Apple to Let People Pre-Order Apps
Apple has made it possible for people to pre-order applications. Technically, the power is being given to developers, who can publish product pages and accept orders ahead of the app's release. Once the app is ready for download, customers will be notified and it will automatically download to their device. Developers can further advertise their apps by using the pre-order badges in their marketing materials. In another change, developers can now offer new customers discounted introductory pricing for auto-renewable subscriptions that are managed on the App Store. For example, digital magazines can offer the first three months of a 12-month subscription for a lower price. Developers can do this thanks to a new API in iOS 11.2 that allows them to configure introductory pricing. The new tools are available to developers today, and will reach end users soon.
Google Improves Visibility of Instant Apps with 'Try It Now' Button
Google today outlined a number of improvements it has made to the Play Store in order to help both consumers and developers make the most of Android apps and games. The most significant user-facing change is the addition of a "Try It Now" button that accompanies Instant Apps in the Play Store.
Google Endows Assistant with More App Smarts
Google today announced a comprehensive update to the Google Assistant. Most of the changes are meant for developers, but everyone will benefit from Assistant's improved ability to interact with third-party applications.
Google to Help Developers Make Apps More Accessible
Google today released a tool for developers that will scan apps and provide feedback on their accessibility. The idea is to help developers view their apps from a different perspective and gain insight about how their user interface choices may or may not work for those with special accessibility needs.
Apple Making Changes to App Store
Apple today informed developers that some changes are headed to the iTunes App Store. Developers will be able to offer auto-renewable subscriptions that don't require subscribers to constantly re-up.