BizTome, my business centric inspirational quotes app for the iPad has just recently been approved and made available on the App Store. I took on this pet project so that I could learn to design and develop for the iPhone/iPad OS as well as learn more about what’s involved in having an app in the app store. It’s been quite a journey and I’m glad a part of it is finally over.

The origins of this app goes back to my love of inspiring quotes. Lately I’ve focused my life on business and have amassed quite a collection of business quotes. When an opportunity came along to create an app that would let me easily view and consume those quotes in the form of a hackathon, I quickly jumped on the chance.

The whole process from inception to available in the App store took approximately 5 months. It probably could have easily taken less than that if we were able to devote more time and resources to it, but this was a side project. Not surprisingly, the app turned out to be more work that I thought for a simple app. Isn’t that how it always is?

The basic design for the app was envisioned at the hackathon early one. It would take 4 months of tweaking before I was finally happy with it.

One of the things I didn’t realize was going to be so much work were the quotes themselves. Although I did have quotes saved up, they didn’t amount to much. Not enough to make an app out of it anyways. So I scoured the web for quotes that I liked and tried to include over 500 in the initial release.

At first I was doing both the design and the development of it. But because this was a side project, I wasn’t making much progress on either front because I was spread too thin. I did learn a lot about Objective-c programming and only barely started to get the hang of it until I was able to find someone who could take on the development tasks so I could truly focus on the user experience and design.

Once the app started to take shape and we were able to play with it, I also had to worry about other things like the app website. I put some effort into designing the homepage so that it would match the look and feel of the app but I hadn’t spent nearly as much time on the rest of the site.

I think one of the hardest parts of this was coming up with a good design for the icon. An icon is so difficult because it’s gotta attract the user’s attention and also provide enough information to make the user want to download it. I designed 3 icons and I still feel like I am not completely happy with it.

Although developing for the iPad technologically speaking was not difficult, some of the challenging things included the whole signing of devices and issuing of certificates and that whole mess. I felt like the whole progress could have been designed better.

Now that the app is done and launched, my new challenges are promoting the app and building awareness of it. I will also have to play around with pricing to see how that affects revenue. All in all the whole experience is pretty educational because it forced me to have to learn a bunch of different skills that I would otherwise not picked up.

Popularity: 7% [?]

Related posts:

  1. Thoughts on iPad Killers
  2. Concept UI: iPad Curved Keypad
  3. The iPad Early Adopter Experience
  4. Thoughts on UX for the iPad
  5. New Blog Design & Sneak Peek at iPad App