Today, we’re bringing you new tools to build better apps with the rollout of Google Play services 7.0. With this release, we’re delivering improvements to location settings experiences, a brand new API for place information, new fitness data, Google Play Games, and more.
Location Settings Dialog
While the FusedLocationProviderApi combines multiple sensors to give you the optimal location, the accuracy of the location your app receives still depends greatly on what settings are enabled on the device (e.g. GPS, wifi, airplane mode, etc). In Google Play services 7.0, we’re introducing a standard mechanism to check that the necessary location settings are enabled for a given LocationRequest to succeed. If there are possible improvements, you can display a one touch control for the user to change their settings without leaving your app.
This API provides a great opportunity to make for a much better user experience, particularly if location information is critical to the user experience of your app such as was the case with Google Maps when they integrated the Location Settings dialog and saw a dramatic increase in the number of users in a good location state.
Location can be so much more than a latitude and longitude: the new Places API makes it easy to get details from Google’s database of places and businesses. The built-in place picker makes it easy for the user to pick their current place and provides all the relevant place details including name, address, phone number, website, and more.
If you prefer to provide your own UI, the getCurrentPlace() API returns places directly around the user’s current location. Autocomplete predictions are also provided to allow a low latency search experience directly within your app.
You can also manually add places with the addPlace() API and report that the user is at a particular place, ensuring that even the most explorative users can input and share their favorite new places.
The Places API will also be available cross-platform: in a few days, you’ll be able to apply for the Places API for iOS beta program to ensure a great and consistent user experience across mobile platforms.
Google Fit makes building fitness apps easier with fitness specific APIs on retrieving sensor data like current location and speed, collecting and storing activity data in Google Fit’s open platform, and automatically aggregating that data into a single view of the user’s fitness data.
In Google Play services 7.0, the previous Fitness.API that you passed into your GoogleApiClient has now been replaced with a number of APIs, matching the high level set of Google Fit Android APIs:
SENSORS_API to access raw sensor data via SensorsApi
BLE_API to interact with Bluetooth Low Energy devices via BleApi
CONFIG_API to access custom data types and settings for Google Fit via ConfigApi
This change significantly reduces the memory requirement for Google Fit enabled apps running in the background. Like always, apps built on previous versions of Google Play services will continue to work, but we strongly suggest you rebuild your Google Fit enabled apps to take advantage of this change.
Having all the data can be an empowering part of making meaningful changes and Google Fit is augmenting their existing data types with the addition of body fat percentage and sleep data.
Google Play Games
Announced at Game Developers Conference (GDC), we’re offering new tools to supercharge your games on Google Play. Included in Google Play services 7.0 is the Nearby Connections API, allowing games to seamlessly connect smartphones and tablets as second-screen controls to the game running on your TV.
App Indexing lets Google index apps just like websites, enabling Google search results to deep-link directly into your native app. We've simplified the App Indexing API to make this integration even easier for you by combining the existing view()/viewEnd() and action()/end() flows into a single start() and end() API.
Changes to GoogleApiClient
GoogleApiClient serves as the common entry point for accessing Google APIs. For this release, we’ve made retrieval of Google OAuth 2.0 tokens part of GoogleApiClient, making it much easier to request server auth codes to access Google APIs.
SDK Coming Soon!
We will be rolling out Google Play services 7.0 over the next few days. Expect an update to this blog post, published documentation, and the availability of the SDK once the rollout is completed.
With the launch of the new Drive UI last year, we renamed the ‘Shared with me’ section to ‘Incoming’ and tweaked the functionality a bit. We’ve since heard feedback from people using the new UI that they miss the ‘Shared with me’ functionality, so today, we’re bringing it back. Release track: Rapid release and Scheduled release For more information: Help Center Note: all launches are applicable to all Google Apps editions unless otherwise noted
We are excited to announce the mentoring organizations that have been accepted for this year’s Google Summer of Code program. As always, we had many more great projects than we could accept. After reviewing 416 applications, we have chosen 137 open source projects, 37 of which are new to Google Summer of Code. You can visit our Google Summer of Code 2015 program website for a complete list of the accepted orgs.
Over the next two weeks, students interested in applying for the Google Summer of Code 2015 program can learn more about the 137 accepted open source projects. The student application period begins on Monday, March 16, 2015 at 19:00 UTC.
Interested? Start by reviewing the Ideas Page from each organization to learn about the project and how you might contribute. Some of the most successful proposals have been completely new ideas submitted by students, so if you don’t see a project on an Ideas Page that appeals to you, don’t be afraid to suggest a new idea to the organization! There are points of contact listed for each organization on their Ideas Page - students can contact the organization directly to discuss a new proposal. All organizations list their preferred method of communication on the organization homepage, available on the Google Summer of Code program website. We strongly encourage students to reach out to the organizations before they apply. Please see our Frequently Asked Questions page for more information.
Congratulations to all of our mentoring organizations! We look forward to working with all of you during this next Google Summer of Code!
Posted by Greg Hartrell, Senior Product Manager of Google Play Games
Everyone has a gaming-ready device in their pocket today. In fact, of the one billion Android users in more than 190 countries, three out of four of them are gamers. This allows game developers to reach a global audience and build a successful business. Over the past year, we paid out more than $7 billion to developers distributing apps and games on Google Play.
At our Developer Day during the Game Developers Conference (GDC) taking place this week, we announced a set of new features for Google Play Games and AdMob to power great gaming. Rolling out over the next few weeks, these launches can help you better measure and monetize your games.
Better measure and adapt to player needs
“Player Analytics has helped me hone in on BombSquad’s shortcomings, right the ship, and get to a point where I can financially justify making the games I want to make.”
Eric Froemling, BombSquad developer
Google Play Games is a set of services that help game developers reach and engage their audience. To further that effort, we’re introducing Player Analytics, giving developers access to powerful analytics reports to better measure overall business success and understand in-game player behavior. Launching in the next few weeks in the Google Play Developer Console, the new tool will give indie developers and big studios better insight into how their players are progressing, spending, and churning; access to critical metrics like ARPPU and sessions per user; and assistance setting daily revenue targets.
BombSquad, created by a one-person game studio in San Francisco, was able to more than double its revenue per user on Google Play after implementing design changes informed during beta testing Player Analytics.
Optimizing ads to earn the most revenue
After optimizing your game for performance, it’s important to build a smarter monetization experience tailored to each user. That’s why we’re announcing three important updates to the AdMob platform:
Native Ads: Currently available as a limited beta, participating game developers will be able to show ads in their app from Google advertisers, and then customize them so that users see ads that match the visual design of the game. Atari is looking to innovate on its games, like RollerCoaster Tycoon 4 Mobile, and more effectively engage users with this new feature.
In-App Purchase House Ads Beta: Game developers will be able to smartly grow their in-app purchase revenue for free. AdMob can now predict which users are more likely to spend on in-app purchases, and developers will be able to show these users customized text or display ads promoting items for sale. Currently in beta, this feature will be coming to all AdMob accounts in the next few weeks.
Audience Builder: A powerful tool that enables game developers to create lists of audiences based on how they use their game. They will be able to create customized experiences for users, and ultimately grow their app revenue.
"Atari creates great game experiences for our broad audience. We're happy to be partnering with Google and be the first games company to take part in the native ads beta and help monetize games in a way that enhances our users' experience."
Todd Shallbetter, Chief Operating Officer, Atari
New game experiences powered by Google
Last year, we launched Android TV as a way to bring Android into the living room, optimizing games for the big screen. The OEM ecosystem is growing with announced SmartTVs and micro-consoles from partners like Sony, TPVision/Philips and Razer.
To make gaming even more dynamic on Android TV, we’re launching the Nearby Connections API with the upcoming update of Google Play services. With this new protocol, games can seamlessly connect smartphones and tablets as second-screen controls to the game running on your TV. Beach Buggy Racing is a fun and competitive multiplayer racing game on Android TV that plans to use Nearby Connections in their summer release, and we are looking forward to more living room multiplayer games taking advantage of mobile devices as second screen controls.
At Google I/O last June, we also unveiled Google Cardboard with the goal of making virtual reality (VR) accessible to everyone. With Cardboard, we are giving game developers more opportunities to build unique and immersive experiences from nothing more than a piece of cardboard and your smartphone. The Cardboard SDKs for Android and Unity enable you to easily build VR apps or adapt your existing app for VR.
Check us out at GDC
Visit us at the Google booth #502 on the Expo floor to get hands on experience with Project Tango, Niantic Labs and Cardboard starting on Wednesday, March 4. Our teams from AdMob, AdWords, Analytics, Cloud Platform and Firebase will also be available to answer any of your product questions.
Posted by Patrick Riley and Dale Webster, Google Research and Bharath Ramsundar, Google Research Intern and Stanford Ph.D. candidate
Discovering new treatments for human diseases is an immensely complicated challenge; Even after extensive research to develop a biological understanding of a disease, an effective therapeutic that can improve the quality of life must still be found. This process often takes years of research, requiring the creation and testing of millions of drug-like compounds in an effort to find a just a few viable drug treatment candidates. These high-throughput screens are often automated in sophisticated labs and are expensive to perform.
Recently, deep learning with neural networks has been applied in virtual drug screening1,2,3, which attempts to replace or augment the high-throughput screening process with the use of computational methods in order to improve its speed and success rate.4 Traditionally, virtual drug screening has used only the experimental data from the particular disease being studied. However, as the volume of experimental drug screening data across many diseases continues to grow, several research groups have demonstrated that data from multiple diseases can be leveraged with multitask neural networks to improve the virtual screening effectiveness.
In collaboration with the Pande Lab at Stanford University, we’ve released a paper titled "Massively Multitask Networks for Drug Discovery", investigating how data from a variety of sources can be used to improve the accuracy of determining which chemical compounds would be effective drug treatments for a variety of diseases. In particular, we carefully quantified how the amount and diversity of screening data from a variety of diseases with very different biological processes can be used to improve the virtual drug screening predictions.
Using our large-scale neural network training system, we trained at a scale 18x larger than previous work with a total of 37.8M data points across more than 200 distinct biological processes. Because of our large scale, we were able to carefully probe the sensitivity of these models to a variety of changes in model structure and input data. In the paper, we examine not just the performance of the model but why it performs well and what we can expect for similar models in the future. The data in the paper represents more than 50M total CPU hours.
One encouraging conclusion from this work is that our models are able to utilize data from many different experiments to increase prediction accuracy across many diseases. To our knowledge, this is the first time the effect of adding additional data has been quantified in this domain, and our results suggest that even more data could improve performance even further.
Machine learning at scale has significant potential to accelerate drug discovery and improve human health. We look forward to continued improvement in virtual drug screening and its increasing impact in the discovery process for future drugs.
This is the second post in our series to explore the convergence of audience data and search marketing. In our last post, we heard from industry leaders on the opportunityand howaudience data helps them deliver even more relevant and resonant messages.
This week, we explore what the future holds. iProspect’s Ben Wood, Havas Media’s Paul Frampton and the IAB’s Steve Chester share perspectives on the continued convergence of audience data and search marketing, implications for digital marketing teams and how they work together, as well as how audience data in search will help bridge the gap between branding and direct response.
Look for our next post in the series, where we will explore best practices for advertisers who are looking to embrace audience data as part of their search marketing efforts.
Home to millions of plant, animal and insect species, the Amazon rainforest is one of the most diverse ecosystems in the world. Undiscovered species thrive in the canopies of the primary forests, atop trees that have stood for centuries. Starting today, with the help of our partners at the Amazonas Sustainable Foundation (FAS), you can begin to unlock some of the wonders of the forest, by traveling from the upper canopy to the forest floor with Google Maps’ first zipline Street View collection.
You can also come out from the shade and take a virtual float down the dreamy waters of the Rio Aripuanã or the Rio Mariepauá and come out to the Rio Madeira, one of the largest tributaries of the Amazon.
And don’t forget to stop by one of the 17 communities of local people who live along the river and in the forest. These people are the devoted stewards of the river and forests, and protect it by living with it, preventing the destruction of the trees and the life that depends on them.
This project is the next step in our partnership with FAS, who first invited us to Rio Negro Sustainable Development Reserve just three years ago. Their hope is that sharing the imagery of their local communities, rain forests and rivers with the world will raise awareness and support for their efforts to conserve these areas. Collected through the Trekker Loan Program, this new imagery is the result of boating down 500 km of rivers, walking 20 km of forest trails and ziplining through forest canopies. We hope it inspires you to embark on your own virtual expedition of the Amazon (you can leave the bug repellent at home!).
Posted by Karin Tuxen-Bettman, Program Manager, Google Earth Outreach
If you’re the kind of person who loves the Internet when it’s at its most Internet-y, you had a good week. From llamas to retro cartoons to that darn dress, here’s a look at the past week in search:
Internet gold Is it white and gold? Or blue and black? That’s the question that had everyone searching, tweeting and generally freaking out Thursday after a Tumblr user posted a photo of a dress that seemed to appear different colors to different people. Debate over the true color of the dress raged for hours, while others tried to solve the mystery of its divisiveness. All we know is, there were more than two million searches for [white and gold dress] yesterday—more than for [blue and black dress]—proving once and for all that it’s white and gold… right?
Before #thedress, though, there were the llamas. In Phoenix, Ariz., yesterday, two llamas got loose from their handlers and took off on a trot through neighborhood streets, yards and sidewalks. Searchers were captivated by the “llama drama,” which ended when police (l)lassoed the animals after a low-speed chase.
Obama says (K)nope Armed with waffles, Lagavulin and a lot of tissues, we said farewell to NBC’sParks and Recreationon Tuesday after a seven-year run. Searchers turned to the web to revisit favorite characters, quotes and episodes from the show that brought us “Treat Yo’ Self” and the Cones of Dunshire, while (wackily) celebrating the value of hard work, friendship and public service.
Moving from the small-town politics of Pawnee to the big-time in D.C., this week President Obama issued his third-ever Presidential veto, rejecting a bill that would have approved the Keystone XL Pipeline project. People turned to the web to learn more about Presidential veto power throughout history and the pipeline itself. What would Leslie and Ron make of all this, we wonder?
Heroic comebacks Woo-oo! Nineties kids are rejoicing following news that the Disney cartoon DuckTales is getting a reboot. Searches for the show spiked 8x the day after the announcement. Sounds like a lot of you are ready for some tales of derring-do in 2017.
And Madonna had a bit of a shaky week, after she fell backwards down a flight of stairs during her first performance at the Brit Awards in 20 years. But the Queen of Pop recovered quickly to finish her song “Living for Love.” She’s still an icon for a reason.
Tip of the week This will be illuminating: if you have an Android device running Lollipop, you can flip the on/off switch on your phone’s flashlight just by saying “Ok Google, turn on my flashlight.” You can do the same trick to turn on or off WiFi or Bluetooth.
Posted by Emily Wood, Managing Editor, who searched for [lil sebastian] and [duck tales real ducks]
Not the sexiest title for a blog post, I know. But as we’ve inhabited a variety of workplaces—including a garage in Menlo Park, a farmhouse in Denmark and an entire New York city block—we’ve learned something about what makes an office space great. And we’re excited to put that into practice, starting here at our home in Mountain View.
Today we’re submitting a plan to redevelop four sites—places where we already have offices but hope to significantly increase our square footage—to the Mountain View City Council. It's the first time we'll design and build offices from scratch and we hope these plans by Bjarke Ingels at BIG and Thomas Heatherwick at Heatherwick Studio will lead to a better way of working.
The idea is simple. Instead of constructing immoveable concrete buildings, we’ll create lightweight block-like structures which can be moved around easily as we invest in new product areas. (Our self-driving car team, for example, has very different needs when it comes to office space from our Search engineers.) Large translucent canopies will cover each site, controlling the climate inside yet letting in light and air. With trees, landscaping, cafes, and bike paths weaving through these structures, we aim to blur the distinction between our buildings and nature.
Of course, this project is about much more than just office space; it’s about doing more with the local community as well. So we’re adding lots of bike paths and retail opportunities, like restaurants, for local businesses. We also hope to bring new life to the unique local environment, from enhancing burrowing owl habitats to widening creek beds. And we’re committed to do everything we can to save energy—our recent agreement to offset our energy consumption in North Bayshore with renewable energy includes the development of this proposal.
We chose Mountain View for our headquarters 15 years ago because we love the beauty of the bay, the close proximity to great universities, the family-friendly environment and the chance to work in a city at the heart of Silicon Valley. Today, we want to create office spaces that don’t just provide a great home for Google, but which also work for the city that has given us so much.
We look forward to working with our neighbors at the City Council on this proposal—and the future of Mountain View’s North Bayshore.
Posted by David Radcliffe, Vice President, Real Estate
The Wikimedia Foundation was one of the twelve mentoring organizations taking part in Google Code-in 2014, our contest introducing 13 to 17 year old students to working in open source communities. Below, Andre Klapper shares the accomplishments of several students who participated with Wikimedia during the contest.
The Wikimedia Foundation was proud to participate for a second time in Google Code-in. In this program, young students are introduced to free and open source software (FOSS) projects and invited to make practical contributions.
Between December 2014 and January 2015, 48 students successfully completed 226 Wikimedia tasks, supported by 30 mentors from our community. Those tasks include not only code development, but also documentation, research, and testing — leading to a wide range of achievements:
Thank you and congratulations to all the students who joined Wikimedia and supported its mission to freely share knowledge! Special kudos to Wikimedia’s two Grand Prize Winners: Danny Wu and Mateusz Maćkowski — and to our finalists Evan McIntire, Geoffrey Mon and Pranav Kumar! The full list of winners across all organizations can be found here.
We also wish to thank all our mentors for their generous commitment: we are especially grateful for the time they spent on weekends, coming up with task ideas, working with students and quickly reviewing their contributions. And last but not least, thank you to Google for organizing and running this contest, creating awareness of and interest in Free and Open Software projects.
The admin quarantine feature provides greater email security and control by allowing admins to moderate when messages satisfying certain conditions are encountered in their domain’s mail traffic. When a message is flagged by a policy for quarantine (e.g. subject contains the word ‘confidential’), it will not be delivered to the intended recipient. Instead, this message will show up in the admin’s quarantine review UI. Admins can then review the message, choose to allow delivery to the intended recipient, deny delivery with or without rejection notice or do nothing. If no action is taken, messages expire and are removed from quarantine after 30 days. To make quarantine management easier, up to 20 named quarantines may be set up with unique quarantine criteria. Admins may choose to put messages in different quarantines based on several classification criteria by setting mail flow policies (content compliance, objectionable content, etc.). See the Help Center for more information on optimizing this feature for your needs. Release track: Rapid release and Scheduled release For more information: Help Center Note: all launches are applicable to all Google Apps editions unless otherwise noted
Based on admin feedback―and in an effort to reduce overall notification volume―we have stopped including suspicious login alerts in the Admin console notification inbox. These alerts will continue to be sent via email. Release track: Rapid release and Scheduled release Note: all launches are applicable to all Google Apps editions unless otherwise noted
Over the past month, we've been showcasing the amazing work of some of Google’s Student Programs Alumni in their communities. In the final installment of the Black History Month Student Tribute series we are catching up with Michael who participated in the 2010 BOLD Internship Program and went on to be elected as a Councilman for the city of Stockton, California.
What’s one thing about you that many people do not know? My email address in high school was “email@example.com”! This is a tough question. I feel like J. Cole when he said, “Share my life with strangers who know me better than I know myself.” I tell my story so many times, I’m not even sure what people don’t know!
Since you’ve graduated from the BOLD internship program, what have you been up to? As a BOLD intern, I learned about project management, how to interact with others and the importance of transparency and communication. I immediately put these skills to work as an intern in the White House and during my time studying abroad in Cape Town, South Africa. The summer after, I co-founded the Summer Success and Leadership Academy at the University of the Pacific and designed a week long residential experience for 50 Stockton students. During my senior year at Stanford, I received my bachelor’s degree with honors, my master’s degree in Policy, Organizational and Leadership studies, and decided to run for city council in my hometown of Stockton.
Since graduation, I’ve been featured in a documentary, True Son, that was screened at Google and premiered at the Tribeca Film Festival. As a Councilman, I have been able to to equip our officers with body cameras and establish an Office of Violence Prevention in partnership with the Police Chief. I have also been able to start literacy programs with the Housing Authority, pass “Ban the Box” legislation to give ex-offenders the chance to apply for jobs for which they qualify, open the first bank in my district in 50 years and I have increased philanthropic support for my district.
You’re a Stockton City Councilman. Was that always something you wanted to do? Absolutely not. I view it more as a calling, as I was motivated by the murder of my cousin to go back and do my best to use the considerable blessings I had been given to improve my community.
You inspire a lot of your peers but who inspires you? Mostly local people and luminaries from my past. My mom, aunt and grandmother inspire me and continue to inspire me. They are three single women who are not well educated, yet have done a phenomenal job. Historically, Harriet Tubman and Sojourner Truth have inspired me because they drove change despite facing so many more obstacles than we face today. Marian Wright Edelman inspires me, too, as do the original Freedom Riders. Finally, people in Stockton who are doing amazing things despite extraordinary challenges inspire me.
Why do you think it’s important to give back to others? “The greatest of you shall be the servant of all,” said Jesus and I agree. Giving back is not a choice but a necessity because we all exist in this ecosystem together and the principle of Ubuntu is so true - “I only am when we all are.”
Last year, we announced a new feature for Hangouts on the web allowing Google Apps customers to share links to Hangouts video calls so that external meeting guests may request to join if not explicitly invited. We recently announced this functionality for iOS as well. Today, we’re announcing that this functionality has been added to the Hangouts Android app and to Chromebox for Meetings devices. Android The latest release of the Hangouts Android app now allows external guests using the app to join Hangouts video calls from their mobile device with a meeting link provided by the organizer. Video calls that are shared with the link require someone in the Apps domain of the Hangout video call to accept those requesting access on the web. Chromebox for Meetings devices People can now use their Chromebox for Meetings devices to both request to join Hangouts video calls as a guest using a link, and accept requests from guests wishing to join using a link. To join a Hangouts video call from your Chromebox for Meetings device, enter the domain in which the meeting is hosted followed by a ‘/’ and the meeting name (e.g. altostrat.com/meeting-name). As before, if the meeting is hosted in your organization, the domain name is not necessary. To see and accept or reject a request from outside your organization, the meeting must be in ‘shared with the link’ mode. Release track: Rapid release and Scheduled release (gradual rollout) For more information: Help Center Note: all launches are applicable to all Google Apps editions unless otherwise noted
New versions of the Google Docs editor iOS apps are now available in the App Store. New features include:Ability to make a copy of documents, spreadsheets and presentations Accessibility improvements in the Sheets appPerformance improvements in al…
A new version of the Google Drive Android app is coming to Google Play. New features include:Improved bulk operations like moving, starring, pinning and downloading multiple files at once by long pressing (see below)PDF viewer improvementsPerformance a…
A new version of the Gmail iOS app is now available in the App Store. New features include:Email files from other apps – Attach photos, links, and documents directly to a Gmail message from iPhoto, Chrome, and other apps.Easily open attachments – With …
Successful developers understand that in order to have a popular app, focusing on retaining a loyal user base is just as important as driving new installs. Today at the Game Developer Conference in San Francisco, we introduced new reports that will help you measure how to do this in two meaningful ways. We’re happy to announce that Mobile App Analytics will now let you understand how users come back to your app day after day, and provide the rich insights you need in order to measure their value over time. Let’s take a look at how these new reports can help make your app a hit.
The active user report displays your 1-day, 7-day, 14-day and 30-day trailing active users next to each other in one, easy-to-view dashboard. The new overview gives immediate insights into how users interact with your app over time, along with dropoff rate comparisons. With this report, an app download is only the beginning of a potentially valuable relationship with your new users.
Benchmark active users at 1-7-14-30 days by selecting the segments you want. (Click to enlarge image)
While these metrics help you monitor your active user trends, when put into context they can answer important questions about your user acquisition strategies. For example, if you are investing in different campaigns, you can compare the cost of retaining users acquired via paid traffic versus organic to understand if you are attracting the right type of users. Not only can you measure your cost effectiveness, but you can also continue to monitor whether or not the users you paid for are still coming back after the campaign is over. This is particularly important when trying to keep your loyal user base engaged and happy with your app.
Lior Romano, Founder and CEO of Gentoo Labs (the makers of Contacts+ for iOS and Android), was one of the first customers to try out this new report during our beta test period. He found the Active Users report especially useful when managing and organizing all their information at-a-glance: “We love the new Google Analytics Active Users feature — it’s a real time-saver! We get a quick overview of the 1/7/14/30-day active user trends side by side in a snap, which helps us to easily track our main metrics.”
After learning how many users have opened your app, the next step in driving engagement is understanding whenthey come back. Cohort Analysis is a user analysis technique that allows you to analyze and compare your users by looking at their customer journey.Using Cohort Analysis, you can see when users are coming back to your app and their behavior over time after the day of the first session, and lets you further filter the information by day, week or month. We’ve also added the ability to compare different segments of users based on the day of the first install.
In order to validate your user acquisition strategies, Cohort analysis lets you compare different periods or campaigns. For example, you can compare different weeks or months to measure the retention effectiveness of a single channel to see if you continue to attract valuable users throughout a campaign. The flexibility of the report also allows you to see how much time users are spending in an app as they come back day after day. With these valuable insights, Mobile App Analytics users can tailor their acquisition campaigns or app experience, just as our partner E-Nor did: “Cohort analysis in GA made it easy for E-Nor to gauge the effectiveness of lead nurturing efforts during an app free-trial promotion campaign. The analysis clearly showed that many users responded well to email and in-app reminders, resulting in over 50% retention between the 3rd and 5th day post sign-up as opposed to 30% in the first and 2nd day.”
See at a glimpse when users are coming back to your app. (Click to enlarge image)
Analyzing retention is a great way to ensure users stick with your app and come back day after day. With Lifetime Value reporting, you’ll get a full picture of these users’ value over time. To get the most out of this report, it’s important to start with a clear definition of what a user’s value means to you based on your business objectives. Once you’ve defined the value, you can access the report to measure certain variables such as revenue per user and number of screen views per user over a period of 90 days. For example, if the goal of your app is to get users to purchase virtual or material goods, you’ll want to use this report to get a clear view of when they make a purchase and how much they are spending in your app over time.
Lifetime Value is a key metric to use to measure the effectiveness of your acquisition campaigns. If your cost to acquire a new user is higher than the average value over time, you might want to optimize your campaigns to meet the lifetime revenue they generate. Lifetime Value is particularly valuable if you offer in-app purchases, but it can be applied to discovering many other useful insights, such as number of times they open your app, total number of screens and goal completions.
Session duration per users compared to goal completion over a 60 day window. (Click to enlarge image)
How to get started
Cohort Analysis report can be found under the ‘Audience’ section in your Google Analytics account, and is now available in beta. Lifetime Value and Active Users reports are coming soon to all Analytics accounts.
To get started login into your Analytics account and look for the new reports under the Audience section.
Posted by Russell Ketchum, Lead Product Manager, Google Analytics for Mobile Apps
Whether it’s buying the right car insurance or finding the best credit card, people want an easy way to understand and compare financial products online. In fact, when it comes to buying car insurance, 80% of drivers think they’d find a better policy if they could compare more than two providers.* That’s why today we’re introducing Google Compare for car insurance in California, with more states to follow. This represents the newest addition to a suite of Google Compare products designed to help people make confident, more informed financial decisions.
Google Compare for car insurance provides a seamless, intuitive experience for connecting with your customers online. Whether you’re a national insurance provider or one local to California, people searching for car insurance on their phone or computer can find you along with an apples-to-apples comparison of other providers — all in as little as 5 minutes. You can highlight what makes your business unique, whether that’s an “A” rating in customer service or better discounts for safe drivers. And when users adjust their deductible or add additional cars to their quote, you can show updated pricing that matches their needs. They can then buy their policy online or over the phone through one of your agents.
Here’s what some of our partners are saying:
“We’re always looking for opportunities to use new technology to enhance the customer experience. Partnering with Google Compare allows us to bring our unique group pricing and benefits to a wider range of customers, while creating an easier shopping experience.” – Kishore Ponnavolu, Executive Vice President at MetLife Auto & Home
“The lifeblood of Mercury’s business has and always will be our partnership with independent agents. We also know many shoppers want to buy anytime, anywhere, and Google Compare gives them a fast, easy way to do so. Partnering with Google Compare provides us with a tremendous opportunity to connect with a segment of the market that would have been out of reach.” – Erik Thompson, Advertising Director at Mercury
As Google Compare for car insurance rolls out to more states, we’ll also be introducing ratings and reviews, as well as local agent support for providers with agent networks. Participation in Google Compare is based on a flexible cost-per-acquisition (CPA) model, but payment isn’t a factor in ranking or eligibility.
You can learn more about joining Google Compare here.
Posted by Jerry Dischler, Vice President of Product Management, AdWords
*Google internal study
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