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Mobile Marketing

App Developer Conversations: Speculation around Google I/O & WWDC

Robi Ganguly  //  May 16, 2013  //  7 min read

In this App Developer Conversations we talked about Google I/O (happening this week) and WWDC (in just a few weeks)

We focused on a few key things:

  • What do people want most out of the various conferences?
  • What can we typically expect?
  • What would be a big surprise?

Take a look and let us know in the comments what you think and what you’d add.

The Transcript:

Robi: Hi there, and welcome to another installment of App Developer
Conversations. As always, I’m joined by Ian Sefferman, CEO of MobileDevHQ.
I’m Robi Ganguly, CEO of Apptentive. We are in a new location. The same
office, but this time we’re facing out. You can see Amazon behind us.
They’re working on ‘not a phone’ over there.

Ian: Yeah, exactly. There’s no phone development happening in that

Robi: No, we know nothing. Sorry, Amazon. We’d like to talk a little
bit about some conferences that are pretty meaningful in the mobile world
coming up over the next month. Next week is Google I/O, and then shortly
thereafter in June is Apple’s WWDC. It probably makes sense to talk a
little bit about the things that we expect to see or hope to see at both of
these conferences, maybe speculate a little bit, and then hopefully you’ll
have participated in the comments and tell us what you’re thinking. With
that, next week, Google I/O. Any things that you’re hoping to come out of
it, that you’d love to have them say, “Yes, we’re doing X”?

Ian: That’s a good question. I would like to see a better Nexus tablet.
The only thing that is guaranteed to me about Google I/O right now is there
will be a lot of talk about Google Glass, there will be almost assuredly a
new Android phone, and that everybody in the audience will get a shit ton
of free hardware. Those are the things that I know will happen at Google

Robi: Pretty easy bets, that’s true. That’s definitely true.

Ian: I’m interested in seeing more of, they’ve been talking a lot about
the Google Glass SDK, open sourcing, and things like that. I’m interested
to see more about it and hopefully learn more about it from that, and I’m
interested to see how they’re tackling the tablet market.

Robi: I think of those things, the tablet would be most interesting,
because I continue to see more and more tablet usage everywhere I go. The
iPad Mini continues to show that even in an enterprise environment, I see
more people doing work on those things and bringing them to meetings. We
know a lot of product managers and product marketers out there who spend a
lot of time in meetings, and it looks like the iPad Mini is the device of

Ian: Yeah, it is. It’s [easy].

Robi: I’d love to see Android competing on that front and pushing the
barrier of what you can do. I think that the connection to Google Apps
makes it for many of those people actually a pretty compelling device,
because we know that continues not to be as good on iOS devices. In
addition to that, what do we think is going to happen with the OS? Are we
going to see more Android operating system updates?

Ian: I’m sure we will. I honestly have no idea what those updates are
going to look like. This is probably pretty sad, but since switching back
to iOS, I have long left Android rumors. I think certainly from Google’s
standpoint, I would expect to see something with Android and Google Wallet

Robi: I would love to see some more work on the play side for in-app
purchases or getting credit cards and talking about how many credit cards
they have on file.

Ian: Yeah, I would like to see that news, that update. I’d like to see how
carrier [billing] is shaping out to be. I personally think carrier billing
is a huge, huge reason that… I think they only do it for certain carriers
in the states right now, right?

Robi: That’s right.

Ian: Seeing them expand that program, I think it’s totally worthwhile.

Robi: Let’s move on to WWDC. In June, we’re going to see what’s next
out of Apple. I think we can assume a few things, like you did with Google
I/O. There’s going to be a new version of iOS, they’re going to remind the
world that they make the best PCs in the world as well, and they’re
probably going to do some refreshes to MacBook Airlines of things, and
perhaps even we’ll grab that OS in a little bit. They’re probably going to
come out and destroy us with the amount of stats and success. They’re just
going to wow us with how much better this is for developers. We can count
on those three things.

Ian: We can also count that you’re not going to get free hardware if
you’re at the WWDC.

Robi: Certainly not. It’s more expensive to WWDC, and you get nothing
for free. You don’t even want to eat there. In fact, I don’t know if
anybody knows this, last year we did a whole series of blog posts about
where to eat in San Francisco when you’re there for WWDC, and it was one of
the most popular things we’d ever done, because everybody who goes to WW is
like, “I’m not eating the food there.” Let’s do a little speculation. What
could come in the next version of iOS that would be really cool, really

Ian: I don’t know how actually important this one is, but this is
something that I really want, a new keyboard. It’s time to innovate on
that. There’s so much that has gone on in touchscreen keyboards that I just
feel like Apple has dropped the ball on that one.

Robi: They still appear not to be working very nicely with our local
friends, Swype, so I wonder if they’re going to be innovating along that

Ian: That’s right. I would love to see something there. What else?

Robi: Real multitasking maybe?

Ian: Real multitasking would be interesting, for sure.

Robi: Seems doubtful, but…

Ian: It seems super doubtful.

Robi: What about a refresh on the look and feel?

Ian: I was going to say, we know all of the rumors that they’re going
flat. That’s actually really interesting because to me, that’s actually one
of the first times Apple is copying Google.

Robi: Or are we copying Google and Microsoft?

Ian: And Microsoft, that’s right. We know whatever they do, they’re going
to do it very differently, or at least we hope so. It would be interesting
to see cross-device integration, specifically, will they have new devices?
Whatever happened to the rumors of the Apple Watch? What type of stuff are
they doing with the TV in your living room and things like that? I don’t
expect any big announcements there.

Robi: I think we can look at Apple TV for potentially a precursor to
what’s going on. I continue to think that an SDK for the Apple TV would be
interesting to a bunch of developers. I know a lot of developers who would
love to play around with that, make it their own, and have it support apps.
I think that would be really interesting to see.

Ian: Quite honestly, I want to see them fix their desktop OS. OSX gets
worse and worse with every release.

Robi: Yeah, more buggy. Software is hard, of course.

Ian: It’s very hard.

Robi: The reality is the last two updates for me have been kind of
painful. I also think one last thing I would like to see is some rethinking
of the notification center. I live on an Android device, you live on an iOS
device. It feels like the way notifications is handled for me has become
less intrusive than it is being handled for you.

Ian: I would totally agree. I would go further and say that Apple’s
notification center is a shitty rip-off of Android’s.

Robi: A revamp of that could actually make a lot of people’s lives a
lot better. Most importantly, the consumer, but I even think developers,
unwittingly, are being annoying to consumers, and that’s never good, so
some help there would be awesome.

Ian: That’s right. I would agree with that. That would be sweet.

Robi: Anything else?

Ian: I think one thing that we’ve talked about in the past is AltWWDC. You
know more about AltWWDC, you pimped it out for them.

Robi: Yeah. Last year was the first time they did this because they
noticed so many developers who couldn’t get into WWDC, they put together an
event that you could actually do by coming to San Francisco but not having
a WW ticket, you could go hang out with other developers, primarily
independent developers. The format was organic. They put together some
sessions and some talks and they provided free space, WiFi, some snacks,
and some water, and it was great. I went to it all last year because I
didn’t have a WW ticket. For five days, I was meeting great indie
developers. The people behind it who put it on are some of the folks behind
Appsterdam, like Judy Chen, and some new developers like Joshua Michaels
and a few other folks. They’re a great crew. They’re very supportive of the
development community and very big fans of Apple. I think that there are a
lot of substance that happens there. If you are going to WWDC, you still
owe it to yourself. Come hang out at AltWWDC and see some people and hang
out. If you don’t have a ticket and you’re going to be in San Francisco for
it, it’s definitely a place to look into. I know they recently ran into
some size limitations, so they’ve got a wait list table, but I believe they
recently got a sponsor in RadiumOne, who is helping them expand space
further. It should be really good.

Ian: It will be awesome. I’m excited for that one. I’m on the wait list,
so hopefully it works out.

Robi: Perfect. All right, so that’s the last of our App Developer
Conversations for today. Please check out the other installment where Ian
talks about some of the activity Facebook is going to be engaging in. Be
sure to like this and share. Thanks.

Ian: Thanks.

About Robi Ganguly

Robi Ganguly is the Co-founder and CEO at Apptentive. He is passionate about giving customers a voice via mobile. Follow Robi on Twitter @rganguly.
View all posts by Robi Ganguly >

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