Hi Vine! do you really want only 63% of the market to use your app?

Vine Android app logo
Lets start with a fact:
Vine is  awesome. If you didn’t try it yet, it is never too late, do it now.
Now for another fact: Only 63% of the Android users can actually use Vine.
Why? Because as you can see on the Vine Google Play page, this app is limited to Androids running version 4.0 and above.
 
Google’s official numbers released on August 2013 show that while huge progress was made and 63% of the Android world are already using Android 4.x, 37% of the market is still using old versions, out of which 33% are still on Gingerbread API 10. Will those users ever upgrade? I don’t think so. Even if they knew how (and they don’t), it is not that easy. What is probably going to happen is that these devices will stay there forever, and die really slow. It can take years until they go away, maybe 5 years, maybe 10, but they will probably stay there for a very long time, probably in big numbers.
 
Now why on earth wouldn’t the Vine team work on an app that can serve the Gingerbread users? Isn’t 33% of the Android market big enough for this? I’m not buying it. Android fragmentation is indeed a huge problem but a third of the market is too big to ignore.
 
The Verge reported last month that a Windows Phone 8 version of Vine is in the make. This is smart, and of course, any company that has the resources should go to every possible platform.
 
If I were Vine, I would consider Gingerbread as just another platform.  It doesn’t have to be a full app with all the newest features, it can be a limited version, light, mini, whatever you call it. But ignoring it would be a mistake. Of course, testing is a challenge – TestFairy is here for a reason – but running away from this challenge is a mistake. Face it and make a Gingerbread app. It will bring you tons of customers.
 
Jelly Bean Fragmentation
 
 

Pocket app review

Untangle the web and organize your internet browsing with the Pocket Android app.  A cool free download from the Google Play store, Pocket uses the share icon as you travel through the internet, social networks, and apps to save items to read later.  Pocket is filled with cool features, slick graphics, and simple interface for the time you carve out of your day to revisit articles, videos, and more.  As a bonus, the content is available offline for those moments stuck in a waiting room without wi-fi.
 
The Pocket Android app simply requires a username and email address to get started, and it moves you step-by-step through your first share to Pocket.  You exit out of Pocket, and you open any app or web browser on your Android device.  The content is dimmed in the background, and a pop-up gives you instructions for how to save to Pocket.  You simply look for the share icon, touch it, touch share to Pocket, and you’re finished.  You sill likely have more trouble finding the share icon from time to time than you will actually have sharing the desired content to Pocket.
 
Pocket app review by TestFairy
 
When you open the Pocket Android app on your tablet and phone, you will find a neatly organized home screen.  There is a menu bar at the top of the screen with icons to help you navigate, sort, filter, refresh, delete, and access settings.  The default view for the rest of the screen is a matrix of still photos framed by the title and source of items you have shared to Pocket.  Visually, the large photos have impact and add energy to the interface.  If you prefer a streamlined interface, you can switch to a list view with one touch on an icon at the top of the screen.
 
Pocket app review by TestFairy
 
With a touch on an item from the matrix or list, you move to a new screen to access the saved content.  You can read an article, watch a video, and check out an interesting Android app you saved from the Google Play Store.  A new top menu bar includes cool one-touch options.  A touch on the check icon archives the content.  If you touch a star, the item moves to your favorite category.  You may choose to adjust the font size and brightness of your screen for viewing.  You may share the content to your Google+, Twitter, Facebook, and other linked social network profiles.  The icon with the three vertical dots is the home of quite possibly the neatest feature of the Pocket Android app–tags.  The ability to create custom tags transforms Pocket into a Pinterest for entrepreneurs.  You create tags for a specific client, marketing research, motivation, and inspiration for new products.  A boring task like creating an office supply order list is transformed with Pocket.  From the home screen, there is a field to enter a tag search that appears just below the top menu bar after you add your first tag.
 
Pocket app review by TestFairy
 
The Pocket Android app gives you a quick way to save interesting, useful items you run across when you don’t have time to fully appreciate them.  The neat tags make you more efficient and productive–even if you only use it to organize your LOL cats memes.
TestFairy provides an informative, insightful testing service for Android developers.  To see the test of Pocket, click here.
 

Android Fragmentation

When I talk to Android developers and tell them that TestFairy started to help fight Android Fragmentation, they usually tell me about the devices in their lab. Some have 10 devices, some have 20. If it’s a big company they may have 30, never met a developer that has more than that.  The usual reaction is “With the devices we have in our lab we cover 85% of the market, this is enough”.
Well, it is not.
OpenSignal has just released a new report showing 11,868 Distinct Android devices using their app.
android-fragmantation
Besides the beautiful visual effects showing the difference between last year and this year’s stats, this report has some answers regarding how many devices you actually need in order to cover the Android market.
So the answer is:
In order to cover 25% of the Android market you will need 12 devices!
In order to cover 50% of the Android market you will need 60 devices!!
In order to cover 75% of the Android market you will need 217 devices!!!
And (back to square one) in order to cover 87.5% of the Android market you will need 427 devices!!! That’s all.
Now all you need to do is buy 427 and hire the people that will actually operate these devices and make those tests happen…
Or wait a minute, maybe use the crowd and do it with TestFairy? 🙂
 
 

DroidCon Paris was absolutely great!

Have you heard about DroidCon? Well, if you didn’t and you are into Android, then you should! We have just came back from DroidCon Paris and the event was absolutely great! The lectures were very interesting (well, the ones that were in English…) and the atmosphere was fantastic. The event was well organized and we are seriously thinking about presenting TestFairy in Droidcon London in October. More updates about that will be here soon.
Being on stage was great, the audience was extremely supportive and apparently they loved TestFairy.
Here is a 3 minute pitch we had in BootCamp, unfortunately the 45 minute session that followed it was not recorded

Followed this presentation I was interviewed by the great guys from FrAndroid. There are some serious camera issues here, but at least the audio is clear 🙂

And as always, When there are geeks around, Gil Megidish (aka TestFairy CTO, and official Ninja) will always find great friends 🙂
Gil Megidish DroidCon 2013