Earlier this year, the Plastic Mobile team developed a Mobile X report on trends in the industry that we saw coming. The one that intrigued us the most was the idea of creating a connected ecosystem of apps for a specific brand. While not for all brands, app ecosystems can be an effective tool for larger and more complex businesses. Using our research, we were able to make this handy infographic to help better understand the idea of app ecosystems. 

Plastic Mobile App Ecosystem Infographic-1

Blog Image Chart 3.001

When it comes to banking, most people are looking for convenience. Dealing with your personal finances are stressful enough without having to worry about bank hours and long lines. Customers want to be able to bank anytime and anywhere, and there is no better option in terms of freedom than mobile banking. Millennials have come to expect real-time mobile access to their personal finances as a baseline service. However, it is not only the younger generation taking advantage of mobile banking.

A recent forecast report by eMarketer has found that the number of US mobile phone users aged 50-to-69 that use mobile banking will increase by 16.5% in 2015. However, even with that increase, Millennial mobile phone users (58.8%) are still twice as likely as baby boomers (27.5%) to make use of a banking service on their phones.

Some baby boomers (and Gen Xer’s) are still hesitant to take to mobile banking because they find the larger screen of desktops and tablets easier to use and more secure. Only half of the baby boomers who are banking digitally, are using mobile banking. To make the transition to mobile banking easier and worry-free, banks must lean on their marketing departments to educate consumers on the specific security features of their applications.

By 2019, roughly half of American adults will be using mobile banking, and banks are starting to realize the importance of making mobile apps their primary point of interaction with their customers. Branches and ATM’s will still remain important, but our reliance on them will continue to decline overtime.

Mobile banking applications are also a great resource for banks to cross-sell their financial products, highlight their premium services, and even acquire new consumers. Many bank branches have already started to teach their tellers to promote usage of their app through education sessions.

Growth rates will eventually slow as the market matures (by 2020 the youngest baby boomers will be 55), but it is easy to assume that Generation Z will grow up in a world where the vast majority of personal banking will take place on a mobile device. In the ever competitive world of personal banking, it will be interesting to see how banks use their mobile properties to attempt to separate themselves from the competition. To prepare for this, banks must continue to evaluate the trends, and ensure they are allocating the correct resources to their mobile properties.


Not one to shy away from radical moves, Google announced yesterday that they will now be owned by company simply known as Alphabet.

The move was announced by former CEO of Google, and current CEO of Alphabet, Larry Page. “What is Alphabet? Alphabet is a collection of companies, the largest of which, is Google,” Page wrote in his letter to investors. Page believes that this will allow Google to focus more on their core offerings and become more efficient, while permitting more unique ventures to thrive under the autonomy of Alphabet.

Under the restructuring, Google co-founder Sergey Brin becomes the President of Alphabet, and Sundar Pichai will take over for Page as CEO of Google. Page and Brin will still have a hand in overseeing Google, but Pichai will relinquish his role as SVP of products and take over the day-to-day operations.

For a number of years, Google has been trying to take on a wide array of projects from robotics, to autonomous cars, to even attempting to reign in aging. By allowing these organizations to be more autonomous, they ensure that they can get the resources and maintain their vision without major impact on Google’s financials.

Additionally, this move allows Alphabet to make more multi-billion dollar acquisitions that Google, as an established brand might have hesitations making. Not having to worry about how an acquisition meshes with Google’s brand, will allow Alphabet more freedom in future developments. It also opens up more executive-level positions within the organization, which will allow Alphabet to prevent their talent from being poached by other technology companies.

To avoid confusion for investors, all shares of Google will be automatically converted over to the same number of Alphabet shares. However, Alphabet will provide Google’s financial information separately in Q4 of 2015.

The news is still very much in its infancy, and the complete ramifications of this move have yet to be revealed. But this is a very pivotal move in the tech world, and it will be exciting to see what it means for the future of the Googleverse.




In 2015, mobile gaming revenues are forecasted to reach US$30 billion worldwide, which will allow them to surpass console gaming for the first time in history. This should come as less of a surprise when you realize that mobile games like Clash of Clans and Game of War: Fire Age are generating over US$1 million per day from their iOS versions alone.

There are a number of insights that marketers from other industries can take from this, and they are shared in my blog post which you can read over at the CMA blog.

Mobile gaming isn’t just Snake and Brick Breaker anymore, it is now a multi-billion industry that needs to be taken seriously.

Eye On Wearables

By on July 09, 2015

wearablesThe wearables wave is not going away anytime soon. Instead it continues to expand into all areas of our lives. Still in its infancy and having started with smartwatches, wearables are growing up quickly changing many areas of our lives.

President and COO of Plastic, Melody Adhami, wrote about her perspective on wearables for the Canadian Marketing Association, explaining why marketers need to pay attention to this shift in technology.

Consumers are now checking their mobile devices on average 100 to 200 times a day. Wearables make it even easier to frequently view content, and marketers can take advantage of this by creating personalized content to desired audiences forging more face time with brands.

Take a read over Melody’s CMA blog post and you’ll quickly learn why the time to learn all about wearables is now.


Havas at Cannes

By on July 08, 2015

HavasAtCannesThe Cannes Lions International Festival of Creativity was all abuzz these past few weeks as top creative professionals from all around the world flocked to France to mingle and learn about the latest creative and communication trends. Havas Worldwide (Plastic’s parent communications company) was in attendance, along with Helen Pak, President and Chief Creative Officer of Havas Worldwide Canada. We had a chance to catch up with the brilliant creative guru and get the scoop on all things new and exciting at Cannes 2015. Here’s a glimpse into our chat with Helen:

Helen spoke specifically to how technology and creativity are blending together more than ever before to create innovation for brands – challenging the status quo of the human-technology experience. With more brands and agencies empowering technology as a source of inspiration for creativity, the two disciplines are no longer siloed, enabling increased innovation.

Some of the major breakthroughs at the festival included the Cannes Gold Lion awarded to Optus ‘Clever Buoy’ that uses beacon technology to alert lifeguards of potential shark attacks. There was also another emerging undercurrent of ‘creating for the common good’ in conjunction with innovation. This was a reoccurring theme – giving creativity a more meaningful purpose so that we’re not just innovating for the sake of innovation itself but rather to enhance the human experience.

Using technology to solve community problems was also a major focus at this year’s event, and brands that succeeded in doing this were the ones that used technology and creativity to enhance communities by alleviating issues and critical problems. Panasonic made strides in this arena winning a Cannes Innovation Lion for their ACH2O filtering system which filters the water created by an air conditioning unit into a drinkable product. The product innovation specifically catered to Ecuador, where water in its original form is not drinkable, however, because of the temperature of the region air conditioners are in abundance.

As Helen explains it; technology is rapidly emerging at the heart of a lot of new ideas, unlocking creative ability. Tech and utility are now working hand-in-hand inspiring innovation that didn’t exist at this scale before. It wasn’t all work and no play. The festivities were endless, along with great speaking sessions at the Palais where prominent celebrities like Will.i.am spoke about his wearables collection catered to the fashion industry.

A big congratulations goes out to the Havas team on their 22 Cannes Lions wins, keep up the beautiful work.





Havas Wins BrandSource

By on June 18, 2015


Recently, our friends at Havas Worldwide Canada won a partnership with furniture and appliance retailer, BrandSource. With a remarkable global footprint, Havas has dedicated themselves to working with some of the best international clients. By partnering with BrandSource, they will venture further into the retail world by repositioning the brand and creating an omnichannel-focused strategy.

As mentioned in Strategy Online, BrandSource hadn’t quite built the brand equity they were hoping for, or achieved the ad viewership that they were expecting since launching in 2012. Some of the traditional outlets like radio and TV, weren’t reaching the customers who spend most of their time on the web.


Apple’s Worldwide Developer Conference (WWDC) has come and gone but the tech world is still abuzz with all the announcements. Perhaps the biggest news was about Apple’s ninth installment for its mobile operating system, iOS 9. Although iOS 9 isn’t as groundbreaking as iOS 8, it still boasts intelligent features and functionality. Here at Plastic Mobile we’ve watched the keynote (admittedly more than once), sorted through the barrage of tech blogs, and spent our fair share of time with the iOS 9 Beta 1 to bring you this list of the top 5 features.

  1. Proactive

Proactive is a new Siri feature that aims to predict behaviour and serve up relevant information. It’s always accessible with a quick swipe left on the homescreen that brings you to a completely new experience engulfed in contextual suggestions. Proactive features trending news articles, app suggestions, contact suggestions and nearby attractions. Proactive also features a handy search API.

  1. Apple Music

It’s fair to say that iTunes launched the digital music revolution and now Apple Music looks to power the streaming music revolution. Apple Music is a digital streaming service that gives you unlimited access to the complete iTunes music catalogue anytime, anywhere. The service will offer recommendations based on your listening habits and provide curated playlists. Apple Music offers a 3-month trial for new users, after which it will become $9.99/month.

  1. iPad Multitasking

The iPad has become even more productive with the announcement of a tablet only feature on iOS 9. The multitasking features will allow iPad Air 2 owners to run 2 apps side by side, simultaneously via “Split View.”  For those who love streaming videos, iOS 9 will also allow for picture-in-picture view. For example users will also be able to watch their favorite TV show while reading emails. Owners of older iPads will be able to pin apps to a sidebar, that they can “slide over” to access quickly without leaving their current app.

  1. Low Power Mode

We have all had that sinking feeling when our phone battery is about to die. Well, iOS 9 is looking to alleviate this with Low Power Mode. Designed to give up to 3 extra hours of battery life, Low Power Mode can really be a life saver. Users have the option to manually enable it or have it automatically start at a certain battery percentage.

  1. News

Keeping in mind that mobile users turn to their devices to keep up to date with the latest news, Apple has created News app. News is a native app built into iOS 9 that aggregates news in a digestible, mobile friendly format. The app curates the news with articles specifically built for the app combined with 3rd party content. This replaces the previous Newstand app.


Push notifications have been around for what seems like an eternity! The ability to start a conversation with users via push notifications has always been one of its biggest strengths. Many apps leverage them as a way to drive continued usage and deliver value to users.

Although push notifications are seen as a fantastic tool by marketers, end users are beginning to see them in a negative light with fewer users opting in to receive them. The median opt-in rate for push notifications has dropped from 45% to 42% year over year. Although this may be surprising, there are several potential causes for this:

Over abundance of messaging: When it comes to push notifications, less is more. Apps that constantly drown users in push notifications are anything but useful and will likely lead to a quick uninstall.

Lack of personalization, contextualization: Generic push notifications that blanket all users with the same message are not effective and likely considered annoying by users. Mobile experiences as a whole have evolved and as such users demand personalization and contextualization.

Too sales-focused: Exclusive offers and discounts are a fantastic use of push notifications but like a pushy salesman, drowning a user with information about promotion will turn them away.

Can opt-in rates be turned around? Are push notifications still a useful marketing tool? What’s the best strategy for push notifications? In our Spring 2015 edition of Mobile X we take an in-depth look at push notifications and the strategies for implementing them successfully.

Havas Family Breakfast

By on June 15, 2015


Since the acquisition announced in February, the Plastic crew has been busy getting to know the many, many faces of Havas Worldwide and network teams everywhere. At our inaugural breakfast in Toronto, leaders from, Montreal, Toronto, Media, Digital and Creative teams shared their vision of the future of integration and collaboration amongst the various specialties in the network.

The morning’s discussion highlighted shared project triumphs. As the various Havas teams came together, talk focused on positioning clients to take advantage of the some of the new and emerging technologies.

We’re incredibly proud to be a part of a team of such talent and experience.


A couple of days ago Apple held their annual Worldwide Developers Conference (WWDC), where technological developments for the next year were announced to an eager crowd of Apple enthusiasts. This year it wasn’t hard to see why there was such a heavy focus on mobile and the development of native applications as these devices become more and more hardwired into our lives.

  1. iOS 9

Just as Google’s Android M took a “back to the basics” approach, Apple’s new operating system iOS 9 promises to take more of a refining approach by revamping some of Apple’s native apps. To name a few, “Notes” will expand on the real estate of the iPhone’s screen by including a drawing feature; “Newsstand” will turn a page into “News” and allow users to read from a host of publications; and “Passbook” will be renamed “Wallet” and include wallet contents not currently supported by Apple Pay. The iPad Air 2’s new “splitscreening” feature will also improve efficiency and productivity as users will be able to open two apps side-by-side. To top it off, as something that is constantly sought out by users of energy-consuming apps, iOS 9’s “low power mode” aims to extend battery life by an extra three hours.

  1. Apple Watch Software Update

While the wearables market is still in its infancy and the creation of apps begins to swell, the Apple Watch will take the next step in expanding its interactivity with its new operating system, WatchOS 2. The new operating system will offer a variety of new watch features, including the aptly named “Time Travel”, which conveniently catalogues the user’s current and upcoming events. The operating system will also allow for a new level of interactivity through play back audio and video functions. As the Apple Watch’s user experience is transformed from a convenient, visual interface into a completely dynamic device, we can only begin to ponder future applications that will completely revolutionize this growing technology sector.

  1. Apple Maps with Public Transit Directions

While Apple Maps is a readily available solution to finding directions, it has fallen short of it’s promise, especially when compared to other competing apps, especially where reliable transit routes and commute time estimates are concerned. The new revamped iOS 9 version of Apple Maps will hopefully solve all that by offering bus, subway, train, and ferry routes. Users will be able to use their iPhones as a map and payment option as Maps will display nearby stores that support Apple Pay. Toronto and New York are among the major cities to get the transit map support.

Users can see more of their convenient and intuitive devices simplifying and expediting day-to-day actions. The future of mobile technology and wearables looks very promising as Apple’s technological developments make it easier for users in search of efficiency in all arenas including shopping, commuting, and content consuming. As history of this brand has told us, we can expect adoption and penetration once the Apple brand is behind a trend.


The Google I/O Conference had some major announcements in the way of mobile tech advancement. So it was very exciting to see that many of the new technologies Google discussed were developments we’ve been working on already with some major clients.

  1. Mobile Payments and Loyalty Cards

Android Pay will replace Google Wallet, as open platform will allow developers to incorporate payments. The platform will be available preinstalled on devices with Google M, and promises to be compatible in the U.S in over 700,000 stores with NFC-based point of sale terminals.

The debate over mobile payments has gained considerable frequency. One concern is whether mobile payment platforms can replace a user’s physical wallet wholesale: cash, credit card, loyalty cards and memberships. Plastic has experienced some great success in the development of loyalty-based apps. For the AIR MILES app, we increased user engagement by including a game where users competed with other users in the pursuit to earn double AIR MILES reward miles. As technology continues to advance we eventually will never have to carry around clunky wallets, while being able to stay on top of brand online rewards via push notifications.

  1. Wearable Apps Invasion

Recently, Google has made some impressive strides with some powerful new apps for the blossoming wearables market. The intent of apps for wearable devices is to make the user experience expansive, intuitive, and convenient. Google’s latest update on Google Maps for wearables will have loaded directions stay on the screen, providing instant access to crucial information while users are on the go.

In our Pizza Pizza Apple Watch app, we worked towards innovation unseen as well as we developed a mobile countdown feature as part of the Pizza Pizza delivery guarantee. Users can observe the live 40-minute countdown on their watch to make sure their order arrives on time, or it’s free.

Also for our REALTOR.ca Apple Watch app users can look up information about a property on site. When a user is in front of a house they’re interested in, a flick of their wrist will pull up details on the house and the demographics of the neighbourhood.

Never resting on our laurels, we’re looking ahead to the next set of innovations in mobile, and we’re equally confident come this time next year, we will once again be on the same page as Google in terms of their thinking towards mobile technology and advancement.


Plastic Mobile is thrilled to announce that it has been highlighted in Clutch’s first Wearable App Development Leaders Matrix, an exclusive list profiling early leaders in wearable app technology and development.

Clutch is an innovative research firm that reviews companies by using traditional business-to-business research and consumer review services. Their criteria featured over a dozen qualitative and quantitative factors, including the ability for a company to successfully deliver a quality product to market with highly rated reviews.

Two of Plastic’s most noteworthy strengths were its market presence, and experience with clients – one of whom, Pizza Pizza, said, “We see Plastic not only as a partner but as an extension of our group. They’re very unique, and that’s why they’re very good at what they do. They stand out in their designing.”

Plastic’s Pizza Pizza app for Apple Watch was featured in the App Store on the day of the wearable device’s release.

To learn more about how Plastic Mobile is leading the next stage of app adoption, please read the press release and report from Clutch.


As the growing market of wearable technology sees more smartwatches, critics are asking what the advantages, applications and use-cases are with these new devices.

The Apple Watch, has been compared to the iPhone itself in functionality and some argue that the limited functions are hindering usability. However, the strength of the Apple Watch isn’t it being a separate interface on which to leverage every functions. Rather, it’s the simplified, convenient, and friction-free user experience that changes the way users interact with mobile apps. The features available on Apple Watch apps keep the user experience contextual, and ultimately lead to frequent and engaged user interactions – if well executed.

An instantaneous and relevant user experience design was the primal consideration in the design and conceptualization of the Pizza Pizza app, enabling customers to quickly place their favourite and recent orders with a flick of their wrist, and interact with the app utility in an expansive and functional way.

For smartwatches to be truly effective, their apps must deliver intuitive user experiences that remove friction from brand interactions and utility. While Apple Watch has limited screen real estate in comparison with some other Apple products, the user interaction is both complementary to the companion devices, as well as a robust stand alone end-to-end experience in and of itself.

The crux of the Apple Watch is that the simplicity of its apps can translate into great, unique user experiences – not whether the apps come chock-full of confusing features.

As this article states, the Pizza Pizza app “is not supposed to have bells and whistles,” as it focuses on quick and easy-to-grasp features. From the outset of the Apple Watch, we can look forward to seeing how it and other wearable technologies shape the future of the app space.

Just in time for the Apple Watch Launch, We Are Wearables held a fantastic Meetup that Plastic Mobile was excited to participate in. The night consisted of exhibitor booths, multiple panel discussions, refreshments and of course…wearable technology, including the newly launched Apple Watch. Plastic Mobile was proud to be featured as an exhibitor and participated in a panel discussion featuring some of the first companies to launch Apple Watch apps.

Jason Hyde, VP of Creative at Plastic Mobile, participated in an exciting and informative live panel to discuss everything Apple Watch and the launch of both Pizza Pizza and REALTOR.ca for Apple Watch. Jason described the user experience and user interface process for Apple Watch, explaining how Plastic Mobile set out to create an experience that gave users substance and was consistent with iOS. As the panel wrapped up attendees had the chance to ask questions to panelists. When the panel concluded people filtered out and came directly to the Plastic Mobile looking to order pizza or view houses, directly from their wrist.

The exhibitor booth run by Plastic Mobile stole the show, with attendees lining up to receive a demo and discuss wearables. The Plastic Mobile booth featured multiple Apple Watches to showcase our Pizza Pizza and REALTOR.ca Apple Watch apps. Attendees were thrilled by the live demos showcasing the ability to order pizza with just a few taps on the watch and browse the delicious Pizza Pizza menu. Furthermore, the ability to see properties for sale, call a Realtor and favorite properties using Force Touch via the REALTOR.ca app fascinated attendees.

The Meetup concluded with time for networking and refreshments from Pizza Pizza. Plastic Mobile is excited for the next We Are Wearables event!


Sep Seyedi, CEO of Plastic Mobile, was recently interviewed by App Academy, a weekly podcast where host Jordan Bryant invites experts to discuss the latest mobile technology trends.

After detailing a bit of Sep’s professional background, the unique qualities of his innovative company, and the success of smartphones, Sep reveals what is next for wearable technologies, particularly the Apple Watch.

Expanding on Plastic Mobile’s slogan for it’s user-friendly mobile apps, technology inspired by design, Sep explains, “it’s important to understand what the user needs, making it ultra-simple for them, and having a great experience in front of them. Leading with design in the experience is important for us.”

In order to build an app geared towards the user, Sep admits it’s actually more important to ask what the end-user – rather than the client – wants in the app. “Be direct and ask them what are the things that are important to them,” says Sep. He continues, “Afterwards, when you do have some creative design that you think is going to answer all that, get a few of those customers in a room and test that out, and see how it performs.”

Plastic’s response to the blossoming wearables market has been to simultaneously simplify its user-friendly apps, while working with the expansive user experience and use-cases that the Apple Watch lends itself to, and performing actions without a mobile device. Speaking about future trends for wearables, Sep declares, “I think we’re going to see a lot more interaction with the physical world… I think there’s been a lot of talk of digital wallets for quite some time… I think that the wearables, especially the watch, are really going to help propel that business – especially because it’s even easier to use.”

When asked about how mobile wallets and smartwatches could be a unanimous success if implemented correctly, Sep responds, “A simple experience like that is the same principle we’ve been taking on every app we build. Things like that and the watch: if they’re simple to use, then it will reduce friction and get people to adopt them much faster.”

Please listen to the full episode from Jordan Bryant’s podcast App Academy, available to download for free on iTunes.

Mobile X Spring 2015 - FINAL - May 15 2015 COMPRESSED

Mobile is being increasingly sought after by marketers as a tool to extend campaign experiences to the palms of customers everywhere. In many cases, various brands have opted to develop a dedicated mobile app for their campaigns.

Campaign apps can often lead to exceptionally entertaining and engaging experiences. To get there, companies must consider several key elements when curating the app experience. They include:

Simplistic Messaging: Content should be simple, digestible and easy to understand. Mobile users don’t want to dig for information, instead they expect it to be presented to them, instantly.

Interactive: Mobile excels compared to other platforms as it presents an array of technologies that can be leveraged. Each technology has it’s own pros and cons that can be combined to create the perfect interactive mobile marketing experience.

Sticky Factor: Engagement drives success. The success of any mobile app can be attributed to the engagement it drives. Providing incentive or motivation for continued use of your app leads to engagement. Creating features that are “sticky” is what really brings users back.

Value: The value provided by your app needs to be clear to the user. If they can’t see the benefits for them it’s unlikely they will download it. With device storage space at a premium users will really be looking for ways to justify an app download.

Looking for more on campaign apps? We’ve attached our Mobile X report which features analysis on some of the most successful campaign apps and the biggest mobile trends this year.

Read more here.


In the past year, with a certainly impressive amount of research and experimentation, facial and image recognition technologies have gained considerable momentum. Among the largest innovators are search engine giant Google, and the colossal online community Facebook, who have harnessed the power of revolutionary facial recognition and image recognition technologies.

Just over a year ago, Facebook released DeepFace, intending to “close the gap to human-level performance in face verification”. By merely looking at two photos, the facial recognition technology deciphers whether the photos contain the same face, irrespective of lighting and positioning of the face. With 97.3% accuracy, only second to the 97.5% accuracy of the human brain, DeepFace is an impressive piece of artificial intelligence that certainly meets its intended goal.

Similarly, Google’s image recognition technology has advanced to the point of being able to mimic human levels of understanding. Although it relies heavily on image descriptions in order to tag them, the search engine is able to identify entire scenes in photos and videos. For example, Google’s image recognition can detect a group of children playing on a jungle gym. By working with Stanford University and merging two types of neural networks, Google has made the cataloguing and searching of billions of images and videos more efficient.

While such technologies may sound fun and useful, both have stirred up considerable controversy. Some Facebook users have protested DeepFace’s preemptive and automatic tagging feature, positing that it violates their human rights. Google has had to meet concerns of some of its users, now that it’s able to track all searches and identify all new content uploaded daily. The search engine recently included a solution to delete and/or download any information users may not want tracked, whether from their search history of Gmail account.

Concerns may start to arise around Facebook’s mobile app, which enables users to take and post photos straight from it. However, if the app’s face verification automatically starts tagging the users in these photos as soon as they’re uploaded, users may feel trepidatious about posting them in the first place. Furthermore, Google has an extensive suite of mobile apps and owns the Android ecosystem, all of which could be easily integrated with image recognition. Google could integrate everything from Google Camera to Google Drive with image recognition to instantly tag photos on your mobile phone and in Google Cloud services. Overall, both companies should take stock in how users will view their apps if privacy concerns remain relevant.


While America leaves a cold, dark winter and starts to enjoy a warm, sunny spring, American upscale fashion retailer Nordstrom is ready to oblige fitness savvy shoppers. Nordstrom has marketed its workout-themed Pop-In @ Nordstrom Nike Women temporary shop through Vogue magazine’s mobile-friendly site. In between content on the site’s homepage, the click-through advertisements with floral backgrounds reminding viewers of the blossoming season, and incentivizing a call to action, “Play, Shop, Win” in a contest for Nike products.

The unique mobile marketing partnership between Nordstrom, a retailer of high-end designer brands, and Nike, an internationally recognized sportswear designer, will be sure to attract the attention of young shoppers. “Millennials are quickly becoming the top consumer of luxury goods and products,” said Melody Adhami, President and COO of Plastic Mobile. “As this group is inherently mobile, consuming and engaging with content on mobile is an expectation, not a luxury for this segment,” she said.

The marketing opportunity will appeal to Vogue’s fashion-savvy audience while promoting a timely product segment. The fashion and health conscious readers and consumers can enter a contest and subscribe to Nordstrom’s newsletter via email.

To wrap up, Melody commented “Nordstrom aligning this Pop-In campaign with Vogue allows them to reach their shared demographic with fitness and health being top of mind. Also leveraging mobile has given them better chances to connect with millennials, layering in a new target segment.”


Apple Watch

Plastic’s long awaited mobile apps for Apple Watch garnered a lot of attention. Both Pizza Pizza and Realtor.ca were featured as launch day apps by Apple. Melody Adhami, President and COO at Plastic Mobile recently sat down with IT Business to provide some insight on exactly how these stellar apps came to be.

Designing for a revolutionary new platform may seem daunting at first, but it’s actually quite simple as Melody Adhami explains. First off Plastic Mobile sees Apple Watch apps falling into two basic categories:

  1. Companion apps:  These apps relay notifications and other information from your smartphone.
  2. Utility apps: These allow users to engage with the interface and complete a basic tasks. These apps are structured to provide standalone experiences apart from the smartphone apps.

Melody continued by clarifying the importance of broadening one’s digital offerings, for Pizza Pizza and Realtor.ca. “This is part of their offering, to be innovative, to be cutting edge,” she says. “They want to be first to market.”

Although Apple Watch is considered to be an extension of the smartphone, Melody reminds us that it has a unique set of opportunities and features “smart watch apps will have to keep functionality as simple as possible”. Looking at extending the functionality of the smartwatch Melody talked about what users may be willing to do with the device. “Buying and selling stocks off their watch, I don’t think so. But ordering a pizza? Sure!”

It seems straightforward, but Melody stresses that when entering the Apple Watch sphere brands must, “Think about what value you’re really able to offer on a person’s wrist and why that’s different from what you’re already doing. Not every task will be suitable for a form factor that’s measured in millimetres and strapped to a wrist.”



When we were lugging folders and papers around with our real estate agent in tow rushing from one door to the next, at some point we all thought to ourselves; “This is ridiculous.” So here at Plastic Mobile we set out to make it better, with Realtor.ca. Now you can check out what’s up for sale in your neighbourhood, and call the agent to make an appointment with a flick of a wrist. The Realtor.ca app allows users to check out listings nearby, see details and call an agent right from the watch.

The Realtor.ca Apple Watch app can perform a wide variety of functions including:

  • Check for nearby properties
  • View neighborhood demographics
  • Favorite properties
  • Create lists
  • View property details
  • Call a Realtor

As technology like the Apple Watch emerges we get a front row seat to the changing consumer behavior, and how prospective homebuyers plan their future.


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In the midst of all the hullabaloo surrounding Apple Watch last week, you may have missed the release of Pizza Pizza’s Apple Watch app. So we just wanted to let you know that you can now order your favourite pizza straight from the wrist. Plastic Mobile is proud to have brought the first and only pizza ordering Apple Watch app to the world. Not to mention 1 of 2 food service apps available for Apple Watch…ever.

The Pizza Pizza Apple Watch app can perform a host of functions including:

  • Quick menu browsing
  • Pizza ordering
  • Payment
  • Delivery countdown
  • Place favorite or recent orders
  • Check club 11-11
  • Check gift card balance

“This is part of their offering, to be innovative, and cutting edge,” commented Melody Adhami, Plastic Mobile’s President and COO, on Apple Watch’s broadening of digital offerings. “The Pizza Pizza customer wants convenience and it doesn’t get more convenient than this.”

“Apple Watch represents the next wave of convenient solutions for our customers, and we are thrilled to be part of this evolution,” said Paul Goddard, President and Chief Executive Officer of Pizza Pizza Limited.



Believe it or not, amidst all the commotion last week surrounding Apple’s new wearable, Apple Watch, there was still other mobile news. “Mobilegeddon” is nigh, according to experts, who have coined the term in reaction to Google’s latest update to it’s search engine algorithm. Google will now prioritize sites with mobile-friendly versions by ranking them higher in search results while downgrading sites that are not mobile-friendly.

The importance of a mobile optimization for brands cannot be stressed enough. At Plastic we’ve been harping on this for 7 years. And while I’d hate to say ‘I told you so’, it’s becoming more and more true every day. As if it’s not quite enough to disappoint and lose your customers when they’re reaching out to your brand on mobile devices, now Google is also leaving non-mobile brands out in the cold.

It’s been predicted that by 2018 m-commerce will make up half of all e-commerce sales, and it’s already well on it’s way with many industries averaging 30-40% of digital sales through mobile. The dollar value of m-commerce will grow to $626 billion in the U.S by 2018, leaving a lot of market share on the table for mobile laggards.

Additionally, Google has claimed that half of all searches around the world originate from mobile devices. No surprise there. Mobile phones have also transformed the way consumers shop online and search.

As mentioned in an article from Marketing Magazine, brands can test and verify the strength of their URL, according to the new Google standards to see how they’re ranking now. The results will hopefully encourage ‘mobiphobes’ to get with the times. While many brands are passing with flying colours, most are simply not up to par. This could very well be the moment of truth for brands and businesses.

“Mobilegeddon” is not just a term to scare marketers into the era of mobile, but rather it’s a shift in paradigm and priorities. It’s not just about content and SEO any more, the very meaning of SEO is anchored in the DNA of a brand, rising up from design, usability and function.



In the past two years, BMW, the German producer of design-savvy and performance-driven automobiles, has transformed the way people use their phones and their cars. The navigation and communication application Life360 will keep families connected all the time and everywhere.

As mentioned in an article from Luxury Daily, Life360 “brings you closer when you’re apart.” The app keeps users up-to-date by sending notifications to their device, which sits in the dashboard, while the navigation system helps the drivers get to their destinations.

“As families, become increasingly reliant on their mobile devices for navigation and communication, brands need to step in and recognize the opportunity being presented,” said Melody Adhami, president and COO of app developer Plastic Mobile.

Since inception, the app has been downloaded and used by over 50 million families. The app is part of BMW’s ConnectedDrive feature, which helps keep BMW’s customers connected with a more personal touch by enabling calling through the app.

When asked what in-car app integration bodes for the future of applications, Melody said, “Soon we will see car dashboards take on more smartphone and tablet capabilities, truly embodying a mobile device.



Although there are some heavy smartwatch competitors out there such as: Android WearPebble and the Microsoft Band; still, over the past few months it’s become clear that Apple Watch is the most anticipated device of the year.

Thus far, the Apple Watch has sparked some concern and controversy from reviewers, but we’ll let their sales vouch for their validity. Between Apple’s discretion and industry whispers many are gearing up for an April 24th launch, however, pre-orders started April 10, 2015 in Australia, Canada, China, France, Germany, Hong Kong, Japan, the UK and the US.

According to The Verge, having just stepped into the smartwatch game it is estimated that Apple already has a million+ units pre-ordered in the US, and over 2.3 million units globally. In order to put these sales into context; compared to the first generation of iPhone, where only sold 270,000 units were sold in the first 30 hours post launch, and the first iPad sold 300,000 in its first day. This first generation Apple product is already making history.

Those who are able get their hands on these luxurious devices can expect built-in Apps such as, Mail, iMessage, Apple Maps, Siri, iTunes, and Passbook, which are a minimum expectation of Apple users.

As for new apps, users focused on their health will be excited to see a wide range of apps dedicated to helping you take control of your health. Apple is looking forward to unveiling the built-in apps, Activity and Workout. However, there are a selection of brands highlighted on Apple’s preview of the Apple Watch App Store.  You can check out,  Nike + RunningStravaGreen Kitchen, Lifesum and Runtastic, to name a few.

Other apps we’re expecting to see include: Air CanadaBabbeltheScoreESPNGlobe and MailShazamInvoice2goMint Personal Finance and Lutron Caséta.

The question here is; how do you plan on improving your users’ mobile experience? If smartwatch or wearable experiences haven’t been on your mobile roadmap, they certainly will be now. We can expect to see more Apple Watch apps flooding the market, sooner than later. Everyone seems to want to get in on the smartwatch action and frankly, we’re excited to be a part of the fun.

Stay tuned for more updates in the smartwatch sphere.


Plastic Black

On April 03, 2015, Clutch, a Washington, DC-based research firm, published their first report identifying the top firms focused on app development and mobile marketing, highlighting those who deliver world-class results for their clients.

We’re delighted to share that Plastic Mobile was included and ranked high as a Leading Mobile App Marketing Agency, based on a full-scale assessment of our experience and work.

Clutch’s Lead Marketing Analyst explains, “These app marketing service providers range in agency size and vary in customer and industry focus. However, these agencies and the strategic marketing teams behind them have demonstrated a commitment to meeting their clients’ app marketing objectives.”

 He also notes, “One of the biggest hurdles an app marketing agency faces is implementing a mobile strategy that is also aligned with their clients’ big picture business goals.” An area we’re proud to have a proven track record in.

Clutch identified Plastic’s strengths in key areas as well as client accolades from interviews. One such client as Pizza Pizza said;

“We see Plastic not only as a partner but as an extension of our group. They’re very unique, and that’s why they’re very good at what they do. They stand out in their design work.”

For a more details, see Clutch.co’s filtering tools to help identify if Plastic best meets your needs.





The NCAA tournament is coming to an end quicker than Iowa’s elimination from the first round! However, there is no shortage of diehard fans, who have been arranging their brackets and gearing up for the event long before it started. In this same vein, mobile is playing a significant role in how fans engage with the competition.

Basketball fans are flocking to mobile as a source of information for the tournament. During April and March of last year, half of all searches relating to college basketball were done via a mobile device. Continuing with this trend, the share of mobile searches reached 60% in January 2015- and this is just the beginning of how mobile has made a splash in the world of college basketball. Here are a few more winning stats and insights:

A big draw for basketball fans and sports fans alike is participating in sporting brackets. Constantly checking your sports bracket and checking game results is something that is inherently mobile. This year, ESPN’s Tournament Challenge alone had 11.6 million brackets.

The ideal situation for a sports fan is being able to enjoy the game while relaxed at home or their favourite bar, but this isn’t always possible. That’s where mobile streaming comes into play. Mobile applications from a variety of publishers including ESPNMarch Madness Live and CBS Sports are filling in the gap by providing seamless, video streaming capabilities that help fans keep track of their favourite teams- no matter where they are.

Even when fans decide to watch the game from a first screen, they are still using mobile. According to AT&T in 2014, 88% of mobile owners watch TV while using a mobile device. Much like any major event or spectacle today, whether the viewer is watching the event on their television, streaming it from a mobile device, or watching it live, they are bound to also be participating in some heavy action on their mobile devices.

While it’s important to understand how consumers are interacting with multiple screens, mobile-first strategies mustn’t be overlooked. March Madness is no stranger to leveraging native videos, and ads to connect with fans. Connecting with fans this way is easy because basketball fanatics can not get enough of tournament highlights. In other words, those who hold college basketball dear to their hearts will talk about Kentucky’s 38 – 0 winning streak this year and willingly watch and re-watch highlights from past games on video sharing sites or broadcasting apps, for years to come.

Mobile can be deployed in a variety of ways to engage fans and if we’ve learned anything from the March Madness tournament, it’s that fans love a good game. Seeing as March Madness is becoming increasingly mobile and bracket gamification is compelling everyone to participate; thinking forward, we predict that mobile gamification will play a much larger role in these kind of tournament. For now, we’ll keep our mobile devices near and tune into next Saturday’s Final Four.


Last week, Austin Texas transformed into the largest playground for creative talent around the world during the 22nd Annual SXSW Festival. Every year there is an overwhelming turnout of musicians, technologists, film makers, sponsors, exhibits, speakers, parties… and more parties. However, it seems that every year something from the Interactive portion of the event finds it’s way into the spotlight. In the past Twitter, GroupMe and FourSquare all took center stage, launching into success at SXSW. This year everyone was talking about the live streaming app, Meerkat.

SXSW is an incubator for cutting edge technology and creativity. Everyone wants to know the ideas of tomorrow. The thing is, speakers couldn’t keep themselves from discussing the future of mobile. From mobile influence, engagement, wearables and mobile payments there is always a special place in SXSW’s heart for mobile – especially during the contests.

Jumping into the contests, there was a generous amount of tech submitted to the 2015 Interactive Innovation Awards. Here are some of our mobile picks from the batch of winners:

FireChat (Free iOS, Android) – As the winners of the ‘Innovation in Connecting People’ category, FireChat is a mobile application that allows users to communicate or chat off the the grid without access to internet.

Freewavz –  Designed by Dr. Eric Hensen, FreeWavz are wireless earphones that received praise because they adhere to the fit-tracking needs of wearable users. More specifically, they allow users to track and hear updates on their heart rate, calories burned, distance, steps and exertion when they want. This made them the 2015 winner of the ‘Wearable Tech’ category.

Guide Dots (Free iOS, Android) –  Lastly, Guide Dots won the ‘Transportation Advancements’ category. This app is particularly interesting because it uses proprietary crowd-sourced GPS location data from Google Places and Facebook Nearby. Using this data it can call out locations and intersections to users so that they can receive nearby promotional offers and find friends who have checked in nearby. Guide Dots mainly hopes to provide an optimized user experience for the visually impaired.

We predict mobile will be an even bigger discussion next year at SXSW 2016, with Virtual Reality tech and the Internet of Things making waves in the mobile sphere. Granted, we look forward to being apart of the journey and seeing what next years talent has to bring.

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We’ve seen a variety of fashion brands such as Vanity Fair, FarFetch, and Wallpaper* provide travel guides that inspire, influence and engage their user base. On Feb 4, 2016 Vogue officially released it’s own rendition of these guides with Vogue’s City Directory, sponsored by Estée Lauder.

Plastic’s COO & President, Melody Adhami, and Luxury Daily noticed Vogue’s mobile travel guide and decided to take a closer look at it’s initiative.

Vogue invites readers to ‘discover’ the most fashionable cities, by providing readers access to content picked by fashion designers, vogue staff, models and a variety of exclusive influencers. The City Directory then guides readers through activities from shopping, dining and other services, in cities such as New York, London, LA, Milan, Paris and Shanghai.

Although this strategy is nothing new, Vogue is taking advantage of the opportunities that mobile has to offer by presenting their content in a format mobile users are familiar with. Melody explains,

“Presenting content in this listed format has become the norm on mobile and is expected by users today. This sort of listed content is beneficial to Estée Lauder because the repetition of ads throughout the content help the brand make an impact in case the ad at the top of the page doesn’t catch the user’s eye.” She continues, “The great thing about mobile is with the limited screen real-estate and on-the-go users with short attention spans, a brand can have a much greater impact by including consistent presence rather than a one-off splash ad.”

While Melody trusts that, “Estée Lauder will definitely benefit from the numerous ads especially since they are not competing with another brand, ” she also believes that the ads could have been better incorporated in the content for a more curated feel.

“Moreover, there seems to be no common thread between the content and the ads. Estée Lauder would have probably benefited from designing their campaign to be more visually aligned with the way the content is presented in the guide,” she concludes.

See Luxury Daily’s screenshots and comments on Vogue’s City Directory here.



Sorry folks, the Doctor Oz alone just won’t cut it anymore. The latest way to stay engaged, informed and involved in your health is – cue drumroll – mobile.

It’s true; mHealth applications are truly empowering consumers to take control of their health and bodies. We’re not suggesting that your mobile device will be the end all cure to bodily ailments, but whether it’s using mobile applications to improve knowledge or using data and biometrics, mobile is playing a crucial role in driving growth between B2B and B2C healthcare providers and organizations.

I’m sure you’ve come across some wearable device or other that’s countings steps and measuring heart rates, or tracking sleep patterns. The increased adoption of mHealth apps that leverage the explosion of wearable and health innovations might seem straight out of a sci-fi film. Wearable health technology including, ECG monitors, blood pressure monitors, pulse oximeters, blood glucose monitors, asthma managers,  and pain relief sensors are encouraging people to take control of their health by keeping track of their bodies.

The issue remains, that healthcare providers and organizers have yet to truly take advantage of mobile technology that engages and empowers patients. Our bodies shouldn’t be a mystery to us, we are looking at a generation of people who want to be more involved in the tracking of their health. People are constantly searching for information on how to manage chronic and acute disorders, all while the solution is right there in the palm of their hands. Mobile allows for the public to make health data and information relevant and useful to their everyday lives as well as their physicians, with seamless data transfers.

By engaging consumers through intuitive and delightful user interfaces, leveraging voice assistance with context aware technology, the healthcare providers who choose to deliver a complete end-to-end solution will have the opportunity to become the ‘Big Heroes’ that meet the needs of these health conscious users.

This year mHealth apps have been a particularly focused on usability, and gamification to maintain engagement. Apps such as, KidSpeak – Medical Preps for Kid, Liverpool HEP iChart, and IntensiveMCQ, can all be found on iMedicalApps’ 10 Best Medical Apps released in January list and are just the beginning of applications bridging the information gap in the healthcare industry.

Mobile can truly drive healthier behaviour by improving health management and user awareness. By making better use of the mobile technology available to us we can finally move forward within the healthcare ecosystem.

Which application will your doctor prescribe next?