Free Essay

Apps

In: Computers and Technology

Submitted By r6498thind
Words 1388
Pages 6
According to Wikipedia, a Mobile application is a software application designed to run on smartphones, tablet computers and other mobile devices. They are usually available through application distribution platforms, which are typically operated by the owner of the mobile operating system, such as the Apple App Store, Google Play, Windows Phone Store, and BlackBerry App World. Usually, they are downloaded from the platform to a target device, such as an iPhone, BlackBerry, Android phone or Windows Phone, but sometimes they can be downloaded to laptops or desktops. Mobile apps were originally offered for general productivity reasons, including email, calendar, contacts, stock market and weather information. However, public demand and the availability of developer tools drove rapid expansion into other categories, such as mobile games, factory automation, GPS and location-based services, banking, order-tracking, and ticket purchases.
For this assignment I will focus on two apps, Swell Radio and MyFitnessPal. I am a person who is just getting my feet wet when it comes to the tech sector. I am a beginner, and so far I seem to enjoy apps that are rather simple and productivity based.

MyFitnessPal Available on:

Website myfitnesspal.com Founded 2005 Founder Albert Lee, Mike Lee
Product Czar Warren Wan

MyFitnessPal is very useful and is a must have when I want to keep track of my calories consumed and burned on a daily basis. The app’s aim is to make good health attainable and sustainable for everyone. Used by more than 40 million people, MyFitnessPal is the leading resource for taking charge of daily health. This free mobile app started as a website in 2005, when co-founder Mike Lee and his wife wanted to lose weight for their beach wedding. They met with a trainer who told them to count calories and handed them a book listing the nutrition profiles of 3,000 foods. Being techies, they decided there had to be a better way. There were hundreds of websites for keeping food logs, but none of them worked the way Lee thought they should. So being a developer, he built a better one. The app and website provide support that allows users to track, learn, communicate and improve their health and wellness. With an extremely large database of foods, including nutritional content from all major brands and restaurants, MyFitnessPal makes you more aware, interested and motivated each day.
MyFitnessPal acquired about 2,000 enthusiastic users in its first year. "We did little things like remembering what you eat most often because people tend to eat the same thing over and over. At the time, nobody was doing that," Lee said. Today the app has more than 40 million users who have collectively lost more than 100 million pounds—equivalent to the weight of the entire population of Las Vegas. The secret to this app’s success is that it is very user friendly and has almost everything you need to keep track of your eating habits. Recently when asked why his app has gained such a huge following Lee said, “You know, I wish I could say that there was a magic formula for how to do it, but really what we've done is focus on our users. As a company we are always thinking about how we can help our users succeed in reaching their goals. Because if they succeed, then we succeed. That's our core belief. We haven't done any weird, engineered viral loops or anything like that; it's been all about helping users succeed because when they love the product then they'll tell other people about it and that's really how we've grown.”
MyFitnessPal’s Key Characteristics * 100% FREE membership * The easiest to use food diary on the web- Track what you eat with just a few clicks from anywhere with an internet connection * A searchable food database of over 3,229,000 items - and it's growing every day * Your own personal food database - add your own foods and recipes at any time * Support and motivation- discussion forums let you learn from others, share your own tips, receive and give encouragement, and make friends
This app’s effects on the business community are similar to other fitness type apps. That means customers are being able to take their fitness goals into their own hands and rely less on outside advice. The popularity of MyFitnessPal would be important for the food industry to note also. I think it speaks to the fact that consumers as a whole generally want healthier choices. I think most food providers are already getting on board with this trend, with nutrition guides in fast food restaurants and the growing popularity of natural grocery outlets. I’m sure there are some great opportunities to partner up with both of the apps I’ve mentioned for companies interested in advertising.

Swell Radio G.D. (Ram) Ramkumar is the Co-Founder & CEO of Swell. He was previously Chief Architect for Visual Search at A9, an Amazon company, and Co-Founder & CTO at SnapTell. Ramkumar holds a Ph.D. in CS from Stanford University.
Swell is a really simple, clever, and efficient way to personalize your daily news and information. With Swell, you never really need to read or watch news to stay highly informed about the topics of the day. The startup behind Swell, Concept.io, is partnered with NPR, American Public Media, and ABC News, and it also includes podcasts from the BBC, CBC, Comedy Central, TED Talks, and others. As you use this FREE app, it will begin to understand what your tastes and interests are. It also looks at the response from a larger user base to figure out what’s popular. Swell doesn’t pay for content, since these podcasts are available for free in iTunes. The company is currently in discussions with some of the content providers. “It’s a new product, and the business model is evolving,” Ram recently said, adding, “We respect content provider’s wishes. We don’t alter the content, and we’re giving it additional distribution.”
Beyond just listening and skipping, users can tell the app that they’re currently looking for content around a certain topic, such as technology, and they can bookmark programs for listening later. Right now the app lets users stream news, comedy, sports, and business content only to their Apple iPhones— with plans to add Android soon. Unlike Stitcher Radio (an app that provides a similar service), Swell doesn't require you to create an account—you can jump right in. Another great feature is the app’s superior audio quality and simple, clutter-free user interface, which are both very appealing to me. Swell Radio utilizes "audio cards," rectangular panels that contain important information such as the show/station/podcast's name, runtime, and the broadcast date. There are also two icons that let you rewind a track in 10-second intervals or fast-forward in 30-second intervals. Tapping the small information icon flips the audio card where you can find a show synopsis and a link to the show's homepage.
Swell Radio doesn't let you continuously listen to one topic or genre, as some other music streaming apps do. For example, Slacker Radio & Stitcher Radio follow more of an on-demand model, Swell Radio, on the other hand, streams a variety of topics that are constantly tweaked. Swell Radio also doesn't offer live radio, which is SiriusXM Radio's bread and butter. Instead, it has timely recorded programming. Although there are many iPhone apps designed to stream music, but very few have a laser-beam focus on news and talk. Swell Radio is impressive and could very well take over the likes of Pandora in some age groups.

References Used

"Free Calorie Counter, Diet & Exercise Journal | MyFitnessPal.com." Free Calorie Counter, Diet & Exercise Journal | MyFitnessPal.com. N.p., n.d. Web. 21 July 2013. <http://www.myfitnesspal.com/apps>.
"MyFitnessPal | CrunchBase Profile." CrunchBase, The Free Tech Company Database. N.p., n.d. Web. 19 July 2013. <http://www.crunchbase.com/company/myfitnesspal>.
"Press | Swell." Swell | News Radio Rebooted. N.p., n.d. Web. 20 July 2013. <http://www.swell.am/press/index.html>.
"Swell Launches A Personalized App For News Radio Listening." TechCrunch. N.p., n.d. Web. 18 July 2013. <http://techcrunch.com/2013/06/27/swell-personal-news-radio/>.…...

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