It is unfortunate that there are 3 kinds of people in this world, as far as conversations are concerned. There are those who will give you all the encouragement you need, those that will give you all the discouragement you don’t need, and those that will not understand what the hell you are talking about, and will appeal the 5th ammendment. I like the 3rd, and adore the first.
The second are the losers in the equation. And in life, generally.
I had a simple brainwave from a personal experience and also from a conversation I had with a friend who was a victim of ‘death-before-a-will’ situation. Because of that, I shared the concept of an inexistent [half-don on my laptop and not online] NikiDedi platform on October 27th. I spent some time discussing the possible algorithms and fail-points for such a system with fellow coders and thinkers. Come 30th October, I get a twit from an e-Troll claiming that I had STOLEN the idea.
My Gawd!!! Unbeknonst to me, someone had spend 3 days of their sad lives trying to invalidate the authenticity of the NikiDedi system. How sad, pathetic and Idle can people be. Instead of eeking every hour of every day trying to improve their lives, people spend endless effort and time and resources trying to discredit others.
Anyway, enough about the e-Trolls. On to todays’ topic.
Overlapping models and concepts.
It is sad. I have attended countless developer contests and the story is always the same. I see apps that compete against each other and see duplication of effort. 2 teams of coders/startups doing the SAME app. Both groups do the app to 70% perfection. Ego and pride making both teams try to out-do each other. Teamwork is only internal. The others are enemies. Ohh, What would it take to join hands and do a super-app together and share the loot?
Think of e.g. An App to show you what is happening today: We have AroundMe, WhatsHappening, Buzz, Phat etc. Think of Medical concepts and we have AskADoc, mPhysician, MedKenya etc. All concepts that are similar.
I am not participating in the Nokia Create4Millions contest that closes tomorrow, despite all the psyche I had. Let us just say that someone gave me a better deal. Instead of shooting in the dark in a developer contest, I decided to work on a real business app. Not a contest app just for the sake of it. More about this in a separate blog post.
This does not mean that I don’t have faith in what Nokia are doing for our tech-scene. This does NOT mean that people should not do contest-apps. This does NOT mean, in any way or manner at all, that Salim does not see the point of developer contests. No. Not at all. It was just a timing issue. Opportunity cost.
When someone speaks of killer-apps, in Kenya, you think of an app with its own revenue model and a SOLID business case. We don’t have the clout to do revenues off ads yet. People WON’T pay to download the apps, yet. Hata 5 bob.
Developers fail to think beyond the APP, and can’t visualize the business. That is why most of us will be seen coding late in the night for developer contests with the money as the END to the app. Not the MEANS to the app’s conquest of it niche/purpose. If an APPs sustainability and profitability is what makes one a killer-app, then there are NONE in Kenya. Not yet.
Tuvitu from Shimba has over 750k downloads from the OVI store. It has made KSHS 0. Version 1 of AroundMe from Mwai saw over 300k downloads. 0 KSHS in revenue. Sembuse from Symbiotic has 250, 000 users. 0 Kshs.
I see a great time ahead, especially with AroundMe version 2, Ma3Racer from Akina Jimmy, MedAfrica (formerly MedKenya) from Shimba. If they stick to the models they have taken me through, then we might see the first Killer-apps. Apps that make sense to the users and cents for the developers.
I have always talked to Erik about this. We need a success story. We need a case study of an app/solution that :
- Changed the life of at least 100k users [socially, economically, emotionally, intellectually].
- Made the developer some money. At least an ARPU of KSHS 5 per month from 40% of the users.
- Gives people a reason to use the APP at least 3 times a week.
- Stays on a user phone for at least 6 months.
When will this be? For those who believe, it will be soon.
Back to code.