Working towards launching the 1.0 of my link saving app Bridges has finished. On Tuesday November 14th the app officially launched for the iPhone, iPad, and Mac. Its reception has been really encouraging and went better than expected.
There was a few people that I though would review the app or speak about it and did. I didn’t really have a proper press kit and that might have hurt my chances for some publications. But all in all I think this initial week went really well.
I had a fantastic review of the app done by a new friend of mine Devon Dundee. We got to know each other because of the app when he joined the TestFlight early on. Eventually we started talking more regularly and he’s contributed some really great feedback that has made the app way better.
Devon co hosts the Magic Rays of Light podcast with Sigmund Judge. A great show about Apple TV, its exclusive shows, and things they’re into. Devon uses Bridges to help him prepare show notes for each episode. In the most recent episode of the show he talks more about this which was really cool to hear.
I definitely wanted to become one of those developers that makes a cool app to help people in their daily workflows. Hearing Devon speak about how he’s using Bridges to make creating show notes easier is really fun.
Some other cool articles were from Lee Peterson and Stephen Hackett. Lee wrote that he is “finding the app now a crucial part of my workflow”. Reading comments like this has me feeling grateful and excited to push the app further. I’ve always looked up to Stephen Hackett and the podcast network he built with Relay FM. To have him link to Bridges on his personal blog 512 Pixels was really cool.
Something that I definitely did not expect but was a pleasant surprise was speaking at iOS Dev Happy Hour. Happy Hour is a really fun online event where once a month developers from all over the world get together and have an online meetup. For lots of developers it’s hard to find a conference to go to or afford one. With iOS Dev Happy hour the organizers make it super easy to attend and enjoy. Its structure is usually a speaker or two talking about a recent hire or app. Then some break out rooms where you get to meet other developers of all skill levels. Everyone is super nice and kind if you have an interest I highly suggest you attend. You might even have someone help you fix a bug you have been working on. This happened in one the breakout rooms I was in it was really cool to see.
After launching the app one of the Happy Hour organizers Chris Wu asked me to speak about Bridges. So I got to share my app with everyone and talk about how I came up with the idea. There was some audience questions too and it was a really fun experience. I didn’t expect to be speaking at the event but I was so glad I had the opportunity.
Having an app in the App Store is not a prerequisite to being an app developer. But for me personally it was an important thing I wanted. I wanted to have something people can find and hopefully enjoy using. Something that I can put all my time into and make it better. I think I have that with Bridges and it’s very special to me.
I see myself as an iOS developer an Apple platforms developer. Like many other developers your apps kind of become your identity for better or for worse. And I’m not pinning my whole identity on the app but it is a big part of how I see myself.
Now is the next part the fun part. To update the app and build more on top of this foundation. There was many different features and plans I have for it that didn’t make it into the 1.0. I plan to use these next months to make that into a reality. I don’t want this momentum to stop. I want it to help put me in a place to grow further.
Some big level features I want to add to Bridges are.
- Interactive Widgets - Shared with You support - Shortcuts
There are many other smaller features but I did want to share some high level ones. Like the TestFlight I plan to do some frequent updates for things to add. Some features will take some time but I don’t want to wait for a big point release for something I can add quickly. The better I can make the app the better it can do for my users.
There really isn’t any guarantee of what number of users you can get for a new app. Many developers release apps that may not get traction. While others have a viral hit. There is numerous factors that influence this but for me Bridges and shipping the app has been working towards a starting point.
The initial downloads this first launch week passed my expectations. Im really happy to say for the iOS/macOS versions of the app the total downloads have passed 200 users. Which is really great to type. It is definitely more than I had thought I would have by now. I feel like some of this has been people using the app and word of mouth but it’s hard to confirm. I think this is a really great starting point to grow from.
If you have downloaded the app or even just shared the app with someone thank you. I also want to thank all the TestFlight users who helped make the app way better and ready for its 1.0. The initial week has surpassed my expectations and I could not be happier.