Spying app for Android smartphones

Android Spying App Review: Improving Smartphone Monitoring for Business

Use of smartphones has become a pretty common thing nowadays. Even we see many businesses providing their employees with Android phones for official purposes. These Android phones are supposed to help businesses become more efficient with their work by helping their employees stay in touch with their colleagues at all times. Even employees can benefit with the help of an Android phone if they install an Android spying app inside their employee’s cell phone to keep an eye on them at all times.

The popularity of Xnspy:

One of the most popular Android spying app in the world is Xnspy. This amazing piece of technology covers really less space inside the cell phone of your employees and provides you with all the data that is stored inside their cell phone. You will love to know that your employee never finds out about the presence of this app inside their cell phone and you get to keep an eye on them with ease. This user-friendly app does not even disrupt any cell phone feature of your employee.

Sharing of data:

All the hTC, LG, Samsung, Motorola, Sony, Dell, Acer, Huawei and other Android phones work brilliantly with Xnspy. All these phones must have an operating system of 2.3 or above that. You need your personal log-in details from Xnspy to gain access to your member’s area. Everything that is stored inside your employee’s cell phone will be shared with you.

Record surroundings:

This is a really interesting feature of Xnspy. With the help of this feature, employers may record all the sounds that surrounding their employee’s cell phone whenever they want to. This feature works with the help of the Mic in your employee’s phone. Apart from this, the ‘Geo Location’ feature assists you in tracking the exact location of your employees. This feature works with the help of the GPS navigator inside your employee’s Android phone.

Call and SMS Logs:

All the outgoing and incoming phone call records of employees are provided to employers by Xnspy along with the total duration and the exact time of each and every call. Not just this, all the missed call records are also part of the data provided. Another option for employers is that they shall even record any particular call if they feel they need to. Same goes for all the SMS messages records as well. All the messages sent and received by your employees are shown to you easily by Xnspy.

Added perks:

All the pictures, video files and audio files stored inside your employee’s cell phone will be provided to you with the help of this Android spying app. Even all the contact numbers stored inside their phone will be shown to you along with all the e–mail messages, web browsing history as well as all the bookmarked pages.

Smooth running of your business is a blessing. An Android spying app Xnspy ensures a smooth running of your business by keeping you informed about your employee’s activities at all times.

Windows 10 settings to protect your privacy

Which Windows 10 Settings Should You Change To Protect Your Privacy?

In July, 2015, Microsoft released its “final” version of Windows: 10. Claiming it will change how its software is delivered in the future and offering an upgrade to existing customers for free (at least for a year), Microsoft seems to have thought things through thoroughly. The question is, have you?

With cool new features, such as Cortana and developer access to a uniform system to create apps on, Windows 10 certainly has a lot to offer (especially for free). If you’ve already upgraded, great, but that also means that time is nearly up to change your mind. Windows 10 offers the ability to “downgrade” to your previous version if you decide you don’t like it, but only for one month.

Still, what’s not to like? With a sharper, more modern interface and faster overall load times, Windows 10 is looking pretty good. The problem, however, lies in whether or not you have a vested interest in your privacy. All these new features come with a trade-off: Microsoft, like other companies, wants to record more of what you’re doing.

So what can be done?

Trade-Off

Regrettably the shiniest, most toted feature of Windows 10 is Cortana. By having Cortana enabled, you give Microsoft permission to record your voice, your typing, view your contacts, your calendars, and monitor your internet traffic. She can even read your emails, and I don’t mean dictation.

Fortunately, Cortana does have certain options to turn on and off. If you go to Cortana’s Notebook and access Settings, you can control what apps she has access to and what data she syncs with the cloud service. You can even delete everything Cortana has collected about you, resetting her effectively to default.

To Microsoft’s credit, they allow you to not only delete information Cortana has stored about you on your device, but also the data stored in their servers. They are very open about what uses Cortana has for your information (hopefully they’re being honest) and why it may be required for her to work.

That said, much of what Cortana does can still be done manually, including searching for things on the net and handling your contacts and calendar events. For the most secure results, you can always switch Cortana off, and it’s recommended that you do so if privacy is your number one concern. The setting stays, so you won’t have to do it more than once unless you decide to try her out again.

Settings

Perhaps the most promising thing about Windows 10 is the ease of access to its settings. On the bottom right of your task bar (if you’re using PC Windows), there’s a little message bubble that takes you to Notifications, where you can access All Settings.

Windows 10 settings

From here, there’s a whole section devoted to your privacy, appropriately called Privacy. Under this section, there are numerous options, a few of which are worth addressing, while others aren’t as important. We’ll take a look at each section to see what’s relevant.

  1. General
  2. Under General, the only setting you should have turned on is the SmartScreen Filter; everything else is just providing additional information that should really be kept private as much as possible.

  3. Location
  4. Location settings are something you may need to turn on and off occasionally, but unless you’re using GPS, they should generally be turned off. Do note that if you’re using Cortana, these settings must be enabled or she won’t work.

  5. Camera
  6. Under the Camera settings, you can adjust which apps are allowed to access your camera. On your mobile, you’ll probably have this turned on, as several apps do need access to your camera to function. On your home computer, this isn’t as often the case; you’ll need to decide when it’s appropriate, but at least there’s a handy list of apps you can turn on and off.

  7. Microphone
  8. Another section that Cortana requires is the Microphone. Not many apps need access to your microphone to function, but there are bound to be a few. Enable and disable only the apps you trust; otherwise leave it turned off.

  9. Account info
  10. Like Cortana, plenty of apps want access to your contacts. They aren’t always malicious, but you’re better off disabling Contacts for any apps you don’t totally trust.

  11. Calendar
  12. Though I don’t personally use the Calendar, some people prefer keeping their plans highly organized and dated. If you’d prefer to keep your schedule to yourself, disable this to keep apps from accessing it (but again, you’re going to lose some functionality).

  13. Messaging
  14. Unless there’s a really compelling app or you hardly use texts or MMS, you’d do well to keep this section disabled. There are probably legitimate reasons for an app to read your texts, but since we’re focused on privacy, you’ll want this turned off.

  15. Radios
  16. The Radios settings address the use of tools such as Bluetooth and are mostly okay to have turned on. If you’re in an unfamiliar area and carrying important data, you can consider preventing apps from controlling your radios, but remember that those apps won’t work properly.

  17. Other devices
  18. Naturally any section with “other” in its title kind of leaves things open. Under the first section on Syncing, it’s probably a good idea to have this off in public places, but it’s likely useful at home. Since anything could be under this section, you’ll have to read closely which devices are interfacing with yours.

  19. Feedback & Diagnostics
  20. You can’t really disable anything here other than whether or not to ask for your feedback, and it doesn’t seem as if there’s any real reason to anyway. Big companies do actually need feedback to know if their products are working well.

  21. Background apps
  22. Turning off background apps is mostly for power saving; if you’re plugged in or at a home computer, you can leave most of these on (unless you don’t use them).

Other Considerations

It’s hard to make any blanket statement about privacy in Windows 10, as plenty of other services are logging your information just as intently as Microsoft. If you want to maintain your anonymity, you’ll need to deal with outside parties too.

Considering setting up a VPN (Virtual Private Network) through Windows or acquiring a third-party service, such as ExpressVPN. A VPN allows you to use the rest of the internet anonymously by encrypting your connection and routing it through a remote server. Though it won’t likely prevent Microsoft from gathering your info, it helps against websites and hackers trying to keep tabs on who and where you are.

Author note

Caroline B.: I’d like to mention how grateful I am that TodaysWeb.net has decided to share my article on their website. Their page is a great resource for staying up to date on the latest social media, marketing, and business news. I would especially recommend that you check out this article listing 70 of the most useful websites.

Top 10 languages for mobile games and apps localization

Top 10 Languages for Mobile App/Game Localization with Maximum Revenue

Promoting a mobile app or game only in one language is not enough. Actually, an app publisher should create multiple localizations in order to cover the top grossing and emerging geographical markets. We recommend considering no fewer than 10 languages for mobile app localization.

App Store Superpowers are the countries holding leadership in terms of downloads and revenue. The latest stats show that the United States is not the front-runner anymore. In 2014, Japan and South Korea surpassed the United States by revenue on Google Play. At the same time, Japan is hot on the United States’ tail on the App Store, where it is #2 by revenue.

According to App Annie’s infographic presented at GMIC Silicon Valley event in December 2014, the following three countries form the App Store Superpowers: Japan, South Korea and the United States.

iOS + Google Play worldwide app revenue & download growth by region, Q3 2014
iOS + Google Play worldwide app revenue & download growth by region, Q3 2014. Infographic by App Annie.

When building the list of the top 10 languages for mobile app localization, we should keep in mind other English speaking countries like the United Kingdom, Canada and Australia, where mobile apps and games gain high revenue as well. Collectively, the English speaking world is still dominating on the mobile app market.

Another significant player on both iOS and Android is China, which became the top 2nd gaming market by revenue worldwide in 2014. Bear in mind that games drive up to 75% of total revenue on the App Store and nearly all revenue growth on Google Play. App Annie Index Market Q3 2014 report puts China to #3 by revenue on the Apple’s App Store. The only reason why this country has not reached similar revenue rank on Google Play is that it got numerous Android app stores, and only 13% of Android market share in China belongs to Google Play.

Android app stores in China
Android app stores in China

As a matter of a fact, simplified Chinese, which is common for Internet and mobile users in China, goes to the #4 in our list of top ten languages for mobile app localization, following English, Japanese and Korean.

Let’s not forget about the Old World. Traditionally, the lion’s share of revenue generated by mobile apps and games in Continental Europe belongs to its most developed countries: Germany, France and Italy. It is worth noting that the estimated revenue from mobile games in Western Europe, according to AppLift and Newzoo, reached $3.2 billion at the end of the year 2014. Which makes Western Europe the third region in the world by revenue from mobile games, after North America and Asia Pacific.

Global mobile games revenues by region
Global mobile games revenues by region. Source: AppLift & Newzoo

Following English, Japanese, Korean and Chinese, the next positions #5 to #9 in our top 10 languages for mobile app localization go to major Western European languages. Let’s take a look at the chart provided by Statista listing the leading gaming markets worldwide in 2014:

Leading gaming countries worldwide by revenue in 2014, Statistic
Leading gaming countries worldwide by revenue in 2014, Statistic

Germany is the leading European market by revenue from mobile apps and games. In App Annie Index: Market Q3 2014 Germany was reported the #4 country by revenue on Google Play. in our list of the top 10 languages for mobile app localization, German language wins #5, and #6 goes to French. Italian (#9) follows Portuguese and Spanish which take #7 and #8 respectively. The reason why Portuguese ranks better than Italian and Spanish is that Brazil’s market share of Google Play downloads increased more than any other country worldwide in Q3 2014. In total, estimated year over year revenue growth in Latin America’s mobile gaming segment exceeds 60%, which is bigger than elsewhere.

In the end, we recommend looking at another huge emerging market, the Southeast Asia. As stated by Newzoo in 2014 Global Games Market Report, the following six countries represent 97% of game revenue in Southeast Asia: Indonesia, Singapore, Malaysia, Thailand, Phillippines and Vietnam. So, Malay becomes our #10 language for mobile app localization, which is the most widely spoken in this region.

Let’s summarize, here’s our top 10 mobile app localization languages for 2015:

1. English
2. Japanese
3. Korean
4. Chinese
5. German
6. French
7. Brazilian Portuguese
8. Spanish
9. Italian
10. Malay

UPD: check out the top 10 countries by total, online and Facebook population with infographics: Global Population: Online and Social. Infographics.

Hot Mobile Games Industry Trends for 2015

Hot Mobile Games Industry Trends For 2015

2014 has been a jammy year for the mobile games industry. In the last 12 months, games have been shining at the top of grossing charts on mobile app marketplaces like the Apple’s App Store and Google Play. Despite the visible success, it’s not as easy as it seems to figure out the landscape of mobile gaming in the upcoming 2015, as this industry probably remains the most disruptive and dynamic in the modern hi-tech segment.

Below are the major trends that, as stated by different experts in mobile gaming, will affect the industry above all in 2015.

Games are the best money generating mobile apps

Games drive the most revenue on both App Store and Google Play, compared to other categories of apps.

According to App Annie Index: Market Q3 2014 report, the lion’s share of Google Play’s worldwide revenue has been generated by gaming apps. From July to September 2014, this trend continued to persist, that led to the increase of games’ share in overall revenue on Google Play. The highest earnings occurred in the United States and South Korea, where games accounted for nearly all revenue of the platform.

This becomes even more evident when you look at the “Best of 2014” list released by Apple earlier this month. 9 of top 10 grossing apps throughout 2014 were games, and only 1 was a non-gaming app. Macquarie Research reveals that in 2014, games will deliver an estimated 75% of income on the App Store. Huge, isn’t it?

Non-gaming apps on the Apple's App Store
Non-gaming apps on the Apple’s App Store

On average, each of the two best selling games earned more than 1 million dollars a day on the App Store during October 2014. Supercell’s Clash of Clans, which is a #1 top grossing game, had an average daily revenue of $1,387,620, and King’s Candy Crush Saga, which is a #2, made $1,097,578 a day.

Top grossing gaming apps on Apple's App Store in October 2014
Top grossing gaming apps on Apple’s App Store in October 2014

Gamers want it for free

Since mobile gaming became an integral part of modern pop culture, the so called ‘devaluation of games’ began. An average user no longer wants to spend any money at all to install the game. 90% of revenue generated by games on App Store this year came from free-to-play titles.

Global Games Market Report by Newzoo, Q3 2014
Estimated Mobile Games Market Growth for 2013-2017 by Newzoo

Research from Newzo published in Q3 of 2014 estimates the total revenue of mobile games industry at $25 billion, $4 billion of which will be gained by Apple and $3 by Google. It’s surprising, but all that revenue is driven by a very tiny segment of gamers. Only 2.2% of users ever pay in free-to-play games, and 46% of the total revenue comes from just 0.22% of the total amount of mobile users, Swrve reports.

Big players get hold of app stores

2014 was the year when massive game publishers monopolized cash flows from app marketplaces. Two companies (King and Supercell) own nearly half of top 10 grossing mobile apps in the US (hence, they get the major portion of revenue). No wonder, there’s a lack of new products in top charts: 8 of top 10 grossing games were published in 2013 or earlier. At the same time, 80% of 1.2 million apps available on the App Store got no downloads at all.

Under such conditions, small game developers approach big publishers for marketing expertise and promotion. This makes some game industry giants that used to focus solely on in-house games launch publishing programs for third-party game developers. For instance, Rovio Entertainment, a company behind Angry Birds title, announced its mobile game publishing ititiative for game developers under the new brand named Rovio Stars in May 2014.

Next steps for game developers

New approaches to marketing games

Given the fact that an average cost of install in mobile advertising is overpriced and probably will rize up to $10 for native mobile apps next year, indie game developers and publishers need to find alternatives to get their apps discovered. And maybe, the solution can be found in the technology that game developers used to pay no regard for. Yes, it’s HTML5.

PuzzleSocial, a game develpment studio based in NYC, unveiled a case study about leveraging mobile web to drive high-quality installs for their game called “Daily Celebrity Crossword”, which is available for iOS, Android and Kindle Fire. They built a lite version of the game on HTML5 and distributed it via mobile web. In 4 months, this resulted into 320,000 unique game plays and, which is more important, 10% of those players proceeded to download the native mobile app.

Roughly, this new marketing model can be presented as follows:

  • An HTML5 based lite virsion of a game provides limited game play with a few levels available for free;
  • Users discover the lite game version via one of the mobile web distribution networks and can start playing it right from a mobile web browser without needing to install an app;
  • If they like the game, they can follow the link to download the full game version from an app store, that is shown to them at game over;
  • A game developer is charged by a distribution network only when a user downloads a native app.

Another promising user acquisition channel is at the back of social video services like YouTube and Twitch. So called “Let’s Players”, people streaming their game play with comments online, have been on the stage since the establishement of YouTube. But in 2014, game developers fully realized the strong potential of Let’s Players which became a full-fledged, powerful media. It’s highly important for game developers to build relationships with popular Let’s Players, who can broadcast a game to millions of their own fans. PewDiePie, a Let’s Player of the year 2014, has 33 million subscribers on YouTube. He’s also popular on Twitch (440,000+ followers), a game-specific video broadcasting service with 60+ million monthly active users. There’s a lot more Let’s Players who are interested in new games to comment, check them out.

Alternative mobile app platforms

It’s been a while since the messaging service Kakao Talk, which is no.1 in South Korea, succeeded as a mobile gaming platform. At the end of 2013, it had 140 million registered users, $203 million revenue and 426 games available. However, Europe and North America always preferred traditional mobile app stores. 2015 may become the year of revolution for mobile games in this area, since Viber decided to follow Kakao’s path. Earlier this year, Viber announced the launch of Viber Games, a marketplace for mobile games. The company plans to make this feature available globally in January 2015. Yet, 5 countries have been selected for soft-launch in December 2014: Ukraine, Belarus, Israel, Malaysia and Singapore.

Viber Games: Android app screenshot
Viber Games: Android app screenshot

Initially, Viber Games launched with two titles from Storm8 (Viber Candy Mania and Viber Pop) and one title from Playtika (Wild Luck Casino). All of them are free-to-play, and Viber will make money from in-app purchases inside those games. Besides, users can synchronize games with their Viber account in order to send gifts and share achievements with friends. Viber Games is not a stand-alone platform, it’s rather a separate section within Viber messenger which redirects to a native store to install a game on a user’s device.

As we can see, Viber is taking the leaf from Asian messengers like KakaoTalk and Line, and that will probably cause a shift in the way users discover games.

Promote your games in Asia and be aware of emerging markets

China, Japan, South Korea, as well as Southeast Asia, grab more and more interest from game developers. Indeed, Asian market looks stronger than ever: Japan and China took positions #2 and #3 respectively (right after the United States, which still holds #1) by downloads and revenue on the App Store in Q3 of 2014. On Google Play, Japan surpassed the United States by revenue taking the #1 from the US, South Korea reached #3 and Taiwan closed the top 5. As for emerging markets to consider, there are Brazil and India, which gained #2 and #3 by downloads on Google Play respectively.

Find out more about the Top 5 Content Marketing Trends for 2016.

Mobile apps vs mobile web

Mobile APP or Mobile WEB? How to Make the Right Choice for Business?

As the total amount of mobile devices worldwide is estimated to be more than 7.7 billion by the end of 2014, it is crucial for basically any business to build a proper mobile marketing strategy. Probably, at this stage, a big challenge to many entrepreneurs can be deciding between a mobile responsive website and a native mobile app.

Mobile apps dominate mobile websites in terms of time spent online.

There’s at least one important fact that speaks in favour of mobile apps. Users spend much more time with apps than with mobile browsers. Another fact is that over 90% of the top 100 brands have their own mobile app. With the variety of apps that are available for mobile devices nowadays, a web browser is just one out of the numerous tools for searching and exchanging content. According to stats revealed by Flurry, there’s a huge shift towards mobile apps at the expense of mobile websites this year. It states that an average US user spends 2 hours and 19 minutes with apps out of 2 hours and 42 minutes spent with a mobile device in total per day. The share of apps increased from 80% of the total time in 2013 to 86% in 2014.

Mobile apps vs mobile web usage in 2014 compared to 2013
Time spent online: mobile apps vs mobile web

But if we take a closer look at the following infographic, it becomes clear that only specific apps categories are used with high frequency. And the biggest share in that respect belongs to games, followed by social networking and messaging apps.

Mobile apps categories 2014
Mobile apps vs mobile web usage breakdown 2014

So, if your app doesn’t belong to one of the most popular categories, it’s probably not likely to reach very high download ranks very fast. Just think of it, there’s about 400, 000 apps with zero downloads out of nearly 1 million apps on the Apple’s App Store in 2014!

Google to encourage mobile friendly websites

Google isn’t going to be out of the swim in the ‘mobile apps vs mobile web battle’. It has introduced a new search label which indicates a website’s ‘mobile friendliness’ and gives it a boost in search results.

Google's mobile friendly search label for websites
Google’s mobile friendly search label for websites

To own the label from Google, a website must meet a number of criteria:

  • not use Flash, which is unrecognizable on mobile devices;
  • links must be optimized for tapping;
  • text must be readable without zooming and scrolling;
  • a web page must load fast enough.

In brief, a website must look great both on mobile and desktop devices. Anyone is able to check a website’s eligibility for the Google’s lable by running a mobile friendly test.

Mobile friendly website
An example of a mobile friendly website

In conclusion, the best strategy for business to compete in this rapidely changing envirornment is to have a mobile friendly website by default. But a native mobile app can be a good solution to enhance the added value for customers, though its development, maintenance and promotion requires additional costs and resources.

Best Android Apps of 2014 on Google Play

Google Play Roundup: Best Android Apps of the Year 2014

As the year 2014 is coming to an end, it’s time for a roundup. Google was among the first mobile industry leaders to come up with its year-end list and unveiled the collection of the “Best Apps of 2014 ” on Google Play.

According to Google, below are the most remarkable Android apps which deliver incredible user experience and great functionality. What is also important is to note that not all of the apps in the list already have millions of installs. Likewise, some of them are free while others are paid. Therefore, it’s difficult to figure out which exactly criterea Google considered to make up the list of the best Android apps 2014.

Keep this collection in your pocket, as it can help you to browse out of nearly 1.5 million apps available on Google Play and choose the one you need most!

Here are some of the best Android apps on Google Play in 2014:

Productivity


  • Wunderlist: To-Do List & Tasks

    by 6 Wunderkinder GmbH

    An app that allows you to keep and organize to-do lists in your Android smartphone.


  • SwiftKey Keyboard + Emoji

    by SwiftKey

    Alternative smart Android keyboard for fast typing.


  • IFTTT

    by IFTTT

    Aggregate Internet content in one app and organize flows between your channels.

    IFTTT - screenshot


  • Sunrise Calendar

    by Sunrise Atelier, Inc

    Beautifully designed mobile calendar.


  • ( OFFTIME ) – Life Unplugged.

    by OFFTIME

    Are you starting thinking that you have spent too much time online? OFFTIME will take care of incoming calls and messages while you can keep doing something important.

Education


  • TED

    by TED Conferences LLC

    TED provides great talks from outstanding people. Over 1700 videos and audios available in 22 languages.


  • Lumosity

    by Lumos Labs, Inc.

    Self-training app which helps you to improve your memory and attention by simply playing built-in puzzle games.


  • Child Mode & Time Education

    by Mindquake

    With this app kids are safe when using your Android smartphone, for you can choose apps they are allowed to use and set appropriate timeframe for that. Due to gamification, kids learn how to manage their own time and cope with negative emotions in a nonintrusive manner.


  • Craftsy Classes

    by Craftsy

    Online classes in your mobile phone. From cooking to photography and art.

Photography


  • Over

    by Over

    This app enables you to add text and artwork to photos taken from your Android device.

    Over - screenshot thumbnail


  • Camera ZOOM FX – FREE

    by androidslide

    Android camera app with tons of stunning effects.

Music & Audio


  • edjing – DJ Music Mixer Studio

    by DJiT – Best free music and audio apps for Android

    Compose and edit your own mixes from 50 million tracks available!


  • Equalizer + mp3 Player Volume

    by DJiT – Best free music and audio apps for Android

    This app is to improve your music listening experience. It offers customizable effects and presets for a flawless sound.


  • musiXmatch Music Player Lyrics

    by musiXmatch

    Mobile player which lets you enjoy your favourite songs with lyrics.


  • Ultimate Guitar Tabs & Chords

    by Ultimate Guitar USA LLC

    Do you like to play guitar and travel? Then take tabs and chords to your favourite songs with you, so you never run out of songs to play on your guitar!

Social


  • SlideShare Presentations

    by LinkedIn

    Enjoy slides on the go! SlideShare is a so called “YouTube for presentations”. Isn’t it wonderful to have an official SlideShare Android app?


  • Viadeo

    by Viadeo (APVO)

    Professional social network (LinkedIn analog) with 60+ million members worldwide. However, it’s more popular in Europe than elsewhere. If you’re in France, you might now about Viadeo.


  • OkCupid Dating

    by okcupid.com

    It’s all about online dating. Go and find your match!

    OkCupid thumbnail

Want more awesome apps for your Android device? Proceed to Google Play’s “Best Apps of 2014”:

Best apps of 2014 Google Play
Best apps of 2014 by Google Play
iTunes Store Shutdown 2014

Prepare Your iOS Apps for iTunes Connect Shutdown 2014

Apple announced the shutdown of iTunes Connect for this year’s Christmas holidays. The service will be unavailable to iOS app developers from December 22 through December 29, 2014. During the shutdown, developers will be unable to release new apps and updates on the App Store. Pricing changes will not take effect until after the shutdown as well. iTunes Connect will be back on December 30.

It is recommended to schedule your updates prior to December 18. Keep in mind that a review by Apple can take 4-7 days, but it can be more time-consuming during peak periods.

Downloads reach their highest level on Christmas holidays, as many people are presented with new iPhone and iPad devices. One of the reasons for the Christmas shutdown might be that Apple is trying to maintant those peak downloads and in-app purchases. On the other hand, this can help to prevent developers from unfair competition. After all, Apple guys may want to spend Christmas holidays with their families, too!

WhatsApp: 5 years on the mobile market. Infographics.

WhatsApp Infographics: Instant Messenger’s 5 Years on the Mobile Market

In November 2014 WhatsApp celebrated it 5th birthday. It’s a cross platform mobile instant messaging app that allows to transfer text, images, videos, audio, share locations with contacts, etc. WhatsApp runs on iOS, Android, Windows Phone, BlackBerry smartphones, as well as Nokia S40 and Symbian mobile devices.

Co-founded by Jan Koum (who was born in Ukraine and moved to the United States as a teenager) and Brian Acton in 2009, WhatsApp messenger gained 600 million monthly active users and 50 million messages processed daily, as of August 2014. WhatsApp’s founders rejected $10 billion acquisition offer from Google, and not long after the company was purchased by Facebook for $19 billion in cash and stock.

A digital marketing agency DPFOC collected infographics that illustrate “The WhatsApp Story” – how a startup turned into a revolutionary instant messaging app with hundreds of millions of active users worldwide.

The WhatsApp Story

Game Review: Agent Run for iOS & Android

Agent Run, a new gesture-based endless runner, has launched on iOS and Android devices, and challenges players to run through environments, dodging obstacles with the use of quick swipes on the screen. Created by two indie developers from Vienna, Matthias Maschek from AgentDroid and Wolfgang Knecht of pixelclash, the game stars Robert Robertson, an agent on a mission to destroy Professor E. Vil and his Doomsday Machine.

In Agent Run, Robertson runs across the screen automatically while being chased by Professor E. Vil’s thugs. Attack dogs, closed doors, swinging logs and other obstacles are scattered on the path ahead of Robert, and players must swipe on the screen to eliminate these threats before he can run into them. For dogs, players swipe on strings hanging bones in mid-air, for instance. The dogs catch the bones, and become distracted. Most other obstacles can also be eliminated with a quick swipe.

Some items in the world aren’t obstacles, but instead provide opportunities to collect coins. A jump pad, for instance, rockets Robert into the sky, collecting an arch of coins in the process. These coins are used when players fail (to earn a second chance at the game), or to purchase a head-start at the beginning of a run. Users can also spend coins on powers in the game’s store. There are eight gadgets in all, including a jetpack and a bazooka, and players start out with the hedge trimmer for free. The hedge trimmer, for instance, is used to mow down tall thorns that may otherwise trip Robert up and end the game.

Users can complete missions as they play, with the mission system resembling that of Halfbrick’s Jetpack Joyride. Users earn stars for each mission they complete, and will earn overall “levels” as they earn stars. Gamers can also unlock nine achievements by playing the game.

Agent Run offers four different randomly generated environments, including a jungle, basement and military bunker. The first level of the game is available to download and play for free, while the three remaining levels can be unlocked for $2.99.

“We decided to create Agent, Run! as an homage to the best Bond films of all time – and we knew that an endless runner would be a perfect match,” said Matthias Maschek, programmer and designer of AgentDroid, in a statement.

Agent Run is available to download for free on the iTunes App Store and Google Play.

Via:: Inside Mobile Apps