Soucre: The App Clone Wars
There is a proliferation of identical apps on the Internet, and they are making a ton of money.
Your instincts probably tell you that software developers aren’t coding them all individually, and you’re right. These apps are produced by very simplistic app building wizards, reminiscent of website wizards that were popular before WordPress.
To use one of these wizards, the channel owner inserts his or her YouTube channel information, or his website information (called a key) into the wizard, and the app is automatically generated from the user’s data. All the owner has to do is pick a color and an icon, as well as agree to pay a monthly fee to the app building service. The app will automatically update whenever the app’s owner changes his or her content, so the creator can forget about it once it’s done.
So why am I writing about this? After doing some research and extrapolation we determined that the app wizard industry (including the wizards that build YouTube apps) generates more than 200 million dollars per year.
This is an amazing fact given that these wizards pretty much suck. For one, the apps they make all look the same, which is a problem when you are trying to differentiate your content from your competitors. One size does not fit all: you are bound to have different needs from your neighbor, and your app should reflect that. Yet there are hundreds of thousands of app clones trying to do different things.
These builders also don’t let you keep the app; they charge you a monthly hosting fee to let you use the app, and if you stop paying the app will be taken down. This means that if your app starts to gain users you are at the company’s mercy to leave the app up. I’ve communicated with people who have horror stories about gaining traction only to either get the app stolen from them, or to be blackmailed for much higher rates (which they didn’t agree to from the outset). I’m not saying all companies do this, but some of them have been known to.
What customers of these app wizards don’t know is that if you are willing to learn a tiny bit of coding, it isn’t that hard to make an app for yourself. If all you want, for example, is an app for your YouTube channel, the components you need to include in your app have already been coded a countless number of times. You simply need to know what databases to look in, and how to add the code together (which is a lot easier than it sounds) and you can make your own native app within just a day or so.
One of the several reasons we built Rheti was to make this easier. Rheti is a platform that gives you direct access to app components that we’ve either added ourselves, or that third party developers have uploaded, and lets you create apps with them. Instead of coding you add and connect the components with touch commands.
Rheti is free to use and you get to actually keep the APK file of the app, which means we can’t hold your app hostage even if we want to. You can also put anything wherever you want in your app, so your app isn’t going to look exactly the same as your neighbors. No one is going to accuse you of stealing anyone else’s intellectual property (we recently had someone email us who used a wizard and had this complaint from his audience).
Founded in 2012, Rheti’s Android application is proving that any person can build a great mobile application. Rheti requires no previous programming knowledge and leverages a catalog of hundreds of features, third party APIs, and pre-built app templates to create native Android apps using touch commands. Customers who build apps using Rheti get to market 90% faster and can quickly customize their apps to make them unique in both functionality and design. Users interested in learning how to program are also able to use Rheti’s blockly interface to understand the methodologies behind scripting. Rheti is available for free in the Google Play store https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.rheti.appcreator.
Please visit http://www.rheti.com for more information.