April 11, 2011

Mobile Apps on the Rise in Government

MOST CITY and county governments have websites. But if your organization wants to stay up with things and is interested in better serving the public (and if you have any money), it's time to start thinking about building mobile applications.

According to a July 2010 study by the Pew Research Center's Internet and American Life Project, 40 percent of Americans accessed the Internet, email or instant messaging on a mobile phone in 2010, up 32 percent in 2009.

Some data on the growing prevalence of mobile apps might help.

To date, USA.gov lists 31 government applications designed for the public, with more under construction. Now the drive for federal agencies to share their data via mobile platforms is starting to build momentum.

One of the newest apps on the federal site is IRS2go - here you can check your tax refund status, sign up for tips and more. Other mobile apps include: Product Recalls; My TSA; Collections Search from the Smithsonian; Find your Embassy; and more.

A search of the term "government" on Apple's iTunes store returned 106 iPad listings and over 300 apps listed for the iPhone.

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