Gilbane Advisor 10-27-15 – Platforms, apps, web, neutrality

There are tectonic shifts underway among competing web, mobile, and social platforms, that will have profound effects on digital strategies. There are too many moving parts and shifting alliances for anyone to predict outcomes with any certainty. But Apple, Google, Facebook, and others are making moves that need to be considered in the context of platform competition, whether it is Apple ad-blocking, and News, Google AMP, and Polymer, Facebook Instant Articles, and Notify, or Twitter Moments. Some thoughts…

Mobile is not a neutral platform

For sure. Benedict Evan’s lead-up discussion on desktop vs mobile platform doesn’t sit quite right, but it isn’t necessary to the argument or the other insights which are on target. It is certainly true that mobile operating systems are becoming less neutral and more intrusive and there will be serious consequences as this trend continues.

… this summer we saw moves from Apple and Google to create their own real-estate around the home screen. … but the broader point is that this is Apple’s screen or Google’s screen, and another content provider gets there only if Apple or Google want (and if they implement the indexing APIs that Apple and Google require). This will get bigger… Next, Apple and Google are exploring new ways to unbundle the content within apps into new usage models. Hence Apple’s 3D Touch unbundles app content into the home screen … Can there be apps where this is the main UI? (And of course this isn’t on Android, so the fantasy of a cross-platform app gets even further away.) Read More

Notes from the Platform’s Edge

“Platforms for everyone, publications for no one”. John Herrman on the fascinating dance between publishers and platforms and social “platforms” like Facebook and Twitter who want to compete / survive via notification control. Referrals to websites from Facebook are trending down for many and the top ten membership is changing, and…

Facebook is … experimenting with a new editorial space… an app called Notify, which lets people aggregate… notifications? It was previously reported by Business Insider to be “a standalone mobile news publication.” … An Apple Watch future or a Siri future or a notifications-based future would threaten the most obvious ways Facebook and Twitter make money—by cramming ads into feeds—so it makes sense, probably, to at least try to get ahead of it, by becoming a sort of news notification clearinghouse—better or more vital than the notifications sent to users by, say, an Apple or Google News app…All along, platforms and publications have been interacting in two ways: on one end, by mingling audience and attention; on the other, by the advertising business model of one replacing the advertising business model of the other. Read More

For more on this join us for the New Frontiers in Digital Content Distribution panel discussion at the Gilbane conference.

The Apple-Google, App-Web Divide

Apple wants mobile devices to be filled with apps. Google supports a world where people browse the web for most things. Now websites are increasingly caught in the middle of those competing visions.

The full title of the article is “Publishers Straddle the Apple-Google, App-Web Divide”, but it is not just about publishers—everyone has to to figure out how to navigate among this divide and all of the exhaust from it. Ad-blocking, app-blocking, AMP-advantaging, non-neutral mobile platforms, and (healthy) web standards (e.g., web components) development competition, are all driven by the competing business models. Read More

Google’s Accelerated Mobile Pages AMP Project

Google’s latest strategic salvo in the app-web battle is to provide another way to speed up web pages with an open source project based on the web components standard. The idea is to neutralize any speed advantages of Facebook Instant Articles, Apple News, or other apps. Of course this also serves to influence the direction of the web components standard development in the same way as Polymer. This is all good, but there are some concerns about how open AMP is in its current form. There is already a (beta) WordPress plugin which I have installed on gilbane.com but haven’t tested yet. Danny Sullivan’s post from the announcement contains a description and useful links. Read More

You can hear more about Web Components and Polymer; Deep Linking and App Indexing at the upcoming Gilbane conference.

And now back to our regularly scheduled programing…

Integrating marketing technologies? That’s the easy part

It would be difficult to find someone more qualified than Scott Brinker to talk about integrating marketing technology. He knows firsthand how hard it is, which is why you should listen to what he has to say about what’s even more difficult.

Is the “integration” challenge of marketing technology really our top obstacle?… There are two studies that I’ve come across in the past couple of weeks that have caused me to wonder if integration has become a bit of a red herring for marketers who are wrestling with the much more hairy, vicious, pointy-toothed beast of digital transformation… Integration is getting easier. Marketing, however, is not. Read more

Hear Scott’s keynote on Building an Infrastructure for Marketing Digital Transformation at the Gilbane conference and join us for multiple sessions on integration, digital transformation and marketing challenges.


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Short takes

Why ContentEditable is Terrible Or: How the Medium Editor Works… In case you thought building text editors was easy Or: If you are just curious. via Medium Engineering

CMS and Author Experience Or: Pushing WordPress’ boundaries… via responsivewebdesign.com

World of Service Providers, October 2015… WPP, Publicis, Havas, and Fullsix via Digital Clarity Group

Web Content Management Round-Up, October 2015… including discussion of latest WCM Magic Quadrant. via Digital Clarity Group

A new way to improve app experiences with web content… Safari View Controller and Automatic Safari Reader Activationvia MacStories

Digital Asset Management Round-Up, October 2015… Open Text, SAP, and Widen. via Digital Clarity Group

Useful infographic for anyone wondering why mobile apps take so long and cost so much… Overview of the mobile app development processvia Tech.in.Asia.com

E-Commerce Round-Up: September 2015… Farfetch, Time Inc, and Mondelez.  via Digital Clarity Group

Sorry to say the Boston.com leads the pack… The Cost of Mobile Ads on 50 News Websitesvia nytimes.com

About

The Gilbane Advisor curates content for our conference community of content, computing, and digital experience professionals throughout the year. You can also subscribe via our feed.

The Gilbane Conference on Content, Technology, and Customer Experience helps marketers, IT, and business managers integrate content strategies and computing technologies to produce superior customer experiences for all stakeholders.