Opinion: The State of Windows Phone

Jackdaw Research released a damning report yesterday about Windows Phone and why it is "failing to catch on" with consumers and in the enterprise. It is a scathing study which makes it seem like the platform is doomed to failure, which I don't believe is necessarily the case...

Microsoft is taking a feedback-first approach and allowing users to test and shape Windows 10 before it hits the...

By Ryan Daws, 05 December 2014, 2 comments. Categories: Ecosystem, Microsoft, Platforms.

Play Store launches in China (without the Play Store)

Today, Google has announced the ability for Chinese developers to launch both their free and paid apps to more than 130 other countries who have access to the Play Store. The only caveat is that, although merchant support has launched, citizens are still unable to access it themselves.

If you develop Android apps in China, and want to start distributing your apps to a global audience through Google Play, visit

By Ryan Daws, 20 November 2014, 0 comments. Categories: Android, App Stores, Ecosystem, Industry, Location, Monetisation.

Phablet users spend the most time in-app

Over the past decade, mobile devices have been getting smaller in every dimension (no #Bendgate jokes here...) Unfortunately, we also want to get more done on the move at the same time. As capabilities have increased, due to faster mobile networks and hardware innovations, the potential to do more is there - but it often requires a bigger screen.

The extra real estate allows for more immersive content, and more detailed information.

Even Apple, who was once adamant against larger screens, has seen the light...

By Ryan Daws, 18 November 2014, 0 comments. Categories: Android, Devices, Ecosystem, iOS, Testing.

Six of the most popular mobile development tools

As the app market matures, developers need to begin thinking about porting their apps across multiple platforms to increase their audience size as much as possible. But, developing an app for each different mobile platform is insanely time consuming and requires knowledge of a wide variety of different programming languages. Luckily, cross-platform development tools have emerged to help developers carry some of the burden.

Check out six of the most popular cross-platform tools...

By StartApp, 06 November 2014, 3 comments. Categories: Android, Development Tools, Ecosystem, iOS, Languages, Testing.

Parse introduces A/B testing for Push notifications

Parse, the Facebook-owned mobile app platform, has added a new feature to their roster today called 'Push Experiments' which allows developers to test different versions of their push campaigns and use analytics to monitor users' engagement with them.

You could send one message today - and the other tomorrow - to see which performs better, but the problem with this approach is...

By Ryan Daws, 04 November 2014, 0 comments. Categories: Android, Development Tools, Ecosystem, iOS, Testing.

Google's six magic lines of search code

Google has historically been referred to as "the search giant" which is becoming more and more irrelevant as the firm expands into huge standalone products such as Android. Now the web giant wants to bring their search expertise, and the world's most popular OS, closer together.

On the Android Developer Blog, Google has announced the ability to allow Android's on-device search to open and scour your application for data with just six-lines of code in your AndroidManifest.xml file...

The lines you will need to...

By Ryan Daws, 31 October 2014, 0 comments. Categories: Android, Ecosystem, Languages, Platforms.

Google brings Material Design to pre-Lollipop devices

AppCompat is an API library from Google which allows older versions of Android to be compatible with the latest "Material Design" elements of the world's most popular OS. The library has been updated to v21 in the Android 5.0 SDK, which was released last Friday, and means you can start designing alongside Google's new guidelines and bring it to your current users.

What's New?

Theming

Google's new design takes away from distracting, non-essential elements. The "action bar" - which runs across the top of the...

By Ryan Daws, 23 October 2014, 0 comments. Categories: Android, Design, Ecosystem, Languages, Platforms, Testing.

Google takes Android gaming up a level

You may not have heard, but Google had a fairly-quiet launch of several big new products this week including the Nexus 9 and the Nexus Player. Despite not making as much fanfare as Apple's event, these are important and brand-new devices which show just how serious Google is about the mobile gaming market.

The Nexus 9 packs Nvidia's powerful Tegra K1 and is capable of delivering graphics similar to the Xbox 360 and PS3. If you want to know just how powerful this thing is, its...

By Ryan Daws, 17 October 2014, 0 comments. Categories: Android, Ecosystem, Gaming, Platforms.

Caffeine gives Android development a kick

(Image Credit: Zach Inglis)

Android, as well all know, is a mobile OS which now powers the biggest percentage of smartphones in the world. Part of its rapid-growth is due to Google's embrace of open-source software and technologies, allowing the web giant to remain on the cutting-edge of the latest innovations.

Percolate is a software company...

By Ryan Daws, 14 October 2014, 0 comments. Categories: Android, Development Tools, Ecosystem, Languages, Platforms, Testing.

Android needs a human-approach to Play Store

(Image Credit: Lucas Zallio)

Popular theme developer "the1dynasty" has had his Google Play account terminated for failure to comply with the store's terms of use. Google's Play Store policy means developers cannot use "Android" or "Google" in their package or app names to prevent confusion between official apps which is the rule in which the apps in question fell foul to.

the1dynasty received a slap on the wrist...

By Ryan Daws, 07 October 2014, 3 comments. Categories: Android, App Stores, Development Tools, Ecosystem, Marketing.

Designing for Android Auto: What you need to know

One of the biggest battles for major platform holders will be for the automotive. Google announced at their I/O developer conference earlier this year that the tech giant has plans to outpace competitors with Android Auto; but it stalled on providing most of the vital details.

Now Google has released a design template for Android Auto which developers must use when creating apps for the car. (It's worth remembering at this point the "apps" function as extensions of...

By Ryan Daws, 29 September 2014, 0 comments. Categories: Android, App Stores, Design, Development Tools, Ecosystem, Platforms.

A definitive guideline on building flexible UI using Android Fragments

Who doesn't want to make his/her Android app a silky for the end-users? I'm sure all of you would love to render the perfect user experience to people who choose to download and install your app onto their Android powered devices. Through this article, I will bring to you a comprehensive guide to creating a dynamic UI using fragments. Hopefully by the end of this write-up you will have been encouraged to build your own multi-pane UI that would add elegance to your existing Android application.

By Lucie Kruger, 25 September 2014, 0 comments. Categories: Android, Development Tools, Ecosystem, Languages.

Metal: Apple may destroy OpenGL and boost DirectX 12

Steve Jobs once declared "thermonuclear war" on Android for claims of Google's operating system being a clone of Apple's own. Whilst Android has since forged its own path, and is often the first to adopt new technologies, iOS remains the most popular choice for game developers due to its great development tools and less fragmentation.

At this year's reveal of iOS 8 at WWDC, Apple introduced the 'Metal' graphics API which aims to bring low-level ("to the metal") access on devices touting an A7 processor or...

By Ryan Daws, 22 September 2014, 6 comments. Categories: Android, Ecosystem, Gaming, iOS, Platforms.

Chromebooks now run Android apps without porting

Android is everywhere; whether it's your phone, your tablet, your console, or even your fridge. Where it hasn't been, at least without third-party software such as BlueStacks, is your PC. Back in June, Google promised it would be bringing support (finally!) for Android apps on Chromebooks.

On Thursday, the web giant made good on its promise and launched the first set of these apps for Chrome OS. These initial apps included; Duolingo, Evernote, children's reading app Sight...

By Ryan Daws, 12 September 2014, 1 comment. Categories: Android, Development Tools, Ecosystem, Languages, Platforms, Testing.

Android KitKat is now on a quarter of active devices

Dear Apple fans, please refrain from comments about the amount of devices your latest OS is running on. I'm joking, go ahead. Even as an Android fan I have to admit that the small percentage of those running Google's latest wonder is frustrating; but it's growing.

The latest iteration of Android, KitKat, has now reached a quarter of active devices according to Google's latest platform version marketshare numbers. This is impressive considering the sheer amount and variety of devices which ship with Android...

By Ryan Daws, 11 September 2014, 0 comments. Categories: Android, Devices, Ecosystem, Industry, Platforms.

One Calendar API to rule them, one API to bring them all, and in the darkness bind them

If you’re building an application with calendar integration, it can be a difficult process to support all of them due to their various authentication methods and data models. One Calendar is an API which aims to simplify this by simplifying integration with commonly-used calendars such as Google Calendar and Microsoft Exchange.

The API was birthed out of CEO Adam Bird's frustration with being unable to easily interact with the myriad of existing calendar APIs which are...

By Ryan Daws, 15 August 2014, 0 comments. Categories: Android, Development Tools, Ecosystem, iOS, Languages.

Four essential skills for today’s app developers

Gone are the days when app developers could simply publish their app on an app store and expect a decent amount of downloads. In an increasingly crowded market, devs need to put in more work to ensure that their app gets recognition from fickle users. While there is no magic recipe for guaranteed app success, here are 4 skills that today’s app developer should have for a leg up over competition:

1) Cross-Platform Capabilities

As the mobile market grows, so...

By StartApp, 12 August 2014, 0 comments. Categories: Android, Development Tools, Ecosystem, iOS, Testing.