We often take our phones for granted; they travel with us everywhere we go, take all sorts of abuse from daily wear and tear and hold some our most precious memories. Here at Smart Phone Company we’re interested in the people behind our most treasured necessity and have set out to talk to the developers and designers that make phones and apps what they are. Today we speak to Paul Halpin, a 24 year old developer behind apps like EchoChat, Fedorable, Ambience, Dead Good and Choice Zone to learn about his favourite apps and what the future of the industry may be.
How and where did you start out in the industry?
When I graduated from university I started out as an intern at the Leeds School of Medicine creating E-Learning apps for 4th and 5th year medicine students.
What is the biggest challenge you’ve faced in the industry so far and if you could go back in time what would have done differently?
Trying to develop an app with limited time is something I would definitely try to avoid in the future. It is hard to keep on top of quality control - especially working in a group - when you are racing to complete a piece of software in a limited amount of time.What are you currently working on?
I'm currently working on an iOS app for Wakelet.com. It's a content curation website where you can create coherent collections of a variety of web content. I've also recently released a messenger app called 'Echochat' that I'm currently maintaining.
Editors note: Paul’s ‘EchoChat’ app is a messaging app with a difference, it allows users to send a message and be provided with the opportunity to see the recipient's instant reaction to that message. A unique blend of SnapChat and traditional social messaging, EchoChat is a brilliant way to interact with friends.
What are some of the best games or apps that you’ve seen that you’ve thought ‘I wish I was involved in that’?
Keezy. It’s a really simple drum machine app where you can record your own samples, but works incredibly well.
Monument valley. This is one of my favourite games; you have to navigate a character through optical illusions. I would have loved to see the code behind some of the levels.
And on the other side of the coin, are there any that you thought ‘I could have done that better’ or ‘I wish that had X’?
I see many games that could be brilliant if there weren't a 'freemium' element to them, the best players have either paid to get to that position or have spent hours playing. It kind of ruins the experience for me.
If you had all the time and money in the world, what would you create?
I would create a lucrative freemium game and sell packs of 'gems'.
Where do you see the future of IOS development or production in the next 10 years?
I believe there will be a focus on data capture in the next 10 years. As sensory electrical components become more accurate and affordable, developers will take advantage of this and create software to analyse and give feedback to the user. This could be health apps or any other type of tracking application.
Do you have any advice for those wishing to get into the industry?
Just keep making apps, reading can only get you so for.