What is it like to develop and publish your own app? When we started to think about making our own app, I was seeking for a post like this. I wanted to know, if it is actually possible to start from nearly no knowledge. – Yes it is.
I hope you like to have a brief overview. Furthermore I think this is a nice ending for die Project Linearity.
We learned so much! - We wanna share it!
There was a simple idea: create your own app! Everyday we are constantly using mobile applications, but nearly no one knows how it works. So we wanted to escape being the dumb user.
Two of us hat done some simple programming projects before, but nothing mobile or that complex.
At the beginning we had no clue, so we tried gave us a month to learn and find out what is to do in general.
We were 5 Boys in lower sixth form, sitting in a classroom in school in the afternoon drawing some models on the blackboard. We spend a few hours just discussing the very basic game principal. After we got that settled, we splitted our team in two groups. Jonas and I did all the programming. He nearly did all in the actual app and I did the whole server, database and website. The other group consisting of Christian, Sönke und Stefan did all the graphics and objects for the app. For the programming we used Unity as an IDE (Integrated Development Environment) and for the Modeling and Graphics Blender. These two programs are free to use for those projects, also for small commercial use.
After we had a first stable version with the basic principal, we started to think about how to make people play our game. We came up with this:
If you have a Top Ranking in the Play Store people will probably find your app while browsing, BUT this only works if you already have a huge userbase. So no option for us.
The second thing we came up with was: people talking to each other. Do you remember Flappy Bird, Crossy Road or even Doodle Jump. It was a hype. When I was in 6 grade the main reason for having a smartphone was Doodle Jump. All of your friends were playing it. You need to have it. How do such hypes occur ? It’s exponential! Let’s say you have created a viral game or a super useful application. Furthermore you manage to “infect” 20 friends to play it. If they recommend it just to two more people and infect them, you have done it. Let’s consider it takes 1 days to recommend.
Day 1 … 20 user Day 2 … 40 user … Day 9 … 5120 user Day 10 … 10240 user … Day 17 … 1310720 user
never underestimate exponential growth Peter Thiel
At least that’s what the math looks like.
The smaller methods to get started for noobs like us was posting on Facebook and other social networks. We also tried to infect our own school. We pinned a few dozens QR-Codes in our school and hometown. We knew that Linearity couldn’t compete with games like Doodle Jump, so we tried to connect to the user with slogans like this.
App from students from this school !
To sum up don’t underestimate the marketing of your app.
After the launch, we (at least me) were totally addicted to check for new downloads. The Play Store gives you some free metrics, but they are very slow – sometimes 2 days late. If you have the possibility to create your own metrics for something like the played games, downloads or the seen ads do it.
After a few days of work you will realize, that you need a system to organize. That’s how we did it. Trello as a very basic ticketsystem Google Drive to store all stuff. Our own wiki to collect all knowledge. Some kind of an Instant Messenger.
Hope you enjoyed reading. Some Stats of our launch…
Total downloads … 133 user Total played games …16897 Total seen ads … 2045
by Gordon Köhn