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AppFest 2013 – The Complete Report

Vaibhavi Oza wrote a note on the AppFest 2013 Experience. I am sharing it as it gives a great picture of the event.

Ahmedabad was proud to witness one of the most happening Appfest in India. The Internet and Mobile Association of India (IAMAI) hosted the Second AppFest at the Indian Institute of Management-Ahmedabad (IIM-A) from July 26 to 28. In their own words they have not expected such a huge crowd to turn up for the participation.

The event was divided in three days Talkathon, Hackathon & Challengathon. On day one we saw a lot of industry experts talking about various issues that bothers app developers.

Session started with talk on building android apps: challenges and solutions, where speakers like Anand Virani from Qualcomm, Ravi Vyas from Vserv talked on how to build cooler, richer apps and how to monetize the android apps.

The session was followed by the Best Practices from industries where Satyajeet Singh, Cleartrip Mobile shared his experience and journey of going mobile, also Pawan Agarwal from Gaana.com talked on the selection of platform, which were the real lessons learned from their experiences.

So once you know what challenges in building app are and what are best practices in industry the next thing comes is the Marketing of those apps and getting maximum downloads. Where Ninad chhaya, Mansa Gajaera & Smeer Ganpathy threw some light on what is to be done to make the apps marketable. Some of the things they highlighted were keeping the things simple and emphasize on knowing what your customer wants.

In the session followed by this the speakers talked about going beyond your comfort zone for app monetization and app release. The thing they highlighted was that there are more innovative and smarter ways to launch your app and think beyond Google App store!

The session followed by that was on Using the Facebook Platform to the best potential for your app where Alexandre Corso, Asian BU Head, KRDS- Facebook Experts India, gave insight on how effectively using facebook can help the developer.

Session followed by this was again some industry highlights on marketing the apps and according to the Abhay Johorey, Head Airtel Online, Bharti Airtel, Secrets of successful User Acquisition is there is no Secret! The product has to be the best and there is no way you can keep the consumers more involved and engaged.

The other sessions were on Monetization of apps, making money out of freemium strategy, Earning revenue by building Businesses around App gave some serious insights to the developers.

The last session of day was On Entrepreneurship – Challenges of a freelance developer and raising investment, the session talked about bootstrapping, best practices for small developer operations

and managing small team dynamics. Industry experts speak about fine-tuning processes, planning for new developers and how they can approach for gaining VC investment.

All the sessions were followed by the Q&A sessions where participants came up with their queries and questions and the speakers has tried their best to address them.

The day two we saw the different side of Gujarat developers, Designers and tech savvy people came up in great numbers there were total 45 teams for hackathon and 20 teams for challengathon! Each team consisting of an average of two people!

To Summarize I will put a few quotes from the speakers on what works, what not works and what is important! So here are some of the secrete mantras form the speakers.

“Don’t Just make an Easy App, Think about the Usability as well” – Amber Krishnan
“God is in Details & that differentiates the Good app from the OK app”- Satyajeet Singh ( Cleartrip)
“Focus on Native Experience than a Feature set”- Pawan Agrawal (Gaana.com)
Understanding what kind of App will click to user is important- Sameer Ganapathy Digital Disney UTV
“Secrets of successful User Acquisition is: there is no Secret” – Abhay Johorey ( Bharti Airtel)
“Make A Story Around Your App, that will engage your user ” – Sameer Ganapathy Digital Disney UTV
“App market is crowded No Doubt in that but, there is always some gap, identify that gap and make an app that fills that Gap ”- Zarik Nabi, Milestone Interactive
“Consumer insight is the most important factor, keep your audience in mind when you build your app, listen to feedbacks and keep revamping the app ” – Zarik Nabi, Milestone Interactive

And finally take away for me, the three days were full of excitement, fun and learning what industry expects! There exist a gap in what we develop and what industry & consumer wants!