mobile apps

Mobile Tech Roundup

1.  5 Strategies to Drive Mobile Engagement

How can you manage your app in such a way that it makes users want to return to it over and over again? Keeping your users in mind when creating push notifications, updating content in your app, and thinking through the overall value your app brings, are just a few considerations.

With these helpful strategies, increasing engagement in your app might be easier than you think.

2. Will mobile devices eventually replace desktop?

It’s the question on everyone’s mind as the world of mobile continues to dominate the way we interact with technology. User-friendly devices like smartphones, tablets, and wearable technology leads us to consider: what is the future of desktop?

3. Two out of every three digital minutes are spent on mobile

The numbers speak for themselves. How are you making your communication strategy more mobile-friendly?

4. Complete overview of the mobile app development process (Infographic)

Despite the complex process, mobile app development is well worth it! This helpful infographic shows what all is involved.

5. Harnessing the Power of Mobile for Healthcare

With new opportunities in mobile technology, our well being and overall health is being tied to our digital habits.

Could apps eventually lead to effective positive behavior intervention? The recent developments in mobile technology seem to prove that leading a healthier lifestyle with the help of mobile is possible.

What are you some of your thoughts about the ways mobile technology is continually dominating the digital space?





The Mobile Revolution and the Church

7:00am hits, phone alarm goes off. Eat breakfast and check Twitter for morning news. Play your favorite Spotify playlist on your morning commute. Check notifications on your lunch break. Pay for coffee with the Starbucks app. Text family about dinner plans. Watch the hilarious Jimmy Fallon video your friend sent. Snap a pic of the breathtaking sunset. And much more in-between.

Sound familiar? Maybe the details differ for everyone, but one thing is the same for us all: mobile has become woven into our daily lives. With mobile passing the TV as “America’s first screen”, and people spending almost 2.5 hours daily engaging with apps alone, content consumed on a mobile device isn’t something to brush off as a passing trend.

In fact, we say with confidence that mobile has become vital. With the revolution of apps, mobile devices can now sync our daily, necessary, and leisurely activities all in one control center. People are relying on their devices to consume and communicate what is useful, helpful, and empowering in their daily lives.

[Enter the Church] These are the people that make up your congregation. These are the people that are actively seeking how to use their devices in greater and better ways. These are the people that can greatly benefit from your church’s resources beyond the Sunday service. With the global reach of the app stores, churches and ministries now have an amazing opportunity to enter the space of mobile technology and use it to provide a vital function in their congregation’s daily lives: hearing the Gospel, and staying connected to Christ’s Church.

This is a call to action. An action that we’ve seen countless churches use to fulfill their mission to spread the good news of Jesus, and use technology to be an active presence in the lives of those they shepherd. From more app downloads than members in their congregation, to increases in sermon downloads, to increases in giving, we’ve seen churches like The Village Church, Elevation Church, Fresh Life, and many others find great success through The Church App Platform. By making sermon archives, blogs, push notifications, giving, and other resources instantly accessible, apps can help you meet your audience in their context, on their time.

Think about the people that work weekends and can’t make it to Sunday services. Think about those that need your pastor’s weekly blog post to encourage their spirits. Think about the people who will share sermons via their social channels and will reach their friends and families as a result.

While there are a lot of overwhelming and uncertain ramifications that may accompany the mobile revolution, we challenge you to look at the great and powerful ways technology can be used for good. Here at Subsplash, we are passionate about using technology and delightful design to help make the most of your Gospel content. We want to see the Gospel shared to the ends of the earth. With The Church App Platform you can easily create and manage your own mobile apps, putting your content in the hands of a wider audience. We’d love to help you get started.

Does Your School Have an App?

In today’s world, mobile and tablet use is rapidly growing and becoming more integrated into our everyday lives.  With over 6 billion mobile phones worldwide, 195 million tablets sold in 2013, and “nomophobia”- the fear of being without a mobile device- being a common occurrence in today’s culture, this growth is no surprise.

So what does this mean for today’s schools and educational communities?

Do Churches Really Need an App?

It seems that everyone is talking about apps these days. A word once known more for its prowess at dinner parties has now become synonymous with mobile applications. With this craze, people everywhere are thinking, “hmm..maybe I should get an app for (insert creative thought here).” A word of caution, not all app ideas should be invested in and not every organization needs their own app. So how do you know if you should take this venture on, and if so, where do you start? The road of mobile development can be daunting, so it helps to plan well and to know where to start.

First off, there are many kinds of apps. For the sake of this conversation, I’m going to primarily focus on apps built for churches and ministries. For those looking to build an app for your organization, follow two simple rules: provide content and deliver quality. It needs to be done really well and it needs to have a reason for people to use it regularly.

If there is no reason for someone to download and then repeatedly want to use your app, it’s probably not going to be very successful. You need content, lots of fresh meaningful content. That’s one of the biggest reasons a lot of churches and ministries have had wildly successful apps.

At Subsplash, we have had the opportunity to work with incredible ministries of all sizes. We see over half a million page views daily on our platform. People are using it like crazy and the number one reason people use these ministry apps is to access media. Churches are in the unique place of being content creators and at least once a week there is a new sermon that they want to get into people’s hands. Not only are churches and ministries adding sermons to their apps, but there are a whole host of other things you can provide through the app such as blogs/news, events, online giving, sermon notes and bulletins, music, small group resources, Bibles and reading plans, and pretty much anything else you can think of. The app shouldn’t just be a duplicate of your site, but rather a source to get relevant content into people’s hands. Keep it simple and put your best foot forward.

Along with content, you need to make sure that your app is done incredibly well. As technology continues to develop, people demand more. They want it to be cooler, faster, smarter, and much more fun to use. So, if you have incredible content but you develop a sub-par app, people will hit the eject button before you get a second chance.

Apps are a powerful tool if done well. They can do much more than a mobile site or simply accessing the web through your phone. Take a feature like listening to audio in an app. If your app audio player only allows you to hit play and pause or do a simple fast-forward/rewind, you are going to add frustrations to the end user. What happens when you get a phone call while listening to a 45 minute sermon? Shouldn’t the app remember where you last left off? Or what if you live in a place where you don’t have the best cellular coverage, wouldn’t it be nice if you could download that audio for offline listening? These are just a few examples that seem like luxury items, until you start using the software and realize how important they truly are. We often don’t notice the quality until we use something that doesn’t meet our expectations. Don’t get caught being the church that built an app that was frustrating to use.

Overall, your app should be simple to use, it should work how you expect it to, and it should look really nice. It doesn’t have to win awards, but make sure it’s visually appealing and a delightful experience.

Most of the churches that have utilized our software have seen more downloads of their app than attendees in the church. Sometimes up to 50 times more downloads of their app than church members. Also, most churches see their sermon downloads increase as well as a spike in online giving. As an example, one church with a membership of 1000 people saw 2,000 downloads, 22,000 launches, and increased giving within the first six months of having their app. If your ministry has content and wants to present it well, doing an app might just be the right next step.

Discover more: Watch the video

Why Mobile? Do I Need An App?

The Question:

“Do we need an app?” That’s one of the primary tech related questions being asked today by organizations of all sizes. There are a number of reasons to consider taking your message and offerings mobile, but how do you know if it’s right for you?

Today, people are consuming data nearly as much on their mobile devices as they are on their computers. In fact, mobile is projected to become the dominant source for data consumption in the near future. Just two short years ago, app development was largely reserved for game creators or huge corporations with substantial budgets for custom development. Today, apps are being created daily for anyone looking to connect with their audience in a new way. It’s no longer a conversation for the Fortune 500 or tech elite, it’s now mainstream.

The Story:

It all started with a little company called Apple, you know, the world’s most valuable company ( Or you could say it started with Palm in the late 90's, but we'll just start with Apple when they created the iPhone and subsequently the App Store, which then started a revolution of mobile mania that created a new industry and attracted competition from other humble companies such as Google and their Android Platform and Marketplace. When the iPhone first came out, mobile websites were the first to break ground. These mobile friendly sites made navigating easy on a tiny screen. But soon, the incredible features and overall experience of apps began to seize control. These days, apps are by far the preferred choice by mobile users. In fact, people spend an average of 81 minutes per day using apps. Apps give users the ability to do things that still aren’t possible with mobile websites such as bluetooth, camera, and GPS. Apps have the edge in the overall speed, performance, and user experience because they are designed specifically for your device. Now, with HTML5 on the scene, mobile sites are growing in feature capabilities and experience, but will likely always be a step behind. Furthermore, to have an app in the App Store is a big deal. It’s more than just having something that works with a mobile phone, it’s about making it incredibly available. The App Store, as well as the Android Marketplace, are today’s storefronts. It’s the market and it’s where the mobile generation shops!

The Answer:

So, do you need an app? Well, it really depends on what you want to do. We’ve seen two primary keys to having a successful mobile app; content and experience. First and foremost, you have to have the content. If you are creating an app as a novelty, you are probably wasting your time and money. But, if you are giving your audience a reason to use your app and to return to your app, then you should think about mobile. It’s just where people are! Why not make your content easier than ever to access? Second, you need to make sure that your mobile app is good, really good. If people download an app and it just doesn’t look good or work right, they will likely delete it immediately or never open it again. Be very cautious with how you proceed. You need to make sure your app is high quality and you need to have a plan to keep it up to date. If you focus on keeping your content fresh and having a high quality experience for your audience, you should have a very positive response.

The final piece of the puzzle is to figure out how to get your app developed and then published. There are a few options to consider and they couldn’t be more different.


You can work with work with a consulting firm like us to help you build an incredible custom app across multiple platforms. This will result in the best possible end product and you can really do anything you want. It will truly be a brilliant bit of software, but it will cost much more and will take time.

2: In-House

The second option is to try to do it yourself or work with an individual developer. This process is often the longest and the end result will vary largely depending on what you are trying to accomplish. It may also end up costing more money than you bargained for.

3: Platform

The third option is to use a native app platform to create a high quality mobile app at a fraction of the cost of custom development. Using an app platform like ours, the Subsplash App Platform, gives you complete control of your content and helps you offer a variety of features without having to break the bank. You would use our App Builder to control all aspects of your app from layout and branding to new content. This is also the best option for keeping your app up to date. We take care of OS updates, bug fixes, analytics, add in new features, give full tech support, and more. It is really the simplest option if you have content that you want to present to your audience. With these apps you have a number of robust features for content presentation such as videos, audio, blogs, calendars, news, maps, social sharing, and more.

I hope this has helped you answer some questions about mobile. It’s an amazing new world where people can access content from anywhere, anytime. We want you to be a part of it!