Whether you love them or hate them, Apple’s yearly smartphone updates tend to dominate conversations around the future of mobile devices. Apple proudly touted that it sold more than 10 million iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus devices in its launch weekend.
Those are actual tracked sales in the hands of consumers, and while Apple Australia doesn’t break out local figures, the lines to buy iPhones or sign up for contract plans were extensive across the nation. Now that the iPhone 6 and the massive iPhone 6 Plus are here, what do you need to prepare or adapt to as a business.
1. Contactless payments and mobile wallets
Apple’s newly introduced Apple Pay system has no Australian release date just yet, but the company’s made plenty of noise about its potential. Apple isn’t always the first to market with new solutions, but it tends to take over the popular consciousness when it comes to technology ideas.
Australia is already well advanced in contactless payments path with many competing services. You can’t speed Apple’s progress with regards to service integration, but it would pay to be able to explain to customers that other options are available with similar functionality, if and when Apple Pay arrives on our shore.
2. Larger screens means more engagement opportunities
Content on mobile sites have tended towards simple text because resolutions were low, and there’s only so much you can fit into a 4-inch screen. Shifting to larger screen sizes means that consumers will expect richer content you’d see from a desktop browser to their mobile devices.
If your business site still renders a simple mobile site, it would pay to consider a wider screen or responsive style design that works well on larger mobile devices. That won’t just pay off for iPhone users, as there are plenty of fans of other “phablet” devices, such as Samsung’s Galaxy Note series.
3. iOS 8 changes the app game
The new iPhones run Apple’s latest operating system, and it’s one that opens up a number of app possibilities that were previously unworkable on Apple platforms. The TouchID sensor that’s used to lock down consumer iPhones can now also be used as a form of verification for apps, while the native browser now supports WebGL, bringing with it new opportunities for 3D visuals.
Why does that matter to your business? This means you could develop web-based apps that don’t need App store verification and work across multiple mobile devices — not just iOS. App development for marketing purposes and client services will be easier than ever before.
4. Competition with online stores will intensify
The biggest change in the new iPhones is Apple’s adoption of larger screen sizes: 4.7 inches on the iPhone 6 and 5.5 inches on the iPhone 6 Plus. This provides opportunities for you to present any web-based information in a more interactive way, but you’ll also have to be aware that consumers will be more aware of larger phones pushing against their pockets, prompting them to do online research while interacting with you. That’s the reality of the online age, but the faster connectivity of the new devices will only serve to intensify that trend.