The app ecosystem in India has been growing rapidly with the availability of cheap smartphones and mobile data plans. While India is positioned at #1 and #3 on the Nokia App Store and Google Play Store, app development companies still lament about weak demand from Indian businesses.
Despite weak demand for app development among domestic clients, few firms generate good amount of revenue from international businesses. One such company is Noida based AppStudioz, which claims to have touched a revenue of $1 million since its inception in 2011. With a team of 160+ developers, AppStudioz has churned out more than 800 apps for large global companies, including advertising agencies and startups located across 25 countries.
To understand more about AppStudioz, its business, the app ecosystem in India and how Android fragmentation creates hassles, NextBigWhat spoke to Saurabh Singh, founder and CEO, AppStudioz. Singh talked about various aspects involved in app development and demand across operating systems – iOS, Android, Windows Phone, BlackBerry and Symbian. Edited excerpts:
What has been the traction like in terms of business (app development) and split of app developed by firm across operating systems – iOS, Android, Windows Phone, BlackBerry and Symbian?
Native apps for Android and iOS have been widely in demand. Major businesses coming to us are asking for apps on these widely used platforms. But with Windows coming back in action, the demand for app based on Windows OS has started. Major market is of iPhone apps till now, but with hybrid apps under pipeline we can expect surge in that segment as well.
What types of apps are the most popular and from which verticals?
We believe that Social networking based apps are the most popular apps in terms of requirements we get from the clients. Also augmented reality apps and 3D mobile games will be a dominant force in the mobility industry. Apps interacting with wearable computing devices will also be introduced this year and will definitely increase in demand by 2015.
We have been working on developing innovative mobile apps interacting with wearable computing devices since 2012, and have developed couple of apps where the apps are interacting with Bluetooth watches and other Bluetooth devices. With the recent entry of Google Glass, our research and development team is busy cracking more creative apps around it.
As Appstudioz deals with global as well as domestic clients – what’s the demand like and what percentage of overall business comes from international orders?
The app development market is booming with huge demand. A major portion of our business i.e around 85% of the overall business comes from international orders. The Indian market is yet to take the advantage of mobile applications. We have some Indian companies as our regular clients like Times Internet Ltd, Jabong and a few others.
Has Android fragmentation (constant upgradation of version) become a hassle for app development?
There are definitely changes in user interface in new versions and other important hassle/issues in android development. As Android is open source, so different manufacturers change the classes according to their needs and requirements, due to this some default functions stop working on some devices.
Fragmentation is not a big issue with latest versions of Android OSes like Android 4.0 and above, thus upgradation is not a huge challenge for app development. However, when something changes at basic architecture level, then it creates issues.
From monetization part which operating systems (BlackBerry, Android, iOS etc) gives you better margin and why?
AppStudioz is purely into services, we develop apps for our clients as per their requirements. As per our understanding BlackBerry apps has the best monetization than iOS apps but we don’t have much idea on the margins.
Which are the major difference in terms of demand (app development) between India and global markets?
At present, there is good demand for app development from India as well, but the major difference is the UI part. Indian app developers and Indian app development companies still lack massively in coming up with good UI for the users whereas the app development in US are completely based on the user interaction and interface.
Tell us about your future plans, funding status and team size?
Our future plans are very aggressive, we have targeted certain untouched industries and we are very sure that we would emerge as winners. We have some out of the box ideas which we are thinking to patent and get into launching some amazing products in mobile space. We are a self-funded company with over 160 employees, we have doubled our strength in every quarter and we will continue doing the same.