Sure iOS7 brings a lot of technological advances. But more importantly, it sets a new precedent in the Software Development industry. Here are a reasons:
1). An Elite development team. Many people complain about Apple shutting out developers by not opening up. It’s funny because their code is open, you just have to be willing to pay. Where disgruntled programmers see disappointment, I see a company filtering an elite team of outsourced developers to keep pushing the envelope where only the savviest survive.
2). An evermore demanding market niche. I downloaded ios7 on Monday like most devs. The first thing I noticed was Skype crashing and Testflight failing to install. Only a few days later, Skype’s community forums are flooded with complaints pressing for the company to update their app to iOS7. This may not seem like much, after all it’s just a beta, right? Why did all those devs update ahead of time anyway! Don’t forget this group of devs is growing everyday and at the end of the day their pressure is real! Many people are also paying the $99 dev fee just to have access to the betas. So everyday Apple’s niche market is growing in size and influential pressure. I can’t wait for iOSX! They’ll be releasing pre-pre-alpha candidates!
3). Indies are dying! Apple doesn’t really want indies. The days of making a simple game that scored you millions is over. Apple had a hand in this of course. They deliberately raised AppStore standards. WWDC is an expensive event and all these factors combine so that Apple can have, as mentioned before, an elite team of 24/7 developers that pose no company liability as employees but are at the same time manageable via quality controls they define and who are filtered to result in incorporated LLCs which are, unlike their freelance counterparts, accountable 🙂
I started coding in iOS since 2009. I do it part time because I have a full time job, so I dedicate about 3 hours a day, 5 days a week.
I am a tech guy, always have been. Studied Biochemistry and picked up ASP, PHP and moved into iOS. But because I live in a country where technicians are highly undervalued, I got my MBA in 2000. So I know a thing or two about how to run a business.
So when I started meeting indies in 2009, I approached them and said, “I have some ideas for an app, is anyone interested in working with me?”. Their response was always “No thanks, we all have ideas, we don’t need a business type to come and push us around”.
Something inside me said: “Hey, that’s true, Im a tech guy myself, I should know better”. So I decided to begin coding my own projects. I have about 20 of them out of which 5 developed into half-assed apps, Im currently working on 3 and the other 12 are just titles in my Notes.app.
Not only that but I’ve stayed in touch with most of those indies and nobody has made anything out of themselves. No Zyngas, no Halfbricks etc. The more I read tweets and posts and blogs and articles about indies, the more I see they all have trouble marketing games, designing effective games, successfully monetizing games etc. I’m constantly seeing presentations about how a developer “made it big” or at least “worthwile” and he is no longer an indie, but has slyfully re-engineered himself as a development studio (usually 3 or more people). These presentations are usually about their dev career. The funny thing is that most of these presentations almost always include tips like:
Don’t underestimate the power of marketing
Design your app to make it monetizable in the future
Get input from beta testers
Don’t put all your money into a single promotion platform
Hmmmm….This looks a lot like:
Marketing & Sales Plan
It’s still just a Business Plan after all! And after months or years of starving yourself and getting into family or personal financial discussions with your wife or partner, you have nothing to show for except a nice app in the AppStore with a few ratings and about $200 worth of revenue. When a sound business plan could have gotten you a personal loan to cover living expenses and a solid business plan to get you through the first 12 months. After that time you could still have a viable product in the AppStore, money in your pocket, a plan for selling your app profitably into the future, possibly $201 in revenue, but you would still have your sanity…and your wife!
So this is a note to all indies out there. I’m a tech guy myself, I know what its like to be under-appreciated. Swallow your pride, have a few drinks with a business type guy and hear him out. He might know how to get you that studio in 2 months instead of 12.