Sunday, July 06, 2014

iPhone, iPad and Android App Clients - Part 2

Go back to iPhone, iPad and Android App Clients - Part 1

Come to quick agreements on designs


The biggest frustration in doing commissioned work is that, although few people consider themselves to be programmers, almost everyone thinks he/she knows best about designs. Nobody in a meeting will stand up and argue with you about a floating-point variable, but they’ll be more than happy to criticise the shade of blue you’ve chosen for the background of their app.

Often there is little chance of entirely avoiding some creative conflicts during the design process, but the most effective way to deal with this is to concede that the customer is always right. Try and put forward your point of view, but if it is resisted, then agree with the customer. This is the unfortunate nature of commissioned app design.

You can use the money you make from commissions to create your own independent (and no doubt vastly-superior) apps in your own time – you can design these exactly as you want them.

The basics of revenue sharing and other common business arrangements

Instead of paying you up-front, many companies will offer you a revenue share of the projected profits from their commissioned app. In our experience, this is almost never a good idea. Managers will often wildly over-estimate the success of their app. It’s easy to get the impression, from the media, that almost every app is a hit.

The reality is that the market is highly unpredictable. If the company, or individual, commissioning you is not prepared to pay for your time, they are likely to have little faith in their idea. They may even be kidding themselves about unrealistically projected profits.

Make sure you are paid for your work based on an hourly rate. Revenue shares in the app market are usually nothing more a nefarious way of transferring the risk from the commissioning company onto the app designers. Consider also the fact that you won’t get any of the generated revenue because the design, build, deployment, marketing, purchasing Apple admin and client admin stand in your way. However, if you believe in the idea yourself, it might be worth considering reducing your day rate to get a small cut of resultant revenues.

This has worked for some of us.

Read Back - iPhone, iPad and Android App Clients - Part 1
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