Archive for platforms

Gilbane Advisor 1-27-17 — Apple Facebook dance, platform battles

The Great Unbundling

We’ve seen the different ways the internet unbundled print and music. TV is evolving, or at least unbundling, more slowly. Ben Thompson has been tracking this for some time. In his latest look he focuses on TV and how Facebook, Snapchat are contributing to its unbundling. This is not just about commercial TV but video and advertising in general. Read More

Speaking of video, just as Facebook is starting to pushing long form video…

Parse.ly finds users not that engaged with video

Parse.ly examined the performance of four types of posts within its network of 700 sites: long-form, short-form, video, and slideshows. Read More

engagement time performance by content type - via Parse.lySlide by Parse.ly 

The iPhone Unsung Sine Qua Non

Telecommunications companies have historically been masters of control, and their tight grip has often slowed down their own, and other industries’, progress. While Apple has some control issues of their own, their wresting substantial control from the carriers has opened up huge opportunities not just for them, but for everyone. Control, however, is never a permanent state, and shifts are often unforeseen.

In retrospect, the ascendency of Smartphone 2.0 and the way it has shaped our culture seems obvious and natural. But the celebration and contemplation overlooks a crucial Sine Qua Non, a necessary (but not sufficient) condition: Unlocking the carriers’ grip on handset specifications, marketing, and content distribution. Read More

​Speaking of control…

The coming war between Apple and Facebook

Facebook has been phenomenally successful in mobile advertising. But they have long chafed at their dependence on the dominance of the only two mobile platforms that matter, Apple and Google. All three companies are jockeying for platform, content, and advertising control. Mobile marketing strategists need to track this, and Eric Seufert provides a rewarding deep dive that focuses on the Apple Facebook dance. Facebook is hoping messaging can replace operating systems as a more level platform battlefield. Read More

Speaking of messaging apps as platforms…

Tencent launches ‘mini programs’ for WeChat

WeChat is still leading the messaging-as-platform push and are who to watch first. Even though they “only” have some 800 million users in China they may lead in engagement time. WeChat ‘mini programs’ compete with Google ‘instant apps’, all app stores, and of course Facebook Messenger and other messaging products. Read More

Blockstack’s Vision to Reinvent the Web for Better Privacy

Based on blockchain technology as you might guess. The approach is one to watch and there are many companies working on it.

…instead of needing to create accounts with each site, as people do with Google or Facebook, users of sites built on Blockstack’s system will control their own digital identity (or identities). To use a site that needs your information, you will grant access to a profile under your control alone. If you want to stop using a service, you can revoke its access to your profile and data and take it elsewhere. Read More

Also…

On Their Tenth Anniversary, Mobile Apps Start Eating Their Own and of course are also threatened by ‘mini programs’, ‘instant apps’ and bots. via Flurry Analytics

On Medium 1: Jessica Lessin… What Everyone Is Missing About Media Business Models via The Information

On Medium 2: Frederic Filloux… A New Model for Medium via Monday Note

Would be fascinating to have comparable survey of U.S citizens… 70% of Europeans Aren’t Willing to Sacrifice Privacy for New Services, Survey Reveals via Tripwire 

I love quiet, but there is a cost. Think about this… Our Silent Future via The Information

Businesses are people too! and deserve a good CX and DX… Measuring B2B’s digital gap via Mckinsey

The Gilbane Advisor curates content for our community of content, computing, and digital experience professionals. Subscribe to our newsletter, or our feed.

Gilbane Advisor 9-14-16 – Next computing platform, FB, Google, and Daily Beast

Dear Readers: 

Hope you had a fantastic summer. We are back from vacation and our new school-year resolution is to publish more bite-sized issues more frequently – tougher curation and quicker delivery to you.

Beyond the iPhone

is the watch, as the next general purpose personal computer that is. I still think that has always been Apple’s plan, with fitness a viable commercial entry point and learning path to the much larger health care market and everything else. In this regard the AirPods were the most interesting of the recent announcements. As Ben Thompson points out…

… one of the devices that pairs with AirPods is the Apple Watch, which received its own update, including GPS. The GPS addition was part of a heavy focus on health-and-fitness, but it is also another step down the road towards a Watch that has its own cellular connection, and when that future arrives the iPhone will quite suddenly shift from indispensable to optional. Simply strap on your Watch, put in your AirPods, and, thanks to Siri, you have everything you need… just as the iPhone makes far more sense as a digital hub than the Mac, the Watch will one day be the best hub yet. Read More

Facebook’s Power Struggle Over App Links

This long slow cold war requires monitoring by marketers, developers, and publishers. The Information’s Cory Weinberg is watching.

Apps are caught in the middle of a power struggle between Apple, Google and Facebook to control mobile browsing habits. The fragmentation benefits Facebook, which keeps people inside its browser instead of supporting apps’ deep links on iPhones. Read More

Google’s AMP Viewer: the Tinder UX for content?

Google is also increasing its reach and control over the browsing experience. All marketers, not just news publishers, will be affected.

AMP links will no longer be limited to the Top Stories area of mobile results; instead, Google will link to the AMP version of a webpage any time a valid AMP is available. This “blue links” expansion will dramatically increase AMP traffic overall and enable discovery of a rapidly growing universe of non-news and long-tail AMP content. … Publishers might not realize that Google won’t just link to AMPs, but will present them in a Google-hosted viewer which is certain to alter user flow and engagement from mobile search. Read More

How The Daily Beast gets 40 percent of readers to visit its homepage

While the Beast gets its fair share of traffic from Google and Facebook, it focuses more on getting those readers back via email (its subscriber base has doubled in the past year) and its app than on maximizing the reach of content it publishes elsewhere. It has eschewed Google AMP and, after a brief dalliance with Facebook Instant Articles, has stopped using those too. Read More

Also…

“Basically, we have two problems with CX: complexity and perspective.”… The cash model of “customer experience” via Doc Searls

Handy… Introducing the Bots Landscape: 170+ companies, $4 billion in funding, thousands of bots via Venturebeat

NYT and WaPo just edged out Buzzfeed and Huffpost for the most digital readers… Revenge of the ‘legacy’ sector via Politico

The front-end needs the back-end… Digital Experience and Content Operations Need More Attention via EContent

Why are deep neural networks good at solving complex problems? Is the secret buried in the laws of physics? via Technology Review

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Main conference: November 29 – 30
Workshops: December 1, 2016
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The Gilbane Advisor curates content for our community of content, computing, and digital experience professionals. Subscribe to our newsletter, or our feed.

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

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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.