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Old Jan 5, 2013, 12:57 PM   #26
firewood
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I'm telling you it's very possible to make good money in iOS app development if you do the work, real work, and create an interesting and useful app.
You make the interesting assumption that interesting and useful apps involving real work always make more money than those that aren't and don't.

I do a fair amount of competitive analysis in my particular product niche. I buy and test a lot of my competitor's apps. I can tell you from this analysis that useful and difficult to develop apps are often in the bottom half of the store, and free or quickie cruft can be in or near the top of the category (including a few apps that don't even work correctly!). Marketing and luck play a very large part in making good money from apps.
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Old Jan 5, 2013, 08:46 PM   #27
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My statement comes from success as an iOS developer.

You are correct that marketing is important. Just like selling any other product. You cannot just build it and expect they will buy it.

I stand by my initial statement however that the majority of the apps in the App Store are poorly thought out, poorly executed junk and would not sell in interesting quantities under any circumstances.
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Old Jan 7, 2013, 01:42 PM   #28
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As one who spent about a year of evenings and weekends developing a reasonably solid (and productive, in my opinion) iPad app, I can give you some insight into my experience.

Was it worthwhile? Well, it has paid me back for an iMac and a couple of iPads and iPhones. But, if I calculate the hourly return, it's a whole lot less than the minimum wage.

I will admit... I have not done any marketing. I suspect I could sell a couple thousand more copies (@ $3.99) if I did. Since it is more of a gratifying hobby than an income producer, I'm not sure if I want to devote any more hours.

Of course, one never knows what the future holds.
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Old Jan 7, 2013, 05:11 PM   #29
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If you want to sell any product, you have to market that product.

iOS apps are no different.

Our add campaign for the last app we did included $25k in print ads placed in magazines catering to our customers. Sales paid for the ad costs in less than a week from publication.

You cannot simply build it and expect people to find you, you need to go out and sell...

Unless you are writing apps for beer money, you need to have a business plan and treat it like a business, or you will reap very few benefits from your efforts.
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Old Jan 12, 2013, 09:57 PM   #30
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Originally Posted by CalWizrd View Post
As one who spent about a year of evenings and weekends developing a reasonably solid (and productive, in my opinion) iPad app, I can give you some insight into my experience.

Was it worthwhile? Well, it has paid me back for an iMac and a couple of iPads and iPhones. But, if I calculate the hourly return, it's a whole lot less than the minimum wage.

I will admit... I have not done any marketing. I suspect I could sell a couple thousand more copies (@ $3.99) if I did. Since it is more of a gratifying hobby than an income producer, I'm not sure if I want to devote any more hours.

Of course, one never knows what the future holds.
If I may ask, what app is it?
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Old Jan 12, 2013, 10:11 PM   #31
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Originally Posted by CalWizrd View Post
As one who spent about a year of evenings and weekends developing a reasonably solid (and productive, in my opinion) iPad app, I can give you some insight into my experience.

Was it worthwhile? Well, it has paid me back for an iMac and a couple of iPads and iPhones. But, if I calculate the hourly return, it's a whole lot less than the minimum wage.

I will admit... I have not done any marketing. I suspect I could sell a couple thousand more copies (@ $3.99) if I did. Since it is more of a gratifying hobby than an income producer, I'm not sure if I want to devote any more hours.

Of course, one never knows what the future holds.
How much effort did you put into marketing? If you spent a year in development, how many man hours promoting?
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Old Jan 13, 2013, 12:23 AM   #32
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How much effort did you put into marketing? If you spent a year in development, how many man hours promoting?
CalWizrd stated; "I will admit... I have not done any marketing".
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Old Jan 13, 2013, 03:46 PM   #33
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If I may ask, what app is it?
You might guess from my handle... it's called CalWizrd. It does a lot of pretty neat (in my opinion) date related stuff in addition to various calendar views. E.g. when is the next time your birthday will fall on a Thursday, or how many business days until next Christmas, etc. All sorts of stuff like that.
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Old Jan 14, 2013, 08:18 AM   #34
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Originally Posted by CalWizrd View Post
You might guess from my handle... it's called CalWizrd. It does a lot of pretty neat (in my opinion) date related stuff in addition to various calendar views. E.g. when is the next time your birthday will fall on a Thursday, or how many business days until next Christmas, etc. All sorts of stuff like that.
I think Wolfram Alpha also does all of that... which Siri utilizes so you might be able to just ask Siri. (If she doesn't there's always the Wolfram Alpha app.)
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Old Jan 14, 2013, 08:28 AM   #35
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I think Wolfram Alpha also does all of that... which Siri utilizes so you might be able to just ask Siri. (If she doesn't there's always the Wolfram Alpha app.)
I only touched on some of the capabilities. There's a lot of stuff that it does that you can't get through Wolfram.
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Old Jan 14, 2013, 01:37 PM   #36
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My statement comes from success as an iOS developer.
No.

Your success comes from running a mobile app business. Not from just being an iOS developer. And running a business involves a lot more knowledge, skill (and luck) than just being an iOS app developer.

One can become an iOS developer without doing any business planning, competitive analysis, marketing, PR, advertising, and etc.. Once upon a time (circa 3 years back), an independent iOS developer could do that, possibly get lucky and potentially earn a lot more than just a monthly salary. Currently, due to more than a magnitude more apps competing for visibility, success today requires significantly more business savvy. So, a competent developer might still be able to get a financial return from an iOS development related job or contracting opportunity, but as an independent, the odds are really tiny unless they can also run a competitive business, and all that that involves above and beyond app coding and mobile UX design skills.

Of course business knowledge alone won't do it either. I've heard more than my share of MBAs with their really bad ideas for mobile apps. Some taking their investors to the cleaners.
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