Tuesday, January 28, 2014

Android indie developer interview: William Jamieson

Welcome to another interview from the series. Today, I'm going to ask William Jamieson from Supreme apps about his Android experiences and tools that he uses. He has achieved quite a lot with his 5 apps, bearing in mind that he is still a student. His new creation Yik Yak is apparently quite popular and hopefully will get even more downloads in the near future. Enjoy your read.

Bartek: Tell us something about yourself. Who are you? Where do you live? What do you do in life?

William: A sophomore at the College of Charleston. I live in Charleston SC. I play tennis daily, go to class then code.

Bartek: When did your Android adventure start and how? Why did you decide to do it?

William: This past summer when I developed Front Flash to allow people to take selfies in the dark. I did it because I wanted to take snapchats in the dark and there was no app that allowed me to do it.

Bartek: How did you learn how to create apps?

William: I knew how to code from classes at school and I taught myself the android SDK from reading online documentations as well as stackoverflow.

Bartek: What libraries/frameworks do you use?

William: I use no frameworks or libraries I write everything on my own to learn as much as I can.

Bartek: Where do you take app/game ideas from? How do you know if they have a chance to be successful?

William: I come up with the ideas for my apps by identifying something that I want that doesn't exist. Then I make it figuring if I want it then someone else would want it as well. So far the strategy has worked and all 5 of my apps have been successful.

Bartek: Where do you get resources from (graphics, sounds, music)?

William: I outsource all of my graphic design.

Bartek: Where?

William: I outsource my graphic design through fiverr. I heard about them through an internet forum.

Bartek: What's your experience with fiverr designers?

William: I love fiverr and have had great results with it. I pay only $5 for an item and if I don't like the end result I just hire someone else and worse case scenario I only lose a few bucks here and there.

Bartek: What other programming tools do you use?

William: I use git, Dropbox, as well as Google Analytics.

Bartek: How do you use Google Analytics in your apps?

William: I use analytics to monitor the apps growth across geographic regions as well as to see what time of the day the app is most frequently used.

Bartek: How long does is take you to make a single app?

William: My first app took around 1 week because I was learning so much as I was developing it. The next three only took around 2 days each and then my most recent one Yik Yak took a week because it was very complex.

Bartek: How much are you making on your apps?

William: I don't want to answer this, but more than I ever thought I would.

Bartek: How do you monetize your apps? What ad networks do you use if any? Do you have any advice on it for others?

William: My main source of revenue is AdMob banner ads followed by Widdit. My most recent app incorporates in app purchases as its only form of monetization, I am interested in seeing how this works.

Bartek: Why did you choose Widdit?

William: I chose Widdit because the app I use it on is an extension to facebooks app so my app is never seen at all. It was the only way I would be able to monitize my app.

Bartek: Which ones of your apps were the biggest success and which ones were below expectations? Why?

William: Yik Yak and Facebook Photo Downloader where my biggest success. PhoneSpy was below expectations. Yik Yak was a sucess because it was a new type of social networking app that people really enjoy and Facebook Photo Downloader was a success because it was the first app that allowed you to save FB photos without leaving the app, until FB added the feature in their app. 

Bartek: Do you use any marketing techniques or ASO to promote your apps?

William: No, no techniques I just submit my apps to review sites and they typically get reviewed by a few and then the momentum from that just carries the app.

Bartek: What sites do you submit your apps to?

William: I have had sucess on AndroidTappMashable and AddictiveTips.

Bartek: What are your favourite Android games/apps?

William: Fun Run is my favorite game.

Bartek: What Android devices do you own?

William: Galaxy S3 and Note 10.1.

Bartek: What Android blogs/sites do you read regularly?

William: None.

Bartek: What are your plans for the future? What do you want to create/achieve?

William: My current focus is expanding on Yik Yak as much as possible because it has gained 30k users in the last week and I think it has a lot of potential.

Bartek: What advice would you give to other developers (something that you wish you had known before yourself)?

William: Look for features in major apps that you would like to see added in the future then add the feature on your own.

Bartek: Where can people find you on the Internet?

What is to come on the blog in the near future? More interviews, new tools' descriptions and probably an income report, as soon as my Blobby Volley stabilizes in downloads and I manage to remove "Beta" from its name. Come back if you want to know the details.

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