The App Developer for Entrepreneurs and Start-ups

Appster: The Accelerated Execution Partner® for Technology Entrepreneurs:

Appster is a full-scale mobile & web app development firm with 390 people across 3 continents & offices in Silicon Valley (San Francisco), Melbourne (Australia), New York & India.

 

----> CLICK HERE TO VISIT AppsterHQ.com ...and see why so many Founders, Technology Entrepreneurs, Angel Investors, VCs & Fast-Growth companies pick Appster as their development partner.

WHAT DO WE DO?

Product Hacking & Design | Data-Driven Development | User Acquisition | Growth Hacking. 

We've built the best engagement model in the world for taking your idea to market. Starting with Rapid Concept Workshop (the fastest way to design best product strategy & your go-to-market MVP) and our renowned development process Rapid Agile™

WHAT WE'VE DONE FOR OUR CLIENTS:

  • Multiple clients w/ millions in funding
  • BlueDot valued at 14m, named 'potential billion dollar start-up'--founding CFO of Paypal becomes stakeholder & named 'Best Startup' judged by Richard Branson
  • Oscilmet acquired by major Australian insurance company
  • BuckitDream 4m in funding, co-launched with Richard Branson
  • FirstJob with 2.3m users (confidential 8 figure valuation) 

 

 
$25,000+
 
$50 - $99 / hr
 
250 - 999
 Founded
2011
Show all +
San Francisco, CA
Headquarters
  • Appster
    25 Taylor St
    San Francisco, CA 94102
    United States
    844.277.7837
other locations
  • Appster
    L2, 377 Lonsdale St
    Melbourne, VIC 3000
    Australia
    1800 709 291
  • Appster
    79 Madison Ave
    New York, NY 10016
    United States
    844APPSTER
  • Appster
    Plot 15, Aricent Lane, Electronic City, Sector 18
    Gurgaon, HR 122015
    India

Portfolio

Key clients: 

Multiple entrepreneur clients w/ multi-million dollar valuations:

  • BlueDot (14m)
  • FirstJob (2.3m users confidential 8 figure valuation)
  • BuckitDream (4m in funding, Richard Branson partner)
  • ViewPop (3m valuation)
  • Turtle (5m valuation)
  • DTC (6m dls)

Jagermeister, People's Choice Credit Union, Liberal Party Australia, Kent Moving & Storage, CFMEU, Anglicare, Prostate Cancer Research Group Australia.

Miitcute

Smart Alert

Publish King

Personas

ReadyDoctor

E-Patient

Quinions

Turtle

College Social Networking. 5 million dollar valuation.

Splashflood

Music Discovery for indie artists. Winner of W3 Award.

Realifex

Featured as the best app in the Health and Fitness category.

MyCFO

Seen by 2 million businesses.

FirstJob - 2.3 million users.

2.3 million users. 8 figure valuation.

BuckitDream

Co-launched with Richard Branson. Raised 4.5m in funding.

Mood Monitor

Mood Tracker is the only app specifically designed to monitor for depression in people taking the medication Isotretinoin for acne. It provides a set of features that help to discover insidious symptoms of depression fast and efficiently.

TradeMaze

TradeMaze solves the problem by simply returning the top 3 most relevant results and nothing else. This is achieved thanks to patent pending search technology they developed for this purpose. You can connect with service providers instantly and reliably without wasting your time and patience. And the best thing about it is that you can instantly hire the providers and monitor payments to ensure they’re not overcharging or under-delivering!

Donkey

Donkey is a cool location app that allows users to interact over their location. Find your friends in the crowd, have fun with them and enjoy your life with this app while being outdoors and actually living a real life.

PocketTrader

iPhone and iPad app giving access to local advertisements 24/7. Users can browse bargains easier than ever before, with integrated search, direct call to advertiser feature and favourites. Advertisers can submit advert seamlessly straight from the app in just couple of taps.

Kiddi

Kiddi is a secure social platform connecting parents with their kids and care assistants.

The app is a secure social platform for parents to be in touch with child-care educators on a minute by minute basis. Parents can track the personal development of their child whilst increasing the communication and transparency between themselves and the child care centres.

Kiddi provides parents with more balance between career and child care, adding to their overall well-being. And most of all this app is not simply about control – it’s fun to use and parents will actually love it.

CubChat

CubChat is a chat that is safe for kids to use. Parents have control over who interacts with their kids and what content they share, so kids learn to use the benefits of technology sooner without being exposed to the negatives it can provide.

Surfer Bio

Surfer Bio is an extremely simple app bringing absolute Zen to pro surfing news and betting and surfer information. Users can keep up to date with tournaments, current betting odds, enter contests, get the latest info on the sport and place their bets seamlessly.

CrowdSurfer

We have built the World’s first augmented reality locator app allowing users to find friends, businesses and events, taking location apps to entirely new level.

     

Breeze

Breeze is a unique combination of alarm app and productivity tool that allows you to wake up the right way and get in sync with what you need to focus over the day. Add a note or a voice message to your alarm; get in the loop over the daily weather in the morning so nothing will interfere while you kick ass with boosted productivity.

RealChords

If combining virtually every possible chord and key combination on the guitar into a new educational methodology all on a screen the size of an iPAD sounds difficult…then you’ll understand the design challenges we overcame in Real Chords. Featuring beautiful notes from musician Rob Greenvile, Real Chords is available on iPhone, iPad and Android and is widely regarded within the music education space.

Kandid

Find and interact with new people from around the world or get in touch with old friends and have fun chatting with them or sharing photos, videos or flash messages that disappear within seconds.

VideoWill

VideoWill is a SaaS based application to replace traditional legal wills.

Reviews

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Mobile App Dev for Game-Based Learning Platform

"Appster exceeded our expectations. At no point did I feel that we should have done something differently."

Quality: 
5.0
Schedule: 
5.0
Cost: 
5.0
Willing to refer: 
5.0
The Project
 
Confidential
 
Aug. 2016 - Jan. 2017
Project summary: 

Appster designed and developed a language learning app from scratch, beginning with fully scoping the project as a team effort. They also assisted with marketing and launch, working on enhancements as needed.

The Reviewer
 
1-10 Employees
 
Melbourne, Australia
Veronica Borrett
CEO, BAI Games
 
Verified
The Review
Feedback summary: 

Appster delivered a smoothly running app, receiving a couple of awards, including Best Educational App, and only great reviews. Assigned resources were proactive, hit all milestones, and were overall outstanding with project management and QA. They will definitely be a partner for future projects.

BACKGROUND

Introduce your business and what you do there.

I’m the CEO of BAI Games, and our business is a game-based learning app for learning Chinese characters called WenHu. The app that we’ve developed is the first app to use a word reveal of Chinese character components for learning Chinese.

OPPORTUNITY / CHALLENGE

What challenge were you trying to address with Appster?

When we first had the idea for the app, we did detailed business plans and analysis and looked at what sort of support we needed. We determined that we needed someone to guide us through the whole process, from game design to coding. Appster even guided us with marketing approaches and the launch of the app.

SOLUTION

What was the scope of their involvement?

We did a workshop together and put together what the app was intended to do. They had quality game designers and a product strategist who, being fluent in Mandarin, understood what we wanted to achieve. We worked together on the User Stories and they went through the process of putting together a scope of work with the timelines and what would be delivered. We came together as a team, and they guided us through the whole process. They provided input on what we needed to develop, and we workshopped with them on a whole host of things, like the game design and what the design elements would look like.

During pre-development, we communicated with them on a regular basis, but once we got into development, we met on a daily basis to talk about the status of the project and address any questions we had. They came in at certain points and made sure we had done everything on our end that we needed to do, even down to the terms and conditions and privacy policy.

They pretty much held our hands through the whole process, all the way to launching the app. We provided them the information, and they did the interface with Apple and the iTunes platform. Even now, we’re working with them on enhancements, and I expect we’ll be working with them into the future. It felt like we were one team from start to finish.

The app is a game, so it’s intended for someone who’s learning Chinese to be able to recognize Chinese characters. What the game does is break the characters down into their components. From our end, we had educational advisers reviewing our word strategy, word packs, and translations. What Appster did was develop the ability to randomly reveal the components of a word from our word lists and graphics, and present multiple choice translations. The user chooses the correct answer as the word is revealing, so the quicker you choose the answer, the better your fluency. The app includes an extensive range of achievements that you can earn as your fluency improves.

How did you come to work with Appster?

When we were working on the business plan, we basically searched the Internet and looked at what various companies provided and had a look at the reviews of them. We then met with Appster, and they went through their approach. For me, they were a good match in terms of what they could provide and their organization’s culture and feel, so we moved ahead with them.

What is the status of this engagement?

We first visited Appster around June 2016 when we were making a decision about who to choose. We started working with them and signed the contracts in August 2016. They completed the work in January 2017, and that’s when we launched.

RESULTS & FEEDBACK

Could you share any evidence that would demonstrate the productivity, quality of work, or the impact of the engagement?

The app runs smoothly, and we’ve had some great reviews. WenHu has won a couple of awards, including a Best Educational App award on the Best Apps website. It has also won a Communicator award for Best Visual Design Aesthetic.

Another aspect of the app is curricular, so at the moment, we’re concentrating on making lists and working with educators on adding content for curriculums.

How did Appster perform from a project management standpoint?

Appster’s team consisted of around 15 people. They exceeded expectations from a project management standpoint. I have a long experience in working on major projects in a range of industries and in my experience Appster was outstanding in terms of their project management process. They delivered ahead of time—we were a couple of weeks ahead—and worked within the budget. The deliverables were clearly outlined, and we stayed on track throughout the project. We mostly used GoToMeeting for the meetings, but occasionally I met with them at their office. GoToMeeting worked extremely well. They also used Basecamp, which captured all of the team members in the communications.

What did you find most impressive about Appster?

They’re professional and capable. I think what made the project work well is that they have a great culture, and no question was too difficult or too simple for them. They were responsive with everything; I was always keen to make sure that I clarified certain points and they were as well. Anything you needed a response to, they would come back straight away, and you would always get the response.

We had a single point of contact, but other people were copied in as well. Our producer would respond promptly and let me know if she could answer our question or if she had to get the key expert to meet with us during a meeting or respond directly. She ensured that every point was covered and every query received the appropriate response and by the right person. We had "e"-met all of the team (and our Product Owner) and we were clear on their roles. They all played crucial roles and were very capable and responsive.

Are there any areas Appster could improve?

Appster exceeded our expectations. At no point did I feel that we should have done something differently. Everything was proactive and moved forward well and with clear milestones and, together with their willingness to answer questions promptly, I could only say that they exceeded our expectations.

5.0
Overall Score Appster delivered all the requirements and they continually tested every deliverable. When things would go into quality control, everything you got worked just as it should have worked.
  • 5.0 Scheduling
    ON TIME / DEADLINES
    There were seven clear milestones in the timeline and they all were hit. In fact, we were slightly ahead of schedule.
  • 5.0 Cost
    Value / within estimates
    We went through and did the business plan and the budgeting. I think they sort of sat right where we expected them to.
  • 5.0 Quality
    Service & deliverables
    They delivered exactly what we had agreed on.
  • 5.0 NPS
    Willing to refer
    Definitely a five. I would go with them again.

Mobile App Development for Cross Payment Platform

"The app is exactly what we expected. Appster brought our dream into reality."

Quality: 
5.0
Schedule: 
5.0
Cost: 
4.0
Willing to refer: 
5.0
The Project
 
$200,000 to $999,999
 
Mar. 2016 - Ongoing
Project summary: 

Appster developed a web-based, iOS and Android mobile application for a cross payment system. Their team also worked on graphics and helped to launch the mobile apps in the App Store and Google Play.

The Reviewer
 
1-10 Employees
 
Sydney, Australia
Managing Director, ORDR
 
Verified
The Review
Feedback summary: 

Appster’s team delivers all requirements on time and within budget. Their team continuously tests for bugs, and the coding and graphics have been flawless. The project manager replies quickly to all requests and provides a positive customer service experience.

BACKGROUND

Introduce your business and what you do there.

I’m the managing director at ORDR, which currently has four employees. Our business is a mobile app and web interface. We’re a point-of-sale cross payment system in the hospitality industry. Users can order straight from their table using a mobile phone.

OPPORTUNITY / CHALLENGE

What challenge were you trying to address with Appster?

Our internal team doesn’t have development expertise, so we needed a partner to build our mobile platform.

SOLUTION

What was the scope of their involvement?

Our platform is web-based, iOS, and Android. We’ve been liaising back and forth with a team of 15 code writers from Appster. We’ve also dealt with their graphics team, who are based in Melbourne, Australia. They’re incredible. I don’t know the specific technologies used to build the app.

We’ve asked them to incorporate many different features. We use Stripe as our payment system, and they’ve built features for sales reporting, menu creation, and managing bills. There are a ton of features that they’ve integrated. We also sat down for a strategy session with them, working out the best way to move forward with the app, which has helped us gain traction. They assisted with launching the app into the App Store and Google Play.

How did you come to work with Appster?

We started with a Google search for app developers. We researched and found that Appster had incredible reviews, and their work was very on-point. We saw some apps they’d developed previously, and we felt they would help us achieve our goals. Some agencies don’t offer the strategy sessions and other services that Appster has. All their reviews said that their response time and development skills were 10 out of 10.

How much have you invested with Appster?

We’ve invested a total of $350,000.

What is the status of this engagement?

We started working with Appster on March 3rd, 2016. They are still doing all our development. We continue working with them because they’re so responsive and quick.

RESULTS & FEEDBACK

Could you share any evidence that would demonstrate the productivity, quality of work, or the impact of the engagement?

We’ve only recently finished the development, and it will be launched sometime next week, so there aren’t any metrics yet. We haven’t had issues with bugs. Appster does a massive amount of testing and bug-searching. They’re big on making sure there are no bugs when it’s deployed. They deliver all the requirements within the specified timeframe and budget.

How did Appster perform from a project management standpoint?

Their project management is incredible. They’ve kept me in the loop all the way through. We communicate through Basecamp, and we also use GoToMeeting. There’s only a time zone difference of a few hours, so that hasn’t caused any problems.

What did you find most impressive about Appster?

Their communication is amazing. If I want something, they jump on it. Appster doesn’t drag timeout at all. Nothing is delayed. The second I mention something, they respond quickly.

Are there any areas Appster could improve?

I can’t think of anything to suggest.

5.0
Overall Score The team at Appster is very welcoming. They’re a happy bunch of people and full of positivity.
  • 5.0 Scheduling
    ON TIME / DEADLINES
    Appster goes above and beyond to meet or beat the deadlines.
  • 4.0 Cost
    Value / within estimates
    Appster's work is absolutely incredible, but it can be very expensive.
  • 5.0 Quality
    Service & deliverables
    The coding and the graphics are flawless. The app is exactly what we expected. Appster brought our dream into reality.
  • 5.0 NPS
    Willing to refer
    I’ve already referred several friends that want to get into the app industry.

iOS App Development for Social Activities Startup

"Appster is a professional group with a fantastic communication structure."

Quality: 
5.0
Schedule: 
5.0
Cost: 
5.0
Willing to refer: 
5.0
The Project
 
Confidential
 
Apr. 2016 - Jan. 2017
Project summary: 

Appster provided an initial workshop where they outlined an Agile dev timeline. This divided the project into modules and offered the client clear insight into the development of their iOS app.

The Reviewer
 
1-10 Employees
 
Houston, Texas
Founder, Mittcute
 
Verified
The Review
Feedback summary: 

The app delivered by Appster now has 360 users nationwide, has been featured in SXSW Spotlights, and has driven interest from investors.

BACKGROUND

Introduce your business and what you do there.

Mittcute is a social activities app. It allows users to create activity posts for upcoming events for up to a week in advance, and meet people who want to take part in the same activity. I am the founder and president of the company.

OPPORTUNITY / CHALLENGE

What challenge were you trying to address with Appster?

I came up with the idea eleven months ago and wanted to see it created. I have very little coding experience under my belt and wanted to hire a development team to work with.

SOLUTION

What was the scope of their involvement?

Appster was my only development resource for building my iOS app. I have some web and UX [user experience] design experience, so I was hands-on while working on the project. Appster has the talent for everything related to my app, but I wanted to be more involved in the work. They were flexible in accommodating this and even encouraged me to take a bigger role if I had a particular vision and wanted to see it through.

Appster set up an initial workshop during which they put together a timeline. They use the Agile methodology, and divided the project into modules, putting together a proposal of how much the work would be in terms of time and money.

How did you come to work with Appster?

I did some research, looking at local companies. I had had a positive experience with another partner, but Appster's Agile methodology and their young team caught my attention. It was nice to meet another startup and learn about their culture and mission. Appster also had raving reviews and good experience. I called them and set up an interview, during which I liked them more and more. From the very beginning, Appster helped me understand the tech world better, and educated me on important factors for how to build a successful app. Working with Appster proved that I had made the right decision and got the best fit possible.

The first agency I looked at was one I'd used on a previous project. They weren't very interested in the idea, and they were also an older team, working more as a software development rather than an app developer company. In the case of Appster, having a group of people with similar values to mine and telling me how this world worked, added a lot of value. The Agile methodology was also something I valued since I was developing the app using my savings. If needed, I would be able to take some modules out of the scope and still have a structured and ready product for the market.

What is the status of this engagement?

We started the initial workshop in April 2016, the design in May 2016, and the development in late September. We took a lot of time in order to get the UI [user interface] design where I wanted it: going into a lot of detail for certain things. The project had a nine-month duration, and the app was released two months ago.

RESULTS & FEEDBACK

Could you share any evidence that would demonstrate the productivity, quality of work, or the impact of the engagement?

We have attracted 360 users after the nationwide release. We're currently working on localizing the app, and have been recently featured in SXSW Spotlights. A couple of people are interested in investing in our app. The first run of investors was made up of family and friends, and they were very enthusiastic about the idea.

Even though the app may not show users available for particular activities just yet, its design and UX definitely show that it's a labor of love. Everyone on Appster's team has been passionate about it, leading to a top-notch result that people can be truly excited about. Even other poeple on our team, from marketers to animation designers, have loved the idea, and it is great to say that we have followed through with a great product.

People who have seen our ads have contacted us about bringing the app to their country. We have received contacts from the UAE, the UK, Brazil, Canada, Costa Rica, the EU, and Australia. This is in part due to the design, but also to the app itself. It's easy to give people a synopsis, but, once they've seen the content itself, it will stand on its own. 

How did Appster perform from a project management standpoint?

Appster is a professional group with a fantastic communication structure. Many people are scared about dealing with companies which host big parts of their resources overseas. Appster is a great example of how communication and structure can take us a long way, no matter the situation. They're quick in giving any response type, they're friendly, welcoming, and treat clients like smart people. I'm relatively new to the startup world, even though I'd had some experience, the acronyms and language related to the field sometimes made it challenging, and Appster made the process of understanding easy and approachable. 

Appster has tested different tools during our collaboration, including Basecamp and Asana. We ended up only using Basecamp, which is a fantastic platform. We also used InVision for screen designs. We had conferences through GoToMeeting. Personally, I prefer Zoom, but I've never used it for making calls to Australia or India.

They've also developed an internal project management and communication structure which really works. It can provide a transparent and realistic plan, including best-case and worst-case scenarios. I have been aware of where I was at every step of the way. I interacted with their project manager and producer and always knew whom to go to when I needed something.

What did you find most impressive about Appster?

Appster is not only friendly regarding language, but they also made sure I understood what was going on, how each step on the process from pre-development to launch worked, and how I could further work with that information. If I had to name two values of Appster, I would say their transparency and amazing communication structure.

Are there any areas Appster could improve?

Perhaps Appster could implement a different way of verifying written content. I have noticed some grammatical differences based on culture, and maybe we could go through verification of all written content in the same way we do with design.

I thought that the venture would be more expensive in the beginning, but Appster was fantastic about working with me and setting up payments that I could manage. Appster can be expensive, but they're worth it.

5.0
Overall Score As you can tell, I've really loved this experience.
  • 5.0 Scheduling
    ON TIME / DEADLINES
    Delays have also been on my end, and Appster was good in communicating that things were going slowly.
  • 5.0 Cost
    Value / within estimates
    Appster stayed on budget and were upfront about original estimates.
  • 5.0 Quality
    Service & deliverables
    The attention to detail stands out in Appster's work.
  • 5.0 NPS
    Willing to refer
    I have already referred Appster.

App Development for Health and Wellness Company

"I found them quite efficient in meeting the deadlines and making sure that what was promised was delivered."

Quality: 
5.0
Schedule: 
5.0
Cost: 
5.0
Willing to refer: 
5.0
The Project
 
$50,000 to $199,999
Project summary: 

Appster was hired to build an application on iOS that focuses on well-being and gives users suggestions on how to be healthier. Appster provided Scrum masters, testers, and everyone else necessary to build the app from start to finish.

The Reviewer
 
Small business
 
Sydney, Australia
Alex Prate
Founder, Realifex
 
Verified
The Review
Feedback summary: 

The client was very happy with Appster's work, noting project management, dedication to project deadlines, and the quality of their work given the high level of downloads and active users that the app has gotten since its release.

BACKGROUND

Introduce your business and what you do there.

Realifex is a company that delivers apps around well-being. We've created a well-being platform that delivers insights based on real-life moments that give clarity to users in terms of the direction to take or the improvements in their lives that they need to look for. I am the founder.

OPPORTUNITY / CHALLENGE

What challenge were you trying to address with Appster?

I wanted to have a team to develop a complex app because we have a lot of insight, and many complex graphics, and I was looking for a professional team to help me achieve that. I had many functionalities to develop. The project took a year with Appster.

SOLUTION

What was the scope of their involvement?

It's only available on iOS.

How did you come to work with Appster?

I did a short list of 15 companies, and I came across Appster. I was interested in their methodology – developing ways – a workshop that would inform the different decisions to be taken and the frame of the application for it to be successful. We started with this rapid workshop that helped me organize the app and the next phases for the app.

How much have you invested with Appster?

The project cost between $50,000 and $200,000.

What is the status of this engagement?

We continue to work with them [as of November 2016]. We are working on small enhancements currently. There are also enhancements planned for the end of the year and the beginning of next year. The collaboration is good. It's as if it was an internal team from my experience. They have the same commitment. You don't have this distance that you could have with an external partner. I consider them my team, and they are committed to the success. It's great. They know the app inside out and are able to help me define the direction for the next phase.

RESULTS & FEEDBACK

Could you share any statistics or metrics from this engagement?

The app has 90,000 downloads with strong engagement. I've got 10,000 active users using the app regularly.

How did Appster perform from a project management standpoint?

Appster works on a platform that provides an easy way to control your budget. You know exactly what's going to happen in the next week and so on. I found them quite efficient in meeting the deadlines and making sure that what was promised was delivered. I'm satisfied with this point. It's important to control the budget and to be sure that the quality will be there as well. The good thing is that there was an importance on the project between people depending on the phase of the project. This team was combining all the skills that were necessary on the front-end and backend – Scrum masters, older testers, and so on. It's great to know the team is able to address any kind of issues and making sure the quality is optimum.

What did you find most impressive about Appster?

The app is complex, and they managed to meet the different challenges. Most of the functionalities are pushing the boundaries of what mobile can do, and they managed to find solutions all the time. The backend is also complicated because it's a personalization engine that will deliver suggestions on a one-to-one basis if you like depending on the user's situation to deliver the right suggestions for their well-being. All this complexity was managed well. They managed to deliver what was expected. That's really great, really reliable, and the team was highly committed. They did extra hours when it was necessary. Overall, it has been a positive experience.

Are there any areas Appster could improve?

Not really – the project was quite smooth. I think, in time, they're getting to the space of the app where it's quite specific. At the beginning, it takes time to qualify the requirements and understand exactly where I wanted to push the app to. The sprints were more efficient along the way, and the velocity increased. I think it's a normal process because it takes time to understand the requirements and get used to working together.

5.0
Overall Score I'm satisfied.
  • 5.0 Scheduling
    ON TIME / DEADLINES
    That was good.
  • 5.0 Cost
    Value / within estimates
    It was expected to be a significant cost because the app is quite complicated.
  • 5.0 Quality
    Service & deliverables
    For the reasons I said before.
  • 5.0 NPS
    Willing to refer

Development for Personal Trainer App

" I felt that I could relate to Appster, as they were founded by people of my own age."

Quality: 
4.5
Schedule: 
3.5
Cost: 
5.0
Willing to refer: 
4.0
The Project
 
$50,000 to $199,999
Project summary: 

Appster provided a workshop designed to provide a knowledge-base for startups to turn their idea into a business, in addition to building a web-based product targeting personal trainers.

The Reviewer
 
1-10 Employees
 
Melbourne, Australia
James Webster
Founder, PT Pal Online
 
Verified
The Review
Feedback summary: 

The client appreciated the younger leadership team of Appster and their Agile development model, but feels there is room for improvement in the transparency of their communication.

BACKGROUND

Introduce your business and what you do there.

PT Pal Online is a web-based software for personal trainers to track and help create programs for their clients. I’m the director and founder.

OPPORTUNITY / CHALLENGE

What challenge were you trying to address with Appster?

We wanted to take the complex Excel-based program that I had made and make an MVP [minimum viable product] out of it in order to monetize it.  

SOLUTION

How did you come to work with Appster?

I Googled, as everyone does. I chose them after doing a background check on them and others. I felt that I could relate to Appster, as they were founded by people of my own age [in their twenties].

How much have you invested with Appster?

I have spent $80,000 AUD [approx. $63,400 USD], and their startup workshop cost of $7,700 [approx. $5,900 USD].

What is the status of this engagement?

It was between August 2015 and July 2016.

RESULTS & FEEDBACK

Could you share any evidence that would demonstrate the productivity, quality of work, or the impact of the engagement?

They delivered an OK finished product.

Are there any areas Appster could improve?

Yes.

1. Be more open. At the start, there was an issue where nothing was being done for 2-3 weeks after the startup cost had been paid. I wasn’t informed about it and had been lead on. In my eyes, it seemed as if someone either left, was fired, or they lost the info. I wish they just said to me “we apologize for the inconvenience, we had personnel changes and we need you to come back down to Melbourne for a day so we can get a better understanding of your project.” As a customer, I shouldn’t have had to keep nagging at the start.

2. They should give a list of every part of the build to the client, with timelines of how long it may take from start to finish so the client does not have to ask repeatedly for it.

3. Ask how often the client would like updates on their project and then stick to those update times.

4. Be more descriptive when transferring from workshop to users stories. So there is less confusion at the end.

5. Tell or ask the client if there should be delete, edit, or similar functions as they can affect the build dramatically. I was lead to believe that they were standard functions and was not informed that they are major, which lead to an issue at the end of the building process. This created great frustration and anger. Having a trainer not be able to edit or delete a client’s details is a big issue now as I am trying to market my product.

6. Don’t let the project manager high jack the project to what they think it should be. My first project manager did this. After a new project manager came on board, everything went smoothly.

7. Somehow speed up the design process to get to the prototyping stage faster and allow for changes, this will allow for a better end product.

8. Integrate the work in the startup labs workshop into the app’s build or give opinions on the functionality of the software that may help with the marketing of the app later. Examples: discount codes, ability to make unlimited free accounts, etc.

4.0
Overall Score They improved over the course of the building process.
  • 3.5 Scheduling
    ON TIME / DEADLINES
    The beginning was slow and design felt too long, but it was in depth. However, their final phase and the four sprints where they code and put it all together was perfect and on time.
  • 5.0 Cost
    Value / within estimates
    Being Agile, it was easy to take out one thing and put another in its place.
  • 4.5 Quality
    Service & deliverables
    Really good, looks good.
  • 4.0 NPS
    Willing to refer

Niche Travel Experiential App Development for Startup

"It’s like they really gave me the moral support that I needed. That is what makes them stand out"

Quality: 
4.5
Schedule: 
5.0
Cost: 
4.0
Willing to refer: 
4.5
The Project
 
$50,000 to $199,999
Project summary: 

Appster was chosen to build a niche photo and travel iOS app due to their frankness and insight into turning the app into a profitable business. 

The Reviewer
 
1-10 Employees
 
Melbourne, Australia
Andrew Lim
Founder, Loztribe
 
Verified
The Review
Feedback summary: 

Impressed with Appster’s patience and business insights, the client feels Appster has invested in making this a teaching experience in addition to a development partnership.

BACKGROUND

Introduce your business and what you do there.

Loztribe is a travel app for travelers who want to find hidden gems off the beaten track. This app is also a social app where travelers can meet like-minded travelers. I’m the founder.

OPPORTUNITY / CHALLENGE

What challenge were you trying to address with Appster?

I did not have a technology background. I’m a travel photographer. I’m more the artistic creative type. I have zero IT background. I had to get Appster to help me develop the app.

SOLUTION

What was the scope of their involvement?

Right now it’s available on iOS. Once we have made enough money, the next step is to develop for Google Play.

How did you come to work with Appster?

I shopped around. I think why I decided to go with Appster was because there was chemistry. They were pretty honest. They told me that my app was a very niche app and they told me that not many people are going to use the app, including the account executive who met me for the first time. He said it’s probably not a useful app. Then, they told me that because it’s a niche, there is a higher chance of success versus apps that are for the masses. If you go niche and you do it well, the chances of success are good. They were also able to provide me with ideas on how to scale the app - how to make it into a business and not just develop an app. They had the expertise and they also had an Agile development model. It was the first time I tried the Agile development model. I thought it was very efficient.

How much have you invested with Appster?

I have spent near $150,000.

What is the status of this engagement?

I actually approached Appster to develop the app last year in September [2015]. Before we went into development, we had a session where they helped me to come up with ideas for the app, like how to build business independence and how to make users hook onto the app and monetize the app. They gave me a lot of input. They helped me to come up with an application that is scalable. It’s been released for a month.

RESULTS & FEEDBACK

Could you share any evidence that would demonstrate the productivity, quality of work, or the impact of the engagement?

I haven’t really advertised or sent a press release out to the magazines or travel blogs. Because my app has in-app purchases, there’s a premium subscription. In order to get people like travel bloggers and journalists of travel magazines to try the app, I need to give them an incentive to try the app for one-month free subscription or six months free subscription. I didn’t think of that until the app was developed. So right now we’re actually developing a functionality so I can give users free subscriptions. When that is done, which is targeted for the middle of this month [September 2016], then I’ll be sending out press releases to the relevant people.

The feedback that I’ve got so far from the people who’ve signed up is that the app looks really expensive, premium, and looks really good. I’m very happy to get that feedback. Appster was very patient because I’m a perfectionist. Every detail, every feature, and every functionality, has to be working perfectly. We have been fine tuning, so they’ve been working overtime just to fine tune lots of stuff. The app is very good. Once we have the ability to give free premium trials, then we’ll really start to market the app. Right now, what we’re doing is enhancing some functionalities. The feedback has been great so far.

What did you find most impressive about Appster?

They have been really patient with me. I wouldn’t say that I’m an easy person to work with because I’m a perfectionist. I want things to be done properly to my standard. I’m actually a very nice guy. When you’re dealing with perfectionists, every detail has to be correct. They have to be very patient because I know nothing about IT. I’m learning. This is a learning process for me and I did have some meltdowns. They took the time to assure me that I am new to this and that I had to trust them. Emotionally, I felt that they tried to understand me and they were nice enough to be on this journey with me. It’s like they really gave me the moral support that I needed. That is what makes them stand out. It’s not just, “I’m your development company and we’re just taking instructions from you.” When I had my meltdowns, they were there to lend me the shoulder to cry on.

Are there any areas Appster could improve?

All partnerships have ups and downs. I think Appster is also learning. They have to constantly innovate and constantly improve because there will be other development companies who will overtake them if they rest on their laurels. I had a few problems with Appster because they were very rigid with the schedule. It’s the pros and cons. Like sticking with a tight timeline is good because things get done. It’s very professional. But sometimes it’s unforeseen circumstances that will delay the project. I just wish they were more flexible. They had a 30-day post development support where they would fix any issues within 30 days. I told them at the start that 30 days would not be enough, but they were very nice and even though we were past that 30-day mark, they were still there to finish everything that they promised to do and that they promised to deliver. I think it’s just the time issue that was a problem.

4.5
Overall Score
  • 5.0 Scheduling
    ON TIME / DEADLINES
    They meet the deadlines but it’s a problem because they work too fast.
  • 4.0 Cost
    Value / within estimates
    Change requests can add to costs. This is very stressful for bootstrapping startups without deep pockets.
  • 4.5 Quality
    Service & deliverables
  • 4.5 NPS
    Willing to refer
    They are quite rigid. If they could be more flexible, I would be happy to give them a five. I think they have a reason for meeting tight deadlines because they want things to move. If you’re not strict, things will be delayed.

App Development for Australian Startup

"Appster took the stress out of it and I felt supported by the team there every step of the way."

Quality: 
5.0
Schedule: 
5.0
Cost: 
4.5
Willing to refer: 
5.0
The Project
 
$50,000 to $199,999
 
Dec. 2014 - July 2016
Project summary: 

Appster built an app for the client, prioritizing seamless integration and slick functionality and without exceeding the client’s set timeline.

The Reviewer
 
1-10 Employees
 
Australia
Lisa-Maree Hunt
Founder, myVote
 
Verified
The Review
Feedback summary: 

Appster worked with the client to achieve their initial vision for the app, helping them to develop a business strategy and effectively communicating the requirements of the project. The app is now live and no crashes have been reported.

BACKGROUND

Introduce your business and what you do there.

myVote, and Impartial Politics Pty Ltd were created as an iOS political app developed to assist voters by having all the candidates, parties, policies, and political platforms in an easy to use app for Federal, State, and local elections. It was developed from the concept that there was no “one-stop shop” for people to see who and what they’re voting for, thus enabling users to determine who best supports their views in parliament, share politicians and policies via social media, participate in quizzes, and be geo-located to their electorate. Backend functionality also exists within the app.

I am the founder & Chief Executive Officer.

OPPORTUNITY / CHALLENGE

What challenge were you trying to address with Appster?

The challenge I faced, as the creator and an individual, was to find a development company with the skills and knowledge to build an app with seamless integration, slick functionality, and in a timely fashion. Deadlines were a primary factor. I researched several companies and found Appster to be one of the only companies that handled every element of design and build in-house. Many companies outsource elements to third parties and this would have presented too many challenges.

SOLUTION

What was the scope of their involvement?

Appster was involved from the very beginning. Their RCW [rapid concept workshop] was vital in determining the viability of the idea and developing every element of technology required for the build. As a first time developer with a good understanding of technology but no coding skills, they supported myVote from development to launch, when deciding whether to take the leap and proceed with the project. Appster supported my request to conduct a survey to ensure market validation, which was a great way to build my confidence that I had a great idea.

How did you come to work with Appster?

From my first call with Appster, I found them to be professional, enthusiastic, and realistic. My lack of coding and IT skill wasn’t an issue. They knew what developing an app like myVote would require and they were honest about the scale of the project. Other companies used external third party developers, and I was extremely reluctant to involve multiple separate parties in the project as I felt accountability would be impossible to control. Appster took the stress out of it and I felt supported by the team there every step of the way.

How much have you invested with Appster?

It cost approximately $120,000.

What is the status of this engagement?

The timeline was a little confusing. I worked with Appster from December 2014 to mid-July 2016, but the technical build took place between September 2015 and March 2016.

RESULTS & FEEDBACK

Could you share any evidence that would demonstrate the productivity, quality of work, or the impact of the engagement?

The build in itself was incredibly successful, and to date, myVote has had no crashes nor dramatic issues and continues to gain traction. As time goes on, the success of the app is hard to measure, but I feel like we have reached a good level of success within the month myVote has been live.

What did you find most impressive about Appster?

Their customer focus, quality of work, technical knowledge, and willingness to go above and beyond for the client are their greatest strengths. I didn’t feel like an Appster client, I felt like a member of the Appster team in many ways.

Are there any areas Appster could improve?

I think they do a phenomenal job of supporting their clients. Especially since I lacked the technical skills, they were willing to support me to learn and understand every element of the build as development progressed.

5.0
Overall Score I would not be on the journey I am on today without Appster.
  • 5.0 Scheduling
    ON TIME / DEADLINES
    The team worked some very long hours to solve problems and bring the project in on time.
  • 4.5 Cost
    Value / within estimates
  • 5.0 Quality
    Service & deliverables
    Workmanship is exceptional.
  • 5.0 NPS
    Willing to refer
    For first time developers, most definitely. 3.5 for those with technical skills, they may not benefit as much.

App Development for College-Focused Platform

"The best thing about Appster is that when you ask them for something, they'll get it done."

Quality: 
5.0
Schedule: 
4.5
Cost: 
4.5
Willing to refer: 
4.5
The Project
 
$200,000 to $999,999
Project summary: 

Appster helped to develop a college-specific social platform, with both an app and website, and has been the client’s key resource for growth analysis.

The Reviewer
 
1-10 Employees
 
Berkeley, CA
Mohamed El Sewedy
Cofounder, Turtle
 
Verified
The Review
Feedback summary: 

Appster’s genuine excitement for this project has led to a strong partnership with the client. Their expertise and communication have helped to keep things running smoothly throughout this complex development process, and reactions to the product during the beta phase have been extremely positive.

BACKGROUND

Please describe your organization.

Turtle is basically a web and mobile app that acts as a private social network for each university. It provides a simple and connected way for students to access all the tools that they need, ranging from connecting with anyone on campus to discovering events and extra-curricular clubs, to creating your own events. The app is meant to help students stay in the loop with what's happening on campus every day, applying for jobs and internships in the industry, buying and selling text books and furniture, and the list keeps going on. We're basically dubbing it the college app.

What is your position?

I’m the Chief Executive Officer [CEO] and Co-founder.

OPPORTUNITY / CHALLENGE

What business challenge were you trying to address with Appster?

We were looking for months for a developer to work with. I'm majoring in electrical engineering but this is definitely a very, very extensive project and it has so many different components within it. We needed a partner to help develop the app and wanted to take the choice of a partner seriously. We truly feel there is a need for it in the industry. We wanted to be first to market, and first to market with a very high quality product that's really going to wow the crowd.

SOLUTION

Please describe the scope of their involvement in greater detail.

Appster has been our partner guiding the development process of our web and mobile app. We keep developing the app month by month. One of the highlights early on was Appster’s rapid content workshop. In this workshop, they gave us their expertise towards development, towards the business side of our company, and information on how we can scale and monetize the app. The workshop really helped us with growth analysis.

How did you come to work with Appster?

In the beginning, we looked at a few different development shops. We actually looked first at outsourcing internationally because that's usually the cheaper option. There are other barriers to working internationally, such as time changes, language differences, and all that stuff. So we decided to focus more on the US, and find a company that's going to be more financially suitable for us.

All of the development firms that we were approaching in San Francisco, were all quality firms, but we were looking for a company that could do what we wanted but also at a very good price.

We basically found one company, one that is also on Clutch, and the price turned out to be four times higher than what Appster quoted us. While I was searching out the best development firms, Clutch.co came up and that’s how I found Appster. We looked a bit more into Appster. I requested a call with them through their website, and then instantly someone called me back and we started getting into discussion. Josiah Humphrey, Appster’s CEO, came onboard with us very early on. He was actually at our very first meeting.

Another one of the main differentiators for us about Appster was that they use agile development. At that time, a lot of development firms were working mainly under waterfall development. For people without much expertise in the app industry, waterfall development is usually the best way to go, because it agrees on the solidified scope of work but the freedom to change things comes out of the equation. Agile development has been really important to us because through our journey we’ve been able to change a bunch of things in our app. The app has really evolved from what the app was supposed to be in the beginning.

Could you provide a sense of the size of this initiative in financial terms?

This project is in the $200,000 to $1 million range.

What is the status of this engagement?

We're going to be working with Appster for at least the next six months because they're going into the next phase of development for us. They've been very good with us so far. We've highlighted what problems there were with Appster, and we've addressed the problems that we had with them.

RESULTS & FEEDBACK

Could you share any statistics or metrics from this engagement?

Me and my co-founders are students at UC Berkeley, and that's where we saw the problems with the current university experience and realized we could digitalize it and just make it so much more efficient. UC Berkeley was definitely our first stop for a test market. It's an extremely well-known university, so it also provided us with a very good head start into the industry because if we conquer UC Berkeley and really prove our concept there, then that's a very good indicator that the other good universities would use it as well.

We're currently in our beta phase. It's working extremely well so far. We're aiming to get out of the beta phase starting August. Once we expand to other universities, that's basically when our beta campaign ends, around the end of July 2016. That's where we've been so far and just the reaction to the platform has been outstanding.

How did Appster perform from a project management standpoint?

Here's the thing, with Appster we work with so many different people, from Australia, from the US and from India of course, because that's where the development mainly happens. Basically, they coordinate everything extremely well, where they have all the necessary positions you'd ever look for in an app development team, and they all just work extremely well together.

Working with Appster has just been a pleasure because they're people who understand who we are and what we want. At the same time, they react very well to all the changes that we make and are able to keep the project on track. They've been part of the entire process. They've been so cooperative with us. It's just been a great partnership so far.

What distinguishes Appster from other providers?

The best thing about Appster is that when you ask them for something, they'll get it done. It's not like ‘this wasn't in the contract or you can't do this or you can't do that.’ They're not really those corporate type of people who are going to keep pushing you on all these tiny things.

The thing about the Appster team is that they're also a pretty young team, so they kind of understand what our goal is and where we're heading.

Similarly, they just have the drive. As soon as they heard about the platform, they instantly saw something in it and saw something in us. By them seeing something in us and seeing something in the idea itself, really meant a lot to us moving forward and really getting it done. It's been a great experience working with them.

Is there anything Appster could have improved or done differently?

Appster has been great to work with, and we also learned a lot from the development process by working with them. We were rookies in the app world and now we know so much more about it. That said, where we foresee being better in the future is definitely focused on design. That's something that we emphasized to Appster. So the design factor is a definite space for improvement.

Time barriers have been tough as well. Our developers are in India. Definitely working with them at night is a challenge, but it's a challenge we're willing to go through. It's definitely worth the experience. Appster has honestly been pretty great. We have learned a lot from our experience and a lot about approaching app development. They instantly improved any weaknesses that they had on their side, which is great as well. It's been honestly a great experience for both of us, but overall it's been an outstanding one.

5.0
Overall Score
  • 4.5 Scheduling
    ON TIME / DEADLINES
  • 4.5 Cost
    Value / within estimates
  • 5.0 Quality
    Service & deliverables
  • 4.5 NPS
    Willing to refer

Lifestyle App Development for Startup

"Appster’s communication style is second to none. They are absolutely committed to helping."

Quality: 
5.0
Schedule: 
4.5
Cost: 
5.0
Willing to refer: 
5.0
The Project
 
$50,000 to $199,999
Project summary: 

Appster developed a sustainability lifestyle app for the iOS platform and has also helped the client further develop their business strategy.

The Reviewer
 
1-10 Employees
 
Australia
Axel Passeck
Managing Director, App Startup
 
Verified
The Review
Feedback summary: 

Appster showed a strong commitment to collaboration and communication from the very beginning of this project, ensuring that they were always available when the client needed them. The client notes being particularly impressed by Appster’s collaboration tools.

BACKGROUND

Please describe your organization.

The company was formed last year. We had a business idea of a sustainability lifestyle app. We're located in Western Australia, in a remote area, and have all sorts of interesting challenges to overcome.

What is your position?

I’m the Managing Director of the company.

OPPORTUNITY / CHALLENGE

What business challenge were you trying to address with Appster?

We live in one of the most beautiful places in the world, Ningaloo Reef in Western Australia, and can see the destruction of the planet, the destruction of the coral reef, and plastic being washed up from thousands of kilometers away. We decided that something should be done.

We have created the world's first self-green rating app. We believe that the community should be guided and educated on the impact that their purchasing decisions have on the planet and on the environment. We thought of ways that we could reach the most people, and came up with an app because everybody has smartphones, so therefore, we started self-sustainability management.

SOLUTION

What platforms is the app available on?

It is only developed for iOS.

How did you come to work with Appster?

We considered several other companies. We had a Skype meeting with a company in Germany. We considered a couple of other companies and had initial meetings. We weren't really happy with the way things were going, but Appster had a completely different approach. They said, "We know about sustainability and we have all these ideas. We have to start somewhere, and normally we start developing a minimum viable product [MVP] and then go on from there." That all made sense to us.

We found Appster on the internet. We filled in the forms and we were called back straightaway, and that's how the great relationship started.

Could you provide a sense of the size of this initiative in financial terms?

The initial MVP for iOS was $100,000.

RESULTS & FEEDBACK

Could you share any statistics or metrics from this engagement?

It will be launched on April 1st [2016].

What distinguishes Appster from other providers?

Appster’s communication style is second to none. They are absolutely committed to helping, and they're available anytime during the day. Public holidays, weekends, it doesn't matter. If you have a problem, you can pick up the phone and you can call them. It's very clear within the team who is doing what, so it makes it easy to find the right person straight away.

The communication with the development team and the collaboration tools they're using makes it absolutely fantastic. These collaboration and communication tools are in place from the start. As soon as you sign up, they use a collaboration tool. You get an account and get a rundown of how it all works, and that is fantastic.

I think they have become more of a business partner even though they don't have any shares in the company, and they don't invest any money whatsoever. It feels like you actually enter into an agreement with a whole new development team, not only necessarily for an app, but they're also helping you develop your business strategy. I think that's probably the biggest differentiator with Appster.

Is there anything Appster could have improved or done differently?

There's always things to improve on. What we have experienced with iOS development is pretty close to perfect. We have had to travel a fair bit; we're about 5,000 kilometers away from their office and it's where we had the meetings. It would be nice if they could have an office closer to us. That would be one thing.

5.0
Overall Score Absolutely amazing.
  • 4.5 Scheduling
    ON TIME / DEADLINES
    There were a couple of issues. We had an 8-week delay before we started developing, but it was mutually agreed that we endured this one and waited for the best possible team to become available because the app is so complicated.
  • 5.0 Cost
    Value / within estimates
  • 5.0 Quality
    Service & deliverables
    The quality is directly related to my partner, who mostly pushed them and didn't let them get away with letting things slide.
  • 5.0 NPS
    Willing to refer
    Based on our experience with iOS development, I would recommend them to anyone. However, I tried to create the next step, the Android side, and the quotes came back so astronomically high.

Bartering Platform Development for Startup

"You really feel like part of the family when you build a project with Appster."

Quality: 
4.5
Schedule: 
4.5
Cost: 
3.0
Willing to refer: 
4.0
The Project
 
Confidential
Project summary: 

Appster helped the client to fully develop their idea for a mobile bartering platform into a viable application and then designed and built the app.

The Reviewer
 
1-10 Employees
 
Melbourne, Australia
Jin Leon Chuah
Co-Founder, QuidProQuo
 
Verified
The Review
Feedback summary: 

Appster’s unique company culture led the client to feel that they truly cared about the project and could be entrusted with facilitating its success. The client notes that Appster’s attention to detail did, at times, seem to be lacking.

BACKGROUND

Please briefly describe your company.

QPQ [Quid Pro Quo] is a mobile bartering platform that allows users to trade goods with one another.

What role do you play there?

I am a co-founder of the company. As we are a startup, we are still very small, therefore, I look after the everyday operations of the business. However, due to my co-founder’s background in finance, he carries most of the responsibility of the financial area, whereas I take care of the marketing and technological aspects.

OPPORTUNITY / CHALLENGE

What was the business challenge that you were trying to address when you approached Appster?

The main reason we approached Appster was due to the fact that we had an idea, but didn’t know where to start, how to code, or any of the underlying aspects of the social networking landscape.

SOLUTION

Can you tell me about the scope of the project? What were the exact services Appster provided?

Appster provided help from the beginning of the project. They helped us explore all the possibilities of the idea, and then helped us to refine the specific details to lay out how the project should flow. They helped with the technological side of it tremendously, especially since neither I nor my co-founder has experience in coding or developing an app.

Please describe how you came across Appster as a business partner?

We found Appster through a few simple Google searches.

Did you consider other business partners? Why Appster?

Yes, we did consider other agencies, however, from all the meetings I had with other agencies, Appster was the most impressive and attractive. They provided a free thirty minute consultation the first time they met with us. I didn’t feel pressured to do anything, and I felt as if they cared about our product.

Can you give us a sense of the size of the project in dollar terms, deliverables, or personnel work hours?

The size of the project was significantly large in our minds, and I feel that Appster put a lot of work into the project. Personally, we’ve put blood, sweat, and tears into this project, and only hope for it to grow in the future and our past work to pay off.

RESULTS & FEEDBACK

Was there anything unique or special about them compared to other companies that you may have worked with?

Appster’s laid back but effective company culture made me comfortable with the work I had entrusted them with. Personally, I haven’t seen many company cultures like theirs, which intrigued me.

What makes Appster a great business partner?

You really feel like part of the family when you build a project with Appster.

Is there any area that they could improve upon or that you would have them do differently?

Appster’s attention to detail could use work. There were little things that you didn’t expect them to get wrong or overlook, which they sometimes did. We also had very limited interaction with senior management. Lastly, we feel that sometimes Appster doesn’t always operate intuitively.

4.0
Overall Score We could not have gotten to our current position if it weren’t for Appster and their team.
  • 4.5 Scheduling
    ON TIME / DEADLINES
  • 3.0 Cost
    Value / within estimates
  • 4.5 Quality
    Service & deliverables
  • 4.0 NPS
    Willing to refer
    Using an average, five for those with no technical knowledge. If people have sufficient technical experience we would say three.