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Post-hoc Analysis of InstaWifi’s Launch

July 27, 2012 9:00 am by
high resolution instawifi icon

Launching My First Android App Ever

On July 24th, I launched InstaWifi, my first Android app into the market. InstaWifi enables you to connect and share wifi networks instantly with the people who you care about. It was my first Android app that I released in the market, and I was pretty excited to see how it would turn out. It’s quite amazing if you think about it, that a random guy (like me) behind a computer screen today in 2012, can reach out to an audience of thousands of people on the Internet to announce a new product. It’s a random thought but a powerful one — a thought that reminds us of how closely connected we are to other people in this world.

My marketing strategy was simple for InstaWifi, generate viral growth on social networks, and reach out to several news sources online to get some big pageviews so that it will trickle down to smaller blogs, news sources, and social networks. The best strategy, however, is to just make a solid polished app and one that actually solves a problem for users. Without a good implementation, it doesn’t matter how big your budget or effective your marketing strategy is.

This article will be doing a deep dive on the numbers and stats of InstaWifi’s launch for those people out there who are curious on what it’s like to launch an Android app and how successful InstaWifi was.

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About

Jesse is a software engineer at Facebook, who just graduated from UC Berkeley. Passionate about mobile technology and entrepreneurship, he started his own blog as a home for his tutorials, projects, and random thoughts. Follow him on Facebook to stay updated on his latest tutorials and projects.


Getting Out of the Consumer Mindset

February 7, 2012 7:11 pm by
redditors wife

When you wake up, what is the first thing you do?  For me, its checking my email and Facebook.  During that small amount of free time after showering and brushing your teeth, I, probably like many others, like to sit down and ‘catch up’ on what’s been going on on the Internet since last night.  Now, usually this catching up tends to lead to me being late to my class (despite Berkeley time), and in general, putting me in a mood for the rest of the day where I am always looking for more interesting and cool stories/links on the web.

Ironically, 2 days ago I came across this particular comment on reddit, where people were sharing small lifestyle changes that impacted their lives.  Redditor accex brings up an interesting point on people being a producer or a consumer, and (s)he says that starting the morning as a ‘producer’ has made him/her much more productive by realizing how much of a distraction the web can be.  Specifically, this quote was really good:

This keeps you from falling into the needy consumer mindset. That mindset where you find yourself endlessly surfing Reddit, Facebook, etc. trying to fill a void in yourself, trying to find out what you’re missing, but never feeling satisfied.

Damn.  I think this really hit home to me because I know that I pretty much live, breathe, and consume the web.  Every morning, email and Facebook.  Walking to/from class, reddit, fb and Google Reader.  On a computer, HN, Google Reader, reddit, fb, YouTube, and so forth.  To determine how bad of an addict I am to the web, I decided to check my Google Reader earlier to see how much posts I’ve read since I started using Google Reader (that would be September 21, 2008, right about when college started for me).

394,514 items.

That’s 320 posts every single day or 13 posts every hour since 9/28/08, which was almost 3 and a half years ago.  And no, I do not simply mark articles as read when it gets too much.  I just read all of them.  Assuming 30 seconds to read each post, that’s 140 full days of my life in the past 3.5 years that’s been devoted to just reading Google Reader.  This is not even taking into consideration the time spent on Facebook, reddit, HN, and YouTube.

I have a problem

Admittedly, this is hard for me say but its time for me to cut down on the amount of time spent on consuming data and information on the web.  Being a ‘consumer’ is not necessarily a bad thing, but when it becomes addictive where you are continually “trying to fill a void in yourself” and you feel like you have to read everything out there, that’s when it is bad.  Google Reader is an excellent tool to stay updated with multiple blogs/websites, and it has definitely made me more knowledgeable on topics such as technology, gadgets, and programming.  However, using our time every day to be more of a ‘producer’ would make all of us much more productive.  For me, that’s definitely working more on my personal projects, blogging, exercising, and preparing for the real world (personal finance, investments, retirement, real estate, ad nauseum).

In all, this was just me realizing that I have been spending a lot of time with things that are easy to consume and don’t benefit much.  It’s time to be more productive with the limited time that I have each day.  As a friend of mine always say, “the most precious resource you have is time”.  Use it with care, use that time for things that matter most to you.  Stop reading this and go do something productive!

Filed under: General — Tags: , , , , , , — Jesse Chen @ 7:11 PM

About

Jesse is a software engineer at Facebook, who just graduated from UC Berkeley. Passionate about mobile technology and entrepreneurship, he started his own blog as a home for his tutorials, projects, and random thoughts. Follow him on Facebook to stay updated on his latest tutorials and projects.


Getting Rich on Youtube

September 22, 2010 10:26 am by

After posting a handful of videos on Youtube to supplement my Droid X review, it has gotten to be quite an interesting activity to track.  All these videos were kind of just made during my spare time, just for fun – but it seems like they were [at least] somewhat helpful to others.  At this point, the total views on all my videos is ~32k, and I got a nice little surprise when I checked my email one day and got an invite to submit one of my videos for revenue sharing on Youtube.

For those that don’t know, the revenue sharing program is when Google somehow determines [aka magic] that your video is becoming increasingly popular/viral, and would like to put ads on top of your video.  As a result, you share the revenue that Google earns from viewers looking at your ad, and when they actually click on the ad.  I have two of my videos up for revenue sharing, which is rather surprising because of the minimal effort I have put in to those videos I have been uploading.

I think this is a really cool program for Youtube to do, which hopefully assists them in becoming profitable one day.  It creates an incentive for anybody in the world to create genuine and legit videos of their own, and as a result, drive more traffic and revenue for Youtube.  A beautiful positive cycle.  I have read articles of the richest Youtubers out there, people such as nigahiga, who can earn six figures solely from making Youtube videos!  Sounds like the good life, although I do have to question how long these “celebrity figures” on Youtube can stay relevant with the Internet’s shifting, diverting, 15-seconds-of-fame culture.

I am happy to announce that I am on the path of reaching six figures as well from making my brilliant Youtube videos.  If you extrapolate the rate of earnings that I am getting from my videos, it will only be about 1000 years until I hit 100,000$ from my videos. :-P Never mind, guess it won’t be happening.

16$ in the first two months!  Not too shabby, it can buy me..something.

Filed under: Android,General — Tags: , — Jesse Chen @ 10:26 AM

About

Jesse is a software engineer at Facebook, who just graduated from UC Berkeley. Passionate about mobile technology and entrepreneurship, he started his own blog as a home for his tutorials, projects, and random thoughts. Follow him on Facebook to stay updated on his latest tutorials and projects.