A platform that helps you develop apps in minutes instead of months

Start-ups need help to take on the Big Boys as they deliver business disruption by providing newer services and products. With lean internal teams, start-ups need to focus on core business innovation and do so very quickly — technology is key here. Agility aligned with an unwavering focus on innovation is a key catalyst to disruption.

And that’s exactly where IBM’s Bluemix™ platform plays the perfect matchmaker for start-ups because it not only facilitates the ‘entrepreneurs everywhere’ principle but also enables start-ups to focus on innovative applications to solve complex business challenges, leaving behind any infrastructure related issues. Reducing application development time from months to minutes catalyzing disruption.

Earlier, start-ups found it extremely tough to build enterprise-grade applications with the required scalability, resiliency and speed. But thanks to the powerful Bluemix platform, start-ups in India are now providing enterprise-grade applications for giants in industries ranging from IT/ITeS to energy to manufacturing, BFSI, transportation, media and more. In fact, an Enterprise Strategy Group survey reported in mid-2015 that, Bluemix was the most-used PaaS (Platform-as-a-Service). The survey results also showed that the adoption of Bluemix was growing 10x faster on average than the adoption of other PaaS providers. Yipeedo is once such start up currently on Bluemix for its application development. The mobile only platform is helping urban city dwellers discover things to do in cities based on a user’s taste and preferences.
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What’s even more interesting is that the giants themselves are learning from start-ups and using ‘Bluemix’ to leverage start-up agility and innovation.

Take India’s largest private bank, ICICI Bank. The bank wants to deliver the ultimate customer experience. So ICICI Bank is currently organizing the ICICI Appathon by inviting start-ups to participate. “There is a shift in consumer preference wherein they want innovative solutions on the go. We want to broad base and leverage the innovative ideas and exceptional talent in our developers, technopreneurs and technology start-ups,” says Ms Chanda Kochhar, MD & CEO, ICICI Bank. Similarly, Tech Mahindra has currently trained close to 5000 of their developers on Bluemix.

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And soon, Bluemix Local, the latest flavour of Bluemix will come to India to enable enterprises to gain from the power of Bluemix. It will be delivered as-a-service behind a firewall and leverages existing infrastructure in a modern private cloud platform. It will provide a powerful hybrid cloud offering in combination with on premise infrastructure.

So, whether a business — from a start-up to a large enterprise — wants to leverage Bluemix in a public, dedicated or local manner, IBM is delivering Bluemix in a way that is designed to bridge and extend existing systems and data into the cloud.

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Google launches new certification program for software development agencies

The idea behind the program is to recognize agencies that “have undergone the required training and have demonstrated excellence in building Android applications,” by a Google spokesperson.

In total, 13 agencies in India, Russia, U.K. and U.S. have already been certified since Google first announced its plans for this program last December. These agencies work with both large enterprise clients and startups.

While Google notes that it does “not endorse, or offer any warranty, regarding the certified agencies,” the idea here is obviously to highlight some of the agencies that Google itself considers among the best in the ecosystem (and that use Google’s technologies, too). While the focus here is on Android apps, Google tells that the program also includes support for agencies that work on web apps, too.
“The Agency Program is an effort by Google’s Developer Relations team to work closely with development agencies around the world and help them build high quality user experiences,” Google’s global lead for the agency program Uttam Kumar Tripathi writes today.

Google will provide certified agencies with personalized training, dedicated content, priority support and access to the company’s developer relations teams. Certified Agencies will also get early access to upcoming developer products and help with UX reviews.

-by Frederic Lardinois

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App Store Optimization – A Crucial Piece of the Mobile App Marketing Puzzle

With over 2 million mobile apps in the major app stores, getting your app discovered is one of the biggest issues facing mobile app publishers today. If you’re in the mobile app space, it’s important to understand the various methods for marketing your app. We’d like to share with you one very important technique that continues to be overlooked by most – app store optimization (ASO).

ASO is the process of optimizing mobile apps to rank higher in an app store’s search results. The higher your app ranks in an app store’s search results, the more visible it is to potential customers. That increased visibility tends to translate into more traffic to your app’s page in the app store.

The goal of ASO is to drive more traffic to your app’s page in the app store, so searchers can take a specific action: downloading your app.

According to Forrester, 63% of apps are discovered through app store searches. This makes search, in the app store, the most used method for discovering and downloading new apps.

If you’re not using ASO to increase your app’s search ranking, you’re missing out on the largest discovery channel available to your app.

Main Factors:

Title – The keyword placed in the title should be the one with the heaviest search traffic. Spend time researching which keyword that is, because changing your title often to include different keywords can be detrimental. As your app begins to rank higher and gain more reviews, news of your app will begin to spread by word of mouth. Changing the title can make it difficult for word to spread about your app.
Keywords – To improve your search rankings, you need to know which keywords are relevant and used most often by your target audience. It is helpful to monitor competitors in order to realize how you compare week to week.

Secondary Factors:

Total # of Downloads – Your number of downloads are extremely important to ASO, but you don’t have complete control over them.
Ratings and Reviews – Also important and difficult to control. However, there are ways to incentivize happy users to rate and review.

With a sampling of keywords, they looked at the top 25 ranking positions and calculated what percentage of apps had the keyword in the title vs. those that did not. This provided a total aggregate score for the apps with the keyword in the title and the apps without the keyword in the title.

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Based on this test, apps with keywords in the title ranked on average 10.3% higher than those without a keyword in the title.

So, is a keyword worth placing in your title? Yes.

To reap the rewards of ASO, you need to invest time and effort. If you do, you’ll have a consistent channel driving traffic to your app. Being found is one of the most difficult challenges for mobile apps, but it is a problem you can actively solve.

About the Author: Robi Ganguly is the CEO of Apptentive, the easiest way for every company with an app to talk with their customers, and the one who give such knowledge about we were unaware of ASO.

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USB-C and Lightning headphones.. USB-C and Lightning headphones aren’t great news for everyone

The 3.5mm port is dying — at least when it comes to smart-phones. If the persistent Lightning headphone rumor wasn’t enough to persuade you, the fact that Motorola beat Apple to the punch should be. Motorola’s new Moto Z and Moto Z Force don’t have that familiar circular hole for your cans to plug into, and it now seems inevitable that almost every phone within a few years will forgo the port in favor of a single socket for both charging and using headphones.

This is a change that few people actually want. It’s driven entirely by the makers of our phones and their desire to ditch what they view as an unnecessary port.

There are literally billions of headphones out in the world with a 3.5mm jack, all of which will need an adapter to work with Motorola’s new phone. And the quality of that adapter is going to be all-important. Phones are digital devices, and headphones require analog input. To solve that, every phone has a digital-to-analog converter (DAC) and an amplifier inside, which do exactly what the names suggest. The DAC converts the signal from ones and zeros to waves, and the amplifier makes those waves audible through a speaker or headphones.

The combination of these two parts (DSPs are also involved, but let’s not overcomplicate things) is what makes phones — or anything with a headphone port — sound different from one another. If you listen to the same track, with the same headphones, on an iPhone 6S and a Galaxy S7, they won’t sound identical, mainly because the two phones use different DACs and amps, which output slightly different analog signals through the devices’ 3.5mm ports.

With the switch to USB-C (or Lightning) for headphones, your phone’s DAC and amp (it’ll still need one for the speaker) are being bypassed. That means this all-important component will now reside inside either the adapter (for your existing cans) or the headphones themselves (for USB-C or Lightning headsets).

In order to get the same quality offered by analog pairs, the price has to go up.

Who should be worried about the change? Well, anyone who doesn’t own expensive headphones and has no intention of getting them. If you’re the type of person who spends $30 to $100 on cans, then you probably have cause for concern. You’re either going to need to grapple with what is likely to be a budget adapter for your existing headphones or choose a cheap USB-C or Lightning model.

And here’s the problem: The DAC and amp inside that $50 pair of digital headphones are not going to be of the same quality as those in a $500 pair. Nor will the sound they output be afforded the same time and effort. Instead of trusting in your phone’s DAC and amp to output decent-quality audio at decent volumes, you’ll now be contending with the choices of a company that has had to cut corners to put out headphones on a tight budget.

The industry is far from finished with developing the 3.5mm port’s replacement.

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Update in iOS 9.3 : what we want to see ! iOS 9.3 coming with Night Shift mode & new 3D Touch features !

iOS 9.3 coming with Night Shift mode & new 3D Touch features !

iOS 9 is available to download and install on iPhones and iPads around the world in September, and since then Apple has released several incremental updates to fix bugs and add improvements and features. The latest was iOS 9.2, which brought the new News App to the UK and added new emoji.

Updated 11 Feb as new iOS 9.3 beta 3 becomes available to public beta testers.

Apple has announced the latest iteration of its iOS operating system via its own website, iOS 9.3. It includes a ‘Night Shift’ mode that’ll adjust colours based on the time of day (and location of the device), producing colors warmer in the evening to combat the issue of blue light effecting your circadian rhythms, making it more difficult to sleep at night. The warmer colours should make it easier on your eyes in the evening, and make it easier to sleep when using an iOS device just before bed (as many of us do!).

The update also brings password protection, along with Touch ID support, to the Notes App, allowing you to keep private notes exactly that – private. Many users use the Notes App to store important snippets of information and sometimes even passwords, which is extremely insecure and could lead to your personal information being accessed if your phone (or iPad, or Mac) is stolen. Apple says that with the inclusion of password and Touch ID protection, users should be free to store personal data including financial details and website logins, without worry.

Alongside this, iOS 9.3 includes a number of smaller improvements to the iOS experience, including the following:

  • The ability to switch to corresponding apps via the Wallet App
  • Landscape support for more iPhones
  • Siri support for new languages, including Hebrew, Finish and Malay
  • The ability to duplicate a Live Photo as a standard photo when exporting images from the Photos App
  • ‘Duplicate’ option in Photos App
  • Taptic feedback when accessing the multi-tasking menu via 3D Touch on the iPhone 6s and 6s Plus
  • Option to display Activity App data in the Health App
  • New Workout data section in the Activity App
  • iOS Education upgrades
  • Enhanced Apple Music support in CarPlay
  • iCloud for iBooks will sync PDFs and more

No word on the final release date of this update just yet, but make sure you keep checking back as we’ll update this with more information as soon as we receive it.

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