Google adds Smart Reply and Language Identification APIs to ML Kit

Google has announced the addition of ‘Smart Reply’ and ‘Language Identification’ APIs to its ML (Machine Learning) Kit.

Until now, the APIs in ML Kit have focused predominantly on camera-based machine learning processing. The latest additions begin to unlock the many other possibilities for machine learning.

Smart Reply provides the same features that you may be familiar with in some of Google's products like Gmail and Android Messages. As the name...

By Ryan Daws, 10 April 2019, 0 comments. Categories: AI, Android, API, iOS.

Snapchat’s new platform delivers Mario Party-like games

Snap is launching a gaming platform which delivers a Mario Party-like experience for users while unlocking a new revenue stream for developers.

Mario Party, if you haven't played it, offers a series of minigames that are catered to multiplayer. Snap wants to harness that social experience to keep users on its platform.

The ‘Snap Games’ platform started from a late-2017 acquisition of Australian game studio Pretty Great. The studio was originally created by former Halfbrick talent which many...

By Ryan Daws, 05 April 2019, 0 comments. Categories: Android, Gaming, iOS, Mobile, Platforms.

Opinion: Apple Arcade follows industry shift to gaming subscriptions

Apple Arcade is Cupertino’s jab at following the industry shift into providing unlimited access to games through a subscription model.

Gaming is among the last of the core entertainment industries to switch to such a model. Music is now primarily accessed through services like Spotify and Apple Music, while video is served by companies such as Netflix and Hulu. Even books are heading in that direction with services Like Kindle Unlimited.

Apple is the first platform-holder to debut the model on mobile....

By Ryan Daws, 27 March 2019, 0 comments. Categories: Apple, Gaming, Industry, iOS, Mobile.

Apple will enable developers to lure ex-subscribers back with discounts

Apple has announced it will soon allow developers to lure users who previously had an in-app subscription back with discounts.

In an App Store Connect post, Apple wrote:

“Apps with auto-renewable subscriptions will soon be able to provide a discounted price for a specific duration for existing or previously subscribed customers. You can use subscription offers to help win back subscribers who have cancelled their subscriptions or...

By Ryan Daws, 27 February 2019, 0 comments. Categories: Apple, iOS, Mac, Monetisation, Platforms.

App Store requires devs in ‘Account Holder’ role to enable 2FA

Apple has announced that developers with the ‘Account Holder’ role on the App Store will have to enable two-factor authentication.

The change is compulsory and will come into effect from February 27th.

“In an effort to keep accounts more secure, developers with the Account Holder role in a developer program will need to enable two-factor authentication to sign in to their Apple Developer account and Certificates, Identifiers & Profiles,” the company wrote.

Apple has not disclosed a...

By Ryan Daws, 21 February 2019, 0 comments. Categories: Apple, App Stores, iOS, Mac.

App Store developers have pocketed $120bn since 2008

Apple has used the start of its Entrepreneur Camp in Cupertino as an opportunity to announce some of its latest App Store statistics.

The firm announced that App Store developers have pocketed $120 billion in total since 2008. An impressive $30 billion was distributed to developers in the last 12 months alone.

With Apple still taking a 30 percent cut from App Store sales, the company is raking in the cash. Recent reports that iPhone sales are slowing appear to have had little impact on App Store revenue.

App...

By Ryan Daws, 29 January 2019, 0 comments. Categories: Apple, App Stores, Ecosystem, Industry, iOS, Mobile, Platforms.

Square launches customisable In-App Payments SDK

Payments solution provider Square has launched a new SDK enabling developers to easily integrate support for in-app payments.

With minimal coding, the SDK promises to enable accepting and storing credit card details for checkout purposes. Support for Google Pay and Apple Pay is even included for added convenience.

Carl Perry, Developer Lead at Square, said:

“With the introduction of in-app mobile payments to the Square platform, developers now have a complete, omnichannel payments...

By Ryan Daws, 10 January 2019, 0 comments. Categories: Android, iOS, Mobile.

Supreme Court leaning against Apple in App Store monopoly claim

The day for Apple to defend itself against App Store monopoly claims in front of the Supreme Court arrived Monday, and it’s not looking good for the company.

Attendees claim the case appears to be leaning in favour of the claimants; Robert Pepper and three other Apple users who joined him in a class-action lawsuit.

The claimants brought the case in front of the Supreme Court with the allegation that Apple is forcing users to get apps from the iOS App Store with no alternative. That means Apple can take...

By Ryan Daws, 27 November 2018, 0 comments. Categories: Apple, App Stores, Industry, iOS, Mobile, Monetisation, Platforms.

The benefits of darker in-app colour schemes are clear

Google has finally confirmed what many have suspected, there are clear benefits to offering darker in-app colour schemes.

During its Android Dev Summit this week, Google displayed several comparisons of the power drain while displays show different colours.

As suspected, black is the most power-efficient. White, on the other hand, is by far and large the most power-hungry – consuming over six times as much juice.

By Ryan Daws, 09 November 2018, 2 comments. Categories: Android, Apple, Design, iOS, Mobile.

Apple partners with France-based Simplon for Swift training

Apple has announced a partnership with French vocational school Simplon who will provide Swift programming language training.

Simplon initially plans to launch their Swift training in Paris and Lyon in January. All going to plan, the company will expand to elsewhere in the country.

Participants will enrol in a four-week program which has been developed by Apple itself along with various academic experts.

In addition to the program, Apple will provide funding to recruit more teachers and help with their own...

By Ryan Daws, 24 October 2018, 0 comments. Categories: Apple, iOS, Languages, Mac.

App Store bundles can now include Mac and subscription apps

Apple has announced developers can now include Mac and free apps with subscriptions in their App Store bundles.

With the new functionality, developers can offer a bundle of up to 10 of their apps. This increases visibility while allowing users potentially discounted access.

In its announcement, Apple wrote:

“App bundles make it easy for customers to buy up to 10 of your apps in a single purchase. And now, you can create app bundles for Mac apps or free apps that offer an...

By Ryan Daws, 17 October 2018, 0 comments. Categories: Apple, App Stores, iOS, Mac, Platforms.

Analyst: Supreme Court won’t rule on App Store fees until mid-2019

Developers awaiting the Supreme Court’s ruling in a case against Apple over its App Store fees may have to wait until mid-2019.

Benjamin Schachter, Analyst at Macquarie Research, expects the verdict will be heard soon but the ruling won’t be made until early next year. Furthermore, any potential financial impact will be at least a year away.

The case against Apple was filed in 2011 by a group of app developers who allege that Apple has engaged in anti-competitive behaviours in taking a cut from...

By Ryan Daws, 28 September 2018, 0 comments. Categories: Apple, App Stores, Industry, iOS, Monetisation, Platforms.

Apple simplifies beta testing apps with TestFlight links

Apple developers who use the company’s TestFlight beta testing service can now share invite links with up to 10,000 people.

The new feature aims to simplify the process for both developers and testers.

Developers create a public link which can be shared with multiple users instead of having to create an invite for each.

Potential testers can simply click the link to be guided through installing the required TestFlight app, in addition to downloading the requested beta.

In

By Ryan Daws, 27 September 2018, 0 comments. Categories: Apple, Development Tools, iOS, Platforms, Testing.

Mozilla aims to expand WebVR's capabilities with the WebXR API

Mozilla is building a new API called WebXR aiming to expand the capabilities of WebVR and enable the creation of mixed reality experiences on the web.

WebVR was first conceived in spring 2014 by Vladimir Vukićević from Mozilla with the aim of providing an open source API for displaying VR content on the web. On March 1st 2016, the Mozilla VR team and the Google Chrome team announced version 1.0 of the WebVR API.

The API is supported across many browsers including Firefox,...

By Ryan Daws, 17 September 2018, 0 comments. Categories: Android, API, iOS, Mobile, VR.

Pusher 'Beams' enables read receipts for push notifications

Pusher has launched a new feature called 'Beams' which provides developers with read receipts for their push notifications, similar to using most IM apps.

Read receipts are not exactly a groundbreaking new feature. Since the early days of SMS, users have been able to opt-in to receive alerts when their messages have been successfully delivered to another device.

With the rise of instant messaging, the feature has become somewhat default. Now when you use popular services like Facebook Messenger you...

By Ryan Daws, 07 September 2018, 0 comments. Categories: Analytics, Android, API, Apple, iOS.

Consumers are more satisfied with Apple CarPlay over Android Auto

In the battle to become the car platform of choice, it seems Apple’s CarPlay is winning in satisfaction over Google’s Android Auto.

In a survey conducted by J.D. Power, more consumers are satisfied with CarPlay than Android Auto. This is despite most drivers preferring Google Maps over Apple Maps.

On a 1,000 point scale, CarPlay beat Android Auto 777 to 748. It’s not a substantial difference by any means, but notable regardless.

In terms of mapping choice, the majority (56%) choose Google...

By Ryan Daws, 31 August 2018, 0 comments. Categories: Android, Apple, iOS, Platforms.

Apple’s crackdown on gambling apps has wider casualties

Apple's crackdown on gambling apps in the iOS App Store is having some wider casualties as others get caught in the crossfire.

Developers who’ve been affected received a message from Apple saying it was removing gambling-related apps to “reduce fraudulent activity … and comply with government requests to address illegal online gambling activity.”

Here’s the full message:

By Ryan Daws, 13 August 2018, 0 comments. Categories: Apple, App Stores, iOS, Platforms.

Apple shutters affiliate commissions for apps in the App Store

Effective as of October 1st, Apple will no longer provide affiliate commissions for referrals to apps on its App Store.

The move is of particular concern to publishers who focus on game and app reviews for iOS and Mac. While the commission Apple provides is only around 2.5 percent, a small percentage of the company’s revenue, they are of large importance to such websites.

Following the change, it’s likely there are many publishers out there concerned about how they’re going to make up for...

By Ryan Daws, 03 August 2018, 1 comment. Categories: Apple, App Stores, Industry, iOS, Mac.

Play Store increasingly beats App Store downloads, but revenue is still an issue

The number of Play Store downloads of apps continues to beat the App Store, but the latter remains leagues ahead in generating revenue.

According to figures by App Annie, downloads on the Play Store have increased 20 percent year-on-year. That’s impressive enough, but put in the context that represents 160 percent more growth than Apple’s iOS App Store – well, it’s quite staggering.

By Ryan Daws, 19 July 2018, 0 comments. Categories: Android, Ecosystem, Industry, iOS, Mobile, Platforms.

Growing up fast: Apple's iOS App Store is about to turn 10 years old

Apple is preparing to celebrate the 10-year birthday of the iOS App Store, over which it's seen phenomenal growth and success for developers.

The App Store was introduced on July 10th 2008 with 500 apps. At the time, it was already impressive for a mobile app store.

Now, that number has swelled to over two million apps.

Phil Schiller, SVP Worldwide Marketing at Apple, says:

“In its first decade, the App Store has surpassed all of our wildest expectations — from the innovative apps that...

By Ryan Daws, 06 July 2018, 0 comments. Categories: Apple, Industry, iOS, Mobile, Platforms.