14 Oct · 5 min read
At WWDC20 Apple announced the new iOS 14 and, alongside it, some new features it will support. For me, one of the most interesting features among them were App Clips. Why?
There is an app for pretty much everything you need, but sometimes you either do not know that an app you need exists, or you just do not have the time to search for it. Even when you do find it, you could lack the required space to download it on your phone, or you simply do not want to download an app to use only one feature.
That is where App Clips come in.
As one of the main spotlights of iOS 14, an App Clip is a smaller version of an app that includes only a certain part of its features. They are fast and lightweight so users can open them quickly when they need them to perform everyday tasks, without downloading and installing the full app. After a period of inactivity, the system automatically removes an App Clip from the user’s device to free up space.
A single app can have multiple App Clips, and inside them you can offer the user to download the full app from the App Store. If a user installs an App Clip’s corresponding full app, the full app replaces the App Clip. After that, every invocation launches the full app instead of the App Clip, and the user gets the functionality of the App Clip within the full app.
App Clips can be used in many cases, like paying for parking, renting a scooter, ordering take-out from a restaurant etc. Here is an example of how you can use App Clips to order a drink:
A key part of the App Clips experience is how you discover them. The image below shows how this can be done:
The best way for your users to discover your App Clip. It’s visually beautiful and distinct, so when someone sees one, they’ll know there’s an App Clip waiting for them. Each App Clip Code encodes a URL and can incorporate an NFC tag, so the code can be tapped on or scanned by the camera.
Users can tap their iPhone on NFC tags that you place at specific locations to launch an App Clip, even from the lock screen.
Place QR codes at specific locations to let users launch an App Clip by scanning the code with the Barcode reader or the Camera app.
When your webpage is configured with a Smart App Banner for App Clips, users can just tap to open it from there.
When you enable sharing within your App Clip, users can send it via iMessage, and the person who receives it can open it right from Messages.
When your App Clip is associated with a specific location, you can register your App Clip to appear on a place card in Maps so users can open it from there.
App Clips don’t clutter the Home Screen, but recently used App Clips can be found and launched from the Recents category of the new App Library.
If you own an iOS app, you should consider adding App Clips to it. Here are some of the benefits:
If you are considering adding App Clips to your app here are some of the things you should avoid:
From a business perspective, App Clips are designed to get more users into the funnel and to keep them engaged. So, if you find that interesting but do not know how you can use it for your app feel free to contact us.
The article was first published here