Yesterday I read about iLike providing a syndication platform to help artists connect with fans through custom iPhone Apps. It seems the commercials don’t lie. “There’s an app for that” is increasingly true. The iLike move reminded me of when web tools first emerged to help people create sites to promote themselves, their business, or whatever. Now it’s happening with iPhone apps.
Then I read a quote pulled from the Buckinster Fuller Challenge website: “You never change things by fighting the existing reality. To change something, build a new model that makes the existing model obsolete.”
Apple has done that with the app store, and others are following. On the mobile phone, the web browser is being replaced by a new model: apps powered by Internet data. If making apps become easier, and services like iLike facilitate the creation of apps by layman, like a website, every company, brand, and individual will soon have their own mobile app. As if reading my mind, Advertising Age had this article about brands that already have apps: Mobile Marketing: Is ‘App-vertising’ the Answer? Uniqlock, Adidas, Chanel, Audi, Dockers, Burger King seem to think the answer is yes.
But if everyone and brand has an app, like most websites, there will be some that we use often, and many that we don’t. And if apps on mobile phones become more like how we interact with websites, we’ll need tools to help us navigate and manage the system. I have seven full screens of iPhone apps, which make navigation and management a chore. What will happen with more? Sadly, it doesn not seem that Apple has addressed this for iPhone 3.0. I wonder if another soon to be unveiled app store, which promises 20,000 download possibilities, has considered the impact of the shift to apps.
But don’t let this discourage you from creating your own app and adding it to the system. A rush to app overload may speed up the design of new services to solve the problems created by the new model.