It’s our favorite time of year – when all of the crazy facts from the world’s internet use come alive in infographics and clever videos to show us how much time we spent online. Check out our own edition to 2013′s recaps below with the annual Mobile Year in Review 2013 for Mobile Future on the biggest trends in mobile in 2013. If you’re left wanting more, you can watch the Mobile Year in Review 2010, 2011 and 2012 too!
We’re thrilled to introduce The Mobileys, a brand new competition that rewards entrepreneurs who look to inspire change through mobile innovation, produced by Mobile Future and conceptualized/ designed by iStrategyLabs. The Mobileys seeks to discover an individual or early stage startup that recently launched or plans to launch their mobile app, service or other product within the next six months. Submissions should be cutting-edge, creative “game changers” that use mobile in unprecedented ways to positively impact our lives.
Winners will receive cash prizes of up to $10,000 and be invited to demo their product in Washington, DC in December 2013.
Think you have what it takes?
Prove it: TheMobileys.com
Head over and play it now from 5pm-10pm EST August 19th – 30th before reading another word.
A Skill Crane?
Yes, a skill crane. Not just any skill crane, but one controled by you over the internet on Facebook!
Our previous post provided a sneak peak at some of the hardware we were using and building to make this crane a reality. Check out the following behind the scenes shots of the physical machine.
Here at ISL we thrive on innovation. We’re addicted to the thrill of building things no one has ever seen (like the GE Social Fridge and the REDD’s Launcher. We’ve recently begun working with Nickelodeon on just such a project.
Here is the thing: it’s top secret. I know, I know…you’re all like, “common just tell us what it is already…something, ANYTHING”. I can’t. I won’t. But I will give you a few behind the scenes sneak peeks to tide you over until mid-August when it launches…
It all started out with a creative idea, as many things here do.
We’ve unleashed our Arduino microcontrolers…
And powered up a brand new Social Machine….
…made out of parts we’re cranking out of our 3D printer…
And wahla! Here we are testing out the prototype…
This is really the tip of the iceberg kids.
You may be thinking to yourself, “oh yes, I know exactly what those iSLers are up to.”
But…really…you have NO idea… Stay tuned.
Architects dream of building sky scrapers. Writers dream of writing novels. ISL Designers & Developers? They dream of building iPad apps.
The platform is uniquely seductive for one simple reason: an app is a hermetically sealed, self-contained universe. A universe where (nearly) all variables are known, and under the creator’s control. And there is nothing we like more than control.
So, when DoubleTree by Hilton brought us their “Home & Away” iPad app, nearly one year ago, with clear instructions to “remake it entirely,” it was quite literally a dream come true.
Our only caveat? We wanted to build it in iOS6 before it officially launched. Using this new software would allow us to take full advantage of a number of novel features, including: grid layouts, enhanced maps and share sheets.
Armed with these insights, iSL set out to design an iPad app that could serve as an efficient, highly functional travel assistant — one that would improve the experience of being “on the road” in a very real way. It was clear that building something aesthetic was not going to be enough: this had to be a workhorse of an app.
In iOS 6, Apple provided the UICollectionView class which allowed us to build all kinds of great interfaces. For this app, we chose a straightforward layout and used a traditional, scrolling collection view. We were putting a lot of information in each collection view cell, so we did not want to make the layout itself too confusing.
The concept is simple though: tell the app which bank, gas station, coffee shop, pharmacy, rental car, etc. that you, as an individual, prefer, and the app will effortlessly map your brand preferences around your hotel. The app also allows you to connect to @DoubleTree on Twitter to voice your feedback.
Fairly quickly, it became clear that the map was the star of the show. We wanted to highlight the hotel location but still provide relevant details for the users surroundings. One of Apple’s most contested decisions in iOS 6 was to switch to using their own maps solution, moving away from Google. While opinions may vary, it allowed us to really bring to life the map and info displayed within the app. In addition to the in-app map, we also included the ability to get directions to any location of interest. With one click, you are into the built-in Maps application with turn-by-turn directions.
And thus, version 2.0 for the DoubleTree by Hilton’s Home & Away iPad app was born (iTunes Download):