How To: Create an iPhone app from your WordPress Blog
Yesterday I published an announcement that I had just released an iPhone app for WPLift into Apple’s app store that was created with the WiziApp plugin, in this tutorial I will guide you through the process of I built it.
Download and Install the Plugin
The plugin is available for free, so download and install it. Once you have activated the plugin you will see a message prompting you to start the app creation wizard – click the link to get started:
Name Your App
Once the wizard has loaded you will see 7 options you have to fill in, the first is to name your app – making sure its something unique:
Design your Splash Screen
The next option is the splash screen – this is the first screen that is shown when the app first loads. You can upload your own design here or you can pick from a number of set designs for the background and overlay your own text on top.
Customize Your Theme
The next option, you can choose whether to show the author’s name and the date on the latest posts page :
Customize Your Tab Bar Menu
This tab allows you to choose what content to show on the bottom bar of the app with icons and also, the “more” button – what content and icons you show on there. This will vary depending on your site content so choose the relevent options
Set Push Notifications
Now you can choose whether to include “push notifications” in your app – this will alert people on their phones when you publish a new post. You can choose whether they receive a text message or sound alert. The user, of course, can disable this in the app settings if they wish to.
Set Sharing Options
This section sets how users can share links to your content – via email, facebook, twitter or SMS.
Monetize Your App
The final section is if you want to monetize your app by showing adverts, if you wish to use this, you will need to sign up for an Admob account and enter your ID here.
Preview Your App
Before you continue any further, hit the “preview” button and a popup will load with a preview of your app – go through every option and make sure its correct
Choose a Plan & Payment
After continuing, a new screen will load with 3 payment plans and a form to create your account and submit payment. Enter these final details and you are finished – WiziApp will begin creating your app for you.
The final step is your app details – here you can choose which category to place it in, which keywords to use. You can upload an icon for your app and add the description :
Your App Stats
Once your app is up and running in the app store, the WiziApp plugin menu will contain a new link called “statistics” which contains everything you need to know about your app. You can view how many daily downloads you receive, how many visits to the app page and geographically where the downloads are.
It also has a tab for “app info” which contains the info which is listed in the App store, along with your download lik and a button you can use on your website.
I was very impressed with the WiziApp plugin – the whole process was really easy from start to finish and I love how my app turned out. The creation wizard is really easy to use and allows for a good deal of control over your app. The pricing starts at $199 with a $19 monthly fee – I think thats a pretty good deal if you consider how much it would cost to hire a developer to make you an app from scratch. If you submitted your own app, you would also have yearly Apple developer program fees to pay. The upside of that is that you would be able to charge for your app if you wanted, I have spoken to the WiziApp people and they say you can have submit your app under your own account if required.
I have submitted my own apps to the store before, using my own developer and the process was quite a pain – so If you’re looking for an easy way to get started in the App store with your blog, then the WiziApp plugin is a good, no-hassle way to go about it.