Playing with iOS development

I know, I can't believe it either

There’s a screen shot of my first iPad (and I imagine iPhone/iPod) application. It’s obvious how well optimized this application is, and I’m proud to say it hasn’t crashed once 🙂

So I’ve signed up for Apple’s iOS developer program. $99 to get into the program, obtain the tools, and purchase the right to put your own code on a device you own. I don’t mind paying for the development tools, but I guess I’m old-school in thinking I should be able to put what I want on something that belongs to me.

I’m not sure what will come of this – my main goal is to learn this environment, write a few apps I want for me, then see where that goes. I find that tinkering with a platform is a great way to learn about it, and while I have no immediate desire to become a full-time iOS developer guy, I have to admit that the business model for application developers intrigues me.

According to a recent Fortune/CNN article, there have been somewhere around 8 million iPads sold since it hit the market in April. That’s a crapload of users (dare I say potential clients?). It has to make you think. Using completely arbitrary and made-up numbers, if only 0.02% of that market buys your $0.99 application, that’s still likely a whole lot more money than you’ll make shlepping e-books on twitter..

The application store model makes me think of a Julien Smith podcast episode long ago where he explored micro-payments as a possible solution for podcasters desiring to earn a few bucks with their hobby. He opined that (some) listeners would be willing to pay a few cents to have their favourite shows, and that the money the producers would make would add up. Basically, more people paying little bits adding up to a measurable revenue stream.  Of course, in those dark ages of podcasting,  the infrastructure for this was no where near existing at the time, not to mention there wasn’t that much worth paying to hear.

I feel it’s the same approach, you could write an app for 1 user and charge hundreds/thousands.. or you sell it on the open market for a few dollars, and hope it fills the need of enough people to make up the difference..

So while my goal is to learn, and I don’t plan to distribute (dare I say monetize?) my iOS development learning, you have to admit it’s hard not to dream about writing the perfect fart application that everyone wants to buy..

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  1. Mark Blevis says:

    Let me know when Apple approves this and it appears in the store. I want to be your first buyer.

  2. julien says:

    i’m interested in where you’d go with this. it’s cool you’re trying it out.

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