I've been frustrated for the last week or so, which I'll get to the details on, but it all boils down to this: Too many ideas, too little time and resources. Story of our lives as indie devs, right? It's one thing when it's personal time, but quite another when it's your livelihood. Independent developers have to do all the tasks to run a company. Not only do we have to code, but we also have to test, design the app and user interface, create graphics, create websites, market the app, answer customer service, plan and strategize the apps and updates to tackle, do the accounting, manage social networking, prepare taxes, and more.
The new iPad (aka 3rd generation) adds a new complexity to universal apps this week—high resolution images and graphics—which could quickly fill up that 16/32/64 GB storage space. In addition, other things happened this week—the 20 MB download limit over non-wifi (3G/4G/4LTE) increased to 50 MB. Updates are no longer showing up in New Releases. Considerations for going Universal may now shift. This post will discuss some of things to consider when deciding on a universal app vs a device-specific app.
Last week I attended 360iDev, an iOS developers conference, in Denver. In my last post I covered all the great things that happened as a result of attending conferences. Not only are they valuable education, but also a indirect marketing benefit. Nearly every person I spoke with at the conference this week agreed that the return on investment, although unmeasurable, easily covers the cost of attending the conference. 360iDev is not only a conference focused on technical sessions for developers, but also runs the gamut of sessions from UI/UX design, to graphics design, to management, to great business-side information from contracting, to marketing, to business models. In this post, I'll go through some of the tips and tricks I picked up from this year's conference.
Which is trickier--coming up with a good idea or 'porting it cross-platforms? Does your company have a long list of ideas, or the skill set to develop across platforms, or both? Recently I read an article about the iPhone becoming more difficult to develop for, due to fragmentation. Besides other things (volume, the AppStore....), the iPhone has been attractive to develop for because it does not require many iterations or multiple phones.
Many blogs and websites use Google Adwords to advertise their product and/or use Adsense to bring in ad revenue. The Adwords model is strongly based on HTML content of the landing page to drive its mysterious "Quality Score" for keywords. The Adsense model uses the HTML content of the website to serve applicable ads. However, as non-HTML-based web applications become increasingly popular, can this current model survive? Or will Google have to rethink their algorithm to support this type of website? We've tried to use Adwords to drive traffic to our new web applications, but Google's current model is completely incompatible. In addition, we had to sacrifice some functionality in order to support the sites with Adsense. This post will describe our experience, layout our frustrations, and challenge the keyword marketing crowd to find a solution.
The Chicago Tribune ran a story this week about local Chicago developers who are selling iPhone apps. Notable were Scott Corley of Red Mercury, who has a highly rated solitaire application, AcidSolitaire Collection, and Jim Brady, of Earthcomber, who will be coming out with a native app soon. Both Scott and Jim are a part of a local group of Chicago mobile (recently expanded from just Palm OS) developers who gather for food, drink, and conversation on a regular basis.
This past week we finally experienced the opening of the much touted Apple AppStore for the Apple iPhone and iPod touch. The AppStore does a lot of things right that developers have been clamoring for: it puts software right in front of every iPhone consumer, it makes it super easy to purchase and install apps, and it makes the whole process accessible for the majority of developers (no more carrier intervention, for example). However, the AppStore is like any piece of 1.0 software—it has it's 'bugs' and exploitations that can only be discovered by massive usage and adoption. This post will note a few areas of needed improvement.
Windows Mobile 6.0 comes up highest in native mobile operating systems, according to a recent Evans Data survey reported at InfoWorld. A worldwide survey of 384 developers was conducted worldwide in May and June. Since the results add up to > 100%, respondents were able to select more than one answer.
Finally some news from Palm about their roadmap. David Flynn of APC, an Australian computer magazine, recently conducted an interview with Palm's CEO, Ed Colligan.
A peek at Nova:
"Colligan speaks of this as being a “next-generation operating system with much more capabilities, driven around the Internet and Web-based applications”. "
He further discusses the Centro:
Palm OS software sales are dead. Most developers will tell you that at the end of 2007 their sales dropped below sustainable levels, even below levels where support is justified. Some developers responded by offering existing titles for free with no support, others have closed completely, while many are looking to port quickly to newer platforms with greater potential. However, according to the buzz online, Palm OS has been slowly dying for three or more years now. And Centro sales have hit one million. So why the sudden sharp drop in sales?