FAQ
Questions answered

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Money and monetization

– What does Ivy cost? What is the price model?
Ivy is a cheap way to be present on both mobile and tablet for both Android and iOS. We package it as a SaaS-product with a monthly license fee– and we call the standard package the Ivy Suite License.

In total, the costs are as follows:

One-time cost
– Startup fee (one-time integration)

Monthly cost
– Ivy Suite (monthly fee)
– Ivy Cloud Hosting (monthly, based on server load)

The monthly Ivy Suite fee gives you access to new features, versions and upgrades continuously. This way, we are able to roll out new functionality quickly – and you’ll be able to give your audience a steadily improved product.

Regular updates are a must in the digital landscape in order to monetize and build a user base.

Your users will feel the love for your product by seeing it getting updates on a regular basis.

The Ivy Suite license includes Ivy App, Ivy Server, Ivy Bridge, Ivy PDF, Ivy Bronze SLA and one app instance in iTunes Store / Google Play – in other words, everything you need in order to start publishing great stuff on tablet and mobile.

Startup fee
The startup fee is a one-time fee that covers the initial integrations to your existing systems along with technical planning, advisory, GUI adaptations, test runs, beta and RC rollouts along the submission process.
Ivy Hosting
Since different clients have different kinds of traffic, we use the amount of server load as a means of scaling the cost our clients pay for server load. Please contact us for pricing quotes.
Ok, fine. But what does it cost?
Since every customer has got different products, different user bases and different needs in terms of integration, we never give out a generic offer publicly.

Instead, we meet with every potential client and give tailor-made offers based on the customer at hand.

In the foreseeable future, we will also package products that are more generic, and these will be possible for us to give an official and open price tag.

What about special integrations?
If you have a very specific request about integrating our solution to a stats & analytics engine or push service / another service that we do not currently support, we will bill by the hour on a discounted rate after reaching an agreement with you on the specific task at hand.
What does the Ivy license include?
The Ivy license includes everything you need to get up to speed with your digital publication strategy. Also, as the time goes by, Ivy will contain more and better products.

Please see the “What Is Ivy” section for more info about the Ivy products that come with the Suite license.

Which platforms are supported?
Currently, we support both iOS and Android, both mobile and tablet. iOS always fully supports the two last main versions of the OS (for instance iOS x and iOS x-1 when iOS x is the latest version), while we support the two last main versions of Android as well.

We want to be tapping into the last innovations on both platforms, and therefore we will not be supporting legacy devices forever and ever.

Such a strategy only leads to stagnation, and neither we or you would want that.

What about other operating systems and platforms?
We are always considering developing for other major operating systems that might show up in traffic logs in such a way that it is beneficial for both you and us to support them. Contact us if you have a specific platform in mind.
What about Windows Phone, for example?
At this point, we are considering to support Windows Phone/Microsoft Windows 10, but our customers aren’t screaming for it either.
Which subscription models are possible?
Ivy has a very open-ended way of doing subscriptions and payment for content. If you’d like to have daily, weekly or monthly subscriptions, you can go ahead and tailor this to your own needs.

We also support a per-product access so that you can charge a one-time fee for a specific product.

How about paywall?
The Ivy Paywall system is very flexible. We have made a great, extensive API that you can tap into – and the API can then be accessed by making an HTML5 paywall page that pops up whenever the user sees an article that is not free or available on the client’s current subscription.

By having complete control over the payment on the HTML5 page, you can always change your subscription strategy without having to wait for a new app version.

Can we use our own 3rd party payment strategy?
Yes, you can. In Schibsted’s case, we have already integrated to their SPiD system, and it works beautifully. We’d be happy to talk about how we can integrate to your specific system.
What about Apple and Google’s payment solutions?
We support In-app subscriptions on both platforms. However, these are optional – you do not have to use them. For instance, if you have integrated to a 3rd party service – or if you do not provide paid content, you can bypass the iTunes / Google Play subscription altogether.
What about Apple Newsstand?
Apple Newsstand used to have some advantages to non-newsstand apps, but not any longer. In iOS 9, Apple Newsstand will be discontinued in its current form.

Integration and adaptation

How do I integrate with my existing user base?
This depends a bit on where your user base is coming from – and in what way you want us to integrate to it.

For instance, if you have an existing app and want to migrate these users onto a new app or an update to the one you currently have, we would have few problems doing so.

What about push messages?
Regarding push, we support Urban Airship. We are also happy to support other push solutions you might have if you’d like. It’s a pretty quick and convenient thing to do.

Contact us here for more information.

Which stats and analytics solutions are currently supported?
We support Google Analytics and Xiti out of the box. However, if you have other stats solutions, we will be happy to integrate to these if required by you.

Contact us here for more information.

Can I integrate to my current stats and analytics solution?
Yes. However you will be charged a standard hourly rate for the eventual interfacing you require. We are flexible to deliver on your needs.
Can Ivy increase my mobile Ad revenue?
We believe Ivy has greater potential for digital ad revenue than a normal continuous scrolling news website. E.g. some of the current navigation schemes of Ivy reintroduce page concepts so that the full page ad format is back in the limelight and will appear as a natural part of the publication.
How are ads integrated?
Since Ivy supports HTML5/CSS/Javascript, you may continue using whatever digital ad solution you might have today. In many cases you could integrate ads without even involving us at all. However, please keep in mind that many HTML ads are poorly written and could potentially affect your app’s performance.
Can I use current ad formats?
As a general rule, the better the format fits with the Ivy experience the better it will perform. Ask for a demo and we will show you the potential.
What about PDFs?
PDF reading is fully supported in our Ivy PDF solution. Contact us for more information.
Can I make my own widgets using web technology?
Yes, you can. Ivy fully supports web views, CSS and JS. By using your own developers, you may make great additional content using standard web tech to enrichen the Ivy experience. However, it is of great importance that you make things that do not break the user experience in terms of heavy scripts or interaction that breaks the app interaction. If you are considerate in this regard, you have an infinite flexibility to give your readers the exact extra content you want – at any given time.
I want to link to web content with Ivy. How do I do it?

Styling and design

What are my styling options with Ivy?
On the article pages, the styling options are vast. Since Ivy is a very user interface-free product by design, your article pages make up the whole screen most of the time. You are in complete control over the entire look of your articles. Use open web technologies like HTML5 and CSS3.

Regarding the rest of the app, you may design your own app icon, your own splash screen, provide the logo type for the left drawer and the top bar on the home screen. You may also change the theme colors of the drawer and home screen – and the fonts are also easily changeable.

What about the table of contents?
What options do I have? As of now, Ivy supports two different ways of displaying the table of contents within the app:

1) Traditional, vertically scrolling list
This is a pretty standard scrolling list of articles. It is perfectly styleable in terms of appearance. Fonts, margins, corners, colors. The list is built using an algorithm that displays the stories in a grid using native technology.

The list will always be perfectly balanced and aligned. We also use hyphenation tech to ensure that hyphens are placed in the best possible manner if words are too long.

This list is available on both mobile and tablet.

2) Horizontal, visual TOC
This is a more visual approach, perfectly suited for magazines and publications rich on nice looking images. The interaction is also very easy to understand. Swipe through sections, tap on stories, drag them downward to go back to the TOC.

Section colors and fonts are styleable – and the images are a true representation of your articles, that you are in full control of in the first place.

This list is only available on tablet as of today.

What about navigation?
Do I have any flexibility there? Yes, of course. You may use different kinds of scrolling schemes in you app – it is easily configurable. However, this only applies to the tablet version. On mobile, the scheme is vertical article scrolling and horizontal scrolling between articles.

In terms of article navigation on tablet, you might choose between the following schemes:

1) Horizontal only
Swipe through an article horizontally. At the end of the article, the next appears.

2) Horizontal and vertical
Swipe through the article vertically. Swipe horizontally to go between articles.

Ok, fine. Do I have to have a home screen?
No. You can easily start the app on a publication archive screen for any given publication.

What are my options regarding transitions and motion design?

Can I design my own templates?
By using open web technologies, you may easily design, alter or add your own templates at will. These templates can be altered freely without resubmitting the app, giving you a whole lot of freedom.
What about portrait vs landscape mode on tablet?
At this point, we only support landscape mode on tablet. The reason for this is that we want the production process to be as quick and easy as possible – and for most people, landscape mode is the preferred one when reading magazines on a tablet device.

However, we are looking at different alternatives that might result in a portrait mode as well somewhere down the line.

Publications and publication strategies

How do publications work?
A publication is a collection of related editions. That particular relation is defined by you. The publication strategy and pulse of a particular publication can be entirely defined by you – and it can be different for each new publication.

This also applies to navigation, transitioning, TOC solution – those can also be different for each publication. This way, you might for instance provide your readers with two different publications with two completely different navigation schemes and looks – making both publications stand out as two different products.

Can I schedule an edition for later publishing?
Yes. Using Ivy Bridge, you can both schedule an edition for automatic publication at a give date and time or publish it manually whenever  you’d like.
Is it possible to feature/highlight certain articles?
Yes. Ivy supports a recommended section where you may highlight specific articles – both on tablet and mobile. The mechanism behind that selection can be entirely decided by you. Just drag your preferred articles into the recommended section using Ivy Bridge.
Is it possible to set up automatically updated publications?
Yes. Using Ivy, you may define automatic sections that always reflect the current article flow coming from your CMS.  This way, you may have an always-updated magazine for your audience without doing anything at all.
I have a PDF version of our newspaper. Can I distribute this as part of the app as well?
Yes. We provide a PDF product enabling you to offer the PDF version of your print product directly within the main app.
Is it possible to create and distribute a single purpose publication within the main app?
Yes. We call these One Shots. Giving you the possibility to quickly put together a special one time edition for a specific event or season. You can even price them differently as well or give them away for free.

They will be available through the edition picker in the main app, and could be featured in the recommended section as well. This way, you may utilize the current app distribution to draw a bigger audience and build your publication strategy within one single app environment.

Can I distribute a daily newspaper and a monthly news magazine within the same app?
Yes. We would classify your first publication as your main publication and the second one as your sub publication. You have full freedom to add as many sub publications as you wish, within the same app or as separate apps.

The different publications may have entirely different publication and monetization strategies. In short, it’s perfectly flexible.

URL API

What does the URL API do?
The URL API enables you to link to a specific page or section within the app. For instance, if you would like to send the user to a specific, related Ivy article, the user can be taken there directly from anywhere in the app if you are using the URL API. You may also use the URL API to open the Ivy app from outside the app itself, for instance by linking to a special article on the front page of your web site.

For more info about the API, please head over here.

Roadmap and product development

How do updates work?
Whenever we have a new version of the app, you will be notified well in advance. By logging into your Ivy account, you will be given access to a demo build of the app in question where you can take part in reporting bugs, errors or ping us regarding other findings so we can fix issues and prepare an RC.

When the RC is ready, you may download it and test it internally.
If you are confident to submit the app, you may do so by approving the build on our website – and then you will be granted access to the build for submitting it yourself.

I have a new feature request. What do I do?
Please pass them along to us! Feature requests are always very welcome. We see the Ivy product as a collaboration between us and our customers. The more suggestions and requests, the more information we are able to process in order to make great features available to you.

Please use the contact form here

Do I get access to future Ivy features?
Yes. By licensing Ivy, you will get free upgrades for all the Ivy features available for your particular license. The product will then evolve to attract more people to your content, giving you more and more opportunities to do great storytelling along the way.
Can we get access to the Ivy source code?
We’re afraid that the answer is no. Ivy is the result of years of hard work, containing a lot of intellectual property. In order to guarantee the quality of our work, we want to have full control over the source code, making products that work right out of the box.

Demo / testing environment

How can we demo Ivy internally?
Apart from showing them this very app, there are several other publications using our platform in the App Store. Contact us for more details. We can also make a tangible demo app using your own content if you provide us with some assets (articles, hi-res pictures and video) from your publication. This app can then be downloaded and tested by the relevant people within your organization. In addition, you then may test some of the other tools available (for example Ivy Bridge) to see the production flow.

Please contact us here for more details.

Can we see our own content using Ivy?
Yes. By giving us access to some of your content, we can easily make a demo that shows the true potential of Ivy.  All we need is high resolution logos, high resolution article pictures and article texts. And if you have a PDF version of your publication as well, it’s a great bonus for us.

If you don’t have the time to prepare some content for us, send us a message. We might be able to help you out anyway. This brochure should also give you a clue about some of the Ivy potential.