Phunware http://www.phunware.com Everything you need to succeed on mobile. Tue, 04 Aug 2015 21:34:57 +0000 en-US hourly 1 http://wordpress.org/?v=4.2.4 This Week In Mobile – July 31, 2015 http://www.phunware.com/blog/this-week-in-mobile-july-31-2015/#utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=this-week-in-mobile-july-31-2015 http://www.phunware.com/blog/this-week-in-mobile-july-31-2015/#comments Fri, 31 Jul 2015 22:21:57 +0000 http://www.phunware.com/?p=20994 Welcome one and all to Phunware’s This Week In Mobile for July 31, 2015. Phunware itself had a pretty good week in mobile with a successful app launch (more on that soon) and lots of activity in the Austin office. In the larger mobile world this week, a new version of the world’s most-used computer […]

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Welcome one and all to Phunware’s This Week In Mobile for July 31, 2015. Phunware itself had a pretty good week in mobile with a successful app launch (more on that soon) and lots of activity in the Austin office.

In the larger mobile world this week, a new version of the world’s most-used computer OS came out, several new Android flagships were revealed, and brands got some bad news about digital advertising scams that kill battery life and waste ad dollars.

This isn’t intended to be a comprehensive roundup, but rather a few things that piqued our interest—and that hopefully will pique yours too. So here now, the news.

Windows 10 / Windows 10 Mobile

blog-app-windows-10It’s finally here! (for PCs, anyway) Windows 10 launched this Wednesday with much fanfare from the tech community. It’s had a rocky start with some bugs and difficulty updating for some users, but it has received some stellar reviews and has already been installed on more than 14 million devices in its first three days.

Any new Windows OS is bound to see huge numbers, but with the mobile companion coming out by the end of the year and free updates for every device running Windows Mobile 8.1, the question is: will Windows 10 make a splash in the mobile space?

New Phone Season Is Here

This week two big players in the Android OEM space, Motorola and OnePlus, both released specs and schedules for their next flagship phones. Motorola held an event in New York where it announced the next version of its Moto X series, the Moto X Style. This device runs Lollipop (and will run Android M when the OS update launches later this year.) It has pretty good specs, with 3GB of RAM, expandable storage, a 21 MP camera and a slightly curved 1440p 5.7” display. As with the previous versions of the Moto X, Motorola is keeping the price down. We’ll see if its strategy to provide a premium product at a value succeeds when the device launches.

In a similar vein to the Moto X Style, China-based smartphone developer OnePlus will release a follow-up to the wildly successful OnePlus 1 with the super-originally-named OnePlus 2. The manufacturer is keeping its invite-only strategy—and testing the upmarket waters by increasing the price from the original. In spite of controversy over some lacking features (no NFC, no fast charging, no wireless charging and a 1080p display), there are more than a million people waiting for this phone.

Mobile Ad Fraud Report Released

Blog-TWIM-Phone-FraudA new study from the research firm Forensiq exposes a rise in apps that defraud brands and advertisers. According to the report, seemingly legitimate Android, iOS and Windows apps start running in the background as soon as a phone is turned on, serving as many as 700 ads per hour that user will never be able to see.

These fraudulent apps waste money for advertisers and consume enormous quantities of data, killing both battery life and performance while creating a terrible user experience. It’s increasingly important for mobile advertisers to know where their ads are being served, not only to make sure that they’re being shown to the right users on the right apps, but to make sure they’re seen in the first place.

Next week is the annual Black Hat hacker conference, so expect some interesting news out of that. Between the Chrysler recall of 1.4 million vehicles due to a vulnerability in their in-dash entertainment system and the Stagefright Android hack, there will be lots to discuss. On a happier note, Google’s Translate team released a cute promo video for its visual translate tool. And for gear heads (or should I say petrol heads) like me, the Top Gear team is coming back in a new show for Amazon’s Prime streaming service (not really mobile news, but you can watch the show on a phone, so I think it counts).

Have any favorite mobile stories from the week that we didn’t cover? Leave us a comment below or on Twitter, Facebook or LinkedIn. We’ll see you next week!

Photo source: Fortune

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“Mobile-First” Is No Longer a Marketing Luxury http://www.phunware.com/blog/mobile-first-is-no-longer-a-marketing-luxury/#utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=mobile-first-is-no-longer-a-marketing-luxury http://www.phunware.com/blog/mobile-first-is-no-longer-a-marketing-luxury/#comments Thu, 30 Jul 2015 21:03:42 +0000 http://www.phunware.com/?p=20973 Mobile-First vs. Mobile-Only At a recent mobile conference in Chicago, Carrie Bienkoski (CMO of mobile-based business PeaPod) declared, “Don’t think mobile-first, think mobile-only—and prepare your business for a world without desktop.” While I admire the sentiment and foresight, a world without desktop—while perhaps inevitable—is still years away. While companies like Uber, Instacart and Square are […]

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Mobile-First vs. Mobile-Only

At a recent mobile conference in Chicago, Carrie Bienkoski (CMO of mobile-based business PeaPod) declared, “Don’t think mobile-first, think mobile-only—and prepare your business for a world without desktop.” While I admire the sentiment and foresight, a world without desktop—while perhaps inevitable—is still years away.

While companies like Uber, Instacart and Square are making seismic impacts on marketing and consumer adoption dynamics, the lion’s share of the industry is still being driven by massive, entrenched brands with strong equity and legacy built in the physical world through traditional media and more recently through digital media, primarily desktop.

It would therefore behoove our industry to prioritize the en-masse marketer transition to mobile-first strategies. I recently returned from Cannes Lions, where I was heartened to see that marketers have finally absorbed that a mobile-first approach will be critical for driving revenue in coming years.

Mobile at the Hub, Not in a Silo

All week on the Croisette, I witnessed conversations on the necessity of going beyond simple mobile extensions of desktop campaigns to a more powerful, native approach. In this current environment where technology and consumer behavior evolve at warp speed, it doesn’t make sense to just tuck away small rainy day budgets when there is a $25 billion monetization opportunity for brands in mobile.

To realize the full potential of the marketplace, marketers must make significant investments in their business infrastructure and create more efficient, enjoyable and rewarding customer experiences. In other words, the long game is to build business infrastructure to facilitate mobile presence and engagement—and it appears that marketers are actually playing. Many brands are making their mobile presences the epicenter of their omnichannel efforts, which also feature desktop and traditional media. In this new, holistic model, mobile marketing is not in a silo, but the hub of the wheel.

Three Big Brands That Went Mobile-First

The splashy announcement in Cannes that WPP, Daily Mail and Snapchat were banding together to create mobile-driven native content shop Truffle Pig was a loud endorsement of how mobile has changed the dynamic between brands, publishers and the technology world. For me however, the great advances being made by three brands that have relied on traditional media—Major League Baseball, HBO and McDonald’s—are more meaningful. They should be lauded for setting shining examples of the power of a mobile-first strategy.

In an interview with Fast Company, MLB Advanced Media CEO Bob Bowman articulated the wisdom and necessity of moving into a mobile world for traditional broadcasters. Bowman explained how transformational mobile has been for his brand as it streams baseball games to 3.5 million subscribers, of whom many are increasingly mobile viewers. Perhaps the biggest lesson here is the importance of speed-to-market. MLB.com exists at its present scale because it launched its streaming services all the way back in 2002.

As for HBO, after a few years and many dollars spent on internal technology and poaching staff from the likes of Zynga, Amazon and Microsoft, the entertainment company ultimately opted to bring in an external partner to build its back-end technology. By many accounts, HBO CEO Richard Plepler had an epiphany that HBO needed to go beyond its identity as the king of premium content and refashion itself technologically to remove all barriers preventing viewers from consuming HBO content. Its most recent foray, HBO NOW, was not only groundbreaking (it provided access to HBO programming and movies outside a TV subscription for the first time), but it also was the most profitable app in the Apple App Store in May 2015.

McDonald’s CIO Deborah Hall-Lefevre believes start-ups can be catalysts for innovation and inspire new, creative thinking. Start-ups can contribute the missing piece of a technology puzzle brands haven’t quite been able to solve in-house. For example, McDonald’s and its Chipotle brand signed a partnership with the start-up Postmates, a network of couriers delivering goods locally. Beyond the “cool” factor of partnering with a hot upstart—one that raised $80M in a Series C round—this kind of partnership delivers a win for both the brand and consumer. The consumer gets previously unavailable access to a product or service, and the brand gets valuable customer data and potential incremental revenue.

What Business Are You REALLY In?

Mobile technology is redefining age-old business models. Companies are being forced to re-architect their payment systems, business operations and in-store customer experiences to deliver the sought-after 1:1 customer communication abilities. They’re being forced to consider Harvard Business School professor Theodore Levitt’s famous question, “What business are you in?” Consumers are walking into your front yard armed with a price comparison tool, a payment system, a customer review engine and a directory of all your competitors. Brands can no longer be just retail outlets or auto dealers; they must now be nimble partners in real-time consumer engagement.

While customer data is crucial as it always has been, connectivity is the new oil—not data. The technology that captures, manages and monetizes this data must be the starting point. And the speed at which you can adopt mobile technology into your business strategy and operations will determine whether you sink or swim in this mobile-first world.

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Apple User Turned Android: Why I Switched From iPhone to Nexus http://www.phunware.com/blog/apple-user-turned-android-why-i-switched-from-iphone-to-nexus/#utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=apple-user-turned-android-why-i-switched-from-iphone-to-nexus http://www.phunware.com/blog/apple-user-turned-android-why-i-switched-from-iphone-to-nexus/#comments Wed, 29 Jul 2015 20:01:57 +0000 http://www.phunware.com/?p=20935 Since my first smartphone, I have been an iPhone devotee because of their superior build quality and the simplicity of iOS. This all changed a few weeks ago when I ordered my first Android, a Nexus 6. So what compelled me to make the switch? It wasn’t an instant decision, but rather a drawn-out realization […]

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Since my first smartphone, I have been an iPhone devotee because of their superior build quality and the simplicity of iOS. This all changed a few weeks ago when I ordered my first Android, a Nexus 6.

So what compelled me to make the switch? It wasn’t an instant decision, but rather a drawn-out realization of what I really want and need in a smartphone. Before you buy a smartphone, make sure you know what you are getting into—or you’ll be making a $500+ mistake.

Battery Life and Speakers for a Music Enthusiast

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Not me, but an accurate representation of how much I love music.

As a proud music lover, I easily listen 7-8 hours every day. I needed a phone with a battery that can last a day at least. My iPhone 6 usually had 30% of battery left after a full day of music streaming and some light web browsing. While this charge level wasn’t bad (it’s definitely better than 0%), I wanted a device with enough battery for the day and some to spare.

The Nexus 6 has a more robust battery than the iPhone, and its quad HD pixel screen makes battery life comparable. But—bonus!—the Nexus 6 turbo charger can charge the phone to 50% in just 30 minutes.

The Nexus 6 is also built to play music better. Its speakers are on the front of the device, not hidden on the bottom or back like most other phones.

iOS and Android UI from a Power User’s Perspective

I don’t just passively listen to music on my phone—I am a power user. I knew all the tips and tricks to maximize the potential of my iPhone 6: actions that conserve battery life, speed processing, force-close troublesome apps, customize notifications and more. And on top of these tips and tricks, I always connected strongly with the high value Apple places on the aesthetics of its operating system and user interface.

Then there’s Android, with its intense focus on functionality and customization. Custom fonts, widgets, themes, skins—there are so many ways for Android users to make their device their own. Manufacturers themselves (like Samsung and HTC) also lay their own skins on top of Android. Unfortunately, all this customizability sometimes makes the Android UI seem disjointed or thrown together, and it can make the system congested and even sluggish. As a graphic designer and a power user, these characteristics always made Android seem undesirable to me.

Pure Android with the Nexus 6

“If you like iOS so much and think Android is unattractive or clunky, why is your post about switching to Android?
—You, probably, reading this post right now

I *did* think that Android left some things to be desired—until the release of Android Lollipop and the Nexus 6. From an aesthetic view, Lollipop is a Godsend for Androids everywhere. Not only does it boast some amazing features, it just looks great!

Before Lollipop, Android had no design specifications. But with Lollipop Google implemented its concept of Material Design, “a visual language for [Google] users that synthesizes the classic principles of good design with the innovation and possibility of technology and science.” The result is an operating system that is easy and pleasant to use. I find it easier to download files from the web, play YouTube in the background and integrate seamlessly with Google apps, just to give a few examples.

Hardware-wise, the Nexus 6 also addresses some concerns for me. This Android phone is straight from Google by Motorola, and runs pure Android without any skins or unnecessary bloatware. It may not have fancy features like the curved screen or fingerprint scanner of the Samsung S6 Edge, but its OS performance is uncongested.

Perfection: In the Eye of the Beholder

Blog-Apple-Turned-Android-PhonesDon’t get me wrong,  a few things are less than perfect with the Nexus 6. Some owners may not prefer its gigantic size. Upgrading from my iPhone 5 to an iPhone 6, and now to the Nexus 6, it seems like a “monster” of a phone. But I kind of like it.

I will also miss the TouchID fingerprint scanner on my iPhone 6, a feature you can find on Samsung devices these days as well. The Nexus 6 has no physical button, let alone a scanner. It really is shame because TouchID is a quick, easy and user-friendly way to bypass the lock screen while still keeping your phone secure.

The iPhone 6 and Nexus 6 are both solid devices with beautiful (yet different) OS interfaces. I’m sure lots of users share my preferences—and still more would probably disagree with me passionately. The point is that in 2015, almost all of us are smartphone users—like, serious smartphone users—and that we all have strong preferences and notions about the way we want our device to function and perform.

It’s the job of the companies that the make hardware, operating systems and smartphone apps (hello, Phunware!) to keep their finger on the pulse of user preference and create the kind of user experience that would make a person like me switch from one device to another.

What devices and operating systems you prefer and why? Leave your thoughts in the comments below.

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Cutting the Cord: What the Shift Away from Cable Means for Media and Entertainment Companies http://www.phunware.com/sports-and-entertainment/cutting-the-cord-what-the-shift-away-from-cable-means-for-media-and-entertainment-companies/#utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=cutting-the-cord-what-the-shift-away-from-cable-means-for-media-and-entertainment-companies http://www.phunware.com/sports-and-entertainment/cutting-the-cord-what-the-shift-away-from-cable-means-for-media-and-entertainment-companies/#comments Mon, 27 Jul 2015 15:51:27 +0000 http://www.phunware.com/?p=20905 TV Everywhere…Literally If you haven’t noticed, the way Americans consume TV and video content is changing wildly. While some of us are upgrading our internet broadband connections to take advantage of every level of resolution offered by a 4K/UHD TV, my 8-year-old daughter would argue that Wi-Fi and a minimal 4’’ iPod screen are all […]

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TV Everywhere…Literally

If you haven’t noticed, the way Americans consume TV and video content is changing wildly. While some of us are upgrading our internet broadband connections to take advantage of every level of resolution offered by a 4K/UHD TV, my 8-year-old daughter would argue that Wi-Fi and a minimal 4’’ iPod screen are all one needs to enjoy TV (they’re all she needs to watch her Netflix Kids shows, after all).  The situation is complicated, involving new and legacy programming models, the expectations and habits of different generations, hardware that never existed before…the list goes on.

First, there are the content providers:

  • Traditional cable and network TV
  • Subscription services like Netflix, Hulu and Amazon Prime
  • TV Everywhere services like HBO Go and CW Seed
  • User-generated content like YouTube, Periscope and Meerkat

Then, the devices:

  • TV
  • Desktop / laptop
  • Tablet
  • Smartphone
  • Apple TV, Roku, Amazon Fire, Chromecast…

With all of these options available, Americans are beginning to divide into three camps:

  • Cord nevers have never subscribed to a multichannel video service like a traditional cable channel lineup and have only consumed video content via subscription services, TV Everywhere or user generated content
  • Cord cutters subscribed to cable TV at one time, but have since cancelled
  • Cord shavers have one foot in both worlds, subscribing to a reduced number of traditional cable channels and binge-friendly services like Netflix and Hulu

Blog-Cutting-Cord-OTT-ServicesAccording to a recent study by Digitalsmiths, the number of  cord cutters in North America is growing. In 2014, 8.2% of former pay cable TV subscribers cut the cord—a 1.3% increase over the previous year. At the same time, awareness of and loyalty to cable alternatives is on the rise. The Digitalsmiths study also found that 54.4% of respondents used monthly subscription services like Netflix and Hulu, and they were willing to pay more for these subscriptions than they had been in previous years.

So what’s driving this trend away from traditional TV? The study looked into that, too. Unsurprisingly, cost, customer service and content viewing flexibility were top influencing factors.

Engagement Opportunities for Media & Entertainment

For media and entertainment companies, this is definitely a case of “when one door closes, another one opens.” Viewers might be migrating away from traditional media—but in doing so they are creating a whole new realm of engagement opportunity for brands.

TV Everywhere is a great example of that: as viewers increasingly consume content on handheld devices, TV networks are meeting them there, offering subscription-based programming to be consumed anywhere (under controlled network conditions), from computers to tablets and smartphones to streaming boxes. The projected ad revenue from TV Everywhere and other “over-the-top” (OTT) services is on the order of $40 billion by the end of 2020.

As we discussed last week, to understand your audience, you need to understand their digital habitat. Here’s some insight into what viewers are thinking about as they deliberate which camp to join (cord nevers, cord cutters or cord shavers):

  • There isn’t a perfect alternative. You may need to combine several services to guarantee access to your favorite show.
  • Are streaming alternatives really cheaper than cable? Monthly subscriptions are cheaper for sure, but after combining your services a la carte, you may spend just as much (or more) as you did on your old cable bill.
  • Oh, live events! Live events are not easily transmitted via services like Netflix and Hulu, so your only options for viewing your favorite games live may still be on a local / cable channel or at a sports bar.
  • Do you have the power? You may need to upgrade your bandwidth to ensure that your household has access to high-def content.

As complex as the situation is, we may need to add a fourth consumer type here: the smart viewer. These folks know their options and have chosen the best one to meet their lifestyle needs and preferences. The availability of content, providers and mobile technology is forcing this change—now it’s up to brands to keep evolving in ways that clearly benefit their viewers.

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This Week In Mobile – July 24, 2015 http://www.phunware.com/blog/this-week-in-mobile-july-24-2015/#utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=this-week-in-mobile-july-24-2015 http://www.phunware.com/blog/this-week-in-mobile-july-24-2015/#comments Fri, 24 Jul 2015 20:49:19 +0000 http://www.phunware.com/?p=20881 This week, the Phunware team attended the Sports and Entertainment Alliance in Technology (SEAT) conference in San Francisco. We enjoyed nerding out in discussions about technology’s role in creating new revenue streams and improving the fan experience. We even had the opportunity to share our knowledge about technology in sports and entertainment in a joint presentation […]

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This week, the Phunware team attended the Sports and Entertainment Alliance in Technology (SEAT) conference in San Francisco. We enjoyed nerding out in discussions about technology’s role in creating new revenue streams and improving the fan experience. We even had the opportunity to share our knowledge about technology in sports and entertainment in a joint presentation with our friend and partner, WWE. And we we got to watch softball and hang out at AT&T Park!

For this week’s post, we’ve got stories about wireless carrier coverage in airports, new details on Windows 10 Mobile’s rumored flagship phone, and the future of mobile hardware.

This isn’t intended to be a comprehensive roundup, but rather a few things that piqued our interest—and that hopefully will pique yours too. So here now, the news.

Sports Viewers Take to Second-Screen Apps

Since we presented this week with our partners at WWE on fan engagement through mobile apps, it’s only fitting that we include a story about sports and the second-screen device trend. A new study found that a third of broadband users have used a second-screen sports app while watching a game on TV, and brands are using mobile to enhance live games too. Technology is having an immediate impact on how we experience sports.

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Which Wireless Carrier Has the Best Airport Data Coverage?

If you’re a frequent traveler, not getting cell coverage at the airport can be one of the more frustrating parts of the travel experience. Well, there’s a new report on which mobile carriers provide the best coverage at America’s biggest and busiest airports. Airports are already stepping up their own technology game with beacons and mobile tech—so get on board, carriers!

Windows 10 Mobile and the Microsoft Flagship Phone

As the July 29 release date of Microsoft’s new operating system approaches, we’re learning more about the mobile version of Windows 10—and the flagship phones that will inevitably come with it. Windows Central, a blog for all things Windows, has released some information about the phones, internally codenamed the Talkman and the Cityman.

Blog-TWIM-Cityman-MockupThey seem pretty similarly specced in comparison to other flagship Android phones and the iPhone 6, with 3GB of RAM, nice front- and rear-facing cameras, and USB type C (which is a great sign that USB type is the way of the future for all phones).

The Windows Mobile OS has always been the third horse in a three-horse race, but they haven’t given up the dream of being a big player yet. Microsoft is coming hard at the market with competitive tech, and time will tell if users are interested in switching to something new. As we’ll see next week (SPOILER!) it is possible to switch from iOS to Android and enjoy the newness…so that’s a good sign for Windows Mobile and for developers!

Gesture and Voice Control Are the Future of Mobile Tech

Finally this week, we have an account from Network World about how one technology executive sees the mobile landscape shifting. With consumer expectations spiraling, hardware providers can’t create a competitive edge using hardware alone—they now have to think ahead to enhance the user’s overall experience with the device. In the future, gesture controls will replace tap and swipe step sequences, and eventually a device that can be entirely and successfully run with voice controls will be the standard for smartphone manufacturers.

Talking about “the future of tech” is always a dangerous proposition, but with the prevalence of motion controls in Android devices and voice control systems like Siri, Cortana and Google Now, the future we just described doesn’t seem too far off.

Other things that happened this week: Google Glass is gaining ground in business and YouTube updated its app to natively support vertical video. Have any favorite mobile stories from the week that we didn’t cover? Leave us a comment below or on  Twitter, Facebook or LinkedIn.

Image source: Windows Central

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Taking Native Mobile Advertising to the Next Level http://www.phunware.com/blog/taking-native-mobile-advertising-to-the-next-level/#utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=taking-native-mobile-advertising-to-the-next-level http://www.phunware.com/blog/taking-native-mobile-advertising-to-the-next-level/#comments Mon, 20 Jul 2015 18:25:19 +0000 http://www.phunware.com/?p=20809 I think we can all agree that mobile advertising will move beyond the standard banner as brands push partners to develop more sophisticated programs that engage users on a deeper level. Consumers now spend almost 90% of their mobile time in-app. That trend creates an enormous opportunity to deliver the kind of mobile experiences brands […]

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I think we can all agree that mobile advertising will move beyond the standard banner as brands push partners to develop more sophisticated programs that engage users on a deeper level. Consumers now spend almost 90% of their mobile time in-app. That trend creates an enormous opportunity to deliver the kind of mobile experiences brands dream about by natively placing your brand or product within mobile apps that have existing, engaged audiences.

Many brands are using third-party audience and geographical (latitude / longitude) data to target and engage users with mobile ads. Although this data is effective, it’s also readily available across mobile—so competitors are using it too. To complicate matters further, brands often pay higher CPMs for these targeted viewable impressions, when the only exposure they may be getting is the time it takes for users to locate the “x” button to close the ad.

It’s clear that brands need a better way to engage users natively within mobile apps. They are continuing to shift focus from desktop to mobile, and marketers are still looking for creative ways to reach mobile audiences. Fortunately, they have several options.

How to Get Beyond the Banner on Mobile

Mobile Video Ads: One of the fastest growing formats in mobile, video is an impactful way to reach your consumers. Many video ads use forced viewing to ensure exposure. Pre-roll (your TV commercials on mobile), interstitials (ads that take up your full mobile screen) and incentivized views (often seen in games) are all examples of forced viewing when the user cannot skip and must watch the video to completion. These formats are popular and effective, and you get what you pay for. Be ready to pay high CPMs and CPCVs (cost per completed view) to ensure your ads are shown next to the best possible content. Also remember that everyone else is fighting for this space, so rates will rise seasonally.

Mobile Native Ads: Native advertising provides an ad experience that follows the natural form and function of the content in which it is placed. Native ads are growing in popularity among publishers and advertisers, and spending on native ads is expected to reach $21B by 2018 (a 347% increase from 2013). These more natural and less intrusive experiences are a win-win for advertisers, publishers and consumers, and they come in many forms on mobile. There are standard native mobile display and video ad units, but brands are now searching for partners that can provide deeper native experiences and product placement.

Maximizing the Value of Native Mobile Ads

As Steve Irwin the Crocodile Hunter (R.I.P.) would say, “If you want to understand a species, you must first understand its habitat.” In the same way, if you want to understand your audience, you must first understand their habitat—and it’s mobile.

Your target audience is posting to social media, texting friends, using dating sites and playing games—all through apps on their mobile devices. These apps have a built-in audience and fan base that lives in its own ecosystem, and advertisers are clamoring for mindshare. One of the best ways for them to gain it is through native mobile advertising.

Pushing Native Mobile Advertising Further

While more difficult to pull off, custom, native programs have shown up more in 2015. For example, at this year’s SXSW, Tinder users were falling head over heels for a woman named Ava in what ended up being a promotional stunt for Ex Machina, a film premiering at the festival. It’s unfortunate that Tinder now runs ads regularly—the once-native feel of their ads has been lost.

Phunware Advertising’s latest work for Mission Impossible: Rogue Nation is another example of native brand placement. By placing the franchise into games that reach Mission Impossible‘s action-loving Millennial audience (see: Ubisoft’s Trials Frontier and Digital Tales’ SBK15), the film establishes a deeper connection with consumers using content that doesn’t feel like advertising.

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Tinder’s Native Promotion for Ex Machina

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Phusion™ Native Brand Placement in Digital Tales’ SBK15

Challenge yourself to find built-in audiences and identify how your brand can become a part of their mobile experience. There will be some programming involved and you will need a team that understands how application development works. But if you’re successful, your brand will be a topic of discussion within the industry and across social media—and your bottom line will benefit.

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This Week In Mobile – July 17, 2015 http://www.phunware.com/blog/this-week-in-mobile-july-17-2015/#utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=this-week-in-mobile-july-17-2015 http://www.phunware.com/blog/this-week-in-mobile-july-17-2015/#comments Fri, 17 Jul 2015 20:43:59 +0000 http://www.phunware.com/?p=20787 Helloooooo, internet! Sorry to miss you last Friday—we had a big gathering of the minds at Phunware to get re-invigorated and re-energized for the second half of the year. The upside is that we now have two weeks of stories and news to bring you, from Google doubling down on beacons, to the shocking amount […]

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Helloooooo, internet! Sorry to miss you last Friday—we had a big gathering of the minds at Phunware to get re-invigorated and re-energized for the second half of the year. The upside is that we now have two weeks of stories and news to bring you, from Google doubling down on beacons, to the shocking amount of data a group of Dead Heads can use, to Apple patenting all-new marketing tech for Apple devices.

This isn’t intended to be a comprehensive roundup, but rather a few things that piqued our interest—and that hopefully will pique yours too. So here now, the news.

Google’s Eddystone Open-Source Beacon Framework

Beacons are small devices that can be mounted on walls, in buses, on street corners and practically anywhere people (or objects) go. They can be used to track items (like the keys you always lose) or to trigger proximity-based marketing messages when you come in range (“Welcome to XYZ store! Here’s a coupon.”). On its Developers blog, Google just announced the launch of a standard and open-source framework for working with beacons called Eddystone. It also opened an API that allows iOS and Android devices to interact with beacons. The future of this tech seems pretty bright. Phunware works extensively with beacons, and we’re excited to expand that work as the technology grows.

Data from Dead Heads

Blog-TWIM-Grateful-Dead-In-Chicago

The Grateful Dead playing at Levi’s Stadium in 2015

Yes, we spoke about the data usage during the Stanley Cup and NBA Finals a few weeks ago, but wow, Dead Heads really like using their phones at shows. The Grateful Dead recently performed for the first time since 1995 at Levi’s Stadium in San Francisco and at Soldier Field in Chicago. At the two shows in San Francisco alone, more than 4.5 terabytes of Wi-Fi data was used by the 150,000+ show attendees. At a show of this magnitude, we can see why it was worth sharing.

Apple Pay in the UK

Apple Pay has seen remarkable growth since its launch in October of last year, and as of July 14, it’s available across the pond as well. Its launch was (mostly) successful, and with good reason. According to Visa Europe, more than 60% of Britons expect to use their mobile devices to buy things by 2020. Apple Pay has been received well, except by those who bank with HSBC, with lots of startups and small businesses planning to embrace mobile payments. Mobile payments are forecasted to grow; we’ll just have to see if the technology can keep ahead of the demand.

Apple Mobile Marketing Tech

In other Apple news, the Cupertino-based company has filed a patent application for a new e-commerce system to deliver targeted ads to people who use Apple products. This isn’t a new idea, but there is one caveat to make it particularly interesting: Apple will be able to look at your bank account, see how much money is in it, and deliver offers and advertisements only for things you can afford. Like any new kind of technology-enabled marketing, we’ll have to see how this one plays out—and whether consumers are comfortable with it.

Blog-TWIM-Star-Trek-CommunicatorIt’s been a great week for mobile and a great week for technology in general. I’m personally excited for The Original Series Star Trek Communicator Bluetooth, and the amazing pictures that New Horizons sent back from Pluto.

Next week some of the Phunware team will be at the SEAT Conference in San Francisco to connect with movers and shakers in stadiums and live entertainment, so hopefully some cool news will come out of that. We’ll see you next week!

Remember, if you have any ideas about how we can improve these updates or other stories you think we should have covered, let us know. Comment below or reach out to us on Twitter, Facebook or LinkedIn!

Photo sources: Levi’s Stadium Facebook page and Techradar.

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Why Your Mobile Advertising Campaigns Underperform http://www.phunware.com/blog/why-your-mobile-advertising-campaigns-underperform/#utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=why-your-mobile-advertising-campaigns-underperform http://www.phunware.com/blog/why-your-mobile-advertising-campaigns-underperform/#comments Wed, 15 Jul 2015 21:28:25 +0000 http://www.phunware.com/?p=20686 Let’s start from the top: do you know the five Ws (and one H)? More importantly, does the team managing your mobile buy know them? They say they do…but the mobile ad space is in a major transitional period. Those who grew up in the space, those who build technology in the space, and those […]

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Let’s start from the top: do you know the five Ws (and one H)? More importantly, does the team managing your mobile buy know them?

They say they do…but the mobile ad space is in a major transitional period. Those who grew up in the space, those who build technology in the space, and those who have invested in mobile-specific solutions for the space are all redefining mobile success. The five Ws (and one H) are changing.

Desktop ≠ Mobile

This transition period is separating the ad partners we grew up with from the new mobile ad partners who are starting with fresh, relevant data. Today, this translates to cookie tracking vs. mobile device IDs and signals. You can’t cookie a cell phone—so you can’t rely on legacy tracking systems to help you understand your mobile audience.

zoom-23936401-3So why are so many brands still counting on their legacy partners to target their mobile audience? This outdated approach is one of leading causes of mobile campaign failure. Legacy partners often use probabilistic decisioning models based on desktop characteristics the can lead brands astray, unless they have valid sign-in data, which most do not. The How of decisioning needs to be different—and mobile-specific.

Similarly, the Who and Why of the mobile space are best addressed with models built on behavior and analytics from mobile devices. This means looking at data from SDKs. Not only the advertising SDK, which so many tout, but the other SDKs that are just as valuable: analytics, location, content management, push notifications and advertising. The nuggets found across these rich data sources can shape a truly compelling mobile experience.

Observations from the Phunware DMP:

  • The vast majority of the time, more clicks = more conversions. When Phunware runs ads across our network of partners, clicks count—and the result is engagement.
  • Most ad network mobile budgets are reset at 12:00am, so the bids end up going higher based on time, not performance.
  • Many advertisers spend their budgets toward the beginning of the day, which can result in a customer not seeing your ad in the evening, when they might be more ready to pull out their wallet.
  • Algorithms and optimization engines are only machines. Machines don’t understand context, new customer goals or third-party factors. Phunware’s results show that active human management and optimization improve campaign performance significantly.

In 2015, Elbow Grease Is Still Powerful

So back to the How: Mobile ad targeting and optimization actually require old-fashioned hard work combined with mobile data modeling and decisioning. Building the framework to understand and model that much data is the starting point…but you have to put those weapons in the hands of competent individuals.

Experiment: Human Management vs. Machine Optimization of a DSP

At Phunware Advertising, we let a DSP with and without human intervention run side by side. The result: Human intervention improved the decisioning of the so-called “world-class DSP decisions engine” by 2.3x.

Why did human intervention make such a big difference?

  1. Humans realized that the conversions were happening based on local factors, not the site itself. For example, because the weather was turning, weather, news and shopping apps began converting well for a short period of time.
  2. The customer had a metric that was not easily measured via online tracking (valid calls to local stores).
  3. Understanding the audience reached hundreds of apps “lightly” (very low conversion rate but backed out to customer goal) the human campaign manager created a separate line item to remove impression restrictions to drive conversion volume at a low price point.

This is a big deal. We continue to see advertisers trust in the technology without realizing that mobile is still the Wild West. Apps and inventory can go from a million daily impressions to zero in a heartbeat.

Who you work with, What platforms you run on, When your ads run, and Where they are placed are critical considerations for the How of mobile decisioning. Let the technology help you make decisions, but trust the mobile captain. Forget divine intervention—there’s no substitute for human intervention.

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Mobile ad blocking is coming. Everybody panic! Wait, no, don’t panic. Here’s why. http://www.phunware.com/blog/mobile-ad-blocking-is-coming-everybody-panic-wait-no-dont-panic-heres-why/#utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=mobile-ad-blocking-is-coming-everybody-panic-wait-no-dont-panic-heres-why http://www.phunware.com/blog/mobile-ad-blocking-is-coming-everybody-panic-wait-no-dont-panic-heres-why/#comments Tue, 07 Jul 2015 22:36:35 +0000 http://www.phunware.com/?p=20648 Lots of people are talking about the recent iOS 9 announcement. In our industry, people are particularly talking about the new content-blocking extensions that will be available on Safari. Among other things, these extensions will allow the creation of ad-blocking apps for mobile browsers. How does ad blocking really work? Ad blockers have been around […]

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Lots of people are talking about the recent iOS 9 announcement. In our industry, people are particularly talking about the new content-blocking extensions that will be available on Safari. Among other things, these extensions will allow the creation of ad-blocking apps for mobile browsers.

How does ad blocking really work?

Ad blockers have been around on the desktop for a long time. In a nutshell, an ad blocker is a piece of software that filters out specific content within a web page. In general, these blockers look for elements that use technologies (e.g., Flash, tracking scripts), perform behaviors (e.g., auto-play), or derive from certain URLs (e.g., ad networks). When the page is rendered, the ad-blocking software will usually tidy up the page so that the user can’t even tell that an ad was ever present.

So what gets blocked?

Ad blockers mostly target the obvious ads on a page. Generally, they don’t affect native ads like sponsored posts or paid content because they are built right into the context of a website or page. Ad blockers also don’t affect ads that appear within a mobile app. So when it comes to ad blocking, we’re just talking about banner and display ads on mobile websites. Got it? Let’s move on.

Ad blocking is increasingly popular among users—and for good reason.

From a user experience point of view, ad blockers can have a number of benefits:

  • Web pages load faster and look cleaner
  • Less waste in terms of bandwidth, CPU and memory resources
  • Less tracking and profiling, therefore greater privacy
  • Marginal security improvements due to reduced risk of ad-borne malware and other infections
  • On mobile, ad blocking can help reduce data consumption by filtering out streaming audio and video, etc.

More than 400 million people have downloaded AdBlock on their desktops. Similarly-named Adblock Plus (actually a different company), claims 300 million downloads. Adblock Plus also recently announced an open beta for its new Android-based solution.  

Nowadays, of course, web consumption is increasingly mobile. According to Global Web Index, internet users aged 16-24 now spend 43% of their online time on mobile devices (3 hours daily). Internet users between 25 and 34 now spend 37% of their online time on mobile devices. And both of those numbers are growing steadily year over year.  With three out of ten Android users saying they use an ad blocker in some form, not only is web usage going mobile—users are also starting to demand ad blocking.

So what does it all mean to advertisers, publishers and app developers?

At Phunware, we look at it this way: people have had ad- and pop-up blocking software on the desktop for years, and the ad business just rolls on. We believe that ad blocking will actually be a great thing for the industry and for consumers, as it will force publishers to be more selective about the ads they run and how they affect the user experience. It will also continue to spur the use of native advertising, which can offer a better user experience as well as higher performance for advertisers.

More importantly, we believe:

Better user experience + Better personalization + Better segmentation = Ads that perform better (and don’t annoy people)

On a personal note, I am a big fan of sites like dribbble.com and daringfireball.net that leverage highly curated ad networks like The Deck. I actually look at and interact with the ads on these sites because they are typically products I’m interested in. That’s a world of difference from the large media sites that are simply packed with junk ads. I think the smart money is on specialized ad networks that can serve quality content.

Advertising can live alongside great content without being interruptive or intrusive. At Phunware, we carefully craft the user experience and every detail of an app. We give the same attention to the ad experience and how well it dovetails with the rest of the app. Advertisers and publishers that do the same will find greater success.

But don’t just take our word for it:

“Like any ad tech innovation, there will likely be an arms race to combat [mobile ad blocking], but anything that provides a good UX for our users is good for us long term.” —Blake Hochberger, The Chive.

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5 Ways an App Can Boost Your Airport’s Non-Aeronautical Revenue http://www.phunware.com/blog/5-ways-an-app-can-boost-your-airports-non-aeronautical-revenue/#utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=5-ways-an-app-can-boost-your-airports-non-aeronautical-revenue http://www.phunware.com/blog/5-ways-an-app-can-boost-your-airports-non-aeronautical-revenue/#comments Tue, 07 Jul 2015 22:05:37 +0000 http://www.phunware.com/?p=20657 Anyone in the travel industry knows that the airline business cycle can be challenging. To balance out the inevitable ups and downs, airports are putting in extra effort to maximize non-aeronautical revenue—and that effort is paying off. In 2012, according to the FAA, U.S. airports generated $7.56 billion in non-aeronautical revenue, or 44.8% of their […]

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Anyone in the travel industry knows that the airline business cycle can be challenging. To balance out the inevitable ups and downs, airports are putting in extra effort to maximize non-aeronautical revenue—and that effort is paying off. In 2012, according to the FAA, U.S. airports generated $7.56 billion in non-aeronautical revenue, or 44.8% of their total operating revenue.

But airports can’t afford to take a “wait and see” approach for boosting non-aeronautical revenue. The best airports are constantly experimenting with new approaches that combine enhanced passenger experiences with new revenue streams.

Airport apps are an emerging, compelling approach to driving satisfaction and revenue. But according to the recent Airport Council International survey, only 4 out of 10 airports in North America have a mobile app.

Why so few? Possibly because creating a mobile app isn’t easy—the best airport apps draw on frequently-changing, complex data sources that few mobile app developers know how to manage. Most mobile app developers don’t have the expertise to know what a leading-edge airport app should offer.

A mobile app for your airport can provide on-demand information about flights, concessions, retailers and more, keeping your passengers informed and relaxed. But just as important, you can use an app to boost your non-aeronautical revenue five different ways. Here’s how:

1. Streamline the experience.

What keeps passengers from spending money at your airport? Airports are challenging environments that can be frustrating and stressful. An app that informs passengers of gate changes or identifies the shortest security line reduces stress and saves time. And when you’ve taken care of your passengers, they won’t be rushing around. Instead, they’ll visit restaurants, shops and services. Happy passengers spend, on average, $6.43 more on retail than disappointed passengers.

2. Help passengers with navigation.

Navigating by smartphone has become a mainstream experience. Why wouldn’t you provide an app that enables turn-by-turn navigation inside your airport? Navigation offers another way to streamline the passenger experience, but it also helps passengers uncover compelling, satisfying interactions with your airport brand. Your app could help passengers find the right restaurant, locate an electronics store or identify the perfect place for a quick manicure.

3. Enable real-time promotions.

Imagine walking through your airport and receiving coupons for the stores you pass. Or getting sale and special pricing notifications by smartphone instead of seeing them on signs throughout the airport. With technologies like beacons, your shops, stores, restaurants and other vendors can pay you to promote their businesses. More store revenue = more revenue for your airport.

4. Generate extra revenue with in-app advertising.

Thanks to the targeted audience segments that come through your airport (think business travelers, vacationing families, etc.), in-app advertising can also add to your non-aeronautical revenue. Many brands would salivate at the ability to reach such a clear, targeted audience—and would be happy to purchase some of your app’s “real estate” for advertising. You’d be paid for selling in-app ad space just as you’d be paid for selling space on billboards or digital signage.

5. Increase passenger loyalty.

Any business owner knows that retaining a customer is cheaper than acquiring one. Whether a passenger casually flies once a year or travels on business once a week, your app can become a tool to enhance their loyalty and interest. You can use your app to promote new art displays, discounts on services, new terminal openings and other events. You can deliver polls, coupons and other forms of media that generate interest and increase enthusiasm.

But there’s another element to boosting non-aeronautical revenue that we haven’t discussed: analytics. An app collects data as people use it, enabling you to continually test and refine your non-aeronautical revenue strategies. Your app can help you understand passenger behavior like in-airport store visits, pathing between locations, dwell time and more.

Phunware is one of the few mobile solution providers with deep airport app expertise. Phunware’s location-aware airport app framework helps airports enhance the passenger experience and drive non-aeronautical revenue at the same time. Learn more about our customizable app framework here.

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This Week in Mobile – ‘Murica Edition 2015 http://www.phunware.com/blog/this-week-in-mobile-murica-edition-2015/#utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=this-week-in-mobile-murica-edition-2015 http://www.phunware.com/blog/this-week-in-mobile-murica-edition-2015/#comments Thu, 02 Jul 2015 16:30:27 +0000 http://www.phunware.com/?p=20614 It’s July 2nd, and that means we’re just a few days away from the best day to be American, July 4th. Since we at Phunware are taking a day off in celebration of our nation’s birthday, instead of writing a wrapup of the news in mobile innovation and tech, I’ve decided to put down some […]

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It’s July 2nd, and that means we’re just a few days away from the best day to be American, July 4th. Since we at Phunware are taking a day off in celebration of our nation’s birthday, instead of writing a wrapup of the news in mobile innovation and tech, I’ve decided to put down some of my favorite apps of the moment that remind me of America and what makes it a great.

FOX Sports Go

Now, I know, we’re usually more into football than fútbol in this country, but with the US women’s national soccer team beating Germany to make it into the finals of the World Cup, there is no time like now to get into the game! The FOX Sports Go app is a great way to watch the Women’s World Cup final if you’re on the go. The game takes place this Sunday, July, 5th in Vancouver, BC, Canada at 5:00 PM Eastern time. I BELIEVE THAT WE WILL WIN! (Related side note: Happy Belated Canada Day to all of our friends from the Great White North!)

Colbr

Stephen Colbert is back, and it’s indeed what America has been clamouring for. After portraying the über-American Stephen Colbert persona on TV for about 17 years, Colbert will always be associated with patriotism for the good old US of A.
In anticipation of his CBS Late Show takeover, Colbert has launched a successful podcast, all-new social platforms and indeed his very own app, which we’re particularly big fans of (disclosure: we built it alongside CBS Interactive). The Colbr app on iOS and Android is the best portal to get all of the Colbert content you could ever want. Colbert’s first Late Show with Stephen Colbert is scheduled to premiere on September 8, 2015 and we are FULL of patriotic fervor about it.

Roadtrippers

Blog-TWIM-MericaWhat better time is there to plan a road trip across the US than the 4th of July? The Roadtrippers app (iOS & Android) is a great way to plan a road trip from start to finish, featuring diners, vistas, hotels and the quirky roadside attractions that make American road trips so fun. Between this app and Roadtrippers’ browser site, you have the perfect way to plan your route to see all the coolest parts of this glorious country. Safe travels!

These are just a few apps that make me feel especially American. Whatever you’re doing to celebrate your American-ness, make Sam Eagle proud by celebrating safely. And have a fire extinguisher ready if you’re in a fireworks part of the nation. Happy 4th of July—we’ll be back to our regularly scheduled programming next week.

Image source: Muppet Wiki

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Micro-Moments Make a Difference: New Permissions in Android M http://www.phunware.com/blog/micro-moments-make-a-difference-new-permissions-in-android-mobile/#utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=micro-moments-make-a-difference-new-permissions-in-android-mobile http://www.phunware.com/blog/micro-moments-make-a-difference-new-permissions-in-android-mobile/#comments Tue, 30 Jun 2015 16:05:26 +0000 http://www.phunware.com/?p=20396 Picture this: you go to the grocery store to grab some items for dinner. At the entrance to the grocery store, you’re stopped by a security guard who asks you to hand over your keys, wallet, phone, Social Security number and personal contact information. “We just need to hang on to this stuff while you’re […]

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Blog-Micro-Moments-01Picture this: you go to the grocery store to grab some items for dinner. At the entrance to the grocery store, you’re stopped by a security guard who asks you to hand over your keys, wallet, phone, Social Security number and personal contact information. “We just need to hang on to this stuff while you’re in the store, sir/ma’am. We’ll be careful with it, I promise. Enjoy your shopping trip.”

If you’re an Android user, you know that this outlandish-sounding scenario isn’t too far off from the experience of downloading a new app from Google Play. At the time of download, before you can even open the app, you get asked to accept a list of permissions.

This list can be daunting and long. It gives no context about why the app needs access to your microphone, camera, contacts or anything else. On top of this lack of context, you’re also expected to accept all of the permissions unconditionally, allowing the application to potentially have carte blanche access to your device! “We’ll be careful with it, I promise. Enjoy using the app.”

From a brand perspective, this is not the best foot to start out on. It creates a lot of unnecessary friction around app installs and updates. Every time that permissions list pops up, it gives the user a chance to consider, “Do I really want to install this game that wants access to my photos? Do I really want to update this game I have installed because it now wants access to my contacts?”

Thankfully, permissions policies are changing in Android M.

Blog-Micro-Moments-02As Google announced at last month’s I/O conference, it has reduced the number of permissions Android requires and grouped them into logical units that make sense to users.

An even larger change requires applications to request permissions at runtime, rather than at installation. This model is common in other mobile operating systems and leads to some immediate user benefits:

  • There is now zero friction in the app installation process: tap the install button and the app installs.
  • Users can now use device settings to control which permissions any app can access. If they enabled a permission in the past for a given app, they can easily revoke that permission at a later time.

There are several important takeaways here for brands and developers. First, and from a 30,000-foot view, this change is indicative of an important truth we all need to embrace: even the smallest interactions impact how users experience your app. Micro-moments like permissions requests can make or break a user’s experience with your brand. Here are some other permissions best practices that can help create a smooth, engaging mobile interaction.

Android M Permissions Best Practices for Creatives

“The key is to make permissions appear predictably.”
—Ben Boiesz, Android Product Manager, Google

  1. Send a warm welcome message the first time a user launches your app. Explaining what your app does makes it easier to understand why permission requests appear.
  2. Ask for permissions when it makes sense, like the moment a user attempts to do something that requires a permission. For example, if the user taps the microphone button to record audio, that’s a great opportunity to ask for microphone permission in a way that makes contextual sense.
  3. It’s possible to request multiple permissions at once, but use this feature carefully. A user could get frustrated and reject all permissions outright, when they might have been more likely to grant permissions if they were requested on an as-needed basis.
  4. Think about the user’s ROI when you request a permission. Give them something in return as soon as they turn a permission on. Back to the microphone example: If you ask for microphone permission when the user taps the microphone button, start recording immediately when they grant the permission. Don’t make them wait or wonder why they granted the permission.
  5. Don’t ask for permissions if you don’t have to. The following tasks have related permissions, but they can also be performed WITHOUT requesting permissions:
    • Taking a picture
    • Selecting a contact
    • Voice-to-text transcription
    • Starting a call or text message

Android M Permissions Best Practices for Developers

  1. There’s no penalty for asking for permissions the first time. So just do it. If the user answers negatively, determine an appropriate time to ask again later (like the next time they tap the microphone button).
  2. The M Permissions model is required when targeting the M SDK, so make sure you do your homework.
  3. Because all permissions used to be granted at the time of installation, there was no need to check for permissions after install. Now, however, it is necessary to add additional code to check for relevant permissions: checkSelfPermission(…) and requestPermission(…)
  4. When the user toggles a permission in Settings your app process gets killed (just like a low memory condition). The Latest Android Studio and Google Libraries introduce new annotations to indicate APIs that need to be guarded by permission checks.

The message is clear: even the most innocuous-seeming details can make a big difference in how users experience your app—and your app can make a big difference in your customer retention strategy. For more tips on creating mobile experiences that keep them coming back, check out App Retention: 5 Tips for Built-in Stickiness.

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Mobile Ad Targeting: Can You Really Reach Your Audience, Anytime, Anywhere? http://www.phunware.com/blog/mobile-ad-targeting-can-you-really-reach-your-audience-anytime-anywhere/#utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=mobile-ad-targeting-can-you-really-reach-your-audience-anytime-anywhere http://www.phunware.com/blog/mobile-ad-targeting-can-you-really-reach-your-audience-anytime-anywhere/#comments Mon, 29 Jun 2015 20:41:29 +0000 http://www.phunware.com/?p=20356 Reaching users with a relevant message when it’s most pertinent is the Holy Grail for brands. There are lots of offerings on the market promising to deliver your audience where and when you want them, but is it really possible to target mobile advertising enough to break through the noise? Spoiler alert: the answer is […]

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Reaching users with a relevant message when it’s most pertinent is the Holy Grail for brands. There are lots of offerings on the market promising to deliver your audience where and when you want them, but is it really possible to target mobile advertising enough to break through the noise?

Spoiler alert: the answer is a resounding YES. From time of day to local weather to audience behavior, you have many options for getting your message to your audience at the time and place it’s most likely to be well-received.

So start thinking about what you want to promote, and what contextual triggers you can leverage to promote it. Read on to learn about some of the ways you can use mobile advertising target your audience.

Geographic Location

For other media sources, location targeting (or geo-targeting) is the historical go-to. It allows advertisers to target an ad to specific visitors based on their location—including country, city, region and zip code. An analysis of that lat/long information can provide the number of unique users at that specific location at any given time. Geography can also provide a glimpse into the daily lives of your audience, like how long it takes them to get to work in traffic. Insights like these help brands understand the historical and future patterns of their consumers.

Weather and Time of Day

Blog-AdTargeting-WeatherServe relevant ads to users based on the current temperature or weather conditions. Drive your users to purchase an ice cold beer on the hottest day of the year. Promote a special on raincoats when the forecast predicts a rainy weekend. You get the idea.

You can also target campaigns by time variables like hours, days and months. This is called day-part targeting, or day-parting. Push a coffee and breakfast taco special on weekday mornings. Create awareness of happy hour specials in the afternoon. Etc.

Demographic Audience Segments

Blog-AdTargeting-AudienceFrom age and gender to household income, many pieces of demographic data are captured when consumers create profiles and register on new sites or for new apps. This data is often paired with third-party and census data for insight into user profiles that brands can leverage.

Behavioral Audience Segments

Knowing users’ specific interests and lifestyle habits is extremely valuable for brand advertisers. As a consumer, simple tasks like favoriting a site on Flipboard can land you in the specific buyer segments for advertisers. Millions of “mindless” online activities like this add up to rich insights that allow advertisers to target the mobile users who will be most likely to respond to their ads.

Phunware’s Clustr™

Blog-AdTargeting-ClustrPhunware Advertising’s Clustr is an audience management platform that creates demographic, geographic, behavioral, and retail profiles on mobile. Clustr ingests and analyzes a comprehensive set of data sources, including proprietary audience and campaign data as well as where people go over time (both online and in the real world).

Improve your mobile ad performance by understanding users’ real-world behavior over time, and accurately target valuable consumer segments like Auto Shoppers, Business Decision Makers, Entertainment Lovers, Travelers and more. From our global location data and deep insights into mobile users, we generate rich user profiles to help you reach your audience, anytime, anywhere (for real).

Download our Advertising Media Kit or Clustr detail sheet to learn more.

Download Clustr Overview

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This Week in Mobile – June 26, 2015 http://www.phunware.com/blog/this-week-in-mobile-june-26-2015/#utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=this-week-in-mobile-june-26-2015 http://www.phunware.com/blog/this-week-in-mobile-june-26-2015/#comments Fri, 26 Jun 2015 22:25:22 +0000 http://www.phunware.com/?p=20279 Another week, another wrap-up. Unlike last week, this week didn’t contain a massive event with news stories pouring out of it. Instead, we saw news coming in from all around the world of mobile: the launch of Microsoft Office native apps on Android, the shocking level of power Taylor Swift has in comparison to us […]

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Another week, another wrap-up. Unlike last week, this week didn’t contain a massive event with news stories pouring out of it. Instead, we saw news coming in from all around the world of mobile: the launch of Microsoft Office native apps on Android, the shocking level of power Taylor Swift has in comparison to us mere mortals, and a fun report about mobile data from the NBA and Stanley Cup finals.

This isn’t intended to be a comprehensive roundup, but rather a few things that piqued our interest—and that hopefully will pique yours too. So here now, the news.

Microsoft Office Apps on Android

The Microsoft Office suite has been on almost every platform for quite a while: OSX, iOS, Windows Mobile and Windows (obviously), but one major platform has noticeably and strangely been missing: Android. Android makes up 78% of worldwide mobile OS market share, and while Microsoft Office has had some support on Android tablets, phone apps have been lacking.

That’s changed with the launch of the official apps for Android for free (mostly). It’s been a long time coming, but it’s great for the platform and allows for native editing of Word, Powerpoint and Excel documents.

Taylor Swift vs. Apple

Blog-This-Week-Taylor-SwiftOh, Taylor Swift, is there anything you can’t do? As Apple prepares to launch its Spotify challenger Apple Music in the next few days, news began circulating that artists, writers and producers would not get paid during the three-month Apple Music free trial period. Taylor being Taylor, she took to Tumblr to inform Apple and the world that the lack of support during this free period was the reason she’d be withholding her album “1989” from Apple Music.

Taylor’s Tumblr post created A LOT of buzz, compounded by the announcement that Google Play Music (which already has Swift’s entire catalogue) will offer a free version. Apple’s Senior VP Eddy Cue took to Twitter to say, “We here you @taylorswift13 and indie artists. Love Apple.” and to confirm that artists would, in fact, be paid during Apple Music’s free trial period. With Swift’s music now officially coming to Apple Music, I have a request for the young superstar: Taylor, if you could talk to Apple about getting rid of the Stocks app I can’t delete, I’d really appreciate it.

Huge Data Use at NBA and NHL Finals

Now that the NHL and NBA playoffs have officially wrapped up, we can confirm that this year’s sports finals were more mobile focused than ever. The AT&T blog has a write up this week looking at data usage directly from the stadiums, and the numbers are staggering. Basketball fans used an average of 122 GB per game and the night the Blackhawks won the Stanley Cup, more than 386 GB of data came out of the United Center.

These massive numbers show that the second-screen experience is no longer just for watching TV at home. People want to be able to share their experiences no matter where they are, and using mobile allows them to do just that. Congrats to the Warriors and the Blackhawks on their wins. (We’ll get ’em next year, Caps!)

This was just a taste of the big mobile news that hit this week. Other stories include the OnePlus Two getting a release date, T-Mobile shifting its structure to allow for more frequent phone upgrades, the open launch of the Amazon Echo, Android Wear’s new watch faces, and on and on and on.

Remember, if you have any ideas of how we can improve these updates, or other things that you think we should have covered, let us know. Comment below or reach out to us on Twitter, Facebook or LinkedIn!

Photo source: Feelgraphix.com

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Cisco Live Recap: How Can Apps Drive Hardware Sales? http://www.phunware.com/blog/cisco-live-recap-how-can-apps-drive-hardware-sales/#utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=cisco-live-recap-how-can-apps-drive-hardware-sales http://www.phunware.com/blog/cisco-live-recap-how-can-apps-drive-hardware-sales/#comments Fri, 26 Jun 2015 20:53:40 +0000 http://www.phunware.com/?p=20259 Phunware’s Cisco roots are deep. Cisco is an investor in Phunware, Phunware is a Certified Cisco Partner and two of Phunware’s co-founders used to work at Cisco. It was great, then, to reconnect with the Cisco community at this year’s Cisco Live conference in San Diego. There was no shortage of educational events, smart IT […]

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Phunware’s Cisco roots are deep. Cisco is an investor in Phunware, Phunware is a Certified Cisco Partner and two of Phunware’s co-founders used to work at Cisco. It was great, then, to reconnect with the Cisco community at this year’s Cisco Live conference in San Diego. There was no shortage of educational events, smart IT professionals and of course nerdy swag. On the last day of the conference, there appeared to be a great nerd exodus at the San Diego Airport—light sabres could be seen sticking out of almost every backpack in sight.

But we didn’t attend Cisco Live just for the light sabres—we attended for insights into IT and hardware infrastructure. And we got them. Read on for our top three takeaways.

1. It’s now the IT salesperson’s job to sell business solutions, not just boxes and switches.

“We’ve completely turned our organization on its head—we’ve moved from selling boxes to selling outcomes.”
–John Chambers, Cisco CEO, Opening Keynote

Cisco is undergoing a huge transformation to bring IT out of the back office and into important discussions about how to best use technology to drive business outcomes. With so many wireless, mobile and location technologies on the market, it can be difficult for customers to understand how to put them all together. Companies are willing to invest in business outcomes like customer experience, competitive differentiation and ROI. Both Cisco and its Solution Partners (like Phunware) need to be clearer than ever about how their technology drives those outcomes. That means helping customers envision possible user engagement scenarios and understand how to combine different technologies to achieve them.

Accordingly, a question we got asked a lot was, “How will a good mobile app help me drive more hardware sales?”

In our experience creating mobile apps for top brands, this is the flow we always see: Great mobile app experiences → lots of downloads → lots of bandwidth used → more hardware procurement needed.

For example, at the AT&T Stadium in Dallas, Phunware’s app engages fans by broadcasting pictures and video they take on their smartphones on huge stadium screens and using augmented reality to let fans create pictures of themselves at various places in the stadium (standing in front of the cheerleaders, for example). Because fans enjoy the app experience, they engage more. Imagine the bandwidth (and hardware) required to support this kind of connectivity. That’s how a good mobile app can drive hardware sales.

Successful sales conversations are changing—innovating and iterating with customers to achieve “A-ha!” moments is now just as integral to driving sales as showing ROI or a favorable cost structure.

2. Customer experience is front and center.

From the opening keynote to the panels to the tradeshow floor, few Cisco Live conversations happened without a mention of customer experience. During the welcome keynote, mobile and location-based customer experiences took center stage. Demos of the future of retail with indoor navigation and the future of connected health with mobile patient experience aligned perfectly with Phunware’s vision and capabilities.

Phunware CEO Alan Knitowski served as a panelist on the Cisco Live Executive Symposium “Building Today, Leading Tomorrow,” where he discussed how redefining risk and reward and organizing internal process around customer experience can propel startup growth.

Customer experience was a major conversation topic on the tradeshow floor as well. Toward the end of the show, a solutions architect came to the Phunware booth and initiated a conversation about the importance of good design. To summarize the conversation: without good design, mobile app users are quick to abandon an app and certainly won’t recommend it to their friends. The fewer users an app has, the lower the utilization is for bandwidth and technologies like Cisco’s MSE or beacons that enable indoor mobile wayfinding. We have reached the point where top-notch consumer-facing design can have a critical impact on enterprise hardware partnerships, strategies and sales.

3. Cisco understands the value of partners and how to cultivate, support and grow relationships within the technology ecosystem.

Due to the speed of innovation, there are more opportunities than ever for companies that partner (rather than build) to create compelling solutions for the entire customer journey. And the results aren’t trivial either—when Cisco CEO John Chambers discusses how Cisco business units have grown in the double digits while their respective markets have only grown in the single digits, he says, “It is about innovation enabled by fast IT and partners.”

Cisco was a great host and we were impressed by the support we got from Cisco team members who came by to see us during the event. Plus, who doesn’t like a free Aerosmith concert with an open bar??

Thanks Cisco, #CLUS2015 was awesome and we can’t wait to see you in Vegas next year!

Photo source: Preferred Networks

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Marketing Automation Goes Mobile http://www.phunware.com/blog/marketing-automation-goes-mobile/#utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=marketing-automation-goes-mobile http://www.phunware.com/blog/marketing-automation-goes-mobile/#comments Tue, 23 Jun 2015 11:16:54 +0000 http://www.phunware.com/?p=20215 In 2008, I graduated from college and got my first marketing job. Part of that job entailed learning to use marketing automation software. I guess I could be considered an early adopter, but really it was all I knew. At the time, marketing automation was revolutionary. It gave us (marketers) a new way to reach […]

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In 2008, I graduated from college and got my first marketing job. Part of that job entailed learning to use marketing automation software. I guess I could be considered an early adopter, but really it was all I knew. At the time, marketing automation was revolutionary. It gave us (marketers) a new way to reach our audience, and to do it en masse.

Fast forward to 2015, and I’m still using marketing automation software—but thanks to mobile, the landscape is changing. Lots of brands are scrambling to figure out how to leverage mobile to reach their audience—how to turn it into a marketing channel. Fortunately, I don’t think going mobile has to be that scary for marketers. We can use what we already know!

Marketing Automation Then

What made marketing automation so special when it first came out? Platforms like Eloqua, Marketo and Pardot empowered us to create one-to-many programs and campaigns that made it easier to tell thousands of prospects how great we were and how much they needed our product, service or solution—whenever we wanted, as often as we wanted. We could update customers on new offerings and other things we thought were interesting. In combination with a CRM tool, marketing automation gave us the power to track every time someone engaged with our brand. Before long, spamming became the dirty little deed we had all done.

Today, marketing automation has reached the early majority. In the US, 55% of B2B marketers and 35% of B2C marketers report having a marketing automation system in place (eMarketer). Most marketers are still getting ramped up to use their automation software properly, though. In fact, nearly half (44%) of B2B marketers report that less than a quarter of their email campaigns are triggered (or, you know, automated).

Marketers today clearly have their work cut out for them just to get up to speed with the technology they already have. They’re so busy doing that, in fact, that most have missed the fact that their audience has shifted to a mobile device—and taken back control of the content they consume.

Mobile Challenges: Where Are My Cookies?

Marketing automation is perfect for the desktop. It allows marketers to reach out and engage with prospects and customers—and to track that engagement with cookies all the way through the funnel. So what in the world are we supposed to do now that mobile is fast replacing desktop as the most significant customer touchpoint? After all, you can’t cookie a smartphone.

On top of the technical difficulty of using desktop marketing automation in a mobile world, there’s the personalized, self-driven nature of mobile engagement. Think about how you personally use your phone: Don’t like someone’s content? Don’t download their app. Navigate away from their site. You have options. You win.

While I love the control mobile gives me as a consumer, I am keenly aware of the challenges it creates for me as a marketer. My audience (and yours, too) can now pick and choose the content updates they receive and the content types they engage with. And the visibility we once had into that engagement is gone.

What we need now is something to open doors in the mobile landscape the way traditional marketing automation did in the desktop landscape. We need mobile marketing automation.

Marketing Automation 2.0: Mobile Marketing Automation

To most marketers, mobile marketing means applying a responsive design to their existing website and email templates. Responsive design is definitely critical, but it’s a way of contorting a digital experience built for the desktop into a digital experience that is accessible on mobile. It’s a band-aid.

The alternative to responsive design is native, mobile-first design—digital experiences that are planned and built specifically for mobile devices. The most obvious example of this is apps: their entire interface is built for mobile, and they often leverage mobile-specific tools like GPS or the accelerometer on a smartphone.

Marketers love apps because they give us the same kind of captive, track-able audience we had back in the early days of marketing automation. Apps are to mobile marketing what email is to desktop marketing. In the same way that you can automate email communications based on triggers, you can automate mobile marketing campaigns.

The tricky thing about apps is that first you have to get people to download them (to opt in, in traditional marketing-speak), and then you have to make sure they’re compelling enough to keep people coming back. The onus is on you to provide some kind of value to the user.

And that’s why I’m excited about mobile marketing automation. It forces us as marketers to ask the questions we should always be asking: Who are we trying to reach? What do they care about? Where can we provide value or assistance? We have to be relevant, because consumers get to choose whether they engage with us.

For more information on mobile marketing automation, download our free Location-Based Marketing Playbook.

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This Week In Mobile – June 19, 2015 http://www.phunware.com/blog/this-week-in-mobile-june-19-2015/#utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=this-week-in-mobile-june-19-2015 http://www.phunware.com/blog/this-week-in-mobile-june-19-2015/#comments Fri, 19 Jun 2015 21:30:18 +0000 http://www.phunware.com/?p=20238 This week ends one of my favorite weeks of the year: the week of the Electronic Entertainment Expo, or E3. There was plenty of E3 news in mobile gaming, of course, but also plenty to keep those not interested in the gaming industry busy. In this installment of “This Week in Mobile,” we’ll talk about […]

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This week ends one of my favorite weeks of the year: the week of the Electronic Entertainment Expo, or E3. There was plenty of E3 news in mobile gaming, of course, but also plenty to keep those not interested in the gaming industry busy. In this installment of “This Week in Mobile,” we’ll talk about mobile gaming, more Apple Watch updates, software bugs in one of the most popular smartphone lines, and something to make caffeine fans (at least those with iPhones) very happy.

This is not intended to be a comprehensive roundup, but rather a few things that piqued our interest—and that hopefully will pique yours too. So here now, the news.

E3 Mobile News

The video game industry’s biggest trade show happened this week. As expected, mobile gaming played a large part in the show. Gaming giant EA announced that its mobile titles had been downloaded an average of two million times per day across 235 countries. Several noteworthy mobile games were announced, including Fallout Shelter. It was announced and launched for iPhone and iPad this past Sunday (coming to Android soon), and it quickly became the number one grossing game in the App Store, outpacing the mobile juggernaut Candy Crush Saga.

Mobile gaming is only going to grow, with revenues expected to exceed every other gaming segment by 2017. The takeaway: more mobile devices, more users and more opportunities for app developers and brand marketers.

Apple Watch in Stores

the-apple-watch-goes-on-display.jpgOh, Apple Watch, will you ever not have big news coming from your little, wrist-mounted screen? Those looking to walk into an Apple Store to purchase the wearable are in luck, finally, as it’s now being stocked in the US, Canada, Japan and China. Unfortunately for Apple, this big news was dampened somewhat by the recent leak of what the tech giant is considering for the next iteration of the Watch.

The rumor mill says the next Watch will have a FaceTime-ready camera, rely less on the iPhone, and keep the same battery. And given the recent Forbes article highlighting the less-than-stellar results of an Apple Watch user survey, it might be good that a new device is coming sooner rather than later.

Samsung Keyboard Problem

This week at the Black Hat Conference in London, Samsung broke the news that its flagship phones (Galaxy S4, S5 and S6) have a bug that may make them vulnerable to attack. Due to a flaw in the virtual keyboard software, other users can potentially gain control of the phone’s microphone and camera, access text messages, and more importantly (and scarily) download other software to the phone. Now, before everyone starts hiding their Galaxys in drawers: this bug will only work under very specific conditions, and Samsung has already announced a fix for it , coming in the near future.

Starbucks Mobile

Finally, Starbucks has announced a further rollout of its mobile ordering program to 25 more states. The program allows customers to order and pay for their beverages using their iPhone (Android coming soon, I feel like I’m saying that a lot this week) and have them hot and ready when they get to the store, no waiting in line. The program was first tested in the Portland, Oregon, and now is offering Starbucks customers across the country a way to skip the line; which could mean shorter lines during the morning rush for everyone, even non-app holders.

Those are the big news stories we have for you this week. The announcement that Amazon has patented a system to unlock a smartphone by recognizing the shape of its user’s ear, goes in the ‘huh?’ category, but it’s worth mentioning. Remember, if you have any ideas of how we can improve these updates, or other things that you think should have been in there, let us know. Comment below or reach out to us on Twitter, Facebook or LinkedIn!

Image source: Shinya Suzuki

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Leadership: A Passion Project? http://www.phunware.com/blog/leadership-a-passion-project/#utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=leadership-a-passion-project http://www.phunware.com/blog/leadership-a-passion-project/#comments Thu, 18 Jun 2015 20:40:03 +0000 http://www.phunware.com/?p=20024 Can leadership be a passion project?  I believe so! I often get asked about the keys to leadership and building teams when meeting with peers and team members. What I can tell you is that leadership to me is truly a passion project. What do I mean by that? I am not driven to lead […]

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Can leadership be a passion project?  I believe so!

I often get asked about the keys to leadership and building teams when meeting with peers and team members. What I can tell you is that leadership to me is truly a passion project.

What do I mean by that? I am not driven to lead so I can build a big team or control resources—it is the exact opposite. I want to use coaching and sharing to enable others to be leaders and experience the sheer enjoyment of building something that makes them proud!

When framing the mission of leadership, it’s fundamentally important to harvest the ideas of your team and help them see the bigger picture. That will allow them to rally around the purpose of what needs to be accomplished. It is the harvesting of ideas that inspires the broader group to make the sacrifices that are required to succeed.

When something is a passion project, it is never considered work but a chance to share with others the discoveries you make while you are on the journey. In the blog today, I wanted to share with you a few resources that can stimulate your learning and help facilitate your journey to lead others:

Team Building:

  • Who: The Method for Hiring by Geoff Smart and Randy Street This is a great reference guide for helping you build processes to hire great teams.
  • Topgrading: The Proven Hiring and Promoting Method That Turbocharges Company Performance by Bradford D. Smart, PHD This the de facto standard and resource guide for hiring.

Expert Insights:

  • The Hard Thing About Hard Things by Ben Horowitz This is a must-read and a great story about leadership and building A-player teams.
  • Wooden on Leadership: How to Create a Winning Organization by John Wooden Old school and such a great read!

Being a Coach versus a Manager:

  • Coaching Salespeople into Sales Champions: A Tactical Playbook for Managers and Executives by Keith Rosen This is not just for coaching salespeople—it’s applicable to all aspects of your life and all teams. Reground your thinking and re-frame your communications with others to engage them and entice them into action.

There is so much more to share about leadership as a passion project, and I look forward to next month’s blog where I’ll dive into how to build leadership skills and ignite the passion to lead.

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Hospital Kiosk: The Next Generation http://www.phunware.com/blog/hospital-kiosk-the-next-generation/#utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=hospital-kiosk-the-next-generation http://www.phunware.com/blog/hospital-kiosk-the-next-generation/#comments Wed, 17 Jun 2015 16:50:21 +0000 http://www.phunware.com/?p=19764 Remember the very early versions of mobile phones? They were BEHEMOTHS. They definitely did not fit in your purse or your pockets. They had limited functionality. And not everybody was comfortable using them. But we learned a lot from those early days, and the succeeding generations of mobile phones have evolved into ubiquitous devices that […]

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blog-Hospital-KioskRemember the very early versions of mobile phones? They were BEHEMOTHS. They definitely did not fit in your purse or your pockets. They had limited functionality. And not everybody was comfortable using them.

But we learned a lot from those early days, and the succeeding generations of mobile phones have evolved into ubiquitous devices that are useful in countless ways.

Many first-generation hospital kiosks are kind of like those old mobile phones—a little clunky, hard to situate in a crowded hospital, expensive, and rather limited in functionality. Each kiosk was likely running its own software that had to be updated manually (a pain). Consequently, maps and wayfinding information were often out of date. Multiple kiosks in a facility couldn’t talk to or work with each other. And sadly, these hardworking kiosks were all too often ignored by patients and visitors who didn’t know what to do with them.

But the potential for our friend “the kiosk” is enormous!

Let’s take a look at Kiosk: The Next Generation.

When a hospital customer works with Phunware to develop a branded mobile app, we can extend that same app for use in a kiosk format. This approach offers a number of next-generation advantages—especially because of Phunware’s powerful, cloud-based software and flexible form factor (tablets or wall-mounted touchscreens).

LOWER COST

A traditional kiosk runs around $5,000. For a hospital with ten kiosks, that’s an investment of $50,000. As an extension of a mobile app deployment, Phunware’s cloud-based kiosk solution can be deployed for as little as $200 each. A ten-tablet solution represents a potential savings of $48,000 initially, and minimal operating costs.

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With Phunware, your digital wayfinding solutions will always be in sync—the mobile application and the tablets can be updated easily from the cloud-based Map Editor Portal.

SPACE-EFFICIENT AND LOCATION-FLEXIBLE

A Phunware kiosk solution can be deployed on a wall-mounted touchscreen or on a mobile tablet at a fixed location (welcome desk, nurses’ station, etc.). You can even equip volunteers with a roving tablet, so they can serve as personal guides for hospital visitors. And of course, with your branded mobile app, patients and visitors can literally carry your facility information and wayfinding assistance in their pockets—inside the hospital and out.

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FAMILIAR TECHNOLOGY AND USER EXPERIENCE

As of 2015, almost two-thirds of Americans own smartphones. The user experience with Phunware’s app and kiosk solutions would be very familiar for most patients and visitors. In addition, large-format touchscreens are also gaining traction across the country, as evidenced by the recent rollout of a pilot program using touchscreens for wayfinding and information in the New York subway system. Currently, 140 touchscreens are in place at 28 subway stations, with an average daily ridership of 1.4 million people.

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We on the Phunware healthcare team are excited about mobile’s potential to help hospitals, providers, patients and visitors. These next-generation hospital kiosks are simply the next step on a very bright journey. Want to learn more? Check out our white paper, A Surprising Rx for the Ailing Patient Experience.

Download Kiosk Comparison PDF

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SEAT 2015 – July 19-22, 2015 http://www.phunware.com/event-articles/seat-2015-july-19-22-2015/#utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=seat-2015-july-19-22-2015 http://www.phunware.com/event-articles/seat-2015-july-19-22-2015/#comments Fri, 27 Mar 2015 19:55:39 +0000 http://www.phunware.com/event-articles/himss-2015-april-12-15-2015-2/ Phunware is proud to sponsor the 9th Annual SEAT Sports & Entertainment Technology Conference and VIP Steering Committee Dinner on Saturday, July 18th. Event Information SEAT San Francisco July 19-22, 2015 The Westin St. Francis Hotel Join us at SEAT 2015 to hear how international sports executives and industry experts are using technology, CRM, business […]

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Phunware is proud to sponsor the 9th Annual SEAT Sports & Entertainment Technology Conference and VIP Steering Committee Dinner on Saturday, July 18th.

Event Information
SEAT San Francisco
July 19-22, 2015
The Westin St. Francis Hotel

Join us at SEAT 2015 to hear how international sports executives and industry experts are using technology, CRM, business analytics, social media, fan engagement and digital marketing to optimize sports and entertainment venue operations.

Visit the SEAT Conference Site

 

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This Week in Mobile – June 12, 2015 http://www.phunware.com/blog/this-week-in-mobile-june-12-2015/#utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=this-week-in-mobile-june-12-2015 http://www.phunware.com/blog/this-week-in-mobile-june-12-2015/#comments Fri, 12 Jun 2015 21:04:28 +0000 http://www.phunware.com/?p=20040 At Phunware, we like to keep up with the latest trends, news and phun facts around mobile. So starting today, we’re going to be writing a wrap-up of the highlights, (and probably a few lowlights as this continues) from the world of mobile tech, innovations and app development. This is not intended to be a […]

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At Phunware, we like to keep up with the latest trends, news and phun facts around mobile. So starting today, we’re going to be writing a wrap-up of the highlights, (and probably a few lowlights as this continues) from the world of mobile tech, innovations and app development. This is not intended to be a comprehensive roundup, but rather a few things that piqued our interest—and that hopefully will pique yours too. So here now, the news.

iOS 9 and watchOS 2

Apple’s 2015 Worldwide Developer’s Conference (WWDC) early this week came with some significant announcements about changes coming to Apple’s mobile OS for the iPhone and iPad and for the newly launched Apple Watch. iOS 9 is getting a massive overhaul to Siri that adds contextual and proactive searching and reminders. That means you could tell Siri, “Remind me about this later today.” and it (She? Sorry, Siri) can tell contextually what you’re talking about, be it a picture, text, or even something on a webpage.

Blog-This-Week-WWDC15The Apple Watch’s operating system is getting a full, numbered update to watchOS 2, despite the original having been released just a few weeks ago. Here’s the most important and exciting part of the new watch OS: it opens the APIs for the functions of the watch to app developers to make native Apple Watch apps. This means Apple Watch is here in force, and now with its very own app store.

There was plenty more from the conference from open sourcing an all-new Swift 2, true multitasking for the iPad, a redesign of Apple Pay, a brand new news-specific app, public transit options for Apple Maps, and on and on and on.

Apple Music

Apple also announced at WWDC the official launch of their Spotify competitor, Apple Music. It’s touting itself as a place to bring fans closer to the artists they love in unprecedented ways. Instead of utilizing algorithms to choose the next song, Apple Music will use curated playlists and recommend them based on the music you listen to. It also provides access to a live, 24/7 radio station, Beats 1 Radio.

Apple has announced that Apple Music will cost $9.99 per user or $14.99 for a family of up to six, with a very limited free version. Will people be interested in paying for a new service when they can get it for free in other places? The short answer is… maybe. Only time will tell. Apple Music launches on June 30 in more than 100 countries on iOS, Mac and Windows, with an Android version coming later this fall. Keep an eye on the Phunware blog—we’ll be writing more about this service soon.

Google Cardboard

Last week, a significant portion of the Google I/O conference was dedicated to talking about Google’s advances in virtual reality (VR). In addition to the release of the second generation of Google Cardboard, the inexpensive and simple VR device, Google announced a partnership with GoPro to develop a mount that will hold 16 cameras for 360° YouTube videos. This, along with the launch of Cardboard Expeditions for classrooms, is a strong signal that Google sees a future for VR in a big way. See Android Authority’s hands-on with the new version of cardboard from IO here.

View Video on YouTube Here

Windows 10 Mobile

I know, I know—Windows Phone has a bit of a weird place in the mobile market. But they still have millions of devices out in the wild—and that number is poised to grow. While announcing the July 29th launch date for Windows 10 for PC, Microsoft has been reluctant to share information about the launch of Windows 10 Mobile beyond “sometime later.” But in a presentation to one of its partners, Microsoft put up a slide saying “Windows Mobile skus will be available late next quarter,” as reported by Neowin. This is of course a rumor, and could change wildly as time goes on, but it seems like more info got out than expected.  Windows 10 Mobile looks interesting and they’ve got native tools to help developers bring apps from Android and iOS onto the Windows App store. Hopefully, this will be the boost Windows Phone has been looking for.

These were just a few of the big news articles in mobile tech this week (just don’t get me started on the debacle of rolling out Android 5.1 for Droid Turbo users).

Next week should be fun. E3 is happening in LA, and there will be lots of mobile gaming and app development news coming out of that show, so check back then. If you have any ideas of how we can improve these updates, or other things that you think should have been in there, let us know. Comment below or reach out to us on Twitter or Facebook!
See you next week!

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Cheers! Celebrating Our Second Red Herring Top 100 Win http://www.phunware.com/blog/cheers-celebrating-our-second-red-herring-top-100-win/#utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=cheers-celebrating-our-second-red-herring-top-100-win http://www.phunware.com/blog/cheers-celebrating-our-second-red-herring-top-100-win/#comments Thu, 11 Jun 2015 18:23:05 +0000 http://www.phunware.com/?p=20022 Phunware is pleased to announce that we’ve been named to the Red Herring Top 100: North America for 2015! It’s a great list with lots of exciting startups from across the US and Canada, and we’re proud to be considered among them. But we’re particularly excited about being selected for 2015 because this isn’t our […]

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Phunware is pleased to announce that we’ve been named to the Red Herring Top 100: North America for 2015! It’s a great list with lots of exciting startups from across the US and Canada, and we’re proud to be considered among them. But we’re particularly excited about being selected for 2015 because this isn’t our first rodeo with the Red Herring Top 100.

Phunware is the only company listed on Red Herring’s Top 100 for North America for two years in a row. It’s a very exciting time for all of us here, and we’re always looking for people to join our team across multiple fields.

Red Herring gives the Top 100: North America award to companies that excel in…

  • Disruptiveness of their solution in its markets
  • Social contribution
  • CEO and team experience and track record
  • Industry awards and recognitions
  • Team quality and experience

And these are just a few qualifications they consider. More information on the award qualifications and on Red Herring can be found here. We’re beyond excited to be given this award for what we’ve done so far and can’t wait to share what’s next.

View Press Release Here

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Phunware Selected as a Red Herring Top 100 North America Winner for Unprecedented Second Year http://www.phunware.com/press-releases/phunware-selected-red-herring-top-100-north-america-winner-unprecedented-second-year/#utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=phunware-selected-red-herring-top-100-north-america-winner-unprecedented-second-year http://www.phunware.com/press-releases/phunware-selected-red-herring-top-100-north-america-winner-unprecedented-second-year/#comments Thu, 11 Jun 2015 13:55:09 +0000 http://www.phunware.com/?p=20010 Award Reinforces Multiscreen Platform Company’s Innovation and Success

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Austin, TX (PRWEB) [June 11, 2015] – Phunware, the pioneer of Multiscreen as a Service (MaaS), the first fully integrated customer engagement platform that enables brands to engage, manage and monetize their anytime anywhere users worldwide, today announced that it has been named a Red Herring Top 100 North America award winner for an unprecedented second year.

Red Herring Top 100 America enlists outstanding entrepreneurs and promising companies. It selects the award winners from approximately 1,200 privately financed companies each year in the US and Canada. Since 1996, Red Herring has kept tabs on these up-and-comers. Red Herring editors were among the first to recognize that companies such as Facebook, Twitter, Google, Yahoo, Skype, Salesforce.com, YouTube, Palo Alto Networks and eBay would change the way we live and work.

“In 2015, selecting the top achievers was by no means a small feat,” said Alex Vieux, publisher and CEO of Red Herring. “In fact, we had the toughest time in years because so many entrepreneurs had crossed significant milestones so early. But after much thought, rigorous contemplation and discussion, we narrowed our list down from hundreds of candidates from across North America to the North America winners. We believe Phunware embodies the vision, drive and innovation that define a successful entrepreneurial venture.Phunwareshould be proud of its accomplishment, as the competition was very strong.”

“What an honor it is not only to be considered among such distinguished company for this award, but also to receive the award two years running. It feels great to have Phunware’s vision receive such strong support and reinforcement from the technology and entrepreneurial community,” said Alan S. Knitowski, Co-Founder, Chairman and CEO of Phunware. “We know that Red Herring does not normally consider companies for back-to-back Top 100 wins, so this award is especially meaningful for us.”

Red Herring’s editorial staff evaluated Phunware and other Top 100 contenders on both quantitative and qualitative criteria, such as financial performance, technological innovation and intellectual property, DNA of the founders, business model, customer footprint and addressable market. A review of the track record and standing of startups relative to their sector peers, allowed Red Herring to see past the “buzz” and make the list a valuable instrument of discovery and advocacy for the most promising new business models in North America, complement this assessment of potential.

About Phunware

Phunware is the pioneer of Multiscreen as a Service (MaaS), the first fully integrated customer engagement platform that enables brands to engage, manage and monetize their anytime anywhere users worldwide. Phunware has introduced category-defining experiences that challenge the outer limits of the most advanced connected devices for the world’s most respected brands and develops next-generation products and solutions that transform how the world interacts with and uses these connected devices. Phunware is currently ranked # 4 on the 2014 Deloitte Technology Fast 500 and is a back-to-back Top 100 award winner on the Inc. 500 list of America’s Fastest Growing Companies, the Forbes list of America’s Most Promising Companies and the Red Herring Top 100 for North America. For more information about how Phunware provides Everything You Need to Succeed on Mobile™, please visit www.phunware.com and follow us on Twitter @phunware.

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Mobile Web vs. Native Apps: An Informal Survey http://www.phunware.com/blog/mobile-web-vs-native-apps-an-informal-survey/#utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=mobile-web-vs-native-apps-an-informal-survey http://www.phunware.com/blog/mobile-web-vs-native-apps-an-informal-survey/#comments Wed, 10 Jun 2015 19:21:19 +0000 http://www.phunware.com/?p=19906 When planning to establish a mobile presence for your organization, should you build a mobile website or a native app? While there are countless blog posts on the topic saying you absolutely must have one or the other, the reality is that both are necessary for most organizations. Rather than add more noise to the […]

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Blog-Phone-Survey-FeaturedWhen planning to establish a mobile presence for your organization, should you build a mobile website or a native app? While there are countless blog posts on the topic saying you absolutely must have one or the other, the reality is that both are necessary for most organizations.

Rather than add more noise to the debate (see here, here and here), I thought it might be fun to conduct a limited informal survey of the two options from a user preference point of view. I created a Google survey to ask my friends and colleagues which they preferred to use: native apps or mobile websites. I also asked what type of apps and websites they accessed, and why they preferred one or the other. The following are my findings and observations.

The Respondents

By default, all the respondents to my survey were smartphone users who use social media and are tech-savvy enough to fill out an online survey (which was mobile-web-based, by the way). About 60% of my respondents were iPhone users and 40% were Android users. There was a lone respondent keeping it real with a BlackBerry Classic. Surprisingly, the ages of respondents varied from under 18 to over 65, with about 25% under 26, 50% falling between 26 and 45, and the remaining 25% over 45.

blog-survey-respondents

Usage and Frequency

All respondents reported using both native apps and mobile websites on their phones—no surprise there—and about 60% use both more than three times per day. The remaining 40% of respondents reported using native apps much more often than mobile websites. Our BlackBerry Classic user reported against the trend (shocker), using mobile website more than 3 times per day, but native apps only 1-3 times per month.

While respondents reported their usage to be at most equal, their results were a surprisingly different when asked which experience they prefer. Interestingly, nearly 25% responded that they prefer using a mobile website—but that preference was not reflected in their actual reported usage.

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Mobile Website Pros and Cons

My respondents reported that they like websites because they can find things there that they cannot find in an app. They felt that websites offer full access to all needed features and more information than they can find on some apps. Some respondents also said that websites provide better security for sensitive information and purchases (while others felt the opposite). And of course, mobile browsers give you access to the entire internet—not just app content.

On the other hand, respondents reported having difficulty with websites that are not mobile responsive. They disliked having to zoom to see small text and click small buttons, and they reported difficulty with video players that do not work on their phones. One iPhone user complained about not being able to view websites built with Flash. Finally (and obviously), websites require internet access. When internet access is slow and spotty, all of the usefulness a mobile site might provide goes out the window.

“Websites give me access without an app taking storage space on my phone”

“Websites through the mobile browser often have access to everything on the site where the app may not have all the options that the site does.”

“Small print on websites makes it hard to find what you are looking for, even with stretching the screen.”

Native App Pros and Cons

An overwhelming number of respondents reported that apps provide a “crafted experience,” quicker response and direct access. Because apps are built specifically for their mobile platform, using them is easier, faster and more convenient. Respondents liked that the app icon sits right on the phone’s “desktop” and that many apps do not even require an internet connection. Some respondents also felt that apps provide better security for sensitive information and purchases.

Complaints about apps generally revolve around malfunctions, crashes and lack of features. Respondents also reported turning to websites for certain functions that couldn’t be performed (or information that couldn’t be found) within an app. Most of these complaints come down to app design and UI/UX.

“An app provides a crafted experience, specific experience, and allows for better and quicker response than a mobile browser.”

“If an app is made right, you may not even need an internet connection. It’s more appealing, better, and has more intuitive features”

“It bugs me when the app is hard to use or has bad programming. If an app frustrates me, I’d rather just use my phone web browser.”

What Do We Learn?

Although my survey was informal and my sample size was small, I think there are important takeaways here for anyone considering mobile strategy. First of all, regardless of the medium, users have very little patience for poor design and performance. Second, smartphone users generally use both websites and apps—but they prefer the convenience of an app. This reflects the larger trend toward native apps and what we know to be true at Phunware (let’s be honest, we’ve built a company around it!). If you’re going to build a mobile website, it is obviously important to optimize it for mobile devices to give users the best possible experience. But there’s simply no match for the experience you can create when you go native.

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Why You Should Consider Porting Your App to Windows 10 http://www.phunware.com/blog/why-you-should-consider-porting-your-app-to-windows-10/#utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=why-you-should-consider-porting-your-app-to-windows-10 http://www.phunware.com/blog/why-you-should-consider-porting-your-app-to-windows-10/#comments Wed, 03 Jun 2015 15:57:35 +0000 http://www.phunware.com/?p=19894 It’s no secret that mobile influence is skyrocketing. According to Cisco, by 2019 there will be nearly 1.5 mobile devices per person on Earth. With so much growth, no one can afford to ignore this shift to mobile-connected devices—even on the less popular platforms. Think about it: Windows may have less than 3% of the global smartphone […]

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blog-app-windows-10It’s no secret that mobile influence is skyrocketing. According to Cisco, by 2019 there will be nearly 1.5 mobile devices per person on Earth. With so much growth, no one can afford to ignore this shift to mobile-connected devices—even on the less popular platforms. Think about it: Windows may have less than 3% of the global smartphone market, but that 3% accounts for millions of devices.

When you combine those millions of devices with the recent Windows tablet usage increase (achieving 5% of the retail applications for the first time in Q1 2015) and the latest industry announcements (more on that below), Microsoft’s plans to become a significant player in the mobile space don’t seem so far-fetched after all.

Last April, Microsoft forecasted that approximately one billion devices would be using Windows 10 within the next couple of years. To make that expansion easier, Microsoft has also introduced SDKs that allow iOS and Android developers to port their apps directly to Windows-based devices. This is great news for brands: they can close any Windows device gaps in their mobile strategy, thereby increasing their reach (more brand engagement!).

Since most brands have already invested significant dollars in their iOS and Android applications, it should be a no-brainer decision to expand their reach into the Windows Store. To ensure that your brand will take one of the first spots for Windows 10 app downloads, make sure you understand the app porting process and perform diligent QA.

Porting iOS and Android apps to Windows 10: the Process

Android developers will be able to port their code to target Windows 10 without leaving their Android IDE, and Microsoft provides an emulator and interop capabilities to ensure that their original app (including UI and services) will run as expected in Windows platform. For iOS developers, Microsoft will provide a universal Windows app within Visual Studio 2015 that allows them to use their existing Objective C code.

It’s time to secure your place in the Windows Store to boost your app downloads with minimum investment. This step will supercharge your engagement and reach, without sacrificing quality or consistency. Have questions? Want to learn more? Contact us.

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