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iPhone apps versus Mobile Website

For the past year, I’ve been working with clients who are itching for an iPhone app, but don’t yet have a dedicated mobile site. iPhone apps have great potential for engaging your current customers and building out your location based services. Before beginning development on an iPhone app, though, you need to ask “Should we focus on building out an iPhone app when we don’t yet have a mobile site built out? Do we have resources to do both at the same time?”

Why should you develop your mobile site before investing in an iPhone app?

Heather from DIOSA Communications addresses this questions in her latest article. Below are the 5 main points. For the full explanation, visit the original article.

1) Almost anyone with a mobile phone can access your mobile website whereas only iPhone users can access your iPhone App.

There are 4.1 billion mobile subscribers worldwide (277 million in the United States) and just a small fraction of those are iPhone users.  

2) Mobile websites are easy to update whereas if you want to update an iPhone App, then the user has to download the Updates.

Essentially, updating an m.yoursite.com is a bit easier than updating your app and asking users to download the update.

3) As the smartphone market expands, are you then going to also launch multiple versions of your App?

Are you going to also create Apps for Palm, Blackberry, Android, etc.?

4) Social networking sites all have mobile websites and their traffic grows every single month.

(think m.twitter.com, m.facebook.com, m.youtube.com)

5) Text alert campaigns need mobile websites to be successful.

If you’re engaging customers via text messages, a mobile compatible site that loads quickly is absolutely essential

Related Links:

Four Reasons Why Nonprofits Need a Mobile Website
10 Nonprofit Mobile Websites
PhotoKast’s Guide on How to Build an iPhone App

iPhone Apps for the holidays

This is the first article I’m writing from an iPhone. This holiday season my sister graced me with this device. Unfortunately I had to spend several hours unlocking it because I have tmobile. Tmobile however does support iPhones and was able to help me get setup.

I’ve also spent some time downloading apps for the iPhone. I’ve listed a few good free ones to look out for

1. WordPress app – allows you to blog from your phone

2. Shozu – connect your camera phone to your flickr Facebook or YouTube account

3. Mint app – get your financial information directly on your iPhone. You must setup an account on mint.com to use this app. Very worthwhile. Also, I would recommend setting a lock code on your phone so if your phone is lost your info is safe.

4. FreshBooks app – for freelancers and professionals. Track your time and invoice your clients from your phone.

5. GooSync app – sync your contacts, google calendar, iCal, and other info between your phone, computer, and google accounts

6. Twitterific app – one of the better twitted reader and writer for your iPhone

What iPhone apps are you using?