It’s hard to get accurate stats about how many smartphones are sold here.
But if Trade is analogue for middle New Zealand, uptake and app usage is proceeding apace.
The company said this morning:
450,000 have downloaded its iPhone app (first released in November last year; when NBR last checked, in June, it was 300,000)
120,000 have downloaded its Android app (released in February; Trade Me asys Android is growing faster than iPhone)
- More than 1000 listings a day are being added via a mobile
(Check out the download numbers of some other big-name Kiwi apps in my earlier blog here.)
CEO Jon Macdonald added that a Trade Me Property app is with Apple for approval, and is expected to be available shortly.
Macdonald told NBR a dedicated iPad app would only make sense for some sections of the site. Property was an obvious one with the need for lots of big pics, and the ability to take advantage of mapping and location-based services.
A full Trade Me iPad app is also in the works, but it is early days (there is already a generic “Touch” version of Trade Me for smartphones and tablets).
Mobile growth is a good thing for Trade Me. People use the site more. And, as Macdonald points out, it lets you circumvent any ban on your work PC.
First video with listings
A second interest development is that Trade Me has soft-launched “Stores Extra” this week – a new service for retailers, and part of a drive to up the percentage of new goods sold on the site.
Macdonald is kidding about the soft launch part. He had to guide me to the modest Stores link half way down Trade Me’s home page (you can also go straight to www.trademe.co.nz/stores)
The first retailers who’ve signed up include The Warehouse, Hallensteins and Glassons.
Stores Extra gives sellers the chance to add video clips to listiings for the first time - something Hallensteins and Glassons have taken advantage of.
Macdonald told NBR the option to ad video will filter down to smaller commercial sellers, and individual members posting auctions.
However, there’s no set time frame.
It’s common for Trade Me sellers to add YouTube links to listings, but this is video directly on Trade Me, and hosted by Trade Me.
Macdonald said Trade Me's content delivery network could easily handle video. He didn't see it adding to costs; a broader rollout was more a matter of making sure there were user-friendly upload options for the general public.