Have you heard of PWA (Progressive Web Apps)?

PWA’s are a great idea. They are definitely going to make some changes to the way we interact with apps on our devices.

  1. They are more reasonable in terms of time and money to develop. Basically, you’d be developing a website and app at the same time.
  2. They function like a native app, for the most part, and if made right, have awesome UX. 
  3. A lot of bigger businesses are developing PWA versions of their native apps because they are realising the benefits of doing so

There’s so much information out there, but you can read more below and decide for yourself.


Progressive Web Apps are:

  • alternative to traditional native apps,
  • are more cost and time efficient to develop
  • can also broaden a business’s target market.

What is a PWA?

Progressive Web Apps, or PWAs, are web apps that load like regular websites or web pages, but behave like native apps.

Simply, they’re a website you can download onto your phone. They’re actually a website with no search bar and access to your storage so they can save things to your phone, like photos. In some cases, it’s possible to send push notifications even when the user isn’t on the website.

There are a lot of benefits to this new technology, but first, it’s worth taking a look at the differences between PWAs and native apps.

PWA vs Native App

PWAs, in a lot of ways, behave like Native Apps. But there are some key differences.

PWAs don’t require an app store, which gives more freedom concerning creating different types of apps. Also, PWAs are progressive, meaning that they work for every user, regardless of their browser choice or device and fit desktop, mobile and tablet screens.

They’re connectivity independent, so they can work offline or on low-quality networks and are very easy to install. The PWA icon will be displayed on the user’s home screen without having to deal with app stores.

It’s also important to note that writing a website is much quicker, and therefore more cost-effective — building a PWA is like making a website and app at the same time! The developers can create one version of the app that’ll display the same way, and seamlessly, on all devices

Finally, PWAs are far more lightweight, meaning that they take up less space on your user’s devices, but also allow your users to consume less data.

PWAs are still a new technology, and that means they aren’t perfect. Not just because anyone can use them, because older browsers might not support them. Also, a lot of people might not know how they work and won’t realise they could install the website like an app. It may also be said that they’re harder to find because they aren’t readily available in app stores yet. There are still some fun functions that can’t be used with PWAs, like fingerprint scanning, but it’s only a matter of time before PWAs start to function the same, if not better than native apps.

Why Build a PWA?

Most companies that need to target a broader audience on their mobile devices are creating PWAs. Mobile websites are quick and easy to get, but the user experience isn’t great. Native apps have excellent user experience, but they are limited to specific devices and must be downloaded from an app store. This means that businesses lose the benefit of their users’ impulse behaviour. PWAs pre-cache, which means that they download the most recent version of the site when they connect to the internet.

Compared to native apps, PWAs are generally just more efficient and work on demand — they’re always accessible. It’s also easy to re-engage users through features like push notifications.

PWAs are app-like, and use app-style navigation and interactions, so users won’t feel that they have the same problems when trying to navigate tricky websites on their mobile devices. The user also consumes less data and doesn’t have to sacrifice any of conveniences they would have using a native app.

Many businesses are now moving towards creating PWAs to save on costs, but also because they want to reach a wider audience. As a result of native apps being developed specifically for iOS or Android, and the fact that they often consume a large amount of data limits businesses to a smaller audience of users. Some of the more notable PWA projects and their successes are Twitter, StarBucks, Trivago and Forbes.

PWAs Are Awesome!

For business owners, developing a PWA rather than a native app, or alongside an existing native app, is absolutely worthwhile. It means a business can save more time and more money. On average, companies that have built PWAs managed to do so in roughly 3 months. Because of the overall efficiency in developing PWAs, developers have been sharing their knowledge about how to make an app a PWA.

Depending on the project, having a PWA developed can be a smarter move, especially if the business goal is to broaden your market reach, you’re working with a smaller budget or just want to build something using the latest technology!

Have an idea – drop us a line idea@automationsquared.com

 

Smartphone = Smarter Healthcare? [Infographic]

More people reportedly have access to mobile phones than to clean water, according to the nonprofit Tides Center that runs openmhealth.org. Assuming this is true, the implications of “mHealth” — the electronic management of health care through mobile devices — could be far reaching. Wondering what mHealth is exactly? The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services defines it as “the use of mobile and wireless devices to improve health outcomes, healthcare services, and health research.”

Sound unlikely? Not really. Chances are you already manage some aspect of your care using mHealth. If you’ve ever downloaded an app like “Calorie Counter” to see how many carbohydrates those daily peanut-butter-and-jelly sandwiches account for or if you’ve ever been online to see if it’s OK to yank out your daughter’s loose front tooth, then you’ve discovered what it is that comprises mHealth.

Original Post http://www.alliedhealthworld.com/visuals/smartphone-healthcare.html

Latest and Most Amazing Software – FOR free?

You’re Entitled!  Yes you!

Did you know you have access to some of IBM’s latest and most amazing software – absolutely free of charge?
At IBM Collaboration Solutions we’ve been busy! Whether it’s social, mobile or secure collaboration we have been taking the latest innovations in social business and making them available to our customers.
To get as much of our exciting new stuff as possible in your hands we are running roadshows where you can see what you can get for free!

● Work anytime, anywhere with mobile push email, calendar and contacts
● Reduce Microsoft Office costs
● Increase productivity through secure, enterprise instant messaging
● A social corporate directory to find people based on expertise
● Secure file sharing
● Provide a VPN to access corporate apps remotely
● Synchronise information across many repositories quickly and efficiently
Dates and Locations

  • 19th June IBM Edinburgh
  • 21st June IBM South Bank
  • 27th June IBM Manchester

Sessions start at 09:30 and end at 14:00
To register, contact your IBM Sales Representative or email: icsevent@uk.ibm.com
(please state which date you would like to attend)

Or even tweet me @Social_Ben or leave a comment here.

Ability for Employees to Work With Greater Mobility is No.1 Reason for Cloud

Small to medium business’s are now looking beyound the cost and resource efficiencies that can be delivered from a cloud enviroment, they are now focused on how a cloud deployment can improve business outcomes and bring strategic value. In a recent study by IBM two thirds of snior managers surveyed had either implemented or intend to implement a cloud service, with over 45% of UK business looking to do so over the next two years.

The most popular reasons identified for doing this are:

  • Increased ability for employees to work with greater mobility was number one
  • Cost efficiences was named as the number two reason

As cloud continues to be a key priority businesses are looking to technology providers, known as Managed Service Providers (MSPs). The emergence of such MSPs is in response to a significant market shift as SMBs move their business applications to the cloud in order to increase their ability to work in a more mobile and flexible fashion.  With limited IT resources, many are looking to a new kind of partner, to help them do this as they seek to off load the management of their IT infrastructure.

“Midsize firms are under increasing pressure to become more efficient and continue to identify new opportunities to grow their business,” explains Lubomir Cheytanov, director of midmarket sales at IBM in the UK and Ireland. “They are looking to local technology providers or MSPs with deep expertise and innovative cloud portfolio to move their business applications to the cloud.”

About the Cloud Research Study:

For the independent study, conducted by YouGov, the opinions of 530 senior managers at small and medium-sized companies in the United Kingdom were surveyed. It was conducted in the second quarter of 2012 to capture current and upcoming business and IT priorities for cloud computing.

If you are looking to transform your business with cloud capabilities why not get in touch or click here for more information

How Retailers Are Adapting to the Mobile Shopping Craze

Like it or not, the time for retailers to adopt a mobile strategy is over. Shoppers are using smart phones and mobile devices for all manner of shopping activities, including price comparison, product information, local inventory lookup, reviews, and more. Retailers are striving to improve their mobile shopping experience to meet the demands of today’s connected consumer.

 

Created by Milo

Is Social Media and Food the Perfect Pairing? [Infographic]

Currently, 49 percent — or nearly half — of surveyed consumers learn about food through social networks, and 9 percent have downloaded a mobile food app in the past year. From tweeting about the delectable belgian waffle they just ate and discovering recipes on image-centric cooking blogs to checking into the hottest new restaurants, more food-obsessed people are turning to social media to help satiate their cravings.

Created by Flowtown.

Is Mobile Africa’s Future?

The economy of Africa consists of the trade, industry, agriculture, and human resources. As of 2006, approximately 922 million peoplewere living in 54 different countries. Africa is a resource-rich continent but many African people are poor. Recent growth has been due to growth in sales in commodities, services, and manufacturing.Africa is by far the world’s second poorest inhabited continent, second only to Asia in the number of poor people. Though parts of the continent have made significant gains over the last few years. In recent years, African countries consist of the fastest growing economies in the world.

 

Is Mobile Africa's Future?

 

UK Retailers must prepare for mobile and social media Christmas rush

Sales driven by social media, and mobile retail are both set to play a bigger role in this year’s Christmas shopping season according to the IBM Coremetrics 2011 UK Christmas Season Readiness Report.

Using data gathered from more than 150 contributing UK retailers, IBM predicts that mobile traffic as a percentage of all retail site visits will hit double figures by Christmas 2011, having grown from just over 4 per cent to 7.2 per cent between November 2010 and May 2011. In the same time period, the contribution of mobile as a per cent of all online site sales nearly doubled, from 3.2 per cent to 6.1 per cent, which suggests further growth for mobile as a sales channel is likely in the run-up to Christmas.

The benchmark also found that mobile users exhibit a trend for fewer page views (5.8 compared with an average of 8.4, across all means of going online), spend less time on websites (4 minutes and 13 seconds, versus 6 minutes and 24 seconds across all means of going online) and display higher bounce rates to other sites (39.6 per cent compared with 32.8 per cent).

“Despite the attractiveness of engaging with customers on the move, mobile brings with it unique considerations and challenges,” said Marcel Holsheimer, global marketing executive for Enterprise Marketing Management (EMM) for IBM. “Using a mobile device to browse, compare prices, check availability and store locations or make a purchase is convenient for the consumer, which can translate into significant conversion opportunities – but only if the etailer delivers a compelling mobile experience. Etailers therefore need to monitor and optimise the mobile browsing experience to counteract mobile users’ tendency for short and erratic periods online.”

Social media contribution to retailer site traffic also grew consistently during the 7 months covered by the report.

From a social media perspective, users behave in a more efficient manner in terms of sales conversion. They are twice as likely to convert, at an average rate of 11 per cent versus 6 per cent overall. This conversion rate, when viewed in conjunction with other behaviour, also suggests social users are more receptive to offers. Their high bounce rate of nearly 62 per cent, coupled with a low average time spent  on the websites of just over 3 minutes, suggests they are responding to social media-only offers – such as Facebook coupons or exclusive offers advertised on Twitter.

“With the recession still very much front of mind, many savvy e-shopper are buying surgically,” said Holsheimer, “They know what they want and can hone in on it with far less browsing than in previous years. Smart etailers still have time to step up and expand their mobile and social networking platforms in time for this year’s festive season, as way to deepen engagement with their prized customers, strengthen their long-term loyalty – and, convert sales via the customer’s personal channel of choice.”

The IBM Coremetrics 2011 UK Christmas Readiness Report is available to download in full here http://measure.coremetrics.com/corem/getform/reguk/holiday2011-wp

About IBM Coremetrics Benchmark

The findings in this press release is based on data collected by Coremetrics Benchmark between November 2010 and May 2011. Coremetrics Benchamrk captures online marketing results and commerce data from more than 150 contributing UK retailers.