By Tyson McCann
Published December 2011 List Price:$29.99, Your Amazon.com Price: $22.04
Amazon.com Sales Rank:1,157,411 Availability: Usually ships in 24 hours
Your one-stop shop for planning, creating, marketing, and maintaining your applications
It takes more than a great idea to succeed at iPhone and iPad app development.This indispensible guide provides an in-depth look into the perils and potential of the iPhone and iPad app landscape. The Art of the App Store presents tried and tested methods for competitive research, finding your niche, understanding customer expectations, setting goals and milestones, and managing app development from concept to post-launch. You will find guidelines for developing and pricing your app using the most up-to-date trends, a plan for viral marketing using social networks, metric tracking, taking advantage of feedback, and much more.
The Art of the App Store:
Shows how the App Store has evolved and how to take advantage of the changes
Helps you identify potential costs and decide where to invest your time and money
Analyzes successful and unsuccessful apps, examines existing niches, and shows how to create successful hybrids
Compares the risks and rewards of free, freemium, and premium apps
Explains how to advertise and market your free and lite apps
Offers tried-and-true advice on marketing your apps through social networks
Demonstrates post-launch update strategies to maintain app awareness
Wrox books are crafted to make learning programming languages and technologies easier than you think, providing a structured, tutorial format that will guide you through all the techniques involved.
GDNet Staff Review:
As I've only said about a million times, actually programming the game is at best half of the job of game programming, so if you just learn programming, you are not a fully-fledged game developer. And, to make matters worse, the other half of game development keeps changing. Twenty years ago, the other half consisted of art, Q&A, paper documentation, box art, and figuring out how to get your product on the shelf at retail stores. Nowadays, some of that stuff is still relevant (art and Q&A of course), but some of it has changed. The box of software with the paper manual and CD is giving way to app stores and deep tutorials that step you through every bit of the game without opening that manual. . .that everyone skips anyway.
The Art of the App Store: The business of Apple Development by Tyson McCann is intended to get you up to speed in one fairly large piece of game marketing nowadays ''' the Apple App Store. At the time of this review, there are approximately 20 squillion apps and 50 hojillion dollars being spent on iOS apps, so venturing into that market without knowing what to do is something you will do at your own peril.
One thing that surprised me about The Art of the App Store was how platform-agnostic much of the book is. While there's plenty of iOS App Store-specific stuff there, you could make use of at least 50% of the book if you're developing for another platform. While the discussions of individual app categories and the money they make relative to each other may very well be an Apple-specific thing, the discussion of the merits of paid/free/freemium/whatever business models for your apps won't be much different if you're developing for Android.
While the last half of the book is about the App Store, the first half is more about the development process itself. How to get your app developed. Where to find art. How to budget yourself. That kind of thing.
There is less '''how to game the app store''' material than I expected. I remember going to a GDC session a couple of years ago, and there is a wealth of little tricks you can do to help bump your app up or get it listed on somesuch '''new apps''' page even if it is not all that new anymore. The Art of the App Store does not have much of that. And that does help make the book a little slower to become obsolete (as I imagine all those holes mentioned in that GDC session have been patched long ago).
The bottom line is, if this book will get you an extra dozen sales, it has probably paid for itself. So if you are a developer at a loss for how to sell your game in an app store without it being lost in the sea of me-too apps, you should give it a read.