The hard business of developing Android: the case of iA Writer

The hard business of developing Android: the case iA Writer

“we’re not sure why applications that are selling well in the Apple universe do not in the Android world.”

iA Writer is a popular text editor designed for writers, bloggers and journalists with several features that differentiate it from the rest, a good design and a good approach from the start. Despite being a niche application, its development is sustainable on iPhone and Android Mac In the case is quite different. Developers say in your web that in one year only sold 6,000 applications for between 1 and $ 5.

Not that they have not earned money, is that in the twelve months leading application for sale, has only managed to cover the cost of little more than a month of development for the team.

an inherent problem with Android?

the App Store and Google Play Store still growing, but divergently. According Appannie in its latest report, 90% were discharged over the Play Store applications in the App Store thanks to the growth of the operating system in emerging markets such as India and Southeast Asia. Meanwhile, the App Store has grown in revenue. 80% more money is generated through the App Store in the PlayStore thanks to the growth and popularity of Apple with the iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus in urban China.



for the big game studios or service applications that base their business model on data or advertising this is not a problem, but it is for developers indie . Hardly anyone pays applications in the Play Store, especially tools and utilities.

What iA Writer has learned and possible solutions

For those responsible for implementation “it is obviously offer paid apps in Android does not generate revenue. ” They do not know why, but they have fenced the problem by elimination:

  • sell almost the same product in the Google Play Store in the App Store. The Android application is almost identical to that of iOS, so it can not be the quality of the product.
  • There are fewer applications that can be compared to iA Writer on Android. Not Editorial, or Ulysses for example. There are fewer alternatives and less competition in the Play Store .
  • Google gives priority rankings to the free apps , he says iA. Although they believe that it does not explain the situation alone.
  • No matter the price of the application . On average always 30 euros are generated. Selling the application to a dollar sell 30 applications, 5 dollars sold 6 to $ 2 sold 15.

The solution to iA is to make a free application and is made sustainable through in-app purchases. Would not only fight against piracy in Android – much easier to perpetrate than iOS -. But create ties with the client to use the application and want to unblock certain functionality

Meanwhile, in the Apple world there developers sell their applications more than $ 30 as Omnigroup and survive, developers reaching the top sales in a few hours thanks to the quality of their product and a legion of loyal customers, as with Tweetbot , and countless more professional thanks to the App Store can pay bills, feed their children and that, unfortunately, will never publish their work in the Play Store.

on Android, for now, the money seems is reserved for micropayments games and applications that live advertising. Developers indies have to experience. Apple, however, has the problem in the App Store for Mac limited by the sandbox tax and several additional problems that developers carry indicating years applications


The hard business of developing Android: the case of iA Writer
Source: english  
March 4, 2016

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