In today’s fast-paced environment, the mobile app market is expanding rapidly. Digital enterprises are trying to make their apps stand out in a competitive market. Because of the potential revenue that mobile apps can generate, many enterprises consider mobile app development a goldmine. Statista estimates that the global mobile app revenue will exceed USD 935 billion in 2023 through paid downloads and advertising.
Your goal when building an app is to provide a solution to your user, increase app downloads, and eventually, increase in-app purchases. Only a handful of mobile apps can achieve this. Poor execution, inefficient app ideas, or the inability to monetize via an app are the reasons why more than 60% of apps fail.
A closer look at the mobile app development services industry reveals that many apps have been shut down during their initial stages of use. This is due to extreme competition and digitalization. An app developer can make many mistakes that can hurt their app’s success, apart from the competition.
You should not only aim for the best but also be prepared for the worst when developing a mobile application. What lessons can you take from the failures of previous apps?
7 Mobile Apps That Failed – What Can We Learn From Their Mistakes
Software development requires skill and knowledge. This is not an easy task. If you don’t have the willpower and willingness to work hard, it is impossible to create a successful app.
Here’s a list of famous app failures. We have provided information to help you understand why these apps failed, and what lessons you can take from them.
Vine – 2012 to 2017
Vine has been branded a failure social media app for its inability to develop a viable business plan. Vine was a video-sharing app that allowed users to share six-second videos. Vine videos were referred to by the term “vine” and could be played indefinitely or integrated into Twitter’s timeline and any other webpage.
Vine was able to take off quickly with the introduction of a new concept – short GIF videos. However, the app hadn’t done much to react to market developments. Vine has struggled with this issue since its inception. Twitter purchased Vine in 2012 for $30 million. The company saw Vine as an ideal complement to its text posts.
Vine was similar to Twitter’s character limit. It had a time limit which, while it provided a creative challenge, also posed a barrier to more compelling, short video stories. Vine’s New York-based team struggled to grow its user base and generate revenue.
Vine was a clear winner over other social media applications, but it was clearly behind Snapchat and other competitors. Instagram added great features to its platform, including the ability to make one-minute films. It also attracted more celebrities. Vine’s videos were eventually extended but it was too late. Vine was also on the failed social media app wagon, but it was too late. Twitter eventually closed Vine down due to its inability to adapt.
The takeaway: While there will always be competition, it should not stop us from adopting changes. Users’ needs change with technology evolution. You need to incorporate a few elements that will make you a success.
Yik Yak 2013-2017
Yik Yak was an anonymous messaging tool that college students loved. It allowed them to communicate privately with people who were nearby. Yik Yak’s most favored feature became its enemy. In anonymous chat rooms, there were cases where cyberbullying was practiced by individuals. Schools and institutions began to ban anonymous threats via Yik Yak.
It was difficult to market the software because of its bad reputation. It also failed to transition to group messaging. When it started asking everyone for a permanent username, or handle, the install numbers dropped to zero. It couldn’t adapt to changing conditions and understand its target markets.
The takeaway: Although there were many problems, such as safety, security, and monetization, it was not possible to alter the factor that drove people to download Yik Yak. Market research should be done before launching an app.
Halo – 2012 to 2014 (North America market)
The company provided an e-taxi service that was similar to Uber. This service was a huge success in London and they plan to expand to New York City. The app is still available in Europe but it was not available in North America, particularly in New York City.
Software thought London drivers were identical to those in New York City. New York taxis aren’t considered a luxury like in London. London is not as well-traveled, but New York City follows a grid system.
Drivers must have a smartphone to use the service. Yellow taxi drivers in New York City didn’t carry one while they were on the job. London’s taxi drivers were highly trained and required to use smartphones in their jobs. New York City’s cab drivers received little training. Hailo could only sign a small number of New York City’s yellow taxi drivers despite receiving over $100 million in funding.
The takeaway: Users are not all the same, and markets are no different. Do not base your conclusions or assumptions on one successful launch.
Live-streaming auctions were a great idea for rare and artifacts sales. Auctionata tried to broadcast live events, but could not due to slow broadband speeds, poor customer support, concerns about delivery safety, and issues with online payments.
The company was known for trying to take legal action against customers. Alexander Zacke (then-CEO) was charged with violating trade laws in March 2016. An independent auditing investigation of the corporation. Zacke and members of the board were found to have illegally bid on auctions to artificially raise the price.
After this disclosure, users of the app started to abandon it. This caused an auction site to lose faith and people who bought artworks felt like they had been cheated of their hard-earned cash. Auctionata was a pioneer in its field but failed to understand its target market and address the issues that it was facing.
Takeaway: Be sure to be transparent about your app’s T&Cs, and to take responsibility for user data. Also, ensure that you comply with industry regulations and policies.
Google Wave – 2009 to 2010
When Google first announced Wave, it was intended to be an email tool that could also manage blogs, instant messaging, and multimedia management. It was designed to improve coworker communication and collaboration.
Google Wave failed to take off despite all the hype and was closed down six months later. There were many reasons why the app failed after it had been tested by 100,000 users and 6,000 developers worked on it.
Wave aggregated services that were available but were not as good as those provided by independent platforms.
Google Wave was better when you used separate services such as email and instant messaging. The app was ineffective as it could not improve upon the platform’s core services or their combination.
The takeaway: Never launch an application before it is ready to be executed. Although it may seem tempting to launch an app without putting much thought into it, there are still chances that the product will not live up to user expectations.
Quixey, 2009 to 2017
Quixey was founded to help users find content in other apps via their tablets or smartphones. After investing nearly $80 million, Alibaba was the largest shareholder in the app. However, the firm was ultimately doomed because Quixey had underperformed.
Alibaba refused to invest more and Quixey was fired shortly thereafter.
The app didn’t generate much money in the end.
Quixey’s failure to pay its debts was the reason it failed. It also failed to generate enough revenue from its product to sustain it. This is a lesson in how debt can be a problem for an app trying to make its mark in the app market.
Rdio – 2011 to 2015
Rdio, a music streaming service that featured a library of 5,000,000 songs and enabled users to keep track of what music their friends were listening to. Janus Friis, Niklas Zennstrom and Niklas Zennstrom were the co-founders of Skype.
The app also included social features that allowed users to see the music being played by their friends in real-time. Instead of focusing on user acquisition, the goal was to create the best music streaming software. Rdio did not have a dedicated marketing team or a marketing plan. This was because marketing was undervalued and they could not work towards a target audience. This is a recipe to fail for a music streaming service, as a large user base is crucial for turning a profit that goes beyond the high fees of record labels.
Spotify also arrived in America about a year later than Rdio. It offered free music streaming to its users via its service, which was subsidized through advertising. Spotify, unlike Radio, spent money marketing and was well-known even before it started. It was also attractive because it was free.
The takeaway: Rdio was ultimately a great app, but it had spent a lot of money and time creating its features. Because it was unable to offer music streaming, it became a classic exam offer and a failed app.
How to avoid making mistakes when developing your app
The app stores of today are overcrowded with many mobile apps competing for your attention. This is a huge benefit to customers today, but it also creates competition which makes it difficult for businesses to develop mobile apps to drive their business.
Don’t rush to develop a mobile app development company if the idea strikes you. It is better to research the market for mobile apps that have failed and analyze what they did wrong.
- Failure to fully understand the preferences of users
- Poor market research and competitor analysis
- Lack of originality and USP
- Inadequacy of the latest technology and innovation
- Too many stakeholders
- Capital & resources are scars The interface is not user-friendly
- Not choosing the right platform to develop your business
- Insufficient app testing
- Incorrect app store optimization
- Poor maintenance after launch
- Security threats are ignored
- Inaccurate functions
- Inadequate features
- Instead of focusing on retention, focus on downloading
- Poor UX/UI design
- Overlooking coding flaws & challenges
- Your app idea is not suitable for prototyping
- Mismanaging budget & timelines
- It is difficult to choose the right partner for app development
How to build a successful app?
There are some things you should keep in mind if you are currently working on an app, or plan to in the future. This will ensure that your app is successful and makes money. It also reduces the chances of it being abandoned.
Define User Personas
Apps without users are useless. It’s important to consider who might be interested in your app. Before you develop your app, narrow down the user personas and use marketing techniques to promote it. You should consider the industry, occupation, income, region, and age of your users to discover commonalities and patterns. Successful apps are designed with certain user demographics. It is therefore important to do your research before you start creating apps.
Validate Your App Idea
Success apps provide solutions to a problem. Apps must provide irrefutable value to users in some way. This is the best way for your app to be validated. Prospective users won’t be inclined to download or seek out an app that doesn’t immediately solve a problem. If the problem is being fixed or improved analysis, then why would someone continue using the Popular app solar has helped users save time, reduce effort, and connect with people?
Conduct market research
Your app competition with other apps, given the growth of the mobile app market. To overtake your competitors, you should research their products and strategies. Your competitors may not have the functionality your users need or aren’t catering to a certain user group. This study may lead to new concepts and ideas that will propel you to the top in your industry.
Partner with an App Development Company
It’s a good idea to get a professional team to assist you in building a mobile app that is both competitive and profitable. An app must provide a user-friendly, relevant, and seamless experience. This requires proper wireframing as well as user journey mapping. Only a well-designed conceptualization can communicate your vision and commitment to making your project a reality.
Only an app developer will be able to quickly run through your idea and consolidate functionality. You will also need to hire professionals to develop an MVP for your product if you are trying to raise capital from investors. The cost of developing your app will be estimated by your development team. A developer can help you quickly track your idea, in terms of technical feasibility, product strategy, and development cost.
Your app will need to be tested for usability, compatibility, and security. To test how your app reacts to abuse or unusual instructions, your development team will run technical tests. After identifying as many faults or problems as possible, your development team will create as many safety nets in your codebase as possible. Your app will be more reliable and stable the more you break it down and test it. A professional QA can also test your app before you launch it. This will save you time and money.
Monetizing Your App
App monetization can be done with a variety of methods, including monthly subscriptions, single-purchase fees, commissions, and affiliate links. You also have the option to use advertising or donation-based techniques. You can find an in-depth article on how to make money from apps here. Each software is best suited for a particular revenue strategy. You can choose the pricing plan that is most appealing to your target audience. Here is where you can use the data that you have gathered about your target market.
All app developers can make mistakes along the way, as the 7 mentioned apps did. If you want your app to succeed, it’s important to learn from these mistakes and avoid them.
It is not possible to develop the perfect app using a one-size fits all approach. This is not an easy task. It is not enough to try to create a unique mobile app. You also need to plan and be careful about how you choose a market for the app. To succeed, however, you need to research your market and understand your target audience.
App development services are offered by many organizations. However, it is important to choose the right one for your app’s success. Artoon Solutions has years of experience in mobile app development and design. Take a look at our portfolio.