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GetJar Gold Virtual Currency reaches 20 million users

GetJar Gold Virtual Currency reaches 20 million users, shows 100% increase month over month

App monetization program doubles developer revenue

SAN FRANCISCO, CA – September 25, 2012 – GetJar, the world’s largest independent app store, announced today that its GetJar Gold Virtual Currency program has reached 20 million users since going live just seven months ago. The virtual payment system for Android bypasses the need for smart phone users to pay for apps with real money, and it increases revenue for developers two-to-three times compared to Google Check-out only in-app billing.

The success of the GetJar Gold Virtual Currency proves that loyalty, versus cash based programs offer solutions to both consumers downloading apps and developers who create them.

  • Consumer benefits: With GetJar Gold Virtual Currency, consumers anywhere in the world receive virtual currency “Gold Coins” in a digital wallet, every time they download an app from the GetJar App Store. Through an instant one-click transaction, these gold coins can be spent in all participating apps, bypassing the need for complicated micro-payment systems, registration systems or credit cards
  • Developer benefits:  Android developers use GetJar Gold Virtual Currency to boost discovery and increase their revenues for their apps globally.  By integrating the GetJar Gold Software Developer’s Kit (SDK) as an in-app purchase mechanism, they can sell upgrades, items or virtual goods within their apps. Most importantly, developers can accept GetJar Gold Virtual Currency on top of existing payment structures, from a much broader demographic than when they sell their apps on other app stores

The ad-supported program was introduced at the end of February and has proved successful with developers everywhere including Fruit Ninja by Halfbrick Studios, Solo by Coding Caveman and GoSMS by Go Development.
“Enabling our users to pay for premium services with GetJar Gold Virtual Currency Program has added over a million dollars a year in revenues to our business,” said Robin Chao, VP Marketing at Go Dev Team. “We have been very impressed with the results thus far and are working closely with the GetJar team on optimizing our monetization to further double or even triple the revenue in the next few months.”

“The GetJar Gold Virtual Currency Program’s user base has literally doubled every single month since its inception, so we’re on track to reach 40 million users by October, comments GetJar Chairman, Ilja Laurs.

“We attribute the incredible success we’ve seen to the very real market need for a new solution for purchasing apps. Until GetJar Gold Virtual Currency, payment options for apps have been complicated, usually rely on credit cards, and many paid apps are only available in limited countries. GetJar Gold Virtual Currency makes apps accessible to everyone, truly rewarding both consumers for downloading high quality apps, and the developers who make them.”

More than 20,000,000 users worldwide are now using GetJar Gold as a way to get premium content and in-app purchases for free.  For more information about the GetJar Gold Virtual Currency program visit support.getjar.com

About GetJar

GetJar is the world’s largest independent app store with over 2.5 billion downloads to date. GetJar Gold is a loyalty program that rewards users with virtual currency for downloading apps from GetJar. The company distributes more than 600,000 mobile applications from over 450,000 registered developers. TIME named GetJar one of “10 Start-Ups That Will Change Your Life.” GetJar is headquartered in Silicon Valley with offices in Seattle, the UK, and Lithuania. For more information, visit www.getjar.com and follow the company @GetJar on Twitter.

Filed under Android, Developer News, GetJar, Rewards SDK

Join Developer Economics 2012

Developer Economics 2012, the seminal report on developers & the app economy, wants to hear from you and is willing to give you some great prizes to entice you to fill out it’s survey.  Better than that, you’ll be able to have your say on some of the key issues of this research: top platforms & app stores, revenues and monetization, main development challenges, app marketing and more.

Go here to fill it out: http://www.visionmobile.com/GetJar

Filed under Developer News

Getting In On The Bottom Floor: M-Health

As the reality of the app economy sets in, entrepreneurial developers are looking at doing to other industries what they have already done for music, photos, and social networking. The big fish is shaping up to be the healthcare industry.  What’s being called m-health (mobile health) is shaping up to be big, big business. The balloon is being lifted by reports that say the market will be worth $23 billion by 2017. Other studies show that near 25% of doctors are already using iPads at work.

Float Mobile Learning, using opinions directly from US Doctors, produced the below infographic. has observed the opinions of US doctors to discover what they really think about mobile and health joining forces. Neurologist Andy Barbash says: “Healthcare is a fundamentally mobile process”, while 78 per cent of consumers are interested in the platform.

If you’re thinking about your next app or start up, we strongly suggest you consider m-health.

http://floatlearning.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/03/mhealth-infographic-float.jpg

Filed under Developer News

Developer’s Toolbox

Developing an app from scratch isn’t easy. You’ve got a great idea, but now you have to actually build it. There are a lot of companies out there that have developed tools to fill the holes in your code to save you time and money. Why spend weeks coding when someone has done the legwork for you? Developer’s Toolbox shows you APIs and SDKs that make your life easier.

1. Location-Based Service Platform by Geoloqi
This just launched today and sounds intriguing. Geoloqi’s new service is a platform for next-generation location based services.  Its a language agnostic SDK and proprietary API. The company is offering a complete stack of geolocation tools like geo-fencing, messaging, security and analytics. They claim that it will help developers unlock the full potential of real-time location-based services and put geolocation into any device or application. It also enables persistent background location tracking, smooth transitions between location sources such and a feature your users will truly love: intelligent battery management. All in all, it sounds like a very exciting offering. Check it out if you plan on adding location related features.

Price: Pricing structure not available yet.
More info: Geoloqi

4. Policy Maker by PrivacyChoice.
Privacy is a hot button issue these days. Recent flaps by Google, Path, and other tech companies have everyone wondering what your app is doing with their information. And now that California Attorney General Kamala Harris has convinced Apple, Microsoft, RIM, Google and others to have clear, understandable privacy policies for their software and the software they distribute, you need to be on top of your privacy policy. But, if you don’t know the first thing about writing one, PrivacyChoice has you covered. Give them some simple information about your app and what it does, and they’ll craft one for you. Your users will thank you.

Cost: Free!
More info: PrivacyChoice

3. 2D Barcode Scanner SDK by DTK Software
DTK offers an accurate and powerful developer library which recognizes 1-D and 2-D barcodes. Using this SDK you can integrate barcode recognition into your app. Although tech pundits are predicting the death of QR codes, there are still some handy uses for them and developers are still innovating with them to find new possibilities, from payment methods to information sharing.

Price: Variable, depending on your team’s size
More info: DTK


Filed under Developer News, Toolbox

Budget Android Phones to Flood Emerging Markets

New research by NPD In-Stat indicates that unit shipments for low-cost Android smartphones will approach 340 million worldwide in 2015. These phones will primarily be 2.2 or 2.3 devices on the EDGE network with 600MHz or lower processors.  These devices cost less than $150 and are made by a number of companies including Huawei, MicroMax, Motorola, Samsung, Spice, and ZTE.

While the report focuses on smartphones, and not other mobile devices, it’s interesting for those of us in the Android business to think about how those additional users will shape the ecosystem. These are users who may not have credit cards, or carrier billing. They may not have as much data per month as the developed world. How might it be possible to monetize users who aren’t able to make in-app purchases?

Another interesting point in the report says Allen Nogee, research director at NPD In-Stat, is that despite the full court press by Android, the competition could be heating up.  “Samsung has bada, and Nokia is developing Meltemi. In addition, Microsoft has stated that it wants to sell Windows Phone in these developing regions as well and could aggressively lower prices to gain market share.”

Filed under Developer News

RIM: 6,000 New Developers Developing Apps For Blackberry In Two Weeks

On top of the news last week that Blackberry is still doing well in download numbers, there’s more good news today for Canadian giant, Research in Motion. As we mentioned, Blackberry is stuck in a difficult Catch 22. They need apps to court users, and they need users to court app developers. Their most recent strategy appears to be paying off.

First, the company announced that with a few tweaks, Android apps would run on Blackberrys. Blackberry phones couldn’t access the Android market, or install apks, but if a developer spent a little time with tools that RIM provided, they could upload an app to the Blackberry app world.

Then the company began offering a new Blackberry Playbook to any one who took an Android application, converted it, and then submitted it to the Blackberry App world. And now, according to the RIM developer blog, 6,000 of you have done just that.

If you did take them up on this deal, what was your thinking? Was it for the Playbook?

Filed under Developer News

Down But Certaintly Not Out

Canadian company Research In Motion announced six million daily reasons to wait before you say the cellphone wars are over. The company has been the source of scorching commentary for it’s security, sales figures, CEOs, and more over the last two years. But while most tech pundits have all declared them dead, they continue to be a big force for developers. They announced this week that their store, the Blackberry App World, receives over 6 million downloads a day. GetJar supports Blackberry apps as well and we can confirm too that Blackberry is certainly not dead. But for a company that used to be on top, they have a long way to go before they can convince people they are on a path towards the future. It’s clear that what cellphone users want are apps. But what app developers want is revenue. But to earn revenue you need users. It’s a intricate Catch 22 that RIM desperately needs to solve.

What do you think? Do you still developer for Blackberry, and if so why?

Filed under Developer News

Mobile Marketing Association Announced Basic Privacy Guidelines

The Mobile Marketing Association has released it’s (non-binding) guidelines for basic privacy when it comes to mobile apps. The guidelines tackle such issues as:

  • Annotated guidance on core privacy principles and consumer-friendly language for developers to consider using
  • Ways to inform users on how data is obtained and used
  • Guidance on security and confidentiality of information

The Mobile Marketing Association is a advocacy group for those that work in mobile. To write these guidelines they took public comments and talked to industry members. While their decisions are non-binding in anyway, they do strike up a good conversation, especially considering the lightning rod that online privacy has become. What basic rights do you owe your users as a developer? These basic rights change from platform to platform and company to company, so the idea of centralized privacy guidelines is certainly an attractive idea. Read the guidelines yourself here.

Filed under Developer News

See Just About Any Phone’s Size And Resolution

A new site called Phone Size allows you to compare just about phone by looking at it’s actual size.

As you can see in the above photo, you can compare anything from a Galaxy Nexus to an HTC Rezound to a BlackBerry Bold 9000 to even a Nokia N900. Using your computer screen’s resolution, they alter the picture to show you exactly how big it is in real life. More useful than that, the site also gives you information about screen size and density. Now you can see if your app will work on any phone just by looking it up.

Check out Phone Size for yourself here.

Filed under Developer News

Increase In-app Revenue With User Loyalty

In the last post, we wrote about the huge future the freemium model for mobile apps (65% of all mobile revenue by 2015). But setting up a successful freemium model is easier said than done. GigaOm had some statistics in an article that came out yesterday. Essentially, using data from Localytics, GigaOm shows that the longer a customer uses your app, the more likely they are to purchase in-app content. This should be a surprise to anyone that’s played a freemium game. Once you’re hooked, it’s difficult not to spend a buck or two to keep playing.

Essentially, you need to focus on loyalty over quick sales. After all, according to Localytics,  26 percent of app users abandon an app after one try. You’re goign to lose that 26% no matter what, so focus on giving the remaining 74% a great experience. Ideally, such a great experience that they’re willing to buy some in-app content. It takes an average user 12 days after the first use of an app before they’re willing to whip out their wallet. On top of that, only 22% of users make a purchase on their first try of an app, and 33% buy something between two and nine uses. But here’s the kicker: 44 percent make their first purchase after 10 or more uses.

But this begs the question, how do you hook someone without being manipulative or too aggressive? There are a number of ways, but for starters, look at your barriers. For arguments sake, you have a fishing game. In this fishing game, there is a certain high value fish that swims by on a set interval. If a user wants the fish to swim by sooner, they can pay for that with in-game currency. If your set interval is too small, say a few minutes, the user will never pay to speed up the process. However, set you interval too high, say a few days, and the user may feel manipulated.  Asking a user who is unwilling or unable to purchase an item to come back in a few days is unreliable at best. At this point you’re going to start losing potential paying customers.

Another issue could be your in-app currency exchange rate. In your hypothetical fishing game, the in-game currency is called Fish Bucks. A user can earn Fish Bucks, or they can purchase bundles within the app. If you price fish bucks at a one to one exchange real world dollars, a user can put a real dollar amount on the purchases. If a feature costs  2 Fish Bucks, is costs 2 real life dollars, which can be  harder for a user to justify. However, if you change the conversion rate so that 1 real life dollar is equal to, say, 1000 Fish Bucks, it comes harder to compare to real world money and thus easier to spend. There are many real life examples of this: Arcade tickets, Disney Dollars, gift certificates, etc.

Being successful in this space is all about walking a fine line between providing an engaging experience and getting paid for your hard work. What works for your? Let us know in the comments!

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Filed under Developer News, How To