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Apps make it possible for brands and business to deliver optimized content to customers via smartphones and tablets.

Of course, the user has to install your app on their smartphone first. But once they do, customers tend to engage longer with brands that provide a user-friendly mobile experience.

Right now, you have two options for apps: progressive web apps and native apps.

This article will discuss what the differences are between progressive web apps and native apps, as well as which option is better for SEO.

Native Apps

These apps use available hardware such as cameras or sensors in the best possible way because they are optimized for that operating system.

Additional Advantages of Native Apps

Native apps can secure data (up to the limit of the available storage) on the mobile device.

With fee-required native apps, a company’s sales can increase through the appropriate app store and the development costs can be recouped.

Because native apps are hosted in the supplier’s store, your developer doesn’t have to deal directly with distribution.

After installation, the app icon is automatically displayed on the home screen.

It’s not all good news with native apps, though. For example, different app versions must be simultaneously developed, published, and maintained for the various operating systems. Updates to the app have to be carried out through the appropriate app store for each operating system.

Native apps are all those apps that are listed in the appropriate app stores from Google, Apple, or Microsoft and can be downloaded by users from there. Common uses for native apps are smartphone games, mobile versions of online shops, or special services from suppliers and companies that are not or only seldom offered by a website.

Perfect examples of a company’s central native app are Instagram or WhatsApp. An example of an outsourced service is the weather app on Yahoo.

Progressive Web Apps (PWA)

Progressive web apps are based on a Google initiative. This is not an app in the true sense, but rather a modified website that suits the output device or the browser used. The operating principle of the PWA is based on progressive enhancement (i.e., a website can be gradually adjusted to the end device’s technical settings).

The development of progressive web apps is based on open web standards. Thus, CSS markup is decoupled; similarly, content and design are decoupled from one another.

Even JavaScript is decoupled from both of these elements. In this way, all content is always available and can be displayed on the device. At the same time, a minimal functionality of the PWA is ensured independently of whether the output device or the browser supports JavaScript or CSS.

If a progressive web app is accessed, the app shell is stored as a base in the device or browser cache. Then, core elements can be loaded immediately.

The app shell itself consists of the absolute minimum HTML, CSS, and JavaScript that a website needs to work. This is a kind of code bundle, whereby the user interface can be provided on the device and the content can be dynamically loaded via an API.

PWAs and native apps share the following characteristics:

The app can send push notices to the user.

The app can be stored on the phone’s screen with an icon.

Many PWA functions can still be used without an internet connection or with a slow one.

Currently, there are more problems with Apple’s iOS because the progressive web app operating system isn’t completely supported. Thus, the use of PWAs is limited to Android devices, for now. Specialized apps work there with all possible and usable functions.

Advantages of PWA Over Native Apps

No separate code base is required for programming because PWAs can also be developed with HTML 5.

Progressive web apps can be found in a Google search because they are completely indexable.

Updates don’t have to run through an app store. Instead, the web app is brought up to the newest standard with the help of service workers.

A PWA can also be used offline since they load the contents and functions in the cache of the appropriate device. If an internet connection is available again, functions and contents can be synchronized with the server.

The development costs are significantly lower than with native apps. This also has to do with the fact that PWAs function on all platforms and no separate versions are needed for different end devices.

No store is required for the operation of the app, and the user doesn’t have to install anything because the app functions with the browser.

PWAs load immediately, thus requiring a significantly shorter loading time than native apps.

Connections with progressive web apps are SSL encrypted and are thus more secure than web connections from traditional apps. The server does have to be set up for this.

PWAs are responsive and are suitable for every output device.

Usage Possibilities for Progressive Web Apps

PWAs can basically use all the same functions as native apps because they have access to the end device’s hardware. In practice, applications that deliver changing content but do not need to be updated through new installations or updates via an app store are particularly suitable.

Among these are, for example, news websites or the weather app developed by Google.

Even Flipboard can be called up via a progressive app. Just as with normal mobile websites, the browser is initially used to do this.

Later, the user receives a notification asking if they would like to save the PWA to their home screen.

You will find more examples of current PWAs on the website pwa.rocks.

Important Development Aspects for PWAs

For development, webmasters ideally need the codelab for PWAs from Google. The first PWA can be designed on the basis of this Firebase platform.

The platform, taken over by Google in 2014, offers many possibilities for changing the functionality and design of PWAs. At the same time, the app can be oriented toward different target groups. Additionally, tests can be carried out very simply.

It is also possible to track the app with Firebase. Thus, Firebase applications can be linked with Google Analytics.

Check out this detailed introduction to programming progressive apps by Addy Osmani, a Google Chrome developer.

Which App Version Is Better for SEO?

Until now, search engine optimization (SEO) for apps was limited to a good listing in the appropriate app store and app indexing. With the help of the app indexing introduced by Google, it’s possible for users to receive link recommendations that directly refer to the contents of the installed app in Google search using the Google search app.

The deep links must be created for iOS and Android separately. Moreover, they can also be integrated into the XML site map so that the Googlebot can be made aware of them.

With further development of progressive web apps, there are many possibilities for SEO.

Conclusion

Progressive web apps are still in the early stages of development and distribution. As of now, they’re only used by a few companies.

If mobile usage continues to increase as it has over the past few years, however, you might eventually not be asking “native app or PWA?”, but rather whether you need your own website or just a web app.

Until that day, though, PWAs are a sensible enhancement for mobile websites.

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5 Features Of Progressive Web Apps

Learn the benefits of progressive web apps (PWAs) and why you should be using them

This year has been huge for the mobile web. Accelerated Mobile Pages (AMP), which have enabled the rapid delivery of news content, have muscled their way to the top of Google search results. Furthermore, Comscore reports that mobile is the leading digital platform, with 52% of mobile media engagement being made via apps.

As mobile consumption continues to grow, providing users with a fast and efficient experience is paramount in boosting impressions, conversions, and sales.

It is because of this that Google is seeking to blur the lines between a mobile website and the native app experience, with the introduction of Progressive Web Apps (PWA).

There is a problem with the mobile web

Think about how quickly the Facebook, Instagram or BBC news apps load on your phone. A world of information is available almost instantly with just one tap.

What makes this worse is that mobile internet connections are fickle and often slow.

Google reports that 53% of mobile site visits are abandoned if it takes longer than three seconds for them to load. It doesn’t make for a great experience and it’s especially not ideal if your business relies on mobile traffic to survive.

Introducing Progressive Web Apps

Progressive Web Apps solve this problem really well. By combining the best of the web and the best of native applications, users get an experience that requires no installation, is fast, feature rich and helps boost conversions.

Some of the biggest brands in the world are already reaping the benefits. Forbes’ PWA increased impressions per visit by 10%. Alibaba increased mobile conversions by 76% and Twitter saw a 20% decrease in bounce rate.

Here are my top five features that make this such an enticing prospect for publishers, online stores, and news outlets.

1. Full-screen native app experience

PWA bring many of the benefits of a native app experience without making sacrifices for devices that do not support them.

One of the most noticeable is the difference between viewing a website in the browser (such as Google’s Chrome or Apple’s Safari) and a native, on-device, application. With PWA, websites are now loaded with a full-screen experience.

Instead of a URL bar, users will now see more of your site on the screen, complete with a splash of branding added in for good measure. This gives your website much more presence and a stronger brand identity.

2. Add to home screen

PWA can be saved to the home screen. This is great for re-engagement. Users are prompted to add the website to their home screen, complete with icon and branding.

This is the first step in creating a native experience. Once the website is on the home screen (with no installation required), it will look and feel just like any other app on their device.

A prominent presence for minimal effort.

3. Works even when offline

Now we get into the really interesting stuff. PWA can work offline or with a limited connection, just like a native app!

Some seriously clever tech means that images, content and even shopping carts are able to function even if you are on a train and you go into a tunnel. Your content is always going to be available, no matter how poor the user’s connection may get.

What’s more, with “pre-caching”, images and articles can be downloaded ahead of time, meaning that users have access to articles they haven’t viewed yet, even if they lose connection entirely.

4. Push notifications

Some of the best features for publishers are the interactivity options that don’t merely mimic a native app experience but are in fact truly native.

Push notifications and the new sharing system allow users to engage and re-engage with publisher’s content in a way that normal websites can’t.

Push notifications will appear in the user’s notification bar, in the same way, that notifications of new matches on Tinder or a new Facebook message do.

Publishers have full control over what they want to “push” to users and when they want to do it. Have you published an awesome new article on PWA? Let your readers know with push notifications.

5. New ways to share content

When users find your content engaging, they want to be able to share it however they choose.

In the past, you were limited to what your developer had built, most likely Facebook and Twitter.

If a new social platform appears, it can often take weeks before a change to your website can be published. This is not only problematic for a user who may want to share the article to their WhatsApp chat group, but also for the publishers, who have to rely on their software team to add support for new services as they appear.

With PWA, users can share web content with any share enabled application that is installed on their device. If a new social network suddenly becomes popular, your content can be shared on it immediately. There’s no need to spend time and resource adding new features to your website.

New features are being added all the time

There are many more benefits to be had from adding PWA functionality to your site, speed and performance improvements, enhanced functionality beyond those outlined here, plus more being added all the time.

Google is actively working on this tech and more and more sites are adopting this concept to make their mobile experiences more dynamic, more user-friendly and better for their customers.

Can I use this now?

Support right now is okay and improving. Google is leading the way and Chrome on Android devices (for the most part) have full integration; with Safari on iOS, sadly, lagging behind.

There is good news, however, Webkit (which powers Safari) is starting to pick up pace in developing the standard.

Adding PWA functionality to existing sites is simple. With careful thought and planning around how and when to use push notifications, which assets should be cached for offline availability and what additional performance enhancing steps can be taken, large improvements in user experience can be achieved. This, in turn, drives more conversions, longer-term engagement, and stronger brand presence.

All of this is great news for the future of mobile web development, and due to the progressive nature and ease of incorporating this functionality into existing websites and workflows, there is no reason whatsoever not to start using this technology right now.

Gartner: More Than Half Of Mobile Apps Will Be Html5/Native Hybrids By 2024

A convergence of mobile trends is setting the stage for a day when more than half of the applications will support both HTML5 and native iOS/Android environments. That’s the word from research giant Gartner, who predicts companies must support multiple platforms as well as native features, such as mapping, cameras and location-based services. Additionally, the researcher forecasts brand-name smartphone makers could be pushed out of the low-cost market as countries such as China and India produce home-grown alternatives priced as low as $50…

By 2024, more than 50 percent of mobile apps will be hybrids, Gartner forecasts.

While IT departments have traditionally viewed mobility as a separate topic from supporting desktops, that tactic must change in light of the growing use of mobile devices in the workplace, Gartner explains:

Increasingly, enterprises are finding that they need to support multiple platforms, especially as the BYOD [bring your own device] trend gains momentum.

Apple has led the wave of mobile devices designed for consumers being brought to work. While companies have quickly adopted Apple’s mobile iOS-based devices, Macs were a more difficult sell.

Infographic by Forrester Research, via Fortune.

However, this could change as Gartner expects Apple to introduce more iOS functionality in its OS X-driven desktops and laptops.

Going forward, Apple will continue to benefit from consumerization and will continue to evolve Macs to take on more iOS characteristics, which will contribute to acceptance of Macs in the enterprise.

As such, enterprise acceptance of Apple will continue to be driven by consumer demand.

As a result of this shifting landscape, Gartner believes that enterprises should plan for continued consumerization and for the fact that Apple will continue to be a significant beneficiary.

Rather than developing apps designed only for HTML5, firms must also take into account features available on differing mobile platforms, including Apple’s iPhone, iPad and the various Android alternatives.

By contrast, Microsoft – which began with a significant lead over Apple in enterprises – will see only limited adoption of its Windows Phone and Windows 8.

“Unlike Apple, Microsoft’s offerings have not benefited from consumerization, which is driven first by consumer demand, and then by the demand of those consumers to bring that technology into the workplace,” according to the researcher.

Microsoft has seen little consumer interest in its Windows Phone or its Surface tablet.

To gain low-cost smartphones, home-grown products have jettisoned many of some features touted by more expensive foreign brands.

“The combination of competitive pricing pressure, open-channel market growth and feature elimination/integration will very soon result in the $50 smartphone,” Gartner opines.

If smartphone brands cannot find a way to compete against the low-cost alternatives, they “may want to cede this market to the white-box vendors and focus on high-end devices,” according to the research firm.

We already see the likes of China’s Coolpad (seen below) outselling Apple’s iPhone.

Other trends are working against Apple.

As we recently reported, places like Tokyo and Thailand are rapidly adopting Android as the self-described ‘fickle’ Asian markets adjust to years of Apple domination.

The iPhone is still wildly popular in China.

Cheap phones “@verge: HTC will offer low-end phones and focus on emerging markets to boost falling revenue vrge.co/12mUx96”

— Christian Zibreg (@dujkan) February 4, 2013

While Apple is unlikely to introduce a $50 handset, we could see a $199 device styled after the iPhone 5. Apple could also finally ink a deal with China Mobile, snaring the world’s largest mobile carrier.

That, and hoping China’s middle-class purchasing power increases, could balance the rise of ultra-inexpensive smartphones. Even the branded vendors outside the Apple realm, like HTC, are recognizing the realities. For example, HTC said today it will shift focus from pricey hero devices to inexpensive handsets aimed at emerging markets.

Pictured at the top: Twitter’s web app.

Nine Creepy Apps For Android, Ios, And The Web

There was an old Andy Griffith episode involving a stranger who arrived in Mayberry and knew so much about the townspeople and the goings-on of the town that it was as if he’d lived there for years. Everyone was mystified, but it turned out that the stranger was getting his information from the local paper, which he’d been receiving in the mail.

I was reminded of that TV episode when I saw this new WhitePages app called WhitePages Neighbors. It also reminded me of Gladys Kravitz, the nosy neighbor on Bewitched, and the black comedy of the John Belushi/Dan Aykroyd movie Neighbors.

WhitePages is a public-records search company. It makes money by giving away a little bit of information on people for free, and then charging for a deeper look into public documents for things like criminal records, liens, and email addresses. But WhitePages Neighbors adds an aerial view to this, so that a user can see all of the houses in the neighborhood, along with the names, mailing addresses and phone numbers of everybody who lives inside those houses.

The app sugar-coats the information-selling aspect by offering a way to send invites to all your neighbors for a “block party.” The site also offers people a chance to “claim” and correct their WhitePages listing–yay! Thanks, WhitePages, for the opportunity to correct your false information and provide you with more of my accurate personal information to distribute.

I’m not accusing WhitePages of providing a hyperlocal tool for smartphone-carrying burglars or stalkers. But WhitePages is already a very nosy and nearly privacy-infringing service, and the addition of the aerial neighborhood views presented on a mobile device tips the service over the line into Creepyville, population 308 million.

Why not, they thought, write a little piece of code that makes it easy for get-’em-on-the-rebound types to be Johnny on the Spot when little Susie Creamcheese is at an early stage of her post-breakup life? Presto–new app. I wonder if using the app makes people feel like vultures circling high in the sky above a parched and staggering horse walking its last mile. I wonder what they do when they actually receive a breakup notification? Do they speed over to the newly single person’s page, pop open the chat window, and offer “heeeeeeeyyy. ’sup?”

Alright, alright. It’s just a hoax. But we had you going there for a second.

Okay–I downloaded this app to my PC, and without warning it installed a new toolbar on my browser. Aaaaaaaggh! Anyway, here’s how this gem of an app works: You upload pictures of yourself and your partner, and then MakeMeBabies uses “face recognition” technology to mash the two faces together into one child’s face.

Similar to the popular Date Check app, which allows you to run a quick background check on a potential hook-up, Background Check from chúng tôi does, well, pretty much the same thing.

You get two choices: a background check or an email search. To trigger a background check, you enter the first and last name of the person of interest, and the app spits out any relevant data it has on the person’s criminal record, property, relatives’ and neighbors’ names, and “also known as” aliases. To request an email search, you enter a person’s email address or select an address from your own address book, and the app seeks out any blogs, videos, photos, or social networking pages associated with that email address.

Sugar Sugar (Missing in Action)

Oh I so wanted to tell you about Sugar Sugar, but the app seems to have disappeared from the App Store, and the developer, Online Dating Systems, has temporarily or permanently taken down the Sugar Sugar website. Too bad because this might have been the first app that helped Johns find prostitutes using geolocation technology. Unlike eHarmony, Sugar Sugar wasn’t designed to set people up in long-term relationships. Nor did it attempt to establish a nostalgic Archies vibe. Instead, it was created to help men with money—sugar daddies—find “sugar babies”—young women willing to give it up in exchange for, uh, gifts. The app used GPS technology to plot on a map the location of women in the area interested in forming a ‘mutually beneficial’ arrangement.

If Sugar Sugar’s gone for good, there’s always chúng tôi which has stepped up to fill the void that the demise of Craigslist personals has left in men’s lives by letting them “bid” real money to hot girls in exchange for a first date. This screen grab from the website tells the whole story:

Evidently, you need a different URL to access all of the site’s frugal and unattractive members.

That’s right; there’s an app for that.

What Are The Best Spanish Learning Apps?

If you’ve always wanted to study Spanish, or if you studied some in high school or college and want to improve your skills but are too busy to take more classes, you might consider going for an app. There are numerous language-learning applications available to assist you in learning or brushing up on your Spanish. So, how do you make your decision?

Consider your preferred learning style and the type of methods that would be most enjoyable and beneficial to your language learning objectives. Here is a selected selection of the finest apps for learning Spanish, with specific qualities highlighted so you can determine which one is right for you.

1. Hellotalk

“The Ultimate Language Exchange,” is how HelloTalk puts itself. With HelloTalk, you’ll be fluent in Spanish in no time. Being among the top apps for learning Spanish, was launched in 2023, making learning Spanish easier by linking you with native Spanish speakers worldwide. As a result, users can teach each other their native language, creating a unique learning experience.

It provides several fun tools to assist people in improving their native language skills. Video and text chat, camera sharing, translation, transliteration, and other capabilities.

While HelloTalk is a great method to learn Spanish and become multilingual, it does not have a user review system. As a result, it’s critical to exercise extreme caution when using its social networking functions. It’s available for free on the App Store.

2. Preply

Preply is the best Spanish learning app available. Preply focuses on tutoring, combining the most successful parts of classroom Spanish instruction with the convenience of a language app.

You will immediately receive feedback if you make a mistake. Students learn at their rate, and tutors employ a variety of teaching approaches to ensure that their students understand a concept completely before moving on.

Students also have the opportunity to practice speaking in front of an audience. You may conquer your anxiety of speaking Spanish openly and begin putting what you’ve learned into practice, which is when you’ll see true development. Preply is a fantastic choice for your primary Spanish study software.

You can choose how much you want to spend and what area of Spanish you want to focus on using the tutor search feature. Preply will refund you or replace your instructor for free if you are not satisfied with a lesson.

Preply matches students with qualified Spanish tutors for one-on-one online video chat classes. You can select your tutor based on various characteristics such as their country of origin, expertise, availability, reviews, and fee.

All new students take a placement test, and the app calculates how many study hours they’ll need to move up a CEFR (Common European Framework of Reference for Languages) level.

3. FluentU

FluentU is a language learning app with a video component. They provide nine different languages, including Spanish, of course. To build an immersive language-learning experience, they employ real-world videos that have been dubbed and translated. Depending on your level, you’ll view music videos, news, movie trailers, and intriguing videos.

4. Rosetta Stone

Rosetta Stone is unlike most language apps on the market today in terms of design. Rather than learning Spanish through English, it is aimed to teach us Spanish from the ground up, as a natural speaker would.

It’s an immersive experience! It also provides a website where you can book sessions with a live teacher for every other class and its learning component. This may be a nice supplementary feature if you prefer practicing Spanish by conversing with native speakers.

The platform’s speech recognition has also been commended for being specifically developed to recognize non-native speakers’ pronunciation.

This is a time-consuming process, but if you’re a language aficionado (and a purist at that), it might be just what you’re searching for.

5. Glossika

Glossika is a phrase-based learning tool that allows you to learn Spanish by listening. It’s ideal for folks who prefer immersion to structure and grammar. If you’re not just learning Spanish, the subscription includes all of Glossika’s other languages, making it a smart pick.

Glossika employs an immersive, spaced repetition system to help you learn Spanish through audio-based lessons. For practice, you can use dictation, multiple-choice, and fill-in-the-gaps capabilities on tests.

Install any of the above and start learning today, whenever, and from any corner of the world!

10 Best Singing Apps For Android

The best singing apps for Android

Price: Free

Dolby On is one of the best audio recording apps for Android. It does the same stuff as any audio (or voice recorder), but adds a few extras to make the experience even better. The app contains six audio filters to bring out some specific characteristics of your voice along with an EQ, an audio trimmer, and external microphone support. The export settings are a little wonky, but you can make some actually good recordings with this app. It has all of the tools you’d need as a vocalist for the low, low price of free.

See also: The best audio recording apps for Android

FL Studio

Price: $14.99 with in-app purchases

FL Studio escalates the audio recording capabilities to the next level. It’s a full studio app where you can record vocals, add beats, and create whole songs. The learning curve is rather steep, but it’s actually pretty fun once you get used to it. The app contains various presets, modules, synths, samplers, beats, and MIDI controller support. Thus, you can create entire songs with a multitude of tools at your disposal. The app is a bit expensive, but getting software like this on desktop computers can cost hundreds of dollars so it’s kind of a steal. The in-app purchases are for optional add-ons that don’t affect functionality.

Check out more DAWs here: The best musician apps for Android

Hi-Q MP3 Voice Recorder

Also try: The best voice recorder apps for Android

KaraFun

Try these too: The best karaoke apps for Android

The Metronome by Soundbrenner

Price: Free

The Metronome by Soundbrenner is one of the easiest and best singer apps. It’s a metronome where you can define a beat and then rap or sing to it. The app also has 20 sounds, a dark or light theme, and even support for MIDI devices. You can create various time signatures, save presets, and more as well. There are many other metronome apps and we have some linked up below the download button, but this one should hit all the notes (pun intended) for most people. It’s also entirely free to use.

Check these: The best metronome apps for Android

Nail the Pitch

Price: Free / $4.99

Joe Hindy / Android Authority

Nail the Pitch is one of the better singing apps for Android. It allows you to monitor the notes you sing so you can see what pitch they were. Some other functions include the ability to test your entire vocal range, record your voice for further analysis, and more. There isn’t much else to it than that. However, this app promises to help you practice pitch and it does. We like it when apps do what they say.

Riyaz

The Vocal Coach

Vocolo

Price: Free trial / $7.99 per month / $29.99 per year

Joe Hindy / Android Authority

Voloco is a recording studio specifically for singers. This is a lot like Dolby On, but with more complex things to help your recorded singing sound better. For instance, you can remove background noise, put your voice to a beat, EQ your voice, play with things like reverb and compression, and more. It also has the ability to extract vocals from existing songs and mess with them to create some weird stuff. Some other features include a notepad for jotting down lyrics, the ability to share your work with others on the site, and over 50 vocal effects. The monthly subscription is a tad expensive and you save a ton of money by going for the yearly version. Luckily, the app gives you a week to test it out before it makes you pay anything.

YouTube

Price: Free / $12.99 per month

Thank you for reading. Try these out too:

The best DJ apps for Android

The best guitar tuner apps for Android

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