Author Topic: Idea for an app  (Read 3994 times)

meadow lark

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Idea for an app
« on: June 22, 2015, 08:55:47 PM »
I have an idea for an app, and I am wondering how feasible it is.  I think it could be great (of course I do) but I am not computer savvy.  I have seen there are places on line that will develop it for a fee.  I don't know yet how high that fee would be.  Has any one else done this, specifically paying someone else to design it?  Thanks!

YTProphet

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Re: Idea for an app
« Reply #1 on: June 23, 2015, 08:14:52 AM »
What's the idea?

forummm

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Re: Idea for an app
« Reply #2 on: June 23, 2015, 08:37:45 AM »
I have. The cost is very variable. It depends on how complex it will be, how many platforms you want it to run on, etc. Then there may be other marketing and operation costs once you have it running. And just because you have an app developed doesn't mean that the app stores will approve it. You should look into their criteria for acceptance.

cripzychiken

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Re: Idea for an app
« Reply #3 on: June 23, 2015, 10:54:31 AM »
A couple of things I'd do before moving too far forward on this:
-Talk to friends that you think would actually use this app, see if they would actually like it AND pay for it
-Talk to a programmer about what it would actually take to get it up and running - looking more for the number of hours and what skill level.
-Understand how much you are willing to invest/lose in this.  You are probably going to be in the thousands of dollars depending on how little work you are able to do yourself

Once you know those things - especially since you are looking to outsource everything - then look at moving forward.  My quick guess is probably do 5-10x what you think it will cost to have someone else develop it, and that will get you a demo version to show people.

When you go talk to a developer - the more info you have the better.  Whats the UI look like, what's the features the app has, that's the app do, how is it different from other apps, what price point are you looking to hit market with, what platforms are you going to be going after, what's your main customer base you want to go after, etc.

The more info you have (i.e. doing your research before) the better and more realistic any cost estimate will be.  The fewer details - the higher the cost since the developer will likely know that you have no idea what you actually want to do and it will not be easy working for you.

Beaker

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Re: Idea for an app
« Reply #4 on: June 23, 2015, 11:25:08 AM »
What @cripzychiken said.

App developers listen to a lot of half-baked ideas that will take huge resources to develop, from people who want to pay peanuts. I'm not saying that's you, but I am saying that developers are usually very, very jaded about this sort of thing. The better thought-out you concept is, the more likely you'll get some actual attention and realistic estimates. Also, paying someone to write code is a very expensive way to figure out your app. Much better to do cheap prototyping with a tool for it, or even pen & paper.

But first, really make sure the idea is a good one. Do not be shy about telling people your idea - they are not going to steal it. If it's a good idea, somebody's already doing it anyway. That's a good thing - you can look at them and figure out if it's a good business or not.

forummm

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Re: Idea for an app
« Reply #5 on: June 23, 2015, 12:10:28 PM »
And if you do decide to go forward, you need a really good requirements document that spells out all the details--exactly how it works each time you do something, what it looks like, etc. You'll be surprised at all the stuff you didn't think of.

meadow lark

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Re: Idea for an app
« Reply #6 on: June 23, 2015, 02:19:50 PM »
Cool.  It's for eating disorder recovery.  Mostly diary style.  List 3 gratitude a day, gives a daily affirmation, a food diary set up for the exchange system most ED treatments use, an exercise diary, a place to make an action plan when people have urges to use behaviors.  A list of resources.
It could actually be an ebook, except there needs to be a place for people to write in it.  Huh.  Is there an ebook form for diaries?

I was amazed there are almost no apps out there for eating disorder behavior management.  I've found about 3.  So you have thousands and thousands of people - a lot of them teens and early 20's, a lot of them with money (affluent parents) who are writing this info down on paper everyday to take to their nutritionist.  And a lot of the non-specific apps for food journals are overtly pro-weight loss which is toxic for people with ED.

Beaker

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Re: Idea for an app
« Reply #7 on: June 23, 2015, 02:58:33 PM »
Cool.  It's for eating disorder recovery.  Mostly diary style.  List 3 gratitude a day, gives a daily affirmation, a food diary set up for the exchange system most ED treatments use, an exercise diary, a place to make an action plan when people have urges to use behaviors.  A list of resources.
It could actually be an ebook, except there needs to be a place for people to write in it.  Huh.  Is there an ebook form for diaries?

I was amazed there are almost no apps out there for eating disorder behavior management.  I've found about 3.  So you have thousands and thousands of people - a lot of them teens and early 20's, a lot of them with money (affluent parents) who are writing this info down on paper everyday to take to their nutritionist.  And a lot of the non-specific apps for food journals are overtly pro-weight loss which is toxic for people with ED.

I don't know the first thing about that space, but it sounds like a good idea. You might want to cast a wider net looking for existing solutions. Are there websites that people use for this? Or maybe they all just use some more general note-taking app like Evernote? Poke around some ED forums and ask people what they use or would recommend. Talk to some therapists and see what they recommend - and ask what it would take for them to recommend your hypothetical app.

If there are competitors, take a look at them. Figure out what they do right. Then try to figure out if there's something you could do that's better - and not a little bit better, but twice as well.

If there aren't any competitors, ask yourself why. There are billions of people in the developed world - almost any good idea has been thought of by *someone* before. So if nobody has worked on it, try to figure out if there's a good reason why not. There may not be, but it's a good question to consider before you sink a bunch of money into something.

This market research stuff isn't that exciting, but it is a crucial step.

cripzychiken

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Re: Idea for an app
« Reply #8 on: June 23, 2015, 03:09:21 PM »
Cool.  It's for eating disorder recovery.  Mostly diary style.  List 3 gratitude a day, gives a daily affirmation, a food diary set up for the exchange system most ED treatments use, an exercise diary, a place to make an action plan when people have urges to use behaviors.  A list of resources.
It could actually be an ebook, except there needs to be a place for people to write in it.  Huh.  Is there an ebook form for diaries?

I was amazed there are almost no apps out there for eating disorder behavior management.  I've found about 3.  So you have thousands and thousands of people - a lot of them teens and early 20's, a lot of them with money (affluent parents) who are writing this info down on paper everyday to take to their nutritionist.  And a lot of the non-specific apps for food journals are overtly pro-weight loss which is toxic for people with ED.

That's actually a good idea and very eat to get started in.  Find a weight loss diary app you like and use that as the backbone.  Strip out all the weight-loss stuff and add back the ED recovery stuff.  You have a target market and semi-relevant model to follow to avoid a lot of the 'unknown' costs.  Plus your market is one that is accepting of technology so an app would work.

Coming to a developer with a set-up like that will actually get you a decent estimate on a price.  I want the backbone of "Weight-loss Diary" with these changes.  We are going to replace "current weight" with "consecutive days of... ".  Also I need it to do "x, y and z" for these reasons.

One other person/market I'd talk to is an ED doctor about the sort of things that they have seen that have been helpful in speeding patient recover and seeing if you can add those in.  I don't know anyone with an ED (my family is strictly on the needing the weight-loss side) so I'm not even sure what sort of things would be helpful there.

Last point - try to plan phases if your ideas get too out of hand.  Phase 1 can be the diary with a weekly emailed summary to a doctor/parent/SO.  Phase 2 is a message board/community.  Phase 3 is adding in recipes and other extras.  This will let you control costs and get something to market to build around (and fund later updates).

-side note/idea - maybe go after the doctors with an app that they can give to their patients for free to help keep them on track.  Bulk pricing (every 10 memberships are $xx/month).  They might be able to write it off as a business expense (lower actual cost for them than you would charge), and you would get someone that helps to push your product from a position of authority.  Of course this would start with 10 free memberships (or 3 months of memberships) to show the doctor the benefits of the app.

I like the idea, best of luck.
« Last Edit: June 23, 2015, 03:12:03 PM by cripzychiken »

mozar

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Re: Idea for an app
« Reply #9 on: June 23, 2015, 04:13:38 PM »
There may only be 3 because there's not high demand. Have you thought about advertising? Maybe reddit, or health magazines.

forummm

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Re: Idea for an app
« Reply #10 on: June 23, 2015, 05:01:17 PM »
There may only be 3 because there's not high demand. Have you thought about advertising? Maybe reddit, or health magazines.

Advertising to this demo could be tricky. You don't want any food or magazine model type stuff going there.

Janie

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Re: Idea for an app
« Reply #11 on: June 23, 2015, 05:43:23 PM »
Maybe you've come across this in your research already, but there's an app called Recovery Record that's based on CBT. The Australian who developed it ended up working with Stanford on it. Lots of patients and clinicians use it.

meadow lark

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Re: Idea for an app
« Reply #12 on: June 23, 2015, 09:25:41 PM »
Thanks for all the ideas, guys!  Have a bunch more research to do before I make any decisions.