What makes an iPhone app popular?
That was the question I was asking myself when I started my research on the topic a couple of weeks ago. To answer my question I compared a group of the top paid apps (in the US App Store) with a control group of randomly chosen paid apps from the same categories – business, finance, medical, navigation, news, productivity, reference and travel.
I compared the two groups using the following app characteristics: number of reviews, average rating, vendor type (one-man show, VC-funded startup, etc), vendor popularity, vendor country, app release PR campaign (number of related press releases, activity on social networks), price, availability of a free edition, update frequency and app name specifics. My objective was to find how strong the correlation between any of these app characteristics and the app’s success/popularity is.
There are three serious newcomers rising above the horizon of the mobile OS battlefield which deserve some attention. Let’s have a look at Microsoft’s Windows Phone 7, Nokia and Intel’s MeeGo and Samsung’s Bada.
Microsoft’s Windows Phone 7
Our first contender Microsoft is yet to come up with a mobile platform that captivates the imagination of the market, despite having invested seriously in this direction. With a mobile world future so obviously set ‘in phone’ the company must hurry if it is to catch up with the current leaders.
Having spent years designing UIs for desktops we try to apply all learnt tips and tricks in UI design for mobile apps, but here comes trouble. Surely principles in preliminary research and usability are the same, but designing UIs for mobile apps has certain specifics which set some limits.
The handset isn’t a miniature desktop
Usually we emphasize small screens, less memory and less processor power as the properties of mobile devices which differentiate them from desktop computers, but there are other key factors requiring different approach in mobile app UI design. Those can generally be called “mobile user mental models”. Mental models refer to the way users behave in a particular situation, expect things to work or the tasks they attempt to complete.
“The oxygen for future growth”, that is how Vijay Govindarajan describes Reverse Innovation in an article on Bloomberg Businessweek.
As described on Wikipedia, reverse innovation is:
A term referring to an innovation seen first, or likely to be used first, in the developing world before spreading to the industrialized world.
Mr. Govindarajan elaborates in the Bloomberg article that it’s not only needed to capture growth in emerging markets, but also to fuel growth in home- and developed markets.
What is an enabler and sustainer that can achieve reverse innovation from a
marketing point of perspective?