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App-y Days

Written by Guy Fernandez, a graphic designer here at Planet HQ:

Recently, we've been talking a lot about apps and how they've changed over the years. 

Hi, I’m Guy, and I can’t live without apps. There I said it. It use to be just my phone I couldn't go without, but now that dependence extends to all the many apps that are on both my phone and my tablet too. Aside from the trivial nature of such a first world problem, I would like to understand how I/we, got to this place.

Going back in time

Let’s go back to my very first mobile phone. The Nokia 3210 - a reliable brick of a phone that I have nothing but fond memories of. By today's standards it was an incredibly basic piece of technology, which was designed primarily for making phone calls (who would have thought!?). But even back then was the birth of some of the first true mobile ‘apps’. For me that was SMS text messaging and Snake. I can't tell you how many hours I spent not revising playing Snake. It was the start of a change from our mobile phones being used for communication, to being something so much more.

A new kid on the block

Upon the release of the iPhone in 2007, Apple unveiled a revolutionary piece of tech that not only made touch screens the norm, but they were also the first to coin what we now commonly know as ‘Apps’.

The first iPhone came with just 15 pre-installed apps. This changed with the launch of the App Store in mid 2008, at which point developers took full advantage of the new gadget everyone wanted.

By just 2009 app downloads had exceeded over 1 billion.* Fast forward to 2017 and there have been over 130 billion app downloads on the Apple App Store alone.**  And that’s not even counting the downloads for the almost 3 million apps available on the Google Play Store.***

The growth of apps is nothing short of exponential but why am I, like clearly so many other people addicted to them?

The simplest answer is convenience. As human beings, we’re actually pretty lazy and we want everything to be easier, faster and prettier. Maybe not necessarily in that order of preference, but you get the picture.

Apps have afforded us instant access to the things we want, whenever and wherever we want them. I can now order that present I forgot to buy straight from my phone on my commute home from work. I can jump straight to what I want without sifting through a massive catalogue. I can see the news I want without buying a paper or watching the telly. I can play an award winning game whilst I wait for the train, watch the latest TV series or listen to music from across the world. And I haven't even mentioned staying in touch with friends and family and broadcasting trivial nonsense across twitter. Apps make day to day life pretty sweet.

What about business apps?

Many companies across the world are quickly realising that having their own app is a necessity. Because apps are now a necessity to all of us, in our daily lives.

Apps afford many businesses a brand new avenue to reach their customers and talk to their clients. Whereas emails from companies tend to be a bit of a nuisance; push notifications are instead - actually, useful, bite sized bits of information we want. It’s a great way for a brand to stay connected. Apps deliver the convenience and the experience we all now crave.

Why not check out our video to see how apps can benefit your business.

Soon, you'll never run out of milk again

Apps are only likely to get even more essential - as all technology becomes ever more connected. You can already control your homes heating and lighting via an app, it won't be long before your fridge can order itself some more milk and you can check its arrived from the push notification on your smartphone or tablet. Needless to say the possibilities are exciting and mind-boggling. And I can’t wait!

If you’re part of a business, the next time someone asks “have you got an app for that?” It would probably be best, if you can say, “YES!”