(c) WebComrades

Mobile internet is booming (part 2)

WebComrades got interviewed by Digimedia.be [original transcript] – see issue Inside / Digital Media July-August 2011.

Digimedia: Android platform is now challenging with iOS devices. What would be your advice to the advertisers who are looking for the most relevant mobile platform to reach their audience (applications/services/ads)?

WebComrades: Android is absolutely a winner in the long run. At this time and ‘till the end of the year, we’re pretty convinced the demands will point at iOs products first (in Belgium). Some good advice could be to:
1/ launch a concept on iOs
2/ track success and ROI and if successful
3/ invest and roll it out on Android as well.

In the Android Market you can easily catch up on releasing an app as the approval delay is a non-issue (in comparison with the iOs App approval delays!).

As we aim mainly at less (is more) but international projects, we can tell you that Android is obviously already in high demand. But still, for advertisers it should be important to think and then re-think their strategy before walking into mobile development. We’re seeing way to many applications from big brands that are too much focused on their own product, almost forgetting the “what’s in it for the user?”. We see no use in apps that let me see my (electricity) invoice or just register my email for some advantage elite club teasing with some discounts or free goodies. These are quick wins and fail to be part of a decent strategy. We have seen the tactical apps, now it is time for strategic marketing apps & services.

Digimedia: What is your feeling/analysis about the new Windows Phone 7 platform versus Android, iOS, Blackberry OS  ? What are the main advantages/cons of this new platform?

WebComrades: Honestly, we’re heavily focused on iOs and Android development as we speak. A lot of people seem to forget what people do on a mobile. Yes, Blackberry is sold massively, but how many apps does a Blackberry owner have by average? Not even 5 apps/user. Compare that to the community users on mobile and you’ll see that iOs and Android are currently in the driver’s seat. As long as the market is growing we’ll see some shifting towards some specific platforms, but that’s when advertisers (and mobile agencies & developers) should shift as well.

Digimedia: What’s the budget for developing a mobile app today ? It seems that the prices are going down. Is it possible to have a decent app for 5.000 EUR or less?

WebComrades: We have issues with the “minimal app price” question. Compare it with buying a car. What does a car cost, these days? Is it 10K EUR or 30K EUR?  Just as in any other domain you get what you pay for and it takes time to develop something decent. I sometimes notice that rather traditional agencies are selling the mobile application as a by-product of their 360°-approach. Sometimes they even give it away for free, which obviously can’t be a healthy business model in the long run. You don’t give your core product for free, so why do it on the mobile platform?

Conclusion: the 5K app can be “the first light mobile experience”, so both client & agency are happy to take off on mobile. But ask yourself how many days an agency (big or small) can work with mobile developers for 5K in total. You’ll soon notice that a 5K app will most likely be a quick win app and/or (a) long-term fail. Success of an app lies mainly in the execution of the app (aka production) & less in the so-called ‘award-winning’ concept.

[more on Tuesday]

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