Posted By oomphhq on April 30th, 2012

Cross Platform Support Update from Oomph

May 2012

Oomph CEO, Keith Ahern shares the Oomph position on cross platform, Android in particular.

First of all we love competition in the tablet device space, theres nothing more we would like than serious competition to:

  1. drive down the cost of tablets
  2. allow more publisher friendly business models

Both of the above are win-win for Oomph and our customers.

We bought the first Android phone, the Google G1 in 2009 and since then we have worked with many android phones and tablets including the Samsung Galaxy 7”, Asus tablet, and most recently Amazon Kindle Fire. We created several apps for Android including Truelocal (2009), Kraft iFood (2010) and most prominently The Australian (tablet – 2010).

The Australian on Samsung Galaxy 7” is powered by an Android version of Oomph, however it is way behind the iPad version of Oomph. We decided to focus on iOS for 2011/2012 because:

  1. Android users are much less inclined to pay for content http://allthingsd.com/20110527/android-users-like-apps-but-dont-like-paying-for-them/
  2. Android growth is in devices (phones more so than tablets), not necessarily users who are using appshttp://labs.chitika.com/mobiledominance/
  3. Android app development is difficult to the point of being impossible to provide a good experience across all android deviceshttp://thenextweb.com/mobile/2012/03/30/the-shocking-toll-of-hardware-and-software-fragmentation-on-android-development/
2011/2012 Better features, less effort = better ROI

In early 2011 we sat down and prioritised which of following we would spend our development time and money on:

  1. Interactive Features
  2. Workflow tools for fasters/cheaper production
  3. Cross platform support

We decided on features on the leading platform – the iPad and workflow on Mac and PC. If we focused on cross platform you end up with a non-optimal iPad experience we decided thats not a good thing. Follow the money, and the money, for the next 18 months is on iPad.

For the vast majority of our customers it’s all about ROI. We think that in most cases offering Android will not result in additional revenue, in fact we think the opposite, the support overhead means it will cost more money to support (both us and publishers) than revenue gained.

Our plan going forward

  1. Continue to improve workflow of Oomph tools such as OomphBox
  2. Offer an Android replica solution for customers who must have it
  3. Ramp up work on our HTML5 version for launch in the 2nd half of this year, this will meet android needs too.
  4. Target the top android device that has more than 20% of the entire tablet market (no clear leader yet)