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How to Brainstorm a Great App Idea for 2017

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How to Brainstorm Great App Ideas for 2017

In 2008, leading mobile operating systems offered mobile apps for the first time. These were available over app distribution platforms called app stores like Google Play, Apple Store or Windows phone store. There were both paid apps as well as free apps.

Mobile apps were software programs, designed with the purpose of information retrieval and general productivity, through mobile phones. The next few years saw a rapid explosion in the availability of both mobile phones and app developer’s tools, which raised public demands for more innovative apps.

A brief understanding of the industry

By 2012, the app industry became one of the most lucrative businesses as more and more mobile users were using mobile apps. This contributed to the explosion of new apps in different categories, on a daily basis. Today the biggest challenge for both users and app developers is app ideas and discovery.

In this water-tight competitive market, it’s hard to say which app idea will be a total boom and which a runaway success. It is true that many of the popular app ideas are basically a shot in the dark but a basic understanding of the market and the needs of customers is a good starting point for generating effective app ideas.

Every day, around a thousand mobile apps are released, and needless to say, not all are a success. Understanding the interest of people is a great way to develop a straight line of thought. You may have a unique idea, but what good is it if your audience doesn’t need it ?

Mobile apps are available in app stores under different categories. A look at the number of downloads for each category will give you an idea of the interest and need of most app users. Users frequently uninstall those apps also. There are many reasons why users uninstall mobile apps frequently. Sticking by the popular categories and offering an interesting app idea under these categories can guide you in developing a truly unique app.

A closer look at the statistics

Android and Apple operating systems are most popular and user-friendly mobile operating systems. Naturally, to understand the trends in the app industry, a study of Google Play Store and Apple store respectively, is best suited.

Below are statistics representing the popularity of the different categories in both Apple store and Google Play.

google play apps stat

Image Source: appbrain.com

mobile app category stat

Image Source: statista.com

Focus on solutions

The popularity and availability of smartphones have changed the way a lot of us live our lives. Smartphones allow us to reach information through the internet instantly. However, searching the right kind of information needs a lot of time and research, which in itself can be a tiring act.

The whole idea of an app is information at your fingertips. Apps serve the multi-faced functions in a user’s life. These software programs are developed for mobiles or tablets providing specific information or entertainment pertaining to their interest.

Get inspired

Being informed is one of the best ways to brainstorm a good idea for an app. As a developer, you not only need a clear understanding of the customer’s interest but also the market you want to win over.

Get as much information as you can. Research through the categories and understand what is the need of the hour. Stiff competition is the order of the day, not only in the app world but in life itself. Strive for innovation and excellence in the products you offer.

To have a brilliant app idea, go through the other brilliant apps that are already out there in different categories and have been successfully making life easier for its users. Know the features of the apps in popular categories, so that you have a clear idea what your app should offer.

Make sure your idea stands out

Over time, competition, as well as the demand for unique mobile applications has intensified. Only unique and useful content can help get an extra edge among competitors.

Though a popular app needs a lot of marketing and online PR to stand out in the crowd, the prime factor still remains a standout idea. There are many App Review websites to submit your mobile app. If you can offer a great solution to an existing problem or offer top class entertainment, your app can be the next big thing.

Knowledge-based app

If you look at the statistics closely, you will realize that the most downloaded category is education, lifestyle, business, and health and fitness. They remain the top grosser. It is the age of information. However, information is scattered over the internet, so if you develop an app that offers specific information or education, it is bound to make the cut.

If you do a bit of research you will find that most of these apps spread this information in innovative ways, like in quiz formats or by challenging users to different tasks or inspiring them to become entrepreneurs by providing interesting business ideas or concepts.

For example, you can check popular informative apps like:-

  • QuizUp It is a multiplayer trivia game app. It allows its users to challenge friends and other users on topics of their interest.

  • Small Business Forum – Ideas & OpportunitiesIt is an innovative mobile app that presents a forum for small business owners to discuss their problems and challenges. Interestingly, the solution to these challenges is provided by the other forum members.

  • 7 Minute Workout – Weight Loss This is a great health and fitness app that offers users a specific workout plan to lose weight. Based on a study by of McMaster University, Hamilton, Ontario, this app aims to guide users to make lifestyle changes in a fun and effective way.

  • Pill Identifier and Drug listThis app offers detailed information about branded and generic drugs. It also gives the generic name for branded drugs.

  • TapQuiz Maps World Edition It is a fun and engaging game that allows users to master geography.

Innovative Apps

An out of the box idea that offers the solution to commonly faced problems can be an apt app idea. In the present app market, the key to stand out is innovation. Such smart ideas make fantastic utility apps.

If you can brainstorm a unique solution for a commonly faced problem, develop a mobile app for it and market it well, there are high chances of making it a top-grosser.

Check these innovative apps and think on these lines.

  • Airbnb This app offers a platform for the travelers who need a place to stay and a house owner who is ready to offer their home for rent. With over two million listings in over 34000 cities around the world, it solves half the problems of a traveler and the tourism industry.

  • Duolingo – Learn Languages for Free It is a very popular education app that allows users to learn different languages through fun games.

  • Stress Relief – Coloring for Adults Stress is seen to be the source of many health disorders. Research show that coloring has therapeutic benefits for adults. This app is a fun way to calm oneself and reduce stress.

  • Photomath – Camera Calculator For math haters, this education app can be a real lifesaver. It is a smart camera calculator app that can calculate any math problem pointed towards its camera.

  • Cop Radar – Speed Detector This app is the most practical way of checking your speed limit and avoid further consequences.

  • Uber An app that offers cab service at your doorstep! Experience the best of low-cost to premium transport service in your city with just a few click clicks through your mobile.

  • Store Finder: Local Business Search by Vintelli – This app makes life easier for the user. Be it finding restaurants, to plumbing services, to cinema halls to gyms, this app finds the service near you.

Final Words

If you are gearing up to develop a top-grade app, try to develop an app that acts as a solution to commonly faced problems. This is a great way of striking a chord with the target audience. Research well, and develop apps that offer effective solution or information in an innovative way.

Images: Author’s Own


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Sudeep Banerjee is the Founder & President of B3NET Inc. - the leading California orange county web design & Web Development firm. He is an expert in Web & Mobile Development & Internet Marketing with 26 years of experience. Sudeep also loves to golf and play basketball. https://www.b3net.com/

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  • Thanks for sharing this great app ideas,will help me for sure.




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