7 Necessities of Successful Mobile ApplicationsThe below screenshots illustrate the three ste...
Build an App that Gets Used: 7 Necessities of Successful Mobile ApplicationsMonetizing Your AppThe Apple store makes it ve...
Build an App that Gets Used: 7 Necessities of Successful Mobile ApplicationsMulti-taskingWhat does multi-tasking mean? It ...
Build an App that Gets Used: 7 Necessities of Successful Mobile ApplicationsConclusionIf you are ready to build an applica...
Build an App that Gets Used: 7 Necessities of Successful Mobile ApplicationsAbout ApplicoApplico creates intuitive and sca...
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Applico mobile company

  1. 1. White Paper:Build an App that Gets Used:7 Necessities of Successful Mobile Applications © Copyright 2010 by Applico LLC. All rights reserved. http://www.applicollc.com | ajm@applicollc.com | 203.295.0569
  2. 2. Build an App that Gets Used: 7 Necessities of Successful Mobile ApplicationsTable of ContentsIntroduction ………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………… p. 3I. Navigation …………………………………………………………….….………………………………………………………................ p. 4 Tile Displays and List Displays ……………….…………….….…………………….……………………………………………… p. 4 Tile Displays …..…………………………………………………………………………….……………………………………............ p. 5 Menu Footer and Header ……………………………………………….…………..……………………………………………….. p. 6 Innovative Home Screens ………………………………………………………..…………………………………………………… p. 7 Off-Screen Menus ………………………………………………………………...……………………………………………………… p. 8 Design Advantages – Scrolling …………………………………………………..……………………………………………….. p. 10 Using the iPhone and Android …………………………………………………….……………………………………………… p. 10 Using the Blackberry ……………………………………………………………………..……………………………………………. p. 11 An Alternative to Scrolling ………………………………………………………………..………………………………………… p. 12II. Application Features Your Users Will Love ……………………………….………….…….………………. p. 13Push Notifications…………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………… p. 13 What is Push?……………………………………………………………………………………………………….……….……………. p. 13 iPhone ………………………………………………………………………………………………………………….…….……………… p. 14 Blackberry……….…………………………………………………………………………………………………….….……………….. p. 15 Android …………………………………………………………………………………………………………………...……………….. p. 16Social Media …………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………….. p. 18 Who Is Using Social Media? ……………………………………………………………………………………………………….. p. 18GPS …………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………….……………………….. p. 18 iPhone ……………………………………………………………………………………………………………….……………………….. p. 18 Blackberry………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………….. p. 18Monetizing Your App ……………………………………………………………………………………………………………………. p. 20Multi-tasking ……………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………. p. 21Conclusion ………………………..………………………………………………………………………………………………………………. p. 22About Applico…………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………… p. 23© 2010 Applico, LLC. All rights reserved. 2|P a g e
  3. 3. Build an App that Gets Used: 7 Necessities of Successful Mobile ApplicationsIntroductionYour company made the decision to create a mobile phone application. How willyou ensure people will adopt and use your application?Make Your Application IntuitivePeople use mobile applications to find interesting content quickly and easily. Our research andanalytics show that the amount of time people spend within a mobile application directlycorrelates to how intuitively the application is designed.A company may have a terrific idea for an application and may do an even better job marketingthe application to attract customers. But none of that will matter if the application is slow orhard to use. People want a mobile experience that is efficient, seamless, and engaging.Otherwise, they will lose interest and search for a better alternative.To make your application intuitive, you must design it with two criteria in mind: theapplications navigation (how users will find relevant content) and the devices capabilities (thefeatures users are accustomed to using on the mobile platform).Understand Where Your Application Will LiveIn order to make your application intuitive on a specific mobile platform, the navigation anddevice capabilities must be designed for that platform. iPhone, BlackBerry, and Android usersall interact with their phones in different ways. By designing your application for a specificplatform, you can create a product based upon how consumers already interact with theirphones. This will make your application easy to understand and fun for people to explore.An application will be a profitable investment if the users can access its content in an intuitiveway.To help you get there, this white paper will:  Explain how to incorporate navigation into your application  Explain the unique capabilities of the three mobile platforms  Review best practices and examples of existing applications In the end, you will know how to design a mobile application and make your mobile investment profitable and beneficial to your users.© 2010 Applico, LLC. All rights reserved. 3|P a g e
  4. 4. Build an App that Gets Used: 7 Necessities of Successful Mobile ApplicationsI. NavigationEvery application has a home page and an inner screen. These are the first parts of the mobileapplication that users will see and interact with. Therefore, they need to be easy to understandand catch the users attention.Tile Displays and List Displays List DisplayFor the home screen on touch screen devices, tile displays provide a good format if there are alot of different content sections in the application as seen in the Where application screenshot.List displays are good for home screens that have different sections, as seen in the MensHealth screenshot.On trackpad devices (like those who use the Blackberry), users have to scroll up and down orleft and right to navigate through tile displays which can be cumbersome. List displays areeasier because they simplify the process into just moving up and down to make a selection.While touch screen users can scroll too, these users have the ability to select an item anywhereon the screen in a single motion. A simple "press and go" is the paradigm for them.Inner pages usually have a lot more options than the home screen. Therefore, a list display ispreferable.© 2010 Applico, LLC. All rights reserved. 4|P a g e
  5. 5. Build an App that Gets Used: 7 Necessities of Successful Mobile ApplicationsTile DisplaysOn the iPhone, Android, and BlackBerry Storm, you can display 9 menu icons on one screen. One click to open one of 9 icons An example of a menu footerWith one click, the user has 9 different possible options. On the iPhone, if the user swipes tothe left, 9 more icons appear. This gives the user 18 options with 2 swipes.BlackBerry keyboard devices users would find the tile display above extremely frustrating. Theirscreens have roughly half the size of any touchscreen devices. By looking at only half this menu,BlackBerry users would have to remember which icons were located off the screen.When creating an application, programmers should avoid creating work for their users. Place everymain navigation option on one screen. If you can’t, use secondary navigation screens to keep allthe navigational tools to a single screen.© 2010 Applico, LLC. All rights reserved. 5|P a g e
  6. 6. Build an App that Gets Used: 7 Necessities of Successful Mobile ApplicationsMenu Footer and HeaderMenu footers and headers provide users with an easy way to switch between the differentsections in your application. Instead of requiring users to navigate back to the main screen toaccess the menu, they can just click the desired section from their current page. A menu header A menu footerThe iPhones menu footer feature provides a convenient way for users to navigate betweenscreens without returning to the main menu. This feature is particularly useful because theiPhone—unlike the Android and Blackberry—has no “back” button built into the phoneshardware.Menu footers or headers can also be incorporated into BlackBerry and Android applications.There are seen less often, however, due to the built-in "back" button on both of these devices.On BlackBerry applications with no touch screen capabilities, it can be an annoyance for usersto have to scroll to the top of the page to switch between screens.For example, if you scroll through a list of tweets and want to quickly access the Menu headerto switch to a different screen, having to scroll back up to the top of the screen is not ideal. Tomitigate this issue, incorporate common key "shortcuts" by allowing users to press the "t"button to return to the top of the screen. Learn more about this in the Design Advantages -Scrolling section.© 2010 Applico, LLC. All rights reserved. 6|P a g e
  7. 7. Build an App that Gets Used: 7 Necessities of Successful Mobile ApplicationsInnovative Home ScreensIf your application has one specific purpose, let consumers realize that purpose as fast aspossible. Here are a couple examples of applications that have done just that. Pandora Android application Urbanspoon iPhone applicationThe Urbanspoon iPhone application lets users search for restaurants directly from the homescreen.The Pandora Android application lets users control their songs from the home screen of theirdevice without having to open the application.© 2010 Applico, LLC. All rights reserved. 7|P a g e
  8. 8. Build an App that Gets Used: 7 Necessities of Successful Mobile ApplicationsLaying Out a Tile DisplayTile displays look great—except when they get too cluttered. Inthis example, the clutter and a lack of direction create aconfusing page.Keep things simple and straightforward. If users cannot identifythe purpose of a screen within a couple seconds, you will losetheir attention. Let study groups be the litmus test for yourapplication and incorporate their feedback into yourrequirements, analysis and design.Off-Screen Menus Here, clutter and lack direction create a confusing pageOn the Android and BlackBerry, the devices are equippedwith physical buttons to pull up a Menu. The Menu allowsyou to design your application so that only the most important items are displayed on thescreen. The non-essential items are left in the Menu. These items can include Options orSettings, Share to Facebook or Twitter, Login or Logout, Help, etc. Facebook’s Menu allows users to perform tasks not Google Maps’ Menu is the only way for a user available on the screen as well as the same tasks to control the application available on the screenSometimes users do not press the Menu button and do not have a lot of time to explore theapplication. Make sure that everything essential to the application is displayed on the screen, orusers are likely to miss it.© 2010 Applico, LLC. All rights reserved. 8|P a g e
  9. 9. Build an App that Gets Used: 7 Necessities of Successful Mobile ApplicationsIn certain situations, you will want to use the entire screen for a single purpose and won’t haveany room for other options. For example, when showing a map, often times you will want tohave the map displayed on the entire screen. In these situations, you can place a lot of the maincontrol functions in the Menu instead of on the screen.Facebook’s Menu allows users to use applications that are not visible on the screen at the sametime as ones that are available on the screen.© 2010 Applico, LLC. All rights reserved. 9|P a g e
  10. 10. Build an App that Gets Used: 7 Necessities of Successful Mobile ApplicationsDesign Advantages – ScrollingFor both trackpad and touchscreen devices, scrolling plays an integral part in data rich mobileapplications. Ensure that navigating up and down lists of information and menu options isefficient, fun, and easy.Using the iPhone and AndroidScrolling on the touchscreens of both iPhone and Android devices is natural and fluid. Users cannavigate to the top or bottom of a list by using a finger to stroke or flick the length of the screenone, two, or three times.Each vertical iPhone and Android flick allows a user to cycle through a maximum of about 7screen lengths. The images below show an iPhone screen before and after a user scrolls downwith one flick. Before AfterAs you can see in the pre- and post-flick screenshots above, the user almost reached thebottom of their restaurant list with one movement.Both iPhone and Android users can quickly flick through lists, and can stop mid-scroll with thetouch of a finger.© 2010 Applico, LLC. All rights reserved. 10 | P a g e
  11. 11. Build an App that Gets Used: 7 Necessities of Successful Mobile ApplicationsUsing the BlackBerryBoth BlackBerry models—trackpad and touchscreen—make scrolling more difficult.Each vertical BlackBerry scroll on a trackpad or trackball allows the user to cycle through amaximum of about half a screen length. The images below show a BlackBerry screen before andafter a user scrolls down with one swipe. Before AfterUnfortunately, the user was only able to scroll down 4 items with one movement.The BlackBerry storm is an exception because it has a touch screen. Each vertical flick allows theuser to cycle through a maximum of about 3 screen lengths.BlackBerry users are familiar with using their keyboard to navigate.Specifically, let users click the "t", "b", and space bar keys to allow for easy navigation. The "t"and "b" keys will bring the user to the top or bottom of a list. The space bar will allow the userto jump down the list by about 10 items each time.© 2010 Applico, LLC. All rights reserved. 11 | P a g e
  12. 12. Build an App that Gets Used: 7 Necessities of Successful Mobile ApplicationsAn Alternative to ScrollingEvery mobile device lets its users scroll alphabetically somehow. If a BlackBerry user clicks aletter, he or she will jump down the list to the first item in a letter’s listing. Clicking a letter on the BlackBerry Selecting a letter on the iPhoneiPhone users can choose from a list of letters on the right-hand side of the screen toimmediately jump to that letter.© 2010 Applico, LLC. All rights reserved. 12 | P a g e
  13. 13. Build an App that Gets Used: 7 Necessities of Successful Mobile ApplicationsII. Application Features Your UsersWill LoveKeep users interested in an application.Push NotificationsWhat is Push?A push notification is an Internet-based communication method through which data is sentfrom a server to a mobile application. The companys server originates the push message andsends it to either Apples, RIMs (BlackBerrys), or Googles servers. Their servers then send themessage to the mobile application. Push notifications can have one-to-one or one-to-manyrelationships. Scaling messages from tens to thousands of users is relatively easy for theoriginating companys servers.You can specify which users should receive a push message. Therefore, only users who youdeem appropriate will receive your desired communication.For example, if you had a restaurant app, you could send a user a push message remindingthem that Friday night is date night, which will point them to your application to pick a newdining experience.Push notifications provide a great way to keep users interested in an application. They areefficient, do not drain battery life, and deliver content to users in a timely manner.© 2010 Applico, LLC. All rights reserved. 13 | P a g e
  14. 14. Build an App that Gets Used: 7 Necessities of Successful Mobile ApplicationsiPhoneiPhone push is not as robust as BlackBerry. The payload size—how much information you cansend in a push message—is a lot smaller than BlackBerry. Also, you cannot receive a deliveryconfirmation when your message is successfully sent to a device.The iPhone offers a useful push option that allows you to give your application a “red badge”which indicates that new content is available. While the red badge serves as a good notification,you can only use the standard iPhone popup icon, rather than customizing the popup windowwhen a new push message arrives. Popup for Push Notification Red Badge indicator that a new message is available© 2010 Applico, LLC. All rights reserved. 14 | P a g e
  15. 15. Build an App that Gets Used: 7 Necessities of Successful Mobile ApplicationsBlackBerryBlackberry offers more creative methods to send push messages. You can give the application abadge and put a home-screen indicator at the top of the users screen just as if they received anew email. Push on BlackBerry also allows you to create popup notifications that will triggeryour application to open. This function operates with the standard BlackBerry popups, or youcan create custom ones. Users also have the option to reply to a push notification from withinthe popup itself. A BlackBerry push notification A BlackBerry push notification can let users respond with a text response An example of a custom popup© 2010 Applico, LLC. All rights reserved. 15 | P a g e
  16. 16. Build an App that Gets Used: 7 Necessities of Successful Mobile ApplicationsAndroidFor now, you need to have direct approval from Google to incorporate the push service intoyour Android application. The Android push operates in a similar fashion to Apples pushnotification system, but, again, is not as robust as the BlackBerry push service.Push notifications are included in the 2.2 Froyo update, which was released to the developercommunity in late June 2010. This update, which is packaged as Googles push notificationservice, is called Android Cloud to Device Messaging (C2DM).© 2010 Applico, LLC. All rights reserved. 16 | P a g e
  17. 17. Build an App that Gets Used: 7 Necessities of Successful Mobile ApplicationsSocial MediaYour application delivers value and content to your users. Let them share it with their friends!Integrating your application with social networks enables your application to take advantage ofthe thousands of existing contacts users have in their networks. If leveraged correctly, socialnetworks could help your mobile application experience exponential growth.Every time a user posts an application message on a social network, all of their friends can seethe content and which application the content came from. These friends can also click on thename of the application to go to its website. Twitter links to your applicationWho Is Using Social Media?From our research, Android users are the most likely to shareinformation from an application with friends through socialnetworks.Applications can integrate with social networks like Facebook andTwitter. First, the user has to log-in to their social media account.Once that happens, the application will have permission to accessthat social media account. On Twitter, users can post a tweet totheir profile or follow other users. On Facebook, users can post The login credentials needed tomessages to their profiles and "like" fan pages. register a Twitter account from within an applicationOn Twitter, users can post a tweet to their profile or follow other users. On Facebook, users canpost messages to their profiles and "like" fan pages.© 2010 Applico, LLC. All rights reserved. 17 | P a g e
  18. 18. Build an App that Gets Used: 7 Necessities of Successful Mobile ApplicationsGPSEvery platform offers GPS functionality.iPhoneThe iPhone GPS is fantastic. If the iPhones GPS is turned off,certain applications approved by Apple can prompt the userto turn it on from within the application.This convenient feature allows the user to utilize their GPSwithout leaving the application. Other third-partyapplications require you to turn on GPS from the iPhonesSettings page.If an application attempts to get a users location information,a popup will appear asking for permission. Turn on GPS from within an Application on the iPhoneAndroidAndroid has a similar process. The user can go through additional screens to turn on the GPS and then press the "back" button to return to the application. In newer versions, third-party applications have the ability to prompt users to turn on their GPS from within the application. BlackBerry BlackBerry has the least user-friendly GPS functionality and BlackBerry users are least likely to keep their GPS turned on. To access GPS when it is turned off, the BlackBerry user has to exit the application they are currently using, go into Options menu, select Advanced options, then GPS, and then turn on the GPS program. Then, the user has to return to the application. Furthermore, it takes a frustrating 5-15 seconds on average to There is a separate screen to turn receive GPS coordinates on the BlackBerry. on Android GPSFive steps and a longer-than-average wait will make many BlackBerry GPS users give up and calltheir friends for directions. Unless GPS is vital for your application, use cell site triangulation toacquire the users location instead.© 2010 Applico, LLC. All rights reserved. 18 | P a g e
  19. 19. Build an App that Gets Used: 7 Necessities of Successful Mobile ApplicationsThe below screenshots illustrate the three steps it takes to turn on the GPS on a BlackBerryonce the user exits their application and opens up the BlackBerry Options menu. Step 1 Step 2 Step 3© 2010 Applico, LLC. All rights reserved. 19 | P a g e
  20. 20. Build an App that Gets Used: 7 Necessities of Successful Mobile ApplicationsMonetizing Your AppThe Apple store makes it very convenient to buy applications. You can also incorporate "in-app"purchases. This means users can buy individual items or digital content from within yourapplication. To date, only Apple has this functionality.Both the Apple and Google Application Stores accept credit cards and have an easy onlinecheckout processes. Currently, the BlackBerry Application Store only accepts PayPal. They willbegin allowing credit cards purchases later in 2010.The below screenshots show the three-step process for making an in-application purchase onthe iPhone platform: An iPod in-app purchase© 2010 Applico, LLC. All rights reserved. 20 | P a g e
  21. 21. Build an App that Gets Used: 7 Necessities of Successful Mobile ApplicationsMulti-taskingWhat does multi-tasking mean? It means that your application can be awake and processingwhile you are not even using the phone. For example, an application can run in the backgroundto automatically backup information (such as new contact or calendar entries) while yourphone is idle.The BlackBerry and Android have true multi-tasking capabilities. The iPhone does not, even inthe new iOS4.Only approved applications by Apple like Mobile Me have multi-tasking functionality for theiPhone. To date, no third-party application has access to this functionality.Apples iOS4 allows up to three main functions to run in the background. For instance, you canplay music, use VoIP to answer phone calls, and find an address via GPS while performing othertasks on the phone.iOS4 also lets third-party applications "pause" while users switch to another application. If auser leaves your application, they can easily return to where they left off.© 2010 Applico, LLC. All rights reserved. 21 | P a g e
  22. 22. Build an App that Gets Used: 7 Necessities of Successful Mobile ApplicationsConclusionIf you are ready to build an application, this material will help your users enjoy theapplication and keep coming back for more.People leaving their house these days check to make sure they have three things: their keys,their wallet, and their mobile phone. If your application is on one of the three major mobilephone platforms, you are well on your way to changing the way your company does business.Design is KeySimply deciding to create an application is not enough to make sure it will be used. As we havedemonstrated, the way you design your application can make or break your investmentsprofitability.Pay Attention to PlatformsThe iPhone, BlackBerry and Android are becoming the new Ford, GM and Chrysler in terms ofbrand loyalty. But these platforms provide different functionality to their users and their usersinteract differently with each platform.Create the Best User Experience You CanTerrific design not only gives users a good experience, but it also determines in large part thegrowth and ultimate success of your application. Users who enjoy your application will keep iton their phone. Even better, if you develop a great application, people will refer to it moreoften and recommend it to their friends. However, if users remove your application from theirphones, they will not be likely to download it again, regardless of any improvements or updatesyou make to the application. The applications utility to the user will be tarnished.If you are ready to build an application, this material will help you design it in an intuitive wayto give it the best chance of success in the marketplace.© 2010 Applico, LLC. All rights reserved. 22 | P a g e
  23. 23. Build an App that Gets Used: 7 Necessities of Successful Mobile ApplicationsAbout ApplicoApplico creates intuitive and scalable mobile solutions for brands and agencies across all mobileplatforms. The company has operations in Greenwich, CT and Manhattan.We are a group of people who love what we do and build great mobile solutions. Our teamcomes from diverse backgrounds and we leverage our different skill sets throughout all of ourwork. We value creativity, intelligence, and respectfulness.Applico has experience in custom Mobile Application Development on all the major mobileplatforms for customers around the world. The firm’s clients include Fortune 500 companies,marketing and advertising agencies, Mens Health, Carbonite, financial institutions, as well asstart-ups.About the Founder and PresidentAlex Moazed works with digital, creative and interactive agencies as well as marketing,technology and Fortune 500 companies to develop award-winning mobile phone applicationsas the President and CEO of Applico. These companies have relied on Alex for his experiencewith acquisitions and licensing throughout the mobile phone industry and have seen his workby Fortune, CNN, and Entrepreneur. At Applico, Alex is in charge of management and strategicdirection. He is a graduate of Babson College.Email: ajm@applicollc.com | twitter: alexmoazedContact UsWebsite: http://www.applicollc.com | Press Inquiries: press@applicollc.com | Phone: 1 203.295.0569© 2010 Applico, LLC. All rights reserved. 23 | P a g e

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