Week in Digital: offline caches are content's saviour

By Teamspirit on Tuesday, 3 March 2015

Vine, Twitter’s short film app, will now preload videos for offline viewing. In simple terms, you’re now going to be able to browse and watch content on it after losing your data connection.

This may seem like a small feature, but it’s important - the reason Read It Later, now known as Pocket, is such a popular app is because it takes content that we’d previously need an internet connection to experience, and downloads it for the points at which we haven’t got one.

The frustrating thing about trying to do any online banking on the move is that the moment you lose signal, you can’t access anything. If you’ve been lucky enough to load a page of transactions, that’s all you’ve got for the next six stops on the train.

While making transactions on a mobile app while offline may end up being an unreliable feature due to the fickle nature of sending data and ensuring money has moved, having access to bank and pension statements stored as very small files on your phone could vastly improve online banking experiences.

Offline data can be very useful for intermediaries, too - client files can be cloud-hosted, and having them saved locally to your device means being able to get things done when you’re off the beaten data path. Additionally, it allows for them to better stay up to date with a variety of media, from video to infographics, by ensuring their device is storing it before they’re out of range.

Media can live online, but storing it for later can be the difference between someone viewing an exciting new campaign video and never getting around to seeing it. If you can fill the gap in which someone can’t read Twitter, you may find yourself with a very good platform.

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