iPhone and iPhone Apps can help dramatically change the life of impaired individuals. Often developers forget about accessibility as a market. Developers can do something profound for people, but also make money.
Just a week ago the Global Accessibility Awareness Day took place. This day is to raise awareness among app developers to think about accessibility and how people with disabilities are experience apps and the web. Apple has also put their support behind this great initiative and has highlighted a selection of Accessibility apps on that day including an app called Proloquo2Go.
App developers are often forgetting about Accessibility as a market. It can though be a very lucrative and at the same time very profound market. Take for instance the award winning Proloquo2Go app.
Proloquo2Go developed by AssistiveWare has an unusual high price point of $249.99. According to analytics by Sensor Tower, Proloquo2Go has generated more than $3 million in revenues since it has launched in /4/of 2014. The app has 22,600 downloads and its newest release has support for the Apple Watch.
This accessibility app is a communication app that provide a voice to those who cannot speak by typing and simple graphics. Often those individuals have down syndrome and difficulty in speech and hearing. The app has big impact on those individuals.
Many more accessibility apps are needed as disabilities are very diverse. This accessibility success story is not to say that accessibility apps should have necessarily a high price-point. It is about the value that is provided. AssistiveWare has more than 15 years experience in assistive technology and provided solutions before there was an iPad or iPhone.
We got some interesting feedback from AssistiveWare in response to this report. One thing developers should keep in mind developing assistive apps is that designing and supporting this kind of software is quite costly due to the fact that a product like this needs to serve a wide range of users with a variety of cognitive, visual and fine-motor impairments.
In the case of Proloquo2Go there are also significant licensing costs as it includes third-party Text to Speech voices from Acapela Group, an extensive third-party symbol library from SymbolStix (some 20,000 symbols) and they also license the Ultralingua gram/3/engine.
David Niemeijer, Founder and CEO of AssistiveWare says: “A revenue of $3 million sounds like a lot (but note that actual revenue is significantly lower because a large share of Proloquo2Go sales is through Apple’s Educational Volume Purchasing Program at 50% off). However, in the end we basically break-even when costs are subtracted from the revenue. So our success is relative, we are able to generate enough revenue to keep improving the software and support our user community, but for anyone who wants to make a lot of money other markets are probably more lucrative.”
We still think the accessibility market has a lot of potential not just for doing something profound, but it is a market app developer should keep in mind when creating new apps.
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