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TikTok banned (conditionally), Spotify’s new AI, + more mobile app news| The Median Minute

Welcome to the latest edition of the Median Minute, a semi-frequent series scannable in one minute, powered by the team at, and built for you.

⏩TL;DR: In this edition (our ⏰ April Edit): Spring is here and, in April app news, ‘controversy’ was a going theme. A bill to ban TikTok in the US (conditionally) was passed in late April; Android 15 beta arrived with new features to explore; a new app guide just launched exposing the prohibitive costs of some app development approaches — and more. Let’s dive in and take a closer look at these newsmakers below.

💡FEATURED STORY: How much does app development *actually* cost? 

The quintessential guide to app development costs

It’s a question every project manager or decision maker has asked before leaping into the unexplored and sometimes expensive endeavor of app development — the process of creating an app for your business or personal use.

Whether you’re building an app from scratch in-house, converting your website to an app for iOS and Android, or you’re hiring a developer — knowing how much each of these options costs is key.

Choosing the right development option *the first time* can save you hundreds of thousands of dollars in the long run.

Knowing this, Median has created a full guide to app development costs that you can use to make an informed decision whether to choose an external app builder, or develop it in-house.

Inside the guide:

  • Tips on how to choose the right app development approach
  • The costs of in-house development
  • The costs of outsourcing app development
  • The pros, cons, and costs of app development platforms and services
  • App development: A decision-makers checklist for app development

Deciding between outsourcing and in-house app development can be a significant challenge.

But, those aren’t your only choices: a third and increasingly popular option will save you on costs and avoid you having to duplicate effort. 

Learn more in the guide, which you can find here: The quintessential guide to app development costs

🗞️Apps in the news

Whether it's the ban on TikTok, Spotify’s new AI playlists, Android 15 beta 1, or insights on app name strategies, we’ve been glued to these mobile app news stories this month.

Breaking news: US Signs bill to ban TikTok (on some conditions) 

April 24, 2024 = a significant day for app news: President Joe Biden signed a highly anticipated bill into law that would effectively ban TikTok in the United States. What does it mean exactly? The bill states that TikTok parent company ByteDance will have to sell the popular social media app within nine months, or face a ban indefinitely. The earliest this ban could be in effect, if not sold to the US, would be January 19, 2025. 

What does this mean for app stores in the US? TikTok will ultimately be removed from all app stores across the US. While users who already have the TikTok app can still use the app after the ban, ByteDance won't be able to send updates and security patches to the app, which obviously poses an increased security risk. 

TikTok is planning to appeal this decision — so stay tuned for more developments as we monitor this #trending story.

It’s here: The long-awaited Android 15 Beta 1

After two developer previews, Google has finally released Android 15 Beta 1. Some of the new features of the Beta 1 include: 

  • Edge-to-edge drawing by default
  • System-level app archiving
  • NFC payment

Unlike the user previews, users can easily install the Android 15 Beta 1 on their phones simply by joining the Android Beta program. Stay tuned for more feature announcements by Google at the Google I/O 2024 on May 14, 2024.

Google sees green: A new paid version of Chrome

Google now features a new paid version of Chrome. The paid version offers data loss prevention and malware deep scanning, while the free version offers general phishing and malware protection. Google also introduced a new edition of Chrome —  Chrome Enterprise Premium — which has core (free) and Premium (paid) options. These are business-specific benefits to subscribing to Chrome Enterprise. 

Sing your heart out with Spotify’s new AI personalized playlist

With the popularity of AI increasing rapidly, Spotify too have decided to integrate AI as part of its offerings: Spotify Premium users can now turn any idea into a personalized playlist with AI Playlist (currently in Beta). New music discovery happens quite often on Spotify, with nearly two billion new music discovered every day. With this new feature, users can effortlessly turn their most creative ideas into playlists. 

Android versus iOS: Can Android grow bigger than iOS?

In the decades-long battle of the apps between Android and iOS, researchers are now indicating that Android may be leading the market. iOS devices have been long popular for their unique value proposition — high level user interface, an array of apps available to download + more — but, without adopting AI features, it may not stand a chance against Samsung phones. IDC research director Nabila Poplal says Android is expected to grow twice as fast as iOS this year, due to the fact that Android has more room to grow, being in a state of decline for the past few years. However, it is still not a guarantee and only time will tell.

What’s in an (app) name? How to name your app so it  sells

Standing out in the Google Play Store is no easy matter — a good app name can help you do just that. Craft an engaging Play Store listing by designing a distinctive title, icon, feature graphic, and video to attract users. When selecting a good app name, it is crucial to encapsulate the primary functions of your app within the title. Just by focusing on understanding the digital marketplace, creating a memorable and unique app name will enhance app visibility. Read more via Sidebar magazine: How to choose an app name that will sell on Google Play.

Apple updates: iOS 17.5 beta 2 and App Store Connect’s new features

Apple has announced that online distribution is now supported in iOS 17.5 beta 2 and App Store Connect, allowing developers to provide iPhone apps for direct download to EU customers from their own websites, breaking away Apple’s traditional dependence on the App Store for app distribution in the area. This development marks a significant shift in an ecosystem that enforced strong limitations against ‘sideloading’ which is the practice of installing programs from sites other than the official App Store.

Google’s new updated Terms of Service

Google has updated its term of service for 2024, incorporating a ‘Generative AI Additional Terms of Service’ — in other words, Google does not claim ownership over AI outputs. This update reflects the latest laws and products, classifying spam activities such as jailbreaking, phishing, and more. Country-specific changes are also in place for France and Australia. The changes aim to protect users from unauthorized access to AI content.

New @ Median

Median now supports OneSignal’s user-centric data model

Median now supports OneSignal’s user-centric data model

Median’s partnership with OneSignal continues to grow and give customers a richer experience across the board: Median now supports OneSignal’s new user-centric data model! 

What this means for you: Any new apps created with Median’s App Studio will automatically support OneSignal’s user-centric data model.

However, if you have an existing app, we encourage you to make the migration to this new integration as part of your next app update. 

To do this, visit our documentation page here.

In Toronto this summer? We hope to see you at Collision 2024!

Join the Median team in June, at the 2024 Collision tech conference in Toronto.

That’s right, Median’s very own team of experts will be at North America’s fastest-growing tech conference — a conference that brings together Fortune 500 companies, groundbreaking startups, and industry-leading speakers for a tech-infused event that has become a milestone in the tech industry’s calendar.

Are you attending? Come say ✋!

📱Anatomy of an App: Median’s Native Media Player

While an app’s features, user experience, performance and speed, and visual elements such as screenshots, icons and app splash screens are important for its success, a native media player plugin is equally as important if not more — it enhances user experience by a mile. 

Median's native media player plugin

So, what’s a native media player plugin?

A must have for an app with audio content — a native media player plugin is a software that is added to an app to make the playback of multimedia files (audio and video content) possible. 

Apps like Spotify and Apple Music? They all have native media player plugins integrated into their apps.

You too can have this plugin with the help of Median’s very own Native Media Player plugin.

Some of this plugin’s features include:

  • Seamless integration: It integrates seamlessly within your app, making media content easily accessible without needing external software.
  • Optimized performance: The media optimization allows for a smooth playback experience while also reducing storage usage.
  • Customizability: They’re entirely customizable, so your app can offer settings such as playback controls + more.
  • Streaming ability: Included is access to live streaming content such as radio shows, podcasts, or even live music.

You might be wondering, “How can I add a Native Media Player plugin into my app?”

The quick answer: Median’s Native Media Player plugin has all the above mentioned benefits + more — and adding it to your app is as seamless as possible.

To learn how to add this plugin into your app, check our documentations on the Native Media Player plugin.

Or, want to learn more about the features of the Median’s Native Media Player? Get some practical tips in this recent article from Sidebar Magazine.



STUNNING STATS: The number of sales revenue generated by Apple from the sale of iPhones as of the first quarter of 2024. See more stats at Statista.

📢Overheard @ Median

“Will updates to my WordPress site automatically show live on my app? ”

Yes! Any updates made to your WordPress website will automatically show up on your app. 

Any changes to the web content powering your app will automatically be reflected, with no further update is needed. Specifically, any content updates will be live in the app without needing to republish it. Pages shown via a Median-built app will follow the same caching rules as your browser and update in near real-time.

However, some changes that impact the native app (such as any addition/removal of plugins or configurational changes) require you to publish a new version of the app.

Head of Sales, Pat McCrory, sees the big benefits of this ease of use:

The beauty of Median being a hybrid web=native app is that your web content powers the user experience. Changes to your website and web content are reflected live in the app … so you only need to manage one codebase. Our customers love the fact that they can focus on their business and their customers rather than taking on the cumbersome task of developing and updating an app for both iOS and Android. - Pat McCrory, Head of Sales

Median’s team of experts ensures your app building experience is fast, efficiently done, and stress free.

Time’s up (for now)! 

We’re here to help you make sense of all things mobile. Have specific questions? Get in touch with us here, or visit our website.

*DISCLAIMER: This content is provided solely for informational purposes. It is not exhaustive and may not be relevant for your requirements. While we have obtained and compiled this information from sources we believe to be reliable, we cannot and do not guarantee its accuracy. This content is not to be considered professional advice and does not form a professional relationship of any kind between you and LLC or its affiliates. is the industry-leading end-to-end solution for developing, publishing, and maintaining native mobile apps for iOS and Android powered by web content. When considering any technology vendor we recommend that you conduct detailed research and “read the fine print” before using their services.*
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