Ten Things we were wrong about
When you decide to pursue a career as a developer for mobile apps alone or if you think about founding a company for that purpose with a whole team then you have to do some planning.
If you’ve read the book ‘Rework' (which I strongly recommend) then you'll find the phrase 'Planning is Guessing' right on the cover.
Which in my opinion is correct and has been proven to myself to be true over the course of the last year. But not only is planning guessing but you’re also wrong most of the time.
That would be less surprising if I considered myself an idiot and my team wasn’t very bright either. But at least for my team I can say that they’ve all got degrees in engeneering, one of them will be a doctor soon, some of us have quite extensive experience in software design and digital goods, marketing and professional music creation (one of us has been a fairly successful producer in the past).
We even have an advisor with an MBA from Standford.
Not the typical bunch of ignorant fools I’d say.
So here’s a list of ten things that we’ve guessed wrong anyway (I’ve added some insights in brackets to some of the points):
- The time it would take us to create an iPod version after we’ve finished an iPad version of our app. (Money quote: “It already works, you’ll have the finished version in a week.”)
- The number of downloads you receive when you’re the #1 iPad music app all over the world. (You didn’t really think I’d disclose this, did you?)
- The importance of the chinese market for iPad apps. (Right now you can forget about it.)
- How hard it is to collaborate with other app developers. (Hard. If there are two companies that both don’t have any time to spare good intentions just don’t cut it)
- How important it is to have your app featured in newspapers. (If there’s not a clickable download link below the article, you will never know. What do you mean there are no clickable download links in newspapers!?)
- How many downloads a singe article from gizmodo generates. (Hi there!)
- How reliable and fast Google Analytics is. (Get rid of it as soon as possible.)
- How easy it is to create and manage different versions for different countries so you can adhere to different legal situations. (It’s not just one click)
- How vastly important a project management tool like Basecamp is. (@jasonfried: Tweet us one more time! Please? Your stuff rocks! Ok, I admit I’m a fanboy.)
- How much more important Twitter is to Facebook when it comes to a product that runs on shiny new hardware designed in California and made in China. (Love you Twitter!)
There’s one thing we were absolutely right with though.
From the beginning on we said that we didn’t know nearly enough about the market but that proper market research would take as much time as it would to release a product and just see how it goes. With the difference that we would know for sure instead of relying on outside sources.
We were spot on with that.