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Archive for July 2011

Apple iPad Hall of Fame: SPIN Play, NPR, and The Civil War Today

Three Bottle Rocket produced apps have made the iTunes App Store iPad Hall of Fame list and we couldn't be more proud: 

 

 

To see the full list, open iTunes and navigate to the iPad section of the store.  Under "App Store Quick Links" on the right side of the page, click "iPad Hall of Fame."  Thank you to our clients, A&E TV, SPIN Media, and NPR for allowing us to be a part of your success in the mobile space, and thank you to their fans for downloading and enjoying our apps.

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Discovery Channel HD iPad app updated with Shark Week LIVE in iTunes

Today, we launched the newest version of Discovery Channel HD for iPad "Shark Week," free of charge, in the app store, and we are thrilled to be the ones to make Shark Week truly interactive.

Just in time for this season's Shark Week premier on Sunday, July 31st, this app version has "Shark Week Live," which allows viewers watching the primetime television show to obtain behind-the-scenes information, exclusive production photos, maps, graphs, illustrations and incredible shark facts not seen on the show.  All content is synchronized with the live TV viewing experience.

This new version boasts several new features like:

  • Video "Cinepuzzles," think a traditional puzzle vs. a static image
  • The ability to "favorite" content for later viewing
  • Live, interactive, co-viewing experiences

The user can also compete against other live viewers in polls and quizzes.  Fans of the Discovery Channel's Shark Week, who definitely want additional information and exclusive content, can now see the show schedules, video clips, and photos, plus chat with other viewers via Facebook and Twitter about show content in this latest app.

 

 

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St. Jude: Our July 2011 Charity Selection

When late entertainer Danny Thomas opened the doors to St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital in 1962, he was not just changing the lives of those children who would walk through its doors.  He was changing lives across the world.

St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital opened on February 4, 1962 with a mission is to find cures for children with cancer and other catastrophic diseases through research and treatment.  St. Jude has treated children from all 50 states and from around the world.

On average, 5,700 active patients visit the hospital each year, most of whom are treated on an outpatient basis.  St. Jude is the only pediatric cancer research center where families never pay for treatment not covered by insurance. No child is ever denied treatment because of the family’s inability to pay.

Matt Johnson, our Executive Producer for Thruster Apps, Bottle Rocket's gaming division, nominated St. Jude for contribution consideration.  "My grandmother was a dedicated schoolteacher for many years, and her love of children and learning was inspiring.  She lost the battle with breast cancer when I was only nine years old," says Matt.  "Cancer has affected so many lives, and St. Jude has done amazing work to research and advance cures for pediatric cancers which I know would be a cause close to my grandmother's heart.  I am proud that the Bottle Rocket team is supporting a cause that fights to protect and defend children from disease through pioneering research and treatments."

 

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Have Customers Become Digital Addicts?

We are reaching a new baseline for culture. It’s a baseline where “online” is no longer a technical state. “Online” just is.  Connected consumers now have access, at any time of the day or night, through multiple devices and platforms, to all aspects of their information and product needs.

The digital natives of today have been born into an always-on culture.  For many children that are growing up with early adopters for parents, they have never known a time without cell phones.  They have never known a time without wireless internet buzzing through the walls of their home.  Connectivity flows in the air.

Nearly 50 percent of U.S. online consumers are now advanced users of smartphones, social networks, and other emerging tools, up from 32 percent in 2008, so digital consumers matter.  Not just because there are increasing numbers of them around the world, and not just because digital behavior now impacts virtually every single product category.

No, digital consumers matter because they have stronger relationships with brands.  On average, across all categories and countries, digital consumers have a 15% stronger relationship* with a typical brand.

So, who are these "iConsumers?"  Digital consumers fall into seven distinct groups characterized by the types of digital experiences they prefer:*

  • Digital-media junkies:  As the heaviest user of digital activities across platforms, "junkies" are three times more likely to be early adopters of new technologies.  The average junkie age is 28 with 62% being male and 38% female, and these users represent 19% of all respondents.
  • Digital communicators:  Active in online communities, communicators are above-average smartphone users and use social networking sites  3.2 times more often.  Average age is 35 with 33% male and 67% are female representing 16% of all respondents.
  • Video digerati:  Viewing 2.6 times more videos across all platforms, video digerati are much more likely than other groups to consume Internet-based video content, though they are late adopters of most other new technologies.  With an average age of 34, 53% are male and 47% are female representing 14% of all respondents.
  • Gamers:  Representing 10% of all respondents, gamers spend more time gaming than any other segment, 2.5 hours a day, and are less likely to own smartphones.  54% are male and 46% are female.
  • Professionals:  Representing the lowest percentage of all respondents at 6%, professionals like new gadgets and are more willing to pay for sleek designs.  They primarily communicate by email, and are heavy Web browsers, yet they are less likely to watch videos online spending 44% more time on email.  With an average age of 43, this category is 53% female and 47% male.
  • On-the-go workers:  11% of respondents identify themselves as on-the-go workers who spend less time online than average and more time actually talking on mobile phones.  Few in this category buy the latest gadgets, such as e-readers and they use mobile phones for voice three times more often.  The average age of these consumers is 41 and they are 64% female and 36% male.
  • Traditionalists:  Almost 1/4 of all respondents (24%) categorize themselves as traditionalists. Spending 79% less time social networking, they are less interested in Internet browsing and social networking and are more likely to read print newspapers.  The average age of this group is 48 with 61% female and 39% male.

* Source:  2008, 2009, and 2010 McKinsey surveys of 20,000 U.S. Internet users, aged 13-64

As the usage and processing power of smartphones increase in tandem with the rising speed of 3G and 4G data networks, mobile devices are invading the domains of single-purpose gear such as game consoles and portable media players, as well as PCs.  Smartphones are also becoming the device of choice for email, Web browsing, and product research.  Over the past two years, iPhone users have spent 45% more time emailing on their smartphones and 15% less time emailing on their PCs.

As the power and functionality of devices grow, the possibilities for making money from mobile platforms will continue to improve.  Smartphone users are already more accustomed to paying for digital content and services than traditional online users are.  Three-quarters of iPhone users now pay for one or more apps each month, though most remain free.  As more products are distributed over mobile channels, greater competition will raise the importance of design, ease of use, and new mobile payment options.

Whether it's applications, digital devices, entertainment platforms, or e-commerce business models, there is no one size fits all.  These substantial differences among these distinct groups show that brands, marketers, and technologists must develop tailored offerings for all.

 

 

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