How my app became irrelevant overnight

In previous posts I’ve shared a success story and also how important market is to grow apps.

In this post I wanted to share something a bit different, how choosing the wrong market can mean your app can become irrelevant overnight.

When I built Realtime it was really just to meet a personal need of mine at the time. I wanted to see how many people were on Appbot and my other apps at any time during the day. It gave me a really great pulse of how each was travelling and when to deploy updates.

Google Analytics didn’t have an iOS app at the time and I found the other third party apps to be focused on historical analytics.

The app was really simple, with two main goals:

  • show the active visitors
  • be able to drill into a few key metrics.

It didn’t set the world on fire, but it did achieve steady downloads.

People who liked it, really liked it.

Then in May 2014 the day arrived.

“Finally, Google Analytics App Arrives on iPhone”

And the result for my app was:

Overnight demand disappeared for Realtime.

Although I knew this day would one day come for my app, it’s not always as obvious for other apps and developers. Be careful to choose a market that doesn’t depend on a platform whose owner can make you irrelevant overnight.

Stuart is founder & CEO at Appbot who take the pain out of managing app store reviews. He has built multiple apps that have reached millions of users including one that he built in 6 hours.

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