According to a study done by the University of Alabama a Birmingham’s Online Masters in Management Information Systems, the app market will be a $77 Billion industry by 2017.
Do you want to take part in this MASSIVE opportunity?
If so, generating a new app idea or updating and improving upon an existing app idea is the first step to grabbing your piece of the pie.
For those of you who already have an app idea and are looking for guidance on what to do next feel free to click the button below to submit your ideas and speak with an experienced app consultant.
For those of you who are looking for a little app idea inspiration, we’ve created this resource to get your juices flowing. If you like it, don’t forget to share it ☺
Before we dig in I think it’s important to remind you to be present and aware of your surroundings. Sometimes the challenges that you and your peers face offer some of the greatest sources of inspiration.
Here are a few tips to remind you where to focus your attention throughout the day to help you generate that million-dollar app idea you’re looking for.
- “Listen to the people around you – the solution to their problems could be your next great mobile app.” <<TWEET THIS>>
Excellent advice from Todd Siegel of Protio. Keep your eyes and ears open to the problems of the people you encounter as well as the challenges you face in your own day to day life.
- Think about the apps you use most often. Are they missing any features you’d like to see? Reading user reviews can provide you with a treasure trove of missing features you could include in your app to create a better version of an already popular app.
- Keep tabs on what’s hot and trending in the major app market places. Apple’s App Store and Google Play are the big boys, but if you want to compare and contrast, here’s an app marketplace directory with some of the lesser knowns listed. Use a tool like App Annie to analyze top categories and latest trends so that you can focus your idea brainstorming on niches that already have mainstream popularity.
Now that we’ve shown you what to look for, let’s talk about where to look.
Below you will find a collection of resources to help inspire your app idea. Use the table of contents to skip to the section that interests you most.
I. Online Lists of App Ideas – HIGH VALUE RESOURCE
II. App Idea Generators – LOW VALUE RESOURCE
III. App Idea Contests – HIGH VALUE RESOURCE
IV. App Idea Forums – MEDIUM VALUE RESOURCE
V. Social Media App Idea Inspiration – MEDIUM VALUE RESOURCE
Online Lists Of App Ideas
Wouldn’t it be nice if you could find a list of app ideas that people have already thought of? Well guess what, you can. Below you will find a group of sites that have done the dirty work of compiling big lists of app ideas. These lists are updated regularly so take a look and see if something ignites your creativity.
- Ideas Watch – A massive list of new app and startup business ideas. Share your app ideas or team up with others who have shared theirs to co-create a new business venture. This site allows you to subscribe to have new app ideas sent directly to your inbox or create watchlists of your favorite ideas for inspiration. Follow IdeasWatch on Twitter.
- My App Templates – Another large list of app ideas created by entrepreneur Taphna Ngum. The list is easy to scan and says its consistently updated as well. Follow Tapha Ngum on Twitter.
- PreApps– A unique and interesting tool for both app users and app developers, PreApps has gameified the process of testing and receiving feedback for new app developers. App users earn points for tasks like voting on or surveying apps, while app developers are able to submit their ideas for feedback, beta testing, to build pre-release buzz, and get pre-opted in users for their app before launching into the app marketplace.
“Our vision is to build an ecosystem, which connects mobile app users with mobile app developers to in turn create better quality, more successful apps. By implementing user feedback in the development process, apps have a greater chance of success, and for users a more enjoyable experience.”- Sean Casto (Founder & CEO).
Here’s a video explaining how PreApps works.
Review top voted apps in each category or tell PreApps which niche you’re interested in to receive recommendations of new and exciting apps according to your tastes. These new apps could help with inspiration or you could uncover holes in these apps and build a bigger, better app. Follow PreApps on Twitter.
- Cool Business Ideas Draws on a large network of business ‘informers’ as well as on their own research to present cool business ideas in their weekly newsletter and regularly updated blog. Follow Cool Business Ideas on Twitter
App Idea Generators
App idea generators are web or app based tools that generate random app ideas. Although most of the ideas are silly at best, maybe, just maybe, they will help to spark your creative fire.
- App Idea Generator by USvsTh3m – “Start-ups! Stuck for ideas on how to suck cash out of investors? Keep pressing refresh until inspiration strikes!” is the message you get when you land on the Although it generates mostly outlandish ideas that have no value, you never know what will spark genius.
- App Crawlr List Of Android App Idea Generators – A substantial list of idea generating apps for android phones. Browse through and see if there are any that pique your interest.
- App Crawlr List Of IOS App Idea Generators – Same as above but for iPhones.
App Idea Contests
App Idea Contests are sponsored events where individuals or teams submit their concepts for voting. Whoever comes up with the most innovative and realistic idea, wins lots of cool prizes. Contestants usually come up with some pretty creative ideas making these contests an excellent source of inspiration.
- Verizon Innovative App Challenge – I’ve gotta hand it to Verizon, this is a pretty awesome contest and very educational for the grade 6 – 12 students that enter. Verizon has structured the competition to give these students hands on experience going through the entire pre-app development process from brainstorming ideas, to marketplace research, to developing app features, and finally creating the concept app. Take a look at the concepts with the most votes, see what ideas pop up, then take that idea through the process outlined in the contest guidelines and you’ve got a ready to build app idea.
Here are the guidelines outlined in the contest:
- Gather your team
- Look around for problems in your school or community and come up with a few ideas on what you want your app to tackle
- Research what’s available in the marketplace
- Decide as a group on how your team can improve on what exists or create an entirely new solution
- Nail down your solution and its features
- Assign tasks to the team members
- Create your concept submission
- My Money App Challenge – Launched by the U.S. Treasury Department in partnership with the D2D Fund and Center for Financial Services Innovation, this contest is intended to motivate American entrepreneurs, software developers, the public, and students to propose the best ideas and designs for next-generation mobile tools to help Americans control and shape their financial futures. Concepts are limited to the financial category but browse the entries, maybe you could apply the ideas to another niche.
- Windows and Mojio Windows Phone App Developer Contest– This competition centered around mobile apps and the connected car concept. The connected car/home is a growing trend in mobile technology, so the ideas in this contest could be just what you need to stimulate that million-dollar app idea.
App Idea Forums
If you’re not familiar with forums, these are basically online message boards where people with similar likes congregate to discuss the topics they share an interest in. We’ve scanned the internet for you and found a few threads with big lists of app ideas. These can be a little overwhelming so I would look at some of the other resources listed before digging into these.
- Diigo Forum – This is a massive list of over 3000 ideas of all kinds, be sure to use the filter on the right side to show only app ideas.
- Android Forum – Here’s a thread on the Android forum where people request apps for the android developers to create. These are actual android users looking to solve issues they’re having so this could be a great resource.
- Making Money With Android Forum – Got an idea for a great app? Put it out there and get feedback from other developers. Or if you haven’t got time to build it yourself, your ideas might help another developer who’s suffering “coders block”.
Social Media App Idea Inspiration
To say that there are a lot of colorful and creative people on social media is an understatement. Why not harness some of that imagination by asking a question or monitoring conversations on social media to help with your app idea? Here’s how:
- Twitter – Why not post a question like “Anyone have any interesting #AppIdeas to share?” you might be surprised at the response you get and there could be some gold nuggets. Another tip is to follow the twitter search for app ideas and see what people are posting.
- Pinterest – Here’s a pinterest search for “app ideas”, maybe the visuals will trigger your creativity.
- Q & A sites – Below you will find couple of Quora threads where users are asking for app ideas. You could also perform the same search on other Q & A sites such as Yahoo Answers or com to find even more helpful threads.
- Reddit – Either browse through all the posts for something that sounds interesting or click on the top tab and make sure you’re showing links from “all time.” Another tip is to look for ideas that have the most comments. Warning, some of these are pretty ridiculous but can be pretty damn funny if you need a laugh.
Well there you have it. If you’re just starting out on your journey to become a successful appreneur we hope these resources help you. If so please share with your friends.
Did we miss anything? Let our readers know about any other resources that might help with the app ideation process.