Apple’s new Operating System Updates & Features in iOS 11 at WWDC 2017

Apple has been the leader of the Smartphone and Tablet since the first iPhone launched and they continue to make iOS updates that will enhance the use of these devices while trying to keep a competitive advantage over Android.

On June 5th at the Worldwide Developers Conference  2017, Tim Cook, Apple’s CEO announced the updates for iOS 11, he said this version takes the best and most advanced operating system and take Apple’s operating system to the next level, bringing in new subtle designs and new looks to some of the standard apps are a part of the updates.

Apple is a technology giant for good reason, they have created and maintained an operating system that has taken the world by storm, iPhone users are quick to denigrate other phones as they see Apple products in general as superior to anything currently on the market. This may or may not be true depending on your personal preference, but one thing is for sure Apple has a huge following and a market share to support the hype.

Apple's new Operating System Features in iOS 11

Some of the features to look in iOS 11:

  • Drag & Drop for iPad
  • Augmented Reality for iPhone
  • Apple Pencil Updates
  • Customizable Control Center
  • Wider Range of Setting
  • 3D Touch Integration
  • Siri Enhancements for more Intelligent & Natural Voice Recognition
  • Persistent Dock for Multi-Tasking
  • New One Handed Key-boar
  • New Home-Kit to Support Speakers
  • AirPlay 2 to include Multi-Room Functionality
  • App Store has been Revamped
  • Files App to not Include iCloud but is more User-Friendly
  • Peer to Peer Money Transfer
  • New Screen Effects

These are just a few mentioned updates to the Apple operating system expected in September 2017. These updates will be a huge step for the Apple Smartphone and Tablet platforms claiming to make it the world’s most advanced operating system. There are no questions that Apple has created unique hardware that has changed the lives of many people.

Vensi has been developing iOS applications since the beginning for our enterprise customers and we look forward to the new iOS 11 release, hoping these enhancements will provide more features and add more value in our development of iOS applications.

If you are looking for an Enterprise Application Development Team Apple’s new OS features in iOS 11, contact us at vensi.com/contact_us  for more information.

 

 

Smartphone & Tablet Purchases Exceed 1.2 Billion Dollars on Black Friday through Mobile Commerce

In the past, we have written blogs about the growing number of mobile users that rarely use desktops to access the web. This past Friday on November 25th, 2016 an astonishing number was reached with mobile app purchases, US shoppers purchased $1.2 billion dollars through mobile transactions on Black Friday, the biggest shopping day of the year. That is not the only milestone that was reached on Thanksgiving, but Online shopping increased 21 percent to $3.34 billion in sales surpassing last year’s number in online sales, which was $3 billion in online sales. In the US by the end of Black Friday shoppers spent $5.27 billion.

Smartphone & Tablet Purchases Exceed 1.2 Billion Dollars on Black Friday through Mobile Commerce

Bank Rate reported only 23 percent of US consumers said they planned to shop in stores after Thanksgiving this year, compared with 28 percent last year. By the way, Adobe said the five top-selling electronic products on Black Friday were Apple’s iPads, Samsung’s 4K TVs, the Apple MacBook Air, LG’s TVs and Microsoft’s Xbox.

The shifts in Mobile trends are reshaping the retail industry right before our eyes, what other industries will mobile have this big and effect on. For consumers, mobile apps are a great way to improve their shopping experience. Shopping with mobile apps has many benefits rather than going about shopping the traditional way at the mall, which has it’s many challenges.

The benefits that appeal to most mobile shoppers through Mobile Commerce are:

  • Mobile shoppers are empowered with multiple stores and brand option in real-time.
  • Price comparisons are done easily through mobile apps of various brand and similar products.
  • Detailed product information is available at the push of a button.
  • Helpful user reviews to judge the quality of a product.
  • Checkout processes are much faster than standing in line.

The retail industry has been focused on improving customer satisfaction through mobile apps, and with good reason. The revenue driving through mobile apps this past Black Friday is amazing and will continue to grow as retailers focus on new opportunities for engagement for consumers that previous technology could not deliver.

Retailers are taking advantage of mobile apps and new technology to increase sales by building personal relationships with individual customers based on their shopping styles and the user’s mobile activities; which are monitored and tracked for so that the next purchase is tailored for them. The retailer industry is now running loyalty programs, new customer offers, and promoting new products all with mobile apps this is opening up another source of revenue for retailers.

The biggest trends in mobile apps are:

  • Mobile Inventory Maintenance – Personally when I’m in a store and need assistance, more and more lately sales associates are able to search in-store and locate the item, this feature is very helpful when shopping.
  • The point of Sales (POS) Mobility – I’ve been in stores and have been able to avoid long checkout lines, because of mobile POS systems.
  • Location Based Service – Although they encourage you to spend money, these location-based services provide great sales on items you’ve search.
  • Customer Loyalty apps – Discounts and reward programs are a great way to keep people coming back if they are actually being rewarded for their loyalty, the retail industry is doing that with something people always have on hand, their smartphones.
  • Omni-channel Experience – This is a great way to increase a brand’s visibility in different markets, by making the product available in multiple selling channels.
  • Product Info: Retailers are providing consumers, info on different products when they are available with them based on their past search in online by sending notifications to their mobile apps to maintain regular interaction with the consumer.

Vensi Inc, we are specialized in developing Mobile Apps for retail and commercial use. We developed service and utility mobile apps useful for many mobile users on different Mobile platforms & web. Mobile Apps are playing a key role in the enhancement of retail business to reach more people in future for better and easiest shopping experience with a click.

How Your Business Becomes More Successful With a Hybrid Mobile App

Mobile applications have become a must for almost every type of business to satisfy the exact needs of the sophisticated consumers. The drastic shift of internet users from desktop web to mobile web and mobile apps has brought-up changes in the areas of mobile application development.

hybrid mobile app

Mobile application development has emerged with three categories. These include native apps, hybrid apps, and web apps. Hybrid mobile apps are easier to build than the web apps and native apps.There are various mobile app frameworks in the market to develop new mobile applications, such as jQuery Mobile, Sencha Touch, Mobile Angular UI, Famo.us, Ionic, Onsen UI, Monaca, Trigger.IO and Kendo UI that can be used to develop a multi platform mobile applications easily.

It is very difficult to explain how a hybrid mobile app is developed or built, but we have listed below how a hybrid mobile app behaves, the features and the difference between native and web:

Supports almost all platforms without sacrificing features: Hybrid mobile apps were built in HTML5 web technologies and relies mostly on the use of the web to obtain data. Even though they perfectly supports multiple platforms, provide native app experience and enables to access to native platform features. Because it also contains some standards of native application and uses some of the capabilities that come from the native application. If users want an application that need to offer different platforms, then the hybrid mobile app is best for them.

Can be updated easier than ever: Updates are also made easier with hybrid apps. There is no longer the need to go to the app store and go through all the necessary steps to obtain the update. This enables businesses to push the update through, especially when it is something important, such as a security issue without forcing customers to go through the app store or having to wait for the approval from the stores.

Native capabilities also can be accessed: The reason many companies like hybrid mobile app development is because it has the ability to incorporate native capabilities into the app. This includes the use of the mobile camera, address book, message box and accelerometer. If an app is strictly web based, these features cannot access.

App store distribution: Only Native and Hybrid mobile apps can be distributed through app stores in any platform, but Web applications can not possibly be distributed through the stores. However, every business must have a web even though you have native or a hybrid mobile app because websites are the first place visitors to see your business products or services.

The simple reason in the growth of hybrid mobile app is that you develop them once and use it on every platform. Users can update them anytime without putting any more efforts. We at Vensi develop the hybrid mobile applications that cover a wide range platforms and customized line of business.

Building on Siri – The Future of Mobile Software Development

Siri, the voice in the latest iPhone, is a great start for Apple. It’s been successful, probably beyond their expectations. This has made them even more protective in their drive to prevent “jail breaks” – that’s what the development world calls efforts to open up, or gain access to, the operating system so they can run software and do other things not authorized by Apple. With so much at stake, and with those efforts to break through the defenses so relentless, Apple is vigorously defending its technology, using every tool and technique available.  For example, Apple filed a suit recently against Samsung for infringing on four patents, including Siri’s “voice search.” Sooner or later though, Apple will have to yield and open up a bit. When they do, developers will rush to add Siri’s voice recognition features to their applications.

That voice recognition capability is part of a field called natural language processing or NLP, and its potential goes far beyond the usefulness we’ve seen to date. The way it works is straightforward in principle, if not so much in programming. What happens when you say something like “Please call my Mom,” or “Call Mom,” or something similar? The software recognizes the words “call” and “Mom” and links them. Same thing if you say, “Dial Mom.” The software recognizes nouns and verbs and their synonyms and responds by taking a specific action.

There are many ways this idea can be expanded upon. Right now you have to press a button to activate the software, but you could have a sound activated system that monitors a room and takes a specific action whenever a certain word or sound is heard. It could be in a secure area; it could be in a nursery; or it could be in a conference room. The system could be flexible enough to adapt itself to a complicated spoken command such as “Listen for the phrase xyz, then calculate the latest values for factors 1, 2, and 3. Display the results on the conference room monitor.” The possibilities are endless. Think Star Trek and the voice controlled systems on the Enterprise. They’re always on, always listening, and always responding.

You can extend the notion even further. Cell phones were getting smaller until touch displays and video cameras came along. Then they had to get bigger in order to have a useable display. But, suppose you didn’t have to scroll through apps to find the one you wanted? You could just tell your phone what you wanted or where you wanted to go, and it would sort through the hundreds of apps, find the one corresponding to your needs, activate it, and report/display the results to you. It could also keep track of your location and surroundings and give you a running commentary and make informed suggestions based on your transaction history and interests. Face it, sooner or later your phone will shrink to pen size or smaller, maybe even become part of your body as an implanted micro device.

Or, you might combine NLP with very flexible LCD displays descended from the flexible displays that tech companies like Nokia and Samsung are working on. Then you’d have a screen you could unroll when you need a face to face with someone or want to view content the way you might view it on a TV, magazine, or newspaper. It’d be something like the old-fashioned book scroll you see in period pieces, or even more compact when it’s time to put it away. That’d fit right in with the pen analogy.

So what’s your take on the future of mobile development?  Why don’t you write to us at info@vensi.com and tell us?  If your idea(s) are interesting enough, maybe we can make that happen…

Android tablets will take a bite out of the Apple pie

It looks like Apple’s iPad is finally getting some serious competition,  In fact there is a real frenzy of tablet manufacturers and application developers in the marketplace as all the key players jockey for position and market share.  The most notable and important contenders being the Android tablets. Every major device manufacturer is getting in on the action – Motorola, LG, Samsung, Dell, ViewSonic, Panasonic, Toshiba…It seems like there are product announcements every day, often several in a day. Sony, for example, knows they may be late to the early adopter market, but they are securing a spot in the line-up with their recent public confirmation of plans to use Google’s tablet-specific Honeycomb OS. Companies like Hewlett-Packard are close behind, and high-quality, competitively priced tablet options will be mainstream by the end of the year. At Vensi, we keep our finger on the pulse of all industry trends, and the Droid tablet market is no exception. We thoroughly research and evaluate each of these tablets, and while some tablets are definitely better than others, we see some consistent and significant trends in hardware that indicate Android tablets could soon overtake the iPad in market share.

In a market created and currently dominated by the iPad, many consumers jumped on the Apple bandwagon.  No doubt iPad is a solid product and it has set the bar pretty high with software that still leads the industry in quality, security and user experience. However, many consumers, especially those people buying a tablet for business applications, should consider the array of Android tablets.  For instance, many Droid tablets offer (or promise to offer) higher camera and display resolutions, faster processor speeds, USB ports, and of course a more open operating system. All of these features would enhance the work experience and increase professional productivity, thereby fitting the needs of a business consumer better.  Even the US military seems to think Android is a better fit for their needs.

When comparing the plethora of tablet options now and in the near future, it will be important for consumers to think about the features they want and need. The iPad has set the standard, but competitors are looking to take bites from the Apple pie with features that differentiate them from the iPad and from one another. One important vulnerability iPad has not overcome: The iPad has been criticized for not supporting Flash, so if the “full web experience” is important to a user, a Droid tablet that supports Flash should be a consideration. Another possibly critical feature would be battery life. For some, the iPad standard of ten hours is enough, for those who travel frequently though, removable and spare batteries will be key selling points for the Android tablets.

Android and iPad tablets are a quantum leap in our computing experience, and here at Vensi we are creating innovative, world-class mobile applications that will fully utilize the available features of any platform, including tablets. While it is not clear which operating system will ultimately dominate the marketplace, we will certainly be providing top tier  applications for either platform.  May the best OS win!

Dual Cameras on the iPad 2 Will Do More Than Take Photographs

The iPad 2 is here, and seeing Apple CEO Steve Jobs do what only he can do with his appearance this week was certainly an uplifting moment. With regard to the iPad 2 itself, the particulars were definitely not surprising.

We at Vensi are happy with the new design; Apple did everything we hoped they would do and more: “Thinner. Lighter. Faster. FaceTime. 10-hour battery.”  We are especially excited about the addition of the dual front and rear-facing cameras.

The front-facing camera will provide the much anticipated and very appreciated capability for video chat via FaceTime. This brings the iPad 2 in line with its competition, and we believe it makes the iPad much more marketable as a business tool for enterprise users as well as for small businesses. It may also be the feature that pushes people to add a tablet to their technological repertoire and toolbox.

There has been some commentary about the quality of the rear-facing camera, and indeed it looks as though you will need to pull out your iPhone to take a snapshot of sufficient quality to make it worth saving. However, at Vensi we believe the most marketable advantage of the rear-facing camera has nothing to do with taking the perfect Facebook profile photo of your Basset Hound.  Instead, the addition of a rear-facing camera to a product as pervasive as the iPad makes QR Code scanning something that will rapidly become commonplace.

Barcodes have been on products for decades, and as the barcode gives way to the QR code, we are beginning to see them on used on educational, promotional, and marketing materials. They are on movie posters, in magazines, in restaurant menus, on business cards, at airports, on maps, and more. (If you can’t see the QR code, it is probably digitally watermarked into the images on the source document). The QR code contain links to web sites with more information, access to digital coupons, video and music clips – the possibilities are truly endless.

We are thrilled about the potential of QR coding to transform how businesses target their customers, how individuals learn about new products and events, how marketing data is collected, how thrifty consumers will bargain hunt, even how a dinner reservation is made or a book is checked out from the library. We at Vensi are inspired, and we are already developing some exciting (and pretty groovy) mobile applications that utilize QR code technology. Stay tuned and prepare for another technological leap into the future!

Exploring Tablets

Apple brought the tablet to the forefront of mobile computing with the iPad, and Android certainly seems to be catching the wave. Even Hewlett Packard has launched the HP Touchpad, so more exciting industry changes are on the horizon. The intuitive nature and pervasive adoption of tablet technology has changed the expectations of end users tremendously.

While we at Vensi do not believe tablets are going to replace desktop and laptop systems anytime soon, tablets with touchpad technology are definitely improving workplace productivity. Vensi has been developing tablet applications for a variety of clients representing the medical, construction, and education industries. Vensi has developed applications that allow our clients to better control costs and improve efficiency through tracking, utilization, and labor tracking. There are even applications available to enhance your desktop experience by making your Droid perform as a touchpad mouse and keyboard for your pc.

Managers grab their tablet to take notes at meetings or to share their presentation materials. Marketing and sales folks are taking their tablet on the road to presentations and sales calls and have all the information they need at their fingertips to present their products, answer questions, close the deals, sign up the clients and process the orders right there and then.

Envision going on a sales call – you already have a coveted appointment with the key decision maker. While on the plane, you are able to pull out your tablet and review your research. You note that the potential client actually purchases from two of your competitors instead of one, so you tweak your presentation to illustrate how your product outshines them both. You have been doing this a long time, and in the past you did a lot of presentations where you used a static PowerPoint presentation or company brochure and did all the talking and hoped you were hitting the right points. Now you know you have all you need for a much more effective give-and-take approach wherein you can start with an overview and get a conversation going with your prospective customer.

Because it is not easy to create a presentation that is both brief and covers all contingencies, it is great to have a tablet that has you covered. You can adapt and change the materials you show and discuss as the conversation flows.   You can prepare your materials ahead of time and customize the entire experience on the fly, answering all of your potential client’s questions by pulling up any documents or data you need on your tablet.

Every aspect of the meeting is tailored exactly to the needs of this particular client.  At the end of your meeting, when you see that you have had an impact and the company is on-board and knows your products will make their team more productive, operations more effective or efficient, or customers happier, you’ll be able to immediately pull up a contract and close the deal.  You are successful because you are equipped and ready for anything and everything when you put the power of a tablet to work for you.

With customized applications that make tablet technology an effective solution for increasing productivity, improving sales efforts, and growing your business, this technology is a worthy investment for most industries.

Vensi Project Feature – iPad as Medical Monitor

One of the fun things about being a developer at Vensi is the different types of projects we have the opportunity to work on. Working for Vensi allows mobile app developers to really stretch their talents and find unique ways to solve problems for clients. They often have the chance to show off their technical expertise by being able to help clients get their technology working for them exactly as they envision it.

Vensi is a highly specialized, mobile application developer whose clients rely on their expertise for improving efficiency in operations and providing visionary solutions that escalate the functionality of technology. Our developers are excited to use this blog as a way to share stories about their challenges and accomplishments.

The challenge for Vensi developers:

Vensi’s client needed a medical monitor and control app developed so that they could use an iPad to connect to a medical monitoring device using Bluetooth technology for data transfer. Standard protocols in the iPad’s Bluetooth drivers only allowed them to connect to a headset, not for data transfer. In order to meet the client’s needs, Vensi developers had to jailbreak the iPad and install open-source Bluetooth drivers so that the iPad could communicate more openly.

The solution Vensi developers were able to provide:

Vensi developers conducted weeks of research to determine the best approach, adapting open source technology and rewriting code in order to meet their needs. They used existing technology to jailbreak the iPad, in order to access the Bluetooth drivers. The developers had to work closely with the client; not only was the solution revolutionary, but it required constant feedback and testing by the client to test the functionality of the design. Vensi implemented the client’s feedback, to modify the design and the components, to improve the functionality of the iPad for this unique use.

Why Vensi developers love these kinds of projects:

While it involved a lot of late nights and weekends, the work was ultimately extremely satisfying and challenging. According to the developer leading the project, “There was really nothing ordinary about this project. Every step of the way, we had to create and adapt the tools we would need to make it work successfully for the client.”

Vensi’s take on jailbreaking:

Jailbreaking is the street term used to describe accessing ‘superuser’ permissions on an Apple device: giving the user access to all levels of the device’s functionality. While jailbreaking can be done for unethical purposes, Vensi developers use jailbreaking technology in order to access needed functionality, to be able to meet client needs.

The U.S. Copyright Office, which governs jailbreaking (officially termed “circumvention of technological measures that control access to copyrighted works”), has determined that this activity, when performed in order “to make non-infringing uses of those works,” does not violate copyright or break the law. Vensi supports this decision by the U.S. Copyright Office, which, in addition to mobile application technology, also covers computer programs and video games. This allows developers to advance and enhance the use of this technology in ways that can benefit everyone.

You can read the entire U.S. Copyright Office decision here.