This story was originally published in Times
With the $26 billion app economy in full progress, the economy has given birth to a new generation of app makers with little to zero coding experience. These are app makers who knows how the final output is going to be but not how to get there. New app building tools have made this possible in with chunks of hand-written code into prefabricated building blocks. With so much outsource work done by coders for as little as $6,400, the whole process is simply to connect all the dots.
So meet these four app makers with their own business built by themselves with little or no coding skills.
Twins Rock Media, Isabella and Sofia Mandich, Co-Founders
Total cost of first build: $5,000
Two nieces of the creator of the multi million dollar game Doodle Jump decided to follow in the footsteps of their uncle and build their own game Wild Ski with help from their father and a cousin in Belgrade.
After a year of rigourous testing from their eighth grade classmates, the app was ready for launch. “When we brought over our friends and all of them wanted to continue playing, that’s when we knew it was ready,” says Sophia. The two sisters are also learning to code on the side along with their schoolwork. For their next project, the girls are developing a music sharing app, details of which are a guarded secret of Twins Media, LLC.
Chefs Feed, Jared Rivera, Founder
Total cost of first build: $9,500
Chefs Feed is an app through which top chefs talk about the best places to eat, sort of like a tumblr for foodies. Foodies can highlight restaurants on a map and see dishes that are approved by the industry’s biggest chefs.
Jared Rivera, founder and marketer for more than 200 restaurants says “It was really the ability to connect the dots between the chef having that moment of, ‘Oh, that’s an awesome dish and I want to talk about it,’ and figuring out how they would get in as a chef user of our app,” he says.
HER, Robyn Exton, Founder
Total cost of first build: $4,500
With lesbian dating apps being just typical gay male sites rehashed and repainted with pink and purple, Robyn Exton, 28, the founder of HER was just not satisfied. HER, a lesbian dating app goes in a different direction by encouraging users to exchange messages and comment on curated stories from the internet. Robyn says with women the whole dating game is a bit different. Where a guy would set up a meet just after a day, a woman on the other hand will take upto atleast 10 days with conversations in between before arranging a meet. So knowing your demographic matters.
Articulation Station, Heidi and Chris Hanks, Co-Founders
Total cost of first build: $25,000
Heidi Hanks, 38, is a teacher for special needs students and she used have to carry around worksheets and flashcards to her speech therapy lessons. ”I would find myself practically doing backflips to maintain their attention so we could make any progress at all,” she says. After she first saw an iPod Touch back in 2010, she said “It had tactile feedback and audio feedback and visual feedback, and I just knew that it would be so engaging especially with kids with special needs.”
Heidi along with her husband Chris a graphic designer sketched out wireframes and layouts of how the app might work and look like and then contracted an engineer to write the code. The app released in ITunes stores in November 2011 with more than $500,000 revenue in less than six months with close to one million downloads to date.
So if you have an idea but do not have the coding skills to make a fully fledged app, it’s time you took inspiration from these founders and fleshed out your own innovative idea into life.