Travel Weather

This idea was inspired by WUnderground’s Road Trip weather, but I envision something much more configurable, useful. Basically, to be able to set dates (and optionally, times) for a list of locations and see the current weather forecast for each time/date combination. Obviously, it would update with new forecasts as time passes.

It could be standalone (enter your itinerary manually), but would be better if it integrated with something like TripIt. It’d also be nice if you could enter endpoints for driving directions (for a multi-day road trip) and build from that.

FAD Followup

…where FAD stands for Free App of the Day, the Amazon Appstore’s program where they offer a different paid Android app free to customers every day.

This is a followup post to my original FAD thoughts, posted shortly after I had my first app in the program. Exact download numbers are Amazon-confidential, but suffice it to say that Moon Phase Pro got hundreds of thousands of downloads that day, which significantly boosted its visibility in the Appstore and led to a marked increase in paid revenue for weeks afterward. A good deal all around.

Some months later, Amazon offered me another FAD spot for another app, PolyClock – and since my first experience had been quite positive, I didn’t hesitate. This time things didn’t go nearly as well; the total downloads were much lower, and there wasn’t a significant sales boost after the day. I simply chalked it up to the app in question being more niche-oriented, with a narrower appeal. And since there really wasn’t a downside, I didn’t worry much about it.

Then came my third app in the Program, Convertor Pro, after Amazon extended FAD to their European markets. And unfortunately, I have to say that this was a downright disaster. Again, I can’t reveal exact sales numbers, but since around Christmastime Convertor Pro has been selling reasonably well in the UK; it’d been hovering in the top 5 in its category. Not paying for my retirement, perhaps, but a respectable earner.

Then came its FAD spot – and sales immediately plummeted, to a small fraction of what they’d been before. It’s been about ten days now, and its ranking in category is currently around #15 and still dropping.

Of course, I have no proof that FAD was responsible for the drop, but when you look at a graph of its ranking over time, the correlation is hard to deny:
image
That green bar there is its free day. (The numbers below are its ranking on a given day before FAD.)

So in summary, I’m nowhere near as impressed with FAD as I was a year ago. Perhaps it still makes sense for some apps – but my advice right now is: if your app is already earning any kind of money in Amazon’s Appstore, don’t risk it.