2013-11-28-23-16-02

What Will it Take to Create a High-Quality App that Schools and Teachers can Afford?

Technology has infiltrated virtually every aspect of modern life, changing and enhancing a wide variety of areas common to most people’s daily lives. Education is one of the smaller niches that has seen many benefits, with app developers scrambling to develop content that is beneficial to both teacher and student alike. So what exactly is it that goes into creating an app chock full of quality, but also one that is easy on the wallet? One of New York’s best app developers is sharing its opinion.  

According to a recent study, the average teacher spends over $500 on school supplies, above and beyond what schools are able to provide. This makes it important to create and structure an app attractive and affordable to teachers as well if the school is unable to foot the bill.

Perhaps the single most crucial component in developing and marketing an app to virtually any market is which model for payment and usage is used. This is even more important in an educational setting, with the low amount of available funds making some models more attractive to schools and teacher than others. Most teachers or school administrators want to know the app is worthy BEFORE they sink any money into it.

This, of course, would immediately rule out one of the most popular models for many other types of software, SaaS (service as a subscription), even if a free trial period is offered. Many a teacher has put hours of time and effort into readying a trial app, only to have the period end and they lose all their hard work.

Another popular model that has no place in the classroom is the in-app purchase model, especially if it allows students to make purchases without prior authorization from teachers or administration. The last thing a cash-strapped instructor or institute needs is the nightmare of a costly tally of purchases made without their knowledge.

One model exists as the method most capable of providing a way for teachers to try the app without the threat of losing hard work, or allowing microtransactions to send them to the poor house: freemium. In essence, freemium provides a fully-operational version of the software that users can try with no time restrictions at all. While this is usually a very basic version, it contains everything that is needed to get things up and running effectively. If the teacher likes the app, they can then subscribe to more advanced functions, if they so desire and are fiscally capable.

Simply having a freemium model is not always enough. A delicate balance must be struck between how much content is offered for free, as opposed to what you need to pay for. If too little content is given gratis, not enough interest is generated for the paid parts. If too much content is included for no charge, the risk is run of losing enough income to keep the app profitable.

As you can see, striking the balance between developing an app that is both attractive to users and of high-quality hinges primarily on which type of model is offered to end users. Even with the amazing number of programs out there today that help even the most novice of users create apps of their own, advanced coding skills are usually required to create one that stands out from the rest. This knowledge and experience comes with a price tag that your app must be able to cover, something difficult to accomplish if you do not market it correctly.

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About the author: During college, Patrick Cohen dove head first into the tech industry as a Product Management Intern for the American Red Cross’s app development department. As a recent grad, he now works as a Digital Marketer in New York City. Patrick has worked at award-winning app development and design agencies, and their articles are primarily about mobile technology, mobile development, UX/UI and the social implications of those developments. Patrick loves working in the technology industry because he has a passion for all things tech, and it really shows in his writing.

 

 

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