In less than 24 hours Apple are expected to announce the iPad mini. The rumours suggest it will have the following spec:
- 7.8 inch display (so Google Nexus 7 / Amazon Fire size)
- The A5 from the iPad 2, not the new A6.
- Light weight
- iOS 6
But what about the price? There is a heap of speculation ranging from $350 down to $200. So why does the market need a small iPad?
For me the concept of an iPad mini is an opportunity for Apple to keep its strong hold on the tablet market. So far the iPad has been untouchable and has a large lead against all other tablet devices. However Google and Amazon are offering consumer great devices but at a low cost compared to an iPad.
Only this week we have learned that 1 in 8 web visits in the US is a tablet – which means mostly iPad.
For Apple to keep ownership of the tablet space, they need the next wave of tablet adopters to buy Apple. The next wave of tablet adopters include (not exclusively) a proportion of consumers who will not pay the big bucks for an iPad. Android mobile has benefited from significant market share growth for having cost effective devices on offer.
While I would not expect Apple to release the mini cheaper than the competition, it does need to be close enough. The typical Kindle Fire consumer needs to be able to stretch slightly further to reach an iPad mini. If Apple price this new product too far out, sales will be low and restricted to fanboys and possibly those that feel a 7 inch tablet will fit better into their handbag or coat pocket.
The next 6 months will show if Windows 8 tablets and the latest affordable Android versions can get significant traction. Only time will tell.
I just read and commented on Matt Jeffery’s excellent Recruiting 5.0 article on ERE.
I wanted to share an abstract of my lengthy response, hopefully it makes sense without the context of the article.
The adoption of mobile support has been a slow burn in recruiting. However I have observed a dramatic change of pace in the last 6 months – particularly in the US. A real benchmark was the discussion at mRecruitingCamp. In 2011 the debate was “why bother with mobile” in 2012 the discussion was “How do I go mobile”. During my 2012 presentation I ran a SMS poll, roughly 50% of the audience already had an mSite or a live project building one. Firms going mobile are from a diverse selection of sectors including leading auditors, banks, manufactures, hotel chains and tech firms.
The core focus around ROI and the importance of mobile was well articulated by Matt Lavery from UPS, he stated that it was a waste of time investing effort in Social Recruiting without a mobile optimised site to convert candidates. He shared some great stats that in the first two weeks of going live with their mSite they revived over 2,000 applications. His sucess and sentiments surrounding the tight coupling between social and mobile was shared by many speakers during mRecruitingCamp 2012.
If you check out the infographic you will see a 25% YoY growth in live mobile recruiting sites, this is not actually a big number- but based on observational research of the industry you can expect the growth next year to be significantly higher!
The focus on apps v mSite is interesting. YoY the number of company career apps dropped! There is no doubt that return can be achieved via apps but the socially integrated mSite solves a different (probably larger) problem, I.E converting from social media. A well thought out mSite can provide alerts via social media and deliver many if the benifits gained from an app- including an icon on the phone. But an app delivers conversion from the marketing channel of the various appStores. While the App Store audiences are huge there is a serious unanswered question around volume of career / job related searches.
I noticed a quote a ComScore stat around app v mSite usage. (50% mobile web usage is apps) This stat needs careful interpretation as it causes confusion. If I use Facebook or Twitter app and click on a link someone posted where is the site loaded? It is loaded inside the app- which may register as app usage even though the user is browsing the web. Just something to be aware of, for more info read http://mobiledave.me/2012/05/18/facebook-mobile-app-is-the-new-web-browser/ .
Those that feel it is best to not bother with mobile seriously need a CT scan. Unfortunately it reminds me of the late 90s and early 2000s when the statement was “forget the web!”, I am sure that strategy worked out well (look at newspapers!). The opportunity is to redo your web site, but Mobile First. If you can deliver a great mobile candidate experience then you can expand that highly focus proposition to the desktop format. Mobile First is the opportunity to fix the frequently shocking experience that we force candidates through. Or you can ignore mobile, keep the frustrating desktop web experience and loose candidate and relationships to your competition who made it easier!
The recruiting industry needs to borrow ideas from ecommerce….
+ Remove Barriers
+ Aim for least clicks
+ Delight the candidate
+ Measure at feild level the application journeys
+ MVT and improve the journey using real data to drive change
As mobile web traffic continues to grow and surpass desktop Internet traffic the concept of mobile optimisation needs reviewing. I have observed two polar strategies which are typically considered for mobile optimisation:
1. Produce an mSite which delivers a great user experience for the modern iPhone and latest Android devices.
2. Provide an mSite that is basic in design aimed to support as many mobile devices as possible.
Both approaches have their pros and cons. Both should be avoided, if your serious about the future of your online presence.
The first strategy I call “the Elitist”, it ensures those with the newest kit and those technically capable of upgrading their device OS get a good experience. The downside is rendering the mobile site unusable by other mobile web users. When surrounded by marketing and mobile hype it is easy to assume everyone has a new fancy mobile – this is wrong. Googles Android stats show over 50% of Android devices that access the Google app download service in the last 14 days are running version 2.3. (Released in 2010) The Elitist approach reduces audience reach. This reduces your capacity to do business or hire new staff over mobile web.
The second approach focuses on basic HTML, delivering a basis design. While this approach ensures a wide audience can access the site, the user experience is typically so poor that more modern phone users simply turn away. This, “the No Frills” approach is readable by many, but some don’t like the look of it! It’s sounds all gloom, but many mobile web users on older Android, BlackBerry and Nokia devices welcome the no frills site which doesn’t crash their mobile.
More recently responsive web has become fashionable, this tactic sits in the elitist strategy. Responsive puts high strain on mobile devices, consumes additional bandwidth and requires recent powerful hardware to deliver a reliable user experience.
As mobile web continues to evolve the gap in capabilities of devices will continue to grow. The problem of mobile web support will hinder us for a long while yet, much like early desktop web support. (Anyone supporting IE6, 7 or 8 today?)
Web technology and programming technology has progressed a long way since the pioneer days of the web (or of WAP). It is feasible to mature the mobile optimisation strategies and bring the two polars together.
I am keen to see more support of the “Suits you sir” approach to mobile optimisation. This approach delivers a great (bandwidth friendly) mSite with the latest user experience tricks for the newsy kit, while tailoring the view to support older devices with more suitable designs and UI techniques. It’s the Elite and No Frills merged together!
The challenge with the “suits you sir” strategy is testing, design time and content creation has to be executed multiple times. This increases cost and project schedules. Future changes will cost more as they require more tailoring.
To achieve the “Suits You Sir” strategy and keep costs low, a platform is needed to build from. The platform takes the pain and costs away. The platform provides shared learning and expertise. Ideally the content should be managed in a device intelligent CMS, capable of removing or morphing content to maximise the users mobile investment. This achieves key once entry for content creation.
There are some early devices intelligent CMS tools available – but this is bleeding edge.
(Written on the iPhone)
Yesterday I spoke at the Marketing Forum for ABSco, the topic was apps vs mobile web. I was told that this was the most subscribed to Market Forum they had ever ran, the topic was popular. The debate and discussion illustrated the attendees where not their to simply learn about mobile, instead they wanted hard advice on specific topics to help them make vendor selections. Mobile recruiting has not got the attention of the recruiting industry, it is the new kid on the block now after we have been talking about social none stop for the last 4 years.
While remembering the attendees were 95% recruitment agencies, one of the most common discussions surrounding using mobile apps was for contractor timesheet data collection. This daily / weekly touch point would provide the ideal opportunity to market a message or display the latest vacancies. The approach of mixing it up with marketing messages within an operations process has been tried before, frequently it fails. In this specific example I expect the mix to be very successful, as long as the marketing does not get in the way and becomes annoying spam. Unfortunately, the competitive nature of recruitment often drives agencies to spam the candidate in desperation to be the first to “get a bite”, instead of building a relationship.
Native apps give the recruiter the ability to send push notifications to candidates, as long as the app remains installed. mSites can achieve exactly the same goal, but instead of the obstacle of downloading the app the user has to register with Twitter or Facebook. The latter is a clearer action on behalf of the candidate to be contacted. A product being pitched at yesterdays event, was a native app where by every time a job is uploaded (via a multipost service eg Logic Melon, Idibu) it is sent via an alert to the candidate. I was less concerned that the solution delivers the ability to spam candidates, but more the apparent eagerness from many (not all) to send a none stop tidal wave of alerts to candidates throughout the day. The impact of such stupid behaviour is not limited to that particular recruitment agency.
Lets consider a candidate who downloads a recruiting app for the first time – but not any app this is a spammy recruitment agency app.
- Candidate excited that the new app will help him get a job.
- Candidate downloads the app, and does a wide generic search to see whats available.
- Candidate attention span is lost and starts playing Angry Birds and going about his day.
- Recruitment agency starts pushing messages and uploading new roles.
- Candidate gets his first message, what a great app!
- 120 seconds later the candidate gets another alert, less novel, he hopes this app is not going to do pester too much.
- A few minutes later the candidate gets another alert, he now finds this helpful app a pain in the ass. The tolerance level is very LOW. He has a choice, he can fiddle with his new app, or he can delete it. Unless he has strong brand affiliation with the recruitment agency, then he will probably delete the app there and then.
- App deleted, relationship with the recruitment agency brand damaged.
- Worse still, the candidate makes a mental note not to bother with these recruitment apps, they dont work.
Spamming the candidate will destroy any brand relationship. It will also turn those candidates exposed to spam off mobile recruiting apps. So can the recruitment agencies control their behaviour? Or is it simple second nature to blast candidates out of the ‘app pool’?
Adobe have been busy with Shadow since my last posts. Yesterday I participated in a webinar that showed off Shadow. Unfortunately I can not find a recorded video of the session.
Here are the some of the highlights of the latest updates.
- Localhost is supported (Yeah!)
- HTTP Authentication is supported
- 3rd Gen iPad and Retina display supported
- Kindle Fire Support
- URL monitoring supported to test and debug single page mSites
- Per device pull to refresh (Nice!)
- 20+ devices
- Device DOM inspection is (“for now”) using winrie
- iOS Simulator is NOT supported, but in talks with Apple
- Supports Adobe Edge (HTML5 GUI for animation)
- Full final version expected second half of 2012
- Windows & Mac support – no Linux
Localhost support is nice, it saves browsing by IP which is frequently dynamic.
The pull device to refresh is a great feature, the example workflow to use this feature is:
- Connect a bunch of devices
- In Chrome (with Shadow plugin) browse to site
- Scan devices and notice an error with one
- Change the CSS and save
- Pull down to refresh on that error prone device
- See if fix worked, refresh chrome (reloads all devices)
- Scan devices for errors