When Microsoft released their free Windows 8 book Programming Windows 8 Apps with ... I downloaded it and read the introduction. And then I was stunned. This book was obviously aimed to get a lot of non-programmers to create apps for Windows 8. Why would Microsoft want to do that? Amateurish apps are unlikely to succeed. Why do they want a large number of people to waste their time, writing apps for Windows 8 that nobody wants? And the only obvious answer I could find was numbers. Microsoft wanted an ecosystem with a large number of apps. Who cares if anyone actually use or pay for these apps. Obviously, Microsoft don't.
I mean, anyone will realize that when there are hundreds of thousands of app in an app-store, most of them will not succeed. The amateurs with no prior knowledge in software engineering are not likely to create great things on their first attempt. Somehow, when I think about it, I picture one million monkeys with typewriters :) And also, how can small entrepreneurs, without a seven digit marketing budget, succeed in a marketplace where all the big players are playing?
Usually we hear about the success stories. Yesterday I stumbled over a book in the Kindle store that told the other tale. "App Idiots Quick Stop Guide to Save You from Blowing Your Money on Creating an App" by Jake Williamson. It's actually quite interesting. Especially the description about the ecosystem around the app development, including bloggers who blog for money. (To me, that's the same type of ladies that you are likely to run into in Amsterdams Red Light District).
Anyway, does anyone else have any thoughts about this? Are we (the small app developers/entrepreneurs) just idiots being used by the big players like Google, Apple and Microsoft – or do we have a real chance for success [odds being better than in the nearest Casino]?
And what about the app consumers? Are they being abused by the big players, lured to install (and then throwing away) a large number of useless crap apps?
Just some thoughts a Saturday morning, while the espresso machine is warming up.