BookMyShow, India’s largest online entertainment ticketing platform, has been touted as one of the best apps of 2017 on both Google PlayStore and on Apple’s App Store. As per Google, BookMyShow was one of the most innovative apps this year, a title give to those which explored interactive new ways of budgeting time and money, helping others, and experiencing the world around them.

On Apple’s App Store, BookMyShow featured in their Best of 2017 list in its Trends of the Year section that featured App Store editors’ most download worthy games and apps globally based on topics and trends that were popular on the App store throughout the year. BookMyShow was recognized as an app which helps people get more done each day through time saving personal services that continue to evolve.

Rightly so, BookMyShow has moved beyond just an online entertainment ticketing platform and has completely transformed itself into an experience provider with options of booking tickets for sports, events and concerts or tuning into Jukebox – a platform to stream the latest music and podcasts.

BookMyShow, with its mobile first approach, continues to drive over 75% of total transactions through mobile [apps and mobile web]. In 2017, BookMyShow particularly focused on improving user experience on its platform. Some major visible innovations included roll out of Jukebox- BookMyShow’s audio entertainment service, becoming the first Indian entertainment ticketing player to be a part of WhatsApp for Business pilot wherein WhatsApp replaced SMS as a ticket confirmation channel and rolling out the app in additional vernacular languages taking the total regional language count to 8.

On the other hand, BookMyShow has been tirelessly working at the backend to make its app a lot more intelligent and intuitive. The app now recommends movies and events, basis a user’s purchase history, right at the top, along with preferred cinemas and show times. The interactions between a user and the app have also been made a lot simpler. They no longer have to toggle back and forth and can simply tap to choose between different show times, cinemas while booking for a movie. These minor yet extremely significant changes have improved performance by 2x on major booking screens such as homepage, show times, and seat layout.

On the non-movies front, BookMyShow continued to seamlessly handle thousands of booking requests at once for mega concerts like Ed Sheeran Live in Mumbai, tickets for which were sold out in a matter of 48 minutes! BookMyShow improved the post purchase experience of the users by engaging with them through video and audio content [Jukebox] hosted on BookMyShow. The discovery of experiences was also made easier with introduction of many new filters and improved search option.

Parikshit Dar, Director, BookMyShow said

At its heart, BookMyShow is a simple product that provides a simple solution to pertinent problems that users like you and I face related to entertainment experiences. In all our endeavours, we continue to identify and solve these problems to create an unmatched experience for our users. We are absolutely thrilled that our efforts this year have not just been loved by our users but also recognized by both Google and Apple.

Apple Best of 2017 can be found here. Google Play Best of 2017 can be found here

Google announced the launch of Files Go app that takes a mobile-first approach to freeing up space, finding files faster and easily sharing them with others, even when offline. Starting today, Files Go will be globally available on the Google Play Store for all phones running Android 5.0 [Lollipop] and higher.

Talking about the new app, Caesar Sengupta, Vice President, Next Billion Users, Google, in a blogpost said

Every day, millions of smartphones run out of space. While phones with 16 GB or 32 GB of storage are becoming more popular, many phones around the world have much less storage, often as low as 4 GB. Users often struggle to keep on top of the storage space on their phones and are constantly having to choose between what to keep or delete. We have been testing Files Go for a month, and the average user is saving 1 GB of space and has shared many files with others without using data.

Files Go helps you

  • Free up space – Get personalized suggestions about which files to delete, whether it’s unused apps, large files, duplicate files or low-resolution videos and memes detected using Google’s latest mobile vision technology.
  • Find files faster – No more navigating through a maze of folders. Find exactly the stuff you want with smart filters that automatically organize your images, videos, apps, documents and more.
  • Backup files to the cloud- If you want to keep a file forever, select it from the Files menu and back it up to Google Drive or any other cloud storage app.
  • Share files offline – Transfer directly from your phone to a nearby friend’s phone without using any data. The file transfers are encrypted, fast (up to 125 Mbps) and free.

Makaan.com, part of Elara Technologies Pte Ltd. which also owns Housing.com and PropTiger.com, has introduced an Instant App version for Makaan App. Makaan.com is India’s first digital real estate company to have made its app compatible to Google’s Instant Apps, available to Android users.

Image Source – Makaan

The Makaan Instant App is in line with the brand’s vision of empowering its users with top technology solutions. With Makaan Instant App, an Android user will now be able to experience the ease of Makaan App without actually having to install it on his/her mobile phone. If a user sends a link to property details from Makaan.com’s website to another user, the recipient will be able to access the details even if he/she doesn’t have the app installed.  Whereas, without Instant App, tapping on the link would’ve taken the recipient to the web version of the site.

A user simply has to go to ‘Settings’, select ‘Google’ and then activate ‘Instant Apps’ from the list. He then has to visit Makaan.com website through Google on his mobile phone and engage in the most seamless property search experience ever, similar to using an app. This helps users to save storage space in their phone.

Commenting on the development, Ravi Bhushan, Group CPTO, Housing.com, PropTiger.com and Makaan.com, said

The usage of mobile phones for transaction purposes has seen a huge surge in India. We have also observed that more than half of Makaan.com’s web traffic is on mobile browsers. In line with the belief of having our customers at the centre of our offerings, it was imperative to invest in a technology like Instant Apps to ensure the best customer experience for all.

Speaking on the rising demand for this feature, Ravi further added

Our current engagement metrics on Makaan App is more than 2x better than the web experience.  This clearly indicates that if more users start migrating to Instant App, the engagement levels will go up significantly and we will be able to offer better property search experience to more customers.

This service was introduced by Google in May 2017 and Makaan.com is one of the early adopters of this technology. Instant Apps also allows users to first check the interface of any app by selecting ‘Try-It-Now’ before downloading the app.

Get started with Makaan Instant App, you need to perform the following steps

Go to ‘Settings’ on your mobile phone and click on ‘Google’

In ‘Google’, click on ‘Instant Apps’

Activate ‘Instant Apps’ and switch it ‘On’

Now go to Google on your mobile browser and search for Makaan.com

You will find Makaan.com along with ‘Instant’ written across it in the search results

Click on Makaan.com and enjoy a seamless, app-like property search experience without installing the app on your phone

Do share your feedback/experience in the comments section…

Upon integration of its web and mobile app products with Truecaller’s mobile identity solution, Truecaller SDK, leading e-commerce healthcare start-up 1mg has witnessed an impact upside of 21% increase in their daily user registration.

This integration with Truecaller SDK enables new 1mg users to instantly sign-up in a simple and quick manner using auto-fill functionality and completely bypassing the SMS based OTP process, using their Truecaller mobile identity.

With the above impact, this integration has enabled 1mg to seamlessly on-board new users and appropriately connect with them for fulfilling key use cases in their platform like doctor consultations, diagnostic tests and last mile medicine ordering and delivery. The Truecaller SDK solution has been live on 1mg for about a year now and they have seen very encouraging results.

Truecaller SDK is a developer toolkit for digital startups, app developers, and other online businesses. An efficient, secure and asset-light solution, Truecaller SDK is designed to minimize complexity in user on-boarding and verification process as well as helps businesses build more trust on their products, offer more personalisation and enables further evolution of the quality of users being served by them.

Commenting on the partnership, Priyam Bose, Director & Head, Global Developer & Startup Relations, Truecaller said

Our partnership with 1mg epitomizes the value we bring to the burgeoning integrated digital and mobile healthcare sector in India. Truecaller’s Mobile identity toolkit is enabling better personalization, more trust and seamless consumer experience, and predictable last mile service delivery. This in turn is leading businesses like 1mg to achieve better customer satisfaction and repeat engagements.

Gaurav Agarwal, Co-founder, 1mg said

Truecaller enabled us to obtain verified user identities, right at the time of signup, significantly improving sign up rates while reducing hurdles associated with OTP based registration processes. For a mobile first country like India, Truecaller helped us bridge the chasm to giving users a seamless and automated mobile registration process thus reducing user drop offs and increasing engagement across the board.

Google India reaffirmed its commitment to help developers find success by building high quality products for India by India. In its first ever App Excellence Summit in Bengaluru, Google brought together over 700 Indian app and games developers, where the company shared tips and tools to help developers create the best quality Android apps that are locally relevant.

In addition to this, at the summit, Google also announced its ‘Made in India’ initiative. Starting now, Indian developers can apply for a chance to have apps that are specifically optimized for the Indian market showcased on the Google Play store in India in a special section. All they have to do is apply here

Addressing the summit, Purnima Kochikar, Director, Business Development, Games & Applications, Google Play said

At Google Play, we are committed to helping Indian developers of all sizes seize this opportunity and build successful, locally relevant businesses.  A lot of what we do at Google Play is support developers’ imaginations and make Android consumers aware of the amazing new experiences our developers are creating.

The majority of Indian internet users are going online primarily via their smartphones and this number is growing at a phenomenal rate. There are now more people using Android devices in India than in the US. People in India also install more than a billion apps every month from Google Play. These numbers might seem staggering already, but the number of apps installed in India has grown by 150 per cent each year. Indian consumer spend on apps and games is accelerating at a rapid pace as well, tripling in just the past year alone.

James Sanders-Regional Director, Google Play APAC
Rajan Anandan-VP SEA & India

The summit showcased Google Play success stories from local developers-many developers including HealthifymeUrbanClapRailYatri, and Dailyhunt are already building popular, locally relevant solutions through the resources, tools and support on Google Play. Attendees also got a chance to attend skill-building consultation sessions with Googlers, and visit demo booths to learn more about the latest features and products that Google has to offer the developer community. For those who were unable to attend the summit in person, but are keen to learn more, they can view the entire event at the livestream here and witness all the exciting India-specific content and announcements.

Prior to the announcements, in 2016 Google announced Build for Billions guidelines to help developers overcome challenges such as varying network connectivity, device specifications and high data costs. The build for billions playbook is a step-by-step guide for developers to learn about the features, tools, and best practices to get apps ready to meet the needs of billions of Android users in India as well as globally.

Truecaller have rolled out its newest update for Android 8.21 with interface changes for easier access to spam inbox. The new design will allow users to experience a  cleaner inbox and pay attention to the SMS that matter most with a spam tab segregating the unwanted messages.

Truecaller recently revealed through their Truecaller Insights Special Report, that India receives an overwhelming majority of spam calls. In its strive towards protecting its users from unwanted calls and potential fraud, Truecaller with its new interface is continuing its endeavour to ensure that users are better protected and more aware of incoming spam messages.

Themes in TrueCaller
Look of the SPAM Inbox

In this update, Truecaller has also included new app themes to match every user’s unique identity. This includes new colour combinations, which include colours like royal, coffee, grey, dark, and pitch black.

Other upgrades in version 8.21 include reoccurring pro subscriptions, flash messaging themes, mark all as read in block view and the ability to save MMS. The new update also gives the users an option to block & view profile on incoming flash.

LinkedIn, the world’s largest professional network with more than 42 million members in India have announced the launch of the LinkedIn Lite Android app, a faster and lighter version of its flagship app. With mobile fast becoming the first screen in India, the Lite app offers a seamless and intuitive experience of LinkedIn to users on Android’s operating system, that accounts for 97% of India’s smartphone market [Source].

Developed by LinkedIn’s R&D team in Bengaluru, LinkedIn Lite app is first being rolled out to members in India. The Lite app was inspired by the success of the lightweight mobile website, which was launched in September 2016. LinkedIn plans to roll out the mobile web version and the Android app in over 60+ countries shortly.


To help overcome the challenges of unpredictable internet connectivity, LinkedIn designed Lite to make the platform more easily accessible to the growing population of mobile internet users. Built to run smoothly and offer faster access even on lower end smartphones, the app loads extremely fast – in under five seconds, even on 2G network. The app size is only 1MB and reduces data usage by 80 percent. It also offers all key features like news feed, jobs, profile, network, messaging, notifications, and search.

Commenting on the launch, Akshay Kothari, LinkedIn’s Country Manager for India said

Besides providing a fast, data-light solution for professionals in slow network areas, we hope the LinkedIn Lite app will democratize access to economic opportunity. Regardless of their device or location, we hope to level the playing field for all LinkedIn members so they can get closer to their dream jobs, grow their networks and become more successful.

The LinkedIn Lite app is available on Play Store for all Android users in India.

Gaming has been a crucial part of the mobile industry since the launch of the App Store in 2008. For seven years in a row, gaming apps have been used more than apps from any other category. Consequently, mobile gaming has truly shaped how we engage on our smartphones today. However, since 2015, gaming sessions have been on the decline. Does that indicate the end of the mobile gaming era ?

Flurry Analytics reviewed the gaming industry based on app usage [Flurry Analytics tracks over 940,000 apps across all app categories which provides insights into 2.1 Billion devices]. To investigate current mobile gaming trends, they examined gaming categories combining iOS and Android data and bundled related gaming categories together.

Who are the heavy gamers ?

The top 5 mobile gaming countries [United States, India, China, Brazil and Russia] are driving 50% of all global gaming sessions. While the United States, India, and China take the top positions for gaming sessions, other countries are also showing a growing percentage of gaming addicts. For example, the United States accounts for 20% of all gaming sessions globally, but only 13% of all U.S. app sessions are games.

According to Electronic Entertainment Design and Research, users who are spending more than 5 hours per week in mobile games in North America are 52% female, 38.6 years old, and use both a smartphone and a tablet for gaming in 60% of all cases. While the real gaming addicts are in Europe [users in Netherlands and Sweden spend both 31% of all their app sessions in games], these countries don’t have a significant attribution to the overall global gaming sessions. In fact, Netherlands only accounts for 2% and Sweden for about 1% of all global gaming sessions.

Key Gaming Categories in Decline

For the second year in a row, gaming sessions are declining year-over-year. Three years ago, arcade, casual and brain games were driving 55% of all gaming sessions. Since then, there has been substantial declines in two of those categories – Arcade and Casual games. Arcade games, which accounted for 24% of all gaming sessions in 2014, decreased by 34%, and casual games by 50%. The declines of those two very large gaming categories were a key factor for the overall game session downturn within the last two years. A lot of those sessions simply dropped and were not spent in other gaming categories.

Are there any winners in a time of decline ?

While mobile gaming sessions have declined by 10% year-over-year, some categories continue to gain traction in usage. This year, card & casino apps reached a spot in the top three gaming categories. Sessions grew by 22% since 2014, and the category now accounts for 15% of all gaming sessions. Separately, the growth of smaller app categories is driving diversification for the industry. For example, board and strategy games grew 29% year-over-year from 2016 to 2017 and sessions are up 80% since 2014. This rise increased the category’s session share of all gaming apps from 1.6% to 4.0%.

They also identified similar trends in other smaller categories such as racing. Racing grew by 26% year-over-year and increased its game app session share from 1.6% in 2014 to 2.1% in 2017.

Fewer but longer gaming sessions

Flurry data shows that time spent in gaming apps has remained steady over the last year [+1%]. The average US consumer spends 33 minutes per day in mobile games, and our data showed that the average session length grew from 6 minutes and 22 seconds in 2016 to 7 minutes and 6 seconds in 2017. This is a significant advance, considering that the average session length never exceeded 6 minutes in 2014 or 2015. Additionally, the latest year-over-year session length growth equals an increase of 44 seconds (+12%) per session, which indicates higher in-game user engagement than in previous years. These statistics reveal that while more gamers open gaming apps less often, they often spend more time playing games during each session.

Size does Matter

In the gaming industry, one thing remains true : the bigger the screen, the greater the engagement.

When users play on-the-go, they take their medium-sized phone or phablet. However, if they are purposely dedicating time out of their day to mobile gaming, they are more likely to pick up their full-size tablet device, which explains average session lengths of over 10 minutes on full-size tablets.

With regard to the hours of the day that are most popular for on-the-go versus on-the-couch gaming, tablet gaming showed a steady peak in the morning. Most users carry their phone with them during the day, especially in the morning as they commute to school or work, so this is when many gamers play on-the-go. On the other hand, the use of tablets for couch gaming peaks in the evening, as more users log in from the comfort of their couch or bed. While gaming time on the phone still peaks in the evening, it’s important to consider that overall phone usage peaks at that time as well.

New users reflect increased revenue opportunities

As noted above, the reported shift in time spent on apps leads to more engaged attention spans at a time, which creates new monetization opportunities. Recently, SensorTower disclosed that the combined mobile gaming app store revenue on iOS and Android increased from $7.8 Bn in Q1 2016 to $11.9 Bn in Q1 2017. This equals a 53% year-over-year revenue growth. Besides different gameplay periods, users are becoming more comfortable spending money in apps, which is positively impacting mobile game revenue. SensorTower also found that download to revenue conversion on iOS has increased by 38% from January 2016 to January 2017. All of these observations lead to the conclusion that the mobile gaming industry still has high potential to drive revenue.

Mobile gaming beyond 2017 and tips for app developers

The gaming industry remains a very attractive category for app developers, especially as revenue conversions are growing. We’re seeing that longer session lengths are opening up new opportunities for innovative engagement and monetization tactics. For example, the peak usage hours on mobile devices are between 6 and 9 pm, which app developers can leverage to target specific users with acquisition or engagement campaigns.

Looking ahead, Flurry anticipates new technologies such as virtual reality and augmented reality to open a new chapter of mobile gaming and to enhance the in-app experience as a whole. And gamers are ready – they are already having longer game-plays on their favorite gaming apps than ever.

The complete report can be downloaded from here