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Brits Struggle with Shopping Apps

Brits are increasingly struggling to control their out of hours shopping expenditure which is leaving them out of pocket, says a new survey.

The findings reveal that the apps encourage users to spend more than they intend to so they lose track of outgoings.

The convenience of apps and the ability to make purchases with the click of a button mean growing numbers of British smartphone users are opting to use them.

The findings from the Financial Services Compensation Scheme (FSCS) also found that 15% of users are using shopping apps at work, 89% are using them in the morning and 38% use apps for shopping when in bed.

Also, 61% of users say the apps make it easier to spend and 31% say shopping apps have had a negative impact on their finances.

On average, men are spending £115 a month on shopping apps while women spend £131.

New app helps offenders and families

A new app has been launched to help offenders and their families in the UK’s prison system.

The man behind it, John Burton, says the app is ‘revolutionary’ and with its £1 cost to download, it’s received more than 35,000 online recommendations.

The app aims to help families keep track of their loved one through the prison system including inspecting a log of medications, what education is being received and arranging visits easily.

Drinkers enjoy pub app

When JD Wetherspoon unveiled its new table service app earlier this year they didn’t realise how popular it was going to be.

Indeed, while its main aim is for customers in a Wetherspoon pub to pay for drink and food without going to the bar it’s also popular for another reason.

That’s because drinkers have also begun using it to ask their friends to buy them a drink using the app – regardless of where they may be in the world.

Wetherspoon’s say they are happy with the inadvertent use for its app and a spokesman said: “We are delighted the app is being used by those to buy drink and food for friends thousands of miles away.”

Users urged to be wary of scam apps

While there are thousands of high-quality apps in Apple’s App Store, there are growing numbers of scam apps too.

Indeed, many of these scams will be free to download but will hit the user with expensive weekly subscription fees.

One app was charging around £80 every seven days for users.

Researchers say the app in question was ranked number 10 for being among the top productivity apps.

The app, ‘Mobile Protection: clean and security VPN’ was earning around £63,000 every month, according to researchers Sensor Tower, mainly down to search ads.

Apparently, Apple is now improving its search ads service to prevent future scams appearing.

Progressive Web Apps will take off

Businesses are being urged to turn to Progressive Web Apps (PWAs) to help recapture their audiences as app fatigue sets in for growing numbers of consumers.

The call is being made by Alchemy Digital’s Will Morris who says that these web apps will usher in a new era for brand engagement.

Among those who have begun using PWAs are Twitter and the BBC as well as stores such as Lancome with the appeal being for those firms who have an app that is not perform performing well enough.

He says that the big attraction for investing in PWAs is that they only need to be built once and can be deployed instantly across a range of platforms.

In other Miratrix mobile phone app news …

Sony has unveiled its PlayLink app which will enable users to play PlayStation games on their mobile phone. Essentially, they no longer have to watch friends playing and can now join in using their iOS or Android device.

Will PWA KILL! ASO?? | MTX60

Watch this video on YouTube.

Hello. Welcome to this week’s video. This week, will progressive web apps kill App Store optimization?

For yous who don’t know what progressive web apps are, you need to check out Google. Just Google progressive web apps. They’re fast, reliable and they’re engaging. Vague and wonderful.

Obviously, it’s in my interest to say, “No, definitely not,” but I do generally think it won’t. For one, progressive web apps require a tonne of adoption from brand, anywhere through a website, really. There’s also companies out there who are heavily invested in their apps already so they’re going to turn that boat around.

As much as I quite like progressive web apps, I don’t think it’s going to have a massive effect yet, due to adoption rates, like Google app index, and I’m taking a softer stance. As much as I probably think it is the future, not going to come in the next 12 months really, is it?

That’s my tip this week. If you don’t know what progressive web apps are, you need to go start looking at that.

See you next week.

Enterprise Mobile Apps Are ‘Unfriendly’

While users say enterprise apps are living up to expectations in terms of functionality, they do not deliver a solid user experience.

That’s the result from a survey of 4,000 office workers in the US who said they used mobile apps at work but they were usually underwhelmed by their experiences.

The survey from an app development company says there is a missed opportunity for the development of apps that help with work-related issues.

The firm says it was surprised by the small number of workers who have access to mobile apps that have been provided by their employer to help them perform better at work.

Now, the firm says, employers should invest more in the user experience in a bid to boost usage since most of those who responded said enterprise apps do help improve their productivity.

Indeed, they say that employers that focus on the user experience will see their efforts being separated from the ‘bad’ enterprise apps.

Google announces closer integration between web and phone apps

Google has revealed that its Android apps and web apps are going to work more closely in future to deliver a better user experience.

The firm says it will integrate progressive web apps in its Android platform through app shortcuts for users to enjoy.

The move will allow app developers to create prompts for users to add a shortcut on their home screen to a web app; this ability first appeared on web apps in 2015 through a Chrome update for Android.

Shopping with smartphones grows in popularity

It’s been revealed that 78% of smartphone users have made at least one purchase on their device within the last six months.

The findings from MEF reveal that users bought items through their apps or a mobile website or have used their smartphone as a payment device while in a shop.

Of those who were questioned, 36% of users bought a physical object with the phone, that is a big rise from the 12% registered in 2014.

Another 26% of people said they used an app to buy food, another big rise from the 15% who said they used their mobile device for buying drink or food in 2014.

Researchers say that with the number of apps dedicated to ordering food growing, it’s likely this will help fuel more purchases by phone.

However, the overall spend on digital purchases in the last two years has fallen to 30% from 37%, while 33% of users said they had bought an app for their device, a rise from 2014’s 17% response.

Researchers questioned smartphone users in nine countries including the UK and the US and the findings also illustrate that there is a clear migration from desktop to mobile that is increasing which means businesses must now offer products and services via a mobile channel or lose business.

In other Miratrix mobile phone app news

Viewers using mobile apps to watch videos has been in decline for several years now and fell by 5% in 2016, according to JW Player. Most people are using social media platforms rather than using apps for viewing.

The BBC iPlayer app will begin to be shut down on a number of mobile device platforms following a major announcement from the corporation. The decision will mean iPlayer fans having to upgrade their mobile phone in order to continue using the service since those with Windows phones will not be able to access the site within a few weeks.