No matter which way you look at it, smart phones have changed our lives.
These devices have changed how we communicate with each other, use technology and, use the internet.
But, there was one thing that could not be easily or elegantly done: deep linking.
There has not been a way to link apps to each other or, or websites to link an app. These links had to be manually coded, leaving them open to easily breaking if the linked-to app made any changes. Plus, if the apps were operating on multiple operating systems, all sorts issues arose.
In short, it was too difficult!
Until now. Facebook has come up with a solution that was announced at its F8 conference last week.
App Links is an open source solution that is available for anyone to use. It currently supports iOS, Android and Windows phones but other operating systems will be added. It allows developers to put meta tags on pages that will link directly to apps on smart devices.
There is speculation that App Links will become the default standard for deep mobile linking. Prior to the public launch, Facebook had already signed up 25 big name companies to use the code including Spotify, Pinterest, Goodreads, Hulu and Dropbox. That’s not too shabby a user base if you want to start a new industry standard.
This little bit of open source code may just be the missing link that will allow companies and advertisers to be able to lead customers directly to apps from their websites.
No more clunky referrals from your website to your apps. It’s a win for developers and companies but, especially for customers.
App Links explained