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Very cool, looking forward to trying it out.

I would start versioning your releases—even if you start at something like 0.1.0. Then add a changelog to the site and drop tags in git corresponding to each release.

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Nice. I think there are a lot of programmery types out there who would like to improve their UI/Photoshop skills. I'll definitely check this out.

If I could offer one piece of constructive criticism:

It would be nice to see some examples of things you've built. That's the #1 thing I look for. I realize this can be problematic when working for someone else.

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That makes sense. Here are two of my iOS apps:

http://onevoiceapp.com http://thinklegend.com/commit

More of my design work is here:

http://thinklegend.com/design

I appreciate the feedback!

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I'm in no way saying that Apple's business practices are above scrutiny, but I think it's unfair to claim they are "making developers fall over each other". When the App Store debuted, prices started out in the $5-$20 range, but the market has settled around the $1.99 price point because that's where it ended up. They're not going around telling developers how to price their apps.

It may be Apple's petri dish, but this is the culture that's evolved in it, for better or worse.

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Exactly! $5-$20 was the peak! And the market hasn't settled at $1.99. The market has settled at $ZERO.

I quote from http://www.apple.com/iphone/from-the-app-store/ :

Over 500,000 apps.

For work, play, and everything in between.

The apps that come with your iPhone are just the beginning. Browse the App Store to find hundreds of thousands more. The more apps you download, the more you realize there’s almost no limit to what your iPhone can do.

There's no limit to what the iPhone can do because we don't even need to tell developers how to price their apps.

There are hordes of 20-somethings subsidised by VCs to extend our platform for free forever. No wait. They pay us 100 bucks a head for the privilege. Every year. And there are thousands others who follow suit, even without funding, because they have selectively read all the chapters of Steve's biography talking about the importance of beautiful typography and minimal furniture.

There's no limit to what the iPhone can do because we don't even need to tell developers how to price their apps.

I'm going to stop now. This is too painful to write about.

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>The market has settled at $ZERO.

You're wrong. There are plenty of paid applications sold on the App Store that make decent money. One of my paid applications is bringing in enough to live on, with little maintenance, and without being on any of the App Store charts.

Aside from blind Apple hate, what exactly are basing your argument that the App Store is filled with hopeless developers and un-sustainable business? Do you have any evidence that the ratio of unsuccessful business ventures is any higher on the App Store than in any other walk of life?

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awolf, thanks for chiming in based on your experience. I'm really pleased to hear you've had success with your apps.

I'm sorry about my hyperbolic tones earlier. It's just that there's so much blind hype about the app stores, that it upsets me to see indie devs getting lured in and going bust. I don't hate Apple. I think they are brilliant.

I haven't done huge amounts of research on the distribution of outcomes for developers in the app store, but the typical prices are so low that you'd have to sell to a hell of a lot of people to make any decent money. Moreover, most devs only charge a small one-time upfront fee or IAP, which means you need to keep finding more customers or churning out apps.

I know how hard it is to make a good business even with a SaaS recurring revenue product. A life-time value of $2 sounds horrifying.

There is no doubt in my mind that some people are making good money on the app store. My point is that they could be doing a lot better in another market, with lower risks.

You mention one of your apps is making you enough money to live on. Do you expect that to carry on for a while? Or will you need to make more products? If you're willing to share, I'm curious to know more about your business, but I'll understand if you don't want to share too much.

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>you'd have to sell to a hell of a lot of people to make any decent money

No. This right here is where you're way off.

Some hypothetical math: $3.99 app, $2.79 after Apple's cut.

$2.79 X 50 sales/day = $139.5 revune/day = $50,917 per year.

Enough to live and quite conservative if you make a quality product.

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Isn't $3.99 on the high end of app pricing? Instapaper sells for $4.99 and is considered a premium product.

How long does it take to make a $3.99 app? Do you factor in those development costs?

If it's just one person and you make $50K, that's fine. But what if there's two of you?

What's the probability of getting 50 sales/day and for how long? In the event that you get, let's say 25 sales/day, what's your fallback strategy?

awolf, you may very well be selling hundreds of copies a day of your apps at 10 bucks a piece, but the point is that the vast majority don't.

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Price is not always related to how hard it is to make. Google Search is a fantastically expensive piece of software, but is free. Charge what people are willing to pay.

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> The market has settled at $ZERO.

No. It is in the process of settling at $WHATEVER_WE_CAN_MAKE_YOU_PAY

These guys correctly observed that free apps + IAP are getting the most REVENUE. Not installs, revenue. What they failed to understand is that this only happens when you do exactly the one thing they absolutely did not want to do: milking each customer for what he/she is worth aka "capturing the consumer surplus".

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Finally.

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You have to wonder if John expected this level of backlash. It reminds me of LeBron James' "The Decision" in a lot of ways.

He may be good, but he'll never be loved.

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It's crazy—I taught English in Japan circa 2002-2004, and those pages are laid out exactly the way our school newsletters were (and I'm guessing still are to this day). Right down to the oval portrait shot.

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