I do not blog about it much but I am a bit of a gadget junkie, I had been waiting for the day that some sort of Apple tablet would be launched, now we know that is officially the Apple iPad. I even held off buying a new Amazon Kindle this past month as the rumor mill started heating up since it was obvious any Apple device would have more functionality than just reading books. I am not really big on single purpose devices so it was worth waiting.
As much as their may be a few people saying the iPad is not the end all be all of tablet computing devices they are really nitpicking items that the general user of the device will not care about, what you need to really look at is how the Apple iPhone changed the idea of what a mobile phone could be. It changed the way you accessed information and provided easy access to casual gaming without having to carry a separate device like a Nintendo DS.
With the growth of social networking due to the non-tech crowds acceptance and use of Facebook (have I mentioned that Facebook topped Google in traffic over Christmas, yes I have, and I just did again) apps for social networking were some of the most downloaded and used on the Apple iPhone. As a matter of fact Twitter apps were some of the most requested reviews on iFones.com during its initial launch.
Before I go any further on my thoughts on this Domain Name Wire did a story on this tonight as well, I had planned on doing mine later this week but wanted to give Andrew some link love while his article was still fresh.
And on that note, I think it is important to note that a source such as Domain Name Wire has pointed out the concerns with how devices like Apple iPad are changing how people access information. Although many domainers, and I am sorry to say this, have their heads in the sand and REALLY do not want to admit the times are changing they better be ready for it because it is happening even if you do not want it too.
I spoke to a few folks at the conference about type-in traffic and although the people that spoke to Andrew for his story may not be seeing it the people I spoke to admitted openly that type-in traffic had declined rapidly over the past few years. Now I have nothing that can show exact data but that coincides pretty directly with the growth of the iPhone, better smartphones in general, and also social networking.
Why does the iPhone and now the iPad matter?
It is all about the apps and also about the way people use browsers on their mobile phone. This is also the same thing on all the Android based mobile phones that are coming out, it is all about driving people to the internet through applications, it is the same information provided in an easier to access manner with more functionality thrown in than a typical website allows. People like this, the app store is making Apple millions/billions of dollars. This is not going to change, you cannot hide from this anymore. The Apple iPad is going to accelerate this, probably more so than we can even comprehend right now.
To give you an idea, within 48 hours after the iPad was announced I had 26 emails from people to iFones.com with tips about their upcoming plans for apps that will be optimized for the iPad. Most were small time developers, but so were many of the developers that now rule the app store.
You cannot hide from this….
I typically access Facebook and Twitter from my iPhone equally as much as I do from my laptop, this means I never hit a browser. With the iPad this will increase even more, with the larger screen and other applications that will be available on it there are many times I am not even sure I will have to take a laptop with me for travel. This changes things.
With visual and verbal search on the iPhone and now on the iPad typing in a website name will become something that is more of a hassle than anything, neither visual or verbal search is big right now, but it is coming.
Look, I hate to see type-in traffic decrease as the next person but I also know that there are trends you cannot fight, you have to see what is coming and plan on how to take advantage of the trends. Social media, mobile computing devices, these are things that change the way people access the sites we have.
Your goal should not be to fight them, it should be to find out how to take advantage of them. It is possible you just have to find the way.
SEO+Social Media+Mobile Apps=Success
Staying in the same place = Failure