Remember Apple’s early iPhone TV commercial that underscored the App Store’s plethora of apps? If you want to do just about anything, “There’s an app for that.” Make memes, find your phone, meditate, track your fitness, and a few million more. Trouble is with more than 1 million apps in the App Store and more than 1 million on the Google Play store as of late last year, it’s tough to find new apps to try. That is, unless you see them promoted by experts, or hear about them from a friend, relative, or coworker. Well, guess what? There’s an app for that. TAPPD is the app that personalizes app discovery.
“In our work environment, we were always talking about new apps, and what we loved about them. Every day it seemed someone was finding a new app that they were excited to tell others about,” says David Duncan, co-founder of the social app discovery engine. “Around this time, the challenge of app discovery was also topical among journalists, bloggers, developers, and even the general app user. We looked at the projected growth in apps, the scale and implications this had for app discovery, and specifically how others were tackling this issue.”
The “aha” moment came when one of Duncan’s friends in the office was eager to share about a Tour De-France app he learned about from another coworker. Duncan and his co-founders, Frank Coiro and Tony Coiro, realized that incorporating the conversational side of discovering apps into the mobile platform was the answer. “It’s not just getting a recommendation from a friend, but really understanding what it is they like about a particular app and why we should download it right now,” he says.
While there are other app recommendation engines, 92 percent of consumers say they trust recommendations from friends and family above all other forms of advertising, according to the Nielsen’s Global Trust in Advertising report. And that’s what TAPPD taps into.
“Most of our competitors are focused on building smarter search engines, providing automated recommendations, and delivering daily app deals,” Frank Coiro says. “TAPPD differentiates itself by being the place where you can see what your friends, experts, and people with shared interests are saying about apps.”
The co-founder trio has worked together for more than 10 years running a successful managed services company. As one of the first adopters of cloud services in the technology space, the TAPPD founders’ strengths are identifying key challenges with emerging technologies and solving them through a creative approach. “We identified app discovery as one of the biggest challenges in an emerging market, and we are passionate at how social recommendations play a role in helping to solve this,” Tony Coiro says.
Coinciding with the app’s launch in March, TAPPD saw immediate success after being chosen as the official app to showcase trends in the app space at the 2014 Macworld/iWorld conference in San Francisco. “One of the biggest highlights by far, though, has been the recognition by industry experts that TAPPD is a clever and simple idea that could become the app discovery tool of choice for a lot of people,” Duncan says. “For instance, 148Apps called us ‘The Yelp or TripAdvisor for apps,’ and Steve Sande of TUAW said, ‘I think this app has a chance to become the app discovery tool of choice for a lot of people as it is easy to use, social, and just plain fun.’”
At this early stage, the founders want to see the number of TAPPS (short-form app recommendations) increase across all their app interest groups, grow a global community of app enthusiasts, and continue to work with developers on the engagement and acquisition of new users. Their near-term goals include helping users better connect with Top Tappers (i.e., app writers, bloggers, people of interest, and key influencers), and share what they have to say about apps. “We think this will further enhance app discovery within TAPPD by helping users find apps from trusted sources outside of just their immediate circle of friends,” says Duncan. “Most importantly, we want to continue to develop TAPPD so that it becomes THE best place to discover the apps that are worth talking about.”
TAPPD is available now and free for iPhone users here. Android and Windows versions are coming soon.