A few days ago, Guy Kawasaki tweeted about AppMakr, an online service that allows you to create your own iPhone application instantly. He also included a code that took the price from $199 to $49. Color me intrigued.
After spending some time hunting around for other app makers -- believe me, there aren't as many out there as you think, and none of them are inexpensive -- I threw my lot in with the folks at AppMakr. As I write this, the Floricane app for iPhones is in the approval queue at iTunes; it should be live before the end of the month.
One of the things I particularly like about AppMakr is that they seem to be focused on making the process easy and inexpensive. It doesn't hurt that they also released a solid product that does a few things well. Essentially, the Floricane app will be a reader with three content streams -- pulling the Floricane weblog, the monthly newsletter and the Twitter stream all into one place.
I don't pretend it will be all that useful for most people, but I hope it will be interesting to more than a handful.
AppMakr apps are limited to RSS feeds, which allows AppMakr to eliminate the hosting fees that are standard with many of the other app developers. Your data sits wherever you create it; your app simply pulls from your running feed. Right now, that means no "about" pages or screens with overviews of products and services. Not so much a problem for me.
What is also means is that the best AppMakr applications come from companies and individuals with good content. That's where I think Floricane has an edge. Between the weblog, the monthly newsletter and the Floricane Twitter stream, there is a wealth of information floating out there about our clients and our work.
As AppMakr makes more features available, I'll dig into those, as well. In the meantime, I'll revel in my early adopter moment as Richmond's only strategic planning firm with an iPhone application.
I'll let you know when it's approved and ready for download at iTunes.