These personas are intended to help us think through different use cases and needs, and understand the type of users we're targeting.
Jamie Friendly (Indie/Hobbyist Dev)
Jamie is a student at Newton Fig University studying Information Systems. While learning about web development in her classes, she had an idea for an app that would make university life much easier for her and other students at NFU. The app has a detailed map of campus, class schedules, the University Calendar, and even connects to their course management system to pull in grades and assignments.
Jamie has been working on finishing this app and plans to submit it soon. She’s heard about others getting rich with apps and has a lot of student loans, so she plans to charge $4.99 for the app, but wants her friends to be able to use it for free.
Jamie cares most about:
- Easy to understand documentation
- Simple submission
- Not having to spend much time on maintaining her app
- Getting paid
- Not worrying about sales tax
Porcupain Games (Small Game Shop)
Porcupain is a touch-based game series currently only available on iOS, where it’s the third most-popular free game in the controversial and misunderstood Fantasy Animal-Animal Violence subcategory of Games. The games follow the adventures of Porky, a porcupine whose home is repeatedly destroyed when birds crash into it and explode, assuming based on his name that Porky is a pig who has stolen their eggs. The porcupine sets out to find the bird’s Home Nest to stop the raid, but along the way must fend off a constant barrage of avian attacks by shooting his limited supply of needles at the creatures swooping in from all directions.
Porcupain Games is a 5-person company in Austin, TX and all of their income comes from their two games: Porcupain and Porcupain: Olympics Edition. Porcupain is free, but in order to play past level 2, you must pay $1.99 via an in-app purchase. The developers regularly come up with new in-app purchases to add to the game, like poison-dipped quills and speed boosts.
Unfortunately, with great success comes great support inquiries, which the developers must field themselves. Additionally, some users are asking for refunds of their in-app purchases claiming the poison-dipped quills are not as effective as they expected, or in one customer’s words, “super lame”.
Porcupain Games is currently considering whether to bring their games to other platforms, though none of their current staff have any experience developing for Android.
Porcupain cares most about:
- Prominent placement and discovery in the marketplace
- Detailed analytics and reports
- Sound in-app purchase management
- Easy refund and support tools
International World News Planet (Media Conglomerate)
International World News Planet is a leader in reporting world news, investigative journalism, and celebrity gossip. In addition to their cable channel, radio programs, and annual Columbus Day parade, they produce a daily newspaper and monthly magazine.
Triple Scoop is a daily celebrity gossip newspaper with a worldwide print circulation of 142,790, just ahead of The Columbus Dispatch for the sixth year in a row! IWNP currently has an app for iOS and Android in which print subscribers can access top content for free, while others can subscribe for $3.99 per month.
True Facts is IWNP’s monthly news magazine, featuring top stories from the past month and only a little bit of celebrity gossip. Also sudoku. Print subscribers can access the app’s content for free, and anyone can subscribe for $27.99 per year. The magazine is translated into 30 languages and is available worldwide.
IWNP has 10,000 employees worldwide, 300 of whom are in their Information Technology group responsible for website and app development and infrastructure.
IWNP cares most about:
- celebrity gossip
- Columbus Day
- beating The Columbus Dispatch
App developers at IWNP care most about:
- Access to their subscriber data and contact information
- Detailed reports
- International purchase support
- Marketplace localization
Dolly, Inc. (App Factory/Boutique)
Dolly, Inc. has more than 30 app templates it sells to churches, schools, shops, restaurants, banks, local TV stations, newspapers, and more. Dolly offers customized app solutions for each of these businesses at a fraction of the cost it would take them to build an app themselves. For example, a Dolly restaurant app lets a business set their menu, pricing, hours, and specials and customers can order online. The restaurant simply runs the in-store version of the app and is alerted immediately to new orders.
In addition to app development, Dolly offers their Part of the Flock program, a total app solution in which Dolly will distribute and maintain the customized apps in all of the major app stores. They’ll shepherd the app through submission, customer reviews, support questions, and update businesses on how their apps are doing and offer advice on how improve them.
Currently, Dolly maintains more than 850 apps for its clients, almost all of which are free to consumers.
Dolly cares most about:
- Easy submission and review process
- Painless app updates
- Everything available as an API
- Great organization, filtering, and sorting of app management interface