App.io brings its HTML5 iOS app demos to interactive ads on mobile devices

I’ve covered App.io a few times in the past. The service, which allows app devs to deploy fully useable HTML5 demo versions of their native iOS apps on the web, first launched under the name “Kickfolio” back in 2012. The goal for the company was originally to let devs bring demos of their apps to promotional webpages and it eventually expanded the platform to include Facebook and other channels. Today, and around 2 million interactive app demos later, the company is announcing that it’s bringing those same app demos directly to mobile devices as interactive ads.

The ads go a step beyond the interactive app-like experience that Apple promised, but never quite delivered, with iAd, and allows users to play a demo of the app before deciding to purchase/download or even visit the App Store at all. The ad starts off as a banner or like any other ad but turns into a demo version of a native iOS app that is fully playable for a set period of time before prompting the user to visit the App Store. The company tells me in its initial tests it saw “3-5x higher conversion rates than normal mobile ads.” Read more

Kickfolio changes name to App.io, brings iOS app demos to Facebook news feed

App.io-Facebook-news-feed-iOS-apps

Kickfolio, a service that allows developers to offer demos of their iOS apps directly in the browser using an HTML5-based platform, today announced it is now allowing devs to embed their iOS apps directly in the Facebook news feed. The news comes as the company raises over $1 million in seed funding and changes its ‘Kickfolio’ branding to a more suitable “App.io”.

We’ve told you about the service before, which allows devs to embed playable HTML5 demos of their iOS apps directly on webpages and press releases for as little as $9 a month. Today the company is not only bringing that functionality directly to the Facebook news feed (as pictured above), it’s also announcing that support for Android is on the way.

App.io currently has about 3000 devs signed up, most of which are using the service as a marketing tool to drive users to the App Store. The company says the average user spends about 1 minute, 19 seconds playing the demo with 12 percent making their way to the App Store and those stats are expected to increase thanks to the new Facebook integration. App.io plans to integrate its service with other ad networks and platforms in the future and also launch tracking and analytics features.

You can play an App.io demo of an iOS app below and learn more on the company’s website here: Read more

Kickfolio lets you embed iOS apps on any webpage, adds iPad support, slashes pricing

A demo of Angry Bots iOS app embedded using Kickfolio

We told you about a service called Kickfolio in December that would allow developers to demo their iOS apps directly in the browser using a new HTML5-based platform. The service converts a zipped version of an iOS app into a private test page with a completely interactive HTML5 and CSS version of the app. Today, the service got a few updates including the ability to embed app demos on any webpage using an iframe. You’ll find embedded iOS apps above and below that Kickfolio sent over for us to try. Kickfolio also now supports iPad apps, and it is making the service much more affordable for all. This is a powerful tool for developers promoting their apps online, and it’s one I expect many to take advantage of when providing free demos to potential customers and press on their website.

Kickfolio originally had some feedback for users about plans starting at $50 a month. The good news: the company just slashed the cheapest plan to $9 a month (that includes 500 embed sessions). Every plan now also includes unlimited apps, and the company is reopening 15-day free trials so everyone will get a chance to try the new features.

Another embedded app demo from Kickfolio below: Read more

Kickfolio allows you to demo iOS apps in a browser

Screen Shot 2012-12-07 at 10.00.56 PM

Just launched this week, Kickfolio is a new HTML5-based platform that allows developers to test and share builds of their iOS apps in the browser. Developers simply upload a zipped version of their app (no SDKs or changing code), and the service spits out a link to a private test page displaying an interactive HTML5 and CSS version of the app controllable by mouse and keyboard in portrait or landscape. Testers will also be able to leave feedback and interact with testers in a comment section on the page. Kickfolio has an example of the Angry Bots iOS app from Unity Technologies on its website here.

A pro version of the service also includes a feature to embed apps that allows users to insert the interactive apps in press releases, websites, and elsewhere. The company has a 15-day free trial available, but is also offering pricing ranging from $50 a month for one to two apps to $300 a month for unlimited apps. You can learn more and create an account on the company’s website here.

A demo from Kickfolio of an iPhone app running inside a browser on Samsung’s Galaxy Nexus is below:

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Juicebox brings slick HTML5 image galleries to iOS

John Nack, Adobe’s principal product manager, has taken to his usual forum on the Adobe blogs to share a new HTML5 gallery recently debuted by developer Felix Turner. Turner is known for his PostcardViewer and other Photoshop-compatible image gallery applications that inspired Adobe to include Flash support in Photoshop’s built-in Photo Gallery. Turner’s new HTML5 gallery, called “Juicebox“, also works through Photoshop and Lightroom plug-ins (or through the company’s own app), and it has impressive options for iOS galleries.

A simulation of a Juicebox-Pro gallery on an iPhone (here), and demos of all the customization options are on the company’s website. Juicebox is available through a free lite version and paid licenses ranging from $50 to $99 for 1 to 5 domains, and it has a WordPress plug-in available. The Pro version packs over 70 additional configuration options, the ability add audio and watermarking, a Javascript API, and access to CSS and PNG files. Slick and responsive HTML5 galleries like these on iOS are definitely needed.

Late last month, Adobe launched its CS6 suite of 14 apps alongside its Creative Cloud service.

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Amazon launches iPad Kindle Store on the web, feels like a native app

Amazon today launched touch-optimized Kindle Store for iPad as a standalone web app accessed through the iOS Safari browser. You may remember that the online retail giant released Kindle Cloud Reader in August —also a web app that works great on Apple’s tablet, but this is an entirely different experience. Available on the iPad at www.amazon.com/iPadKindleStore, the web interface totally feels like a native app. It is smooth, natural and supports familiar touch gestures, like swiping left and right to brows the store’s virtual shelves. The design calls for big cover images, large buttons and elegant typeface that’s easy on the eyes, unlike some other HTML5 web apps that feel cluttered on a 9.7-inch screen and cause eye strain…

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iPhones beat out Nokia Lumia 800 Windows Phone in browser benchmark, despite earlier reports

359gsm (via My Nokia Blog) recently pitted the iOS 4.3-based iPhone 4 and the iOS 5-based iPhone 4S against a Windows Phone 7.5 Mango-based Nokia Lumia 800 smartphone in various benchmark tests. In every test, both the iPhone 4 and iPhone 4S significantly outperform one of the best Windows Phone options on the market. This is in contrast to reports in April, prior to Mango’s release, that claimed Window Phone’s IE 9 on Mango devices beat mobile Safari in similar browser benchmark tests.

You can view the results in the video above or get the full results below (via 359gsm). As you can see, the iPhone 4S significantly passes the Lumia 800 in all tests, including: Browsermark tests, Speed Reading test, Sunspider, Acid3, and HTML5. The iPhone 4 also outperforms the Lumia in most tests, although by a narrower margin.

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Facebook iPad app to be announced at upcoming Apple event?

Mashable is reporting that Facebook’s long-awaited iPad app will be announced at Apple’s upcoming event, which will most likely occur on October 4th. In addition to the iPad app, Facebook will reportedly be launching a revamped iPhone app and new HTML 5 version of the mobile site.

You may remember that the iPad app was leaked earlier this year, but was subsequently removed from within the iPhone app. According to a post from former Facebook engineer Jeff Verkoeyen the app is ready, and Facebook is waiting to release it. An event alongside Apple seems somewhat logical, though the companies don’t have the greatest history with each other.

Perhaps most importantly, Apple is said to be integrating Facebook into its iOS 5 the way Twitter is now integrated. Facebook was integrated into prototype versions of iOS 4 but a falling out between Zuckerberg and Apple got them kicked off (screenshot below).

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Though Facebook wants to move to HTML 5 as their main platform, they will also be releasing a revamped iPhone app with speed improvements according to the report. If true, October 4th is sure to be a big day with the unveiling of the next iPhone, iOS 5, and now the Facebook iPad app.

A few more screenshots after the break:

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Apple removes Financial Times app for dodging in-app subscription guidelines

The Financial Times has officially been removed from the App Store after failing to comply with Apple’s in-app subscription model that requires payments to be processed through iTunes (giving Apple a 30% cut in the process).

The publication used to have an iPhone and iPad app, which appear to have been removed from the App Store today. Fortunately for FT (not so much for Apple), they also have an HTML5 web app alternative that they’re urging iOS users to use instead.

The Financial Times told Paid Content: Read more

Mozilla wants web apps to compete with native iOS apps

Apple and Google are clearly the two front-runners competing for market share in the mobile world, which is why it’s no surprise we think of iOS and Android when we think of apps. With the growth of the smartphone industry also came the resurgence of native apps (thanks largely in part to Apple’s App Store which still dominates the space). However, Mozilla hopes that web apps will soon mature to provide a comparable experience for end users and an even better alternative for developers.

“We are aiming at providing all the necessary APIs to build a basic HTML5 phone experience within the next 3-6 months”

While Chrome OS has shown promise, it isn’t the only browser-based platform planning on entering the web app space… If Mozilla has its way, developers can use the results of their new WebAPI project to build an “HTML5 phone experience” that’s compatible across all operating systems (whether it’s Android, iOS, Windows Phone, etc).

report from CNET claims Mozilla has plans for the APIs to “interact with a phone’s dialler, address book, contacts list, and camera”, essentially giving you access to the same functionality of native apps but directly in your device’s browser.

The WebAPI project certainly isn’t trying to create a full-blown operating system. However, working hand in hand with Mozilla’s Boot to Gecko project, which aims to build a “complete, standalone operating system for the web”, it could create a potentially compelling alternative to Google’s browser-based Chrome OS.

It appears that Mozilla is serious about the project, as a report from CNET claims they’re in the process of hiring full time programmers and plan to have the basics in place by February…
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HTML 5 game seen running on jailbroken Apple TV

Youtube user appletvblack has posted a video of an HTML 5 game running on a 2nd generation Apple TV. The clever hacker played ‘Blackjack 4′ by installing Couch Surfer to obtain a web browser on his Apple TV and then simply navigated to the game. The game isn’t much, but it does show HTML 5 gaming is possible if Apple were to open it up… or if we just jailbreak. (via Redmond Pie)