In an increasingly-mobile world, content can be delivered as a responsive blog – which is good – and as a dedicated app too – which is better. Where tech publishers are concerned, especially with blogs like ours, it looks best to package our content as an app so our subscribers and readers get to be right on top of the news and happenings.
Building a dedicated app can be enormously tedious and so we were out looking for a service that does the same. We found Conduit Mobile and frankly, it looks like one of the finest web apps out there. It helps individual publishers make apps out of their content and is aimed at a lot of businesses like restaurants, blogs, music, events etc.
Conduit is quite popular in the web world, especially with amazing interactive apps/services like Wibiya which you might find on a plethora of websites. Their mobile offering (Conduit Mobile) is as powerful and interactive as the rest.
At its core, Conduit Mobile is a web-based platform to build your mobile app from your own content. In our case, we've got our blog's RSS feed along with all our popular social channels – Facebook and Twitter. The ease of use on Conduit Mobile is amazing: you get started in no more than a minute and all we had to do was enter our blog's URL. Almost everything else was taken care of right from the start.
Hardcore developers and large-scale publishers (like TNW, for instance) do not usually give a thought for web-based solutions like Conduit Mobile. Given that the range of content differs and the level of customization varies, it's an agreeable opinion but I think there's some serious power in Conduit Mobile. Especially when it comes to customization.
Conduit Mobile is best suited for publishers, artists, bloggers and other content-producers who aren't intent on putting up 10,000 hours to learn to code an app or shell out thousands to get the same done.
Our experiments with Conduit Mobile have been pretty fantastic so far.
1). Easy to Start with
I fear the blank state as much as any writer, designer and developer. A successful app is one where there's no blank state to start from. When you get started with Conduit Mobile, you're at this place:
It fetches the RSS from your website (if there is one) and builds the content from it. What really surprised me was that it also attached the Facebook and Twitter profile out of our blog and linked it to the app. Now you've already got a complete app with content, social channels and about & contact pages ready!
2). Add More, As Much As You Want
For iGeeksBlog, we're primarily focused on content being delivered correctly. But content, by its definition, is not going to be just words (posts). And since Conduit Mobile targets a wide spectrum of users, they've got a bucket load of different types of content that can be added. Like e-Commerce, events, photos, personalized collections, map, multimedia, a particular webpage etc.
3). Intense Customization
Change the colors, logo, background, navigation.. there's a lot of things to tweak here. It would've been amazing if there was some way to change the typography too. Speaking of customization, you can play around with the splash screens, the logos and the navigation. The navigation is particularly important and it's good that you get to tweak it to a certain extent.
Push Notifications are a good feature to have for an app. Although you'll have to go on a near $100 monthly subscription, it's a feature that many apps use to interact better.
4. Pricing: There is a severely-limited free plan but the $39/month gold should be a good point to start for most websites. Now that means you've got to have a decent way of generating revenues so that you can afford such a plan. But if you're serious about having a dedicated, native mobile app (that works on iPhone and Android), that means you're going to need to have a dedicated service too. A $99/month service gets you more options like Push Notifications that take interactivity and engagement to the next level.
Conduit Mobile creates your app for the iPhone (all 5, 4S, 4) and the iPad besides the Android and HTML 5 version. The developers are also working to add Windows Phone to the list.
You can test it out too (for free) for your blog or website where your content is. Conduit Mobile looks just like the perfect one.
Check out Conduit Mobile here.