Apple iOS10 gets a long-awaited overhaul this fall, and judging from its preview, Apple is shifting its strategy to focus on instant messaging. Out of all the feature-rich changes it is rolling out, Apple urges us first and foremost to “Express yourself in bold new ways in Messages”. Everything else in the iOS10 release, including modifications to Maps, Photos and Siri, follow almost as an afterthought. iMessage fans will now enjoy an avalanche of gigantic emoji, bubble and fireworks effects, overlay handwriting on photos and videos, and of course, gratuitous stickers. These features will be more than a little familiar to anyone who has used WeChat, Line, Snapchat or Facebook messenger over the past year. So how is Apple iOS10 a serious messaging game-changer?
Apple ups the ante by opening up its iMessage app to third-party developers. Made possible through the iMessage App drawer, users can install and access virtually any other app without having to exit iMessage. . It might not seem the most revolutionary change, but think about it:
When was the last time you enjoyed getting kicked out of Facebook Messenger to the App Store just to install a new app? Do you enjoy the hassle of multi-tasking between your messenger app and other apps?
I rest my case.
For developers and content creators, Apple’s move presents a plethora of opportunities for improving their discoverability. Any new content sent via iMessage comes with an automatic prompt to install the app used to create the content. By eliminating the “Jump to App Store” hurdle, the iOS10 update makes it more convenient than ever for developers to reach their users.
Even better, in opening iMessage to third-party developers, we foresee a future where content creators like yourself are more empowered than ever before. We all love that moment when we receive a message with a video clip that makes us laugh, stimulates our imagination, or just makes us want to exercise our creative muscles. Wouldn’t you love to capture that moment with an animated GIF of your own creation and share it with the rest of the world? It’s all possible with Kdan’s ground-breaking Animation Desk app. Importing videos could speed up your animation process as you wouldn’t have to draw everything from scratch. Now imagine drawing on Animation Desk and then sharing your works seamlessly, all from the comfort of iMessage. It’s easy to see why the iOS10 update and iMessage are a boon to all creatives.
Designers and content creators have much to cheer with Apple iOS10’s improved iMessage capabilities. Using Kdan Mobile’s cutting-edge design, editing and other content creation tools deeply integrated with the iMessage platform, creatives will be in a better position than ever to reach their target audience with richer content experiences.
Apple’s decision to empower its users by making it easier to access third-party apps from iMessage points to a broad trend in mobile computing and content creation – the emergence of messaging as the mother of all platforms, embracing all other apps. This is no coincidence given ubiquitous messaging habits, and how lucrative it is to leverage users’ personal networks to connect with brands, retailers and businesses. The fact that popular brands like General Electric and Hello Kitty have accounts on Snapchat and Line, tells us why Apple wants its slice of the messaging pie.
Whether you are animating a new GIF, sketching a personalised emoji, designing anything in general, or simply processing documents, you will soon be able to do so from within the iMessage platform. The big difference is if your content proves to be popular and shareworthy, it will go viral even faster than usual since the need to jump to a different app is eliminated. For all you know, your design could be the next Brown (the bear on Line app)