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Understanding web links, mobile and desktop applications

Introduction

This page describes the what you can include inside the  link library and the different kind of links we support. 

The Link  Library provides your end-users with a handy overview and immediate access to all of the business applications & websites one might use throughout their work day. Spencer knows 3 types of links:

  1. Web link

  2. Mobile application

  3. Desktop application


Web link

A web link is simply a link to a website or web application. It could be a link your existing web-based intranet. It could also be a link to your online CRM (e.g. Salesforce), ticketing system (e.g. Zendesk), or email marketing tool (e.g. MailChimp).

Mobile application

A mobile application is a link to an iOS or Android application. It can be an app that’s available in the Apple App Store or Google Play Store. But it can also be an internal native app that’s privately distributed.

Desktop application

 A desktop application is a link to a Windows or macOS application. It can be an app that’s available in the Windows Store or Mac App Store. It can also be an internal desktop app that’s privately distributed.

Understanding application IDs and URL schemes

When creating a new link to a mobile or desktop application, you’ll be asked to identify it with a:

  1. URL (scheme) or Executable path

  2. Application ID

URL (scheme) or Executable path

A URL (scheme) is basically an address. The most well known URL scheme is http://. When you click on such a link, your browser will open and depending on the full path, it will open a specific place on the way. Well all native apps (not only the browser), can define a URL scheme which allows for the app to be opened from anywhere (e.g. when a user taps this link inside Link Library ).


It’s important to keep in mind, not all native applications implement a URL scheme! Furthermore, there’s no standardized way in which app developers communicate their URL scheme, if they implemented it. In other words, finding an app’s URL scheme will involve “Googling” – sometimes without success.

Executable path

An execute path is simply a path towards an executable file (.exe on Windows, .dmg on macOS).

Application ID

The Application ID is the unique identifier of an app on the respective public app store (App Store, Play Store, Windows Store, Mac App Store). Just look for the app on the web and check your browser’s address bar.


When an end-user clicks a link to an app inside the Link Library for which a/ an Application ID is provided, an b/ the provided URL scheme can’t be opened (e.g. because the user doesn’t have the app installed) – then Spencer will open the app in the correct app store, allowing the user to download & install it effortlessly.



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