Side Hustle: Released My First Mobile Application

Side Hustle

Today I come bearing fruitful news: I’ve released my first mobile application to the Google Play Store.

As some of you may know, from when I briefly introduced myself in one of my first posts, I’m a programmed by trade. Since I was 10 or so I knew that I wanted to program video games when I grew up. It all seemed like a distant dream back then, but dedication and hard work make everything and anything possible.

Humble Beginnings

I programmed small desktop applications for fun, little games and editing tools when I was in high school. When I turned around 15, I started to code for a web-based browser game as a volunteer for experience and because I enjoyed it. I always saw programming as this tool; some knowledge you possess, which you can utilize to make something out of nothing. You tell the computer (CPU) what to do, and it obeys. Of course, it likes to spit out a load of gibberish frequently and make you want to pull your hair out before it settles down and does exactly as you’ve intended for it to do.

From my experience in that web browser game, I’ve come a very long way. After going through cegep (college equivalent in Quebec), I landed a position as a web applications programmer and I’ve loved it. Going to work everyday and doing what I want to do: programming, is one of the best things I could ever ask for. It sure beat my old job making sandwiches, at least.

I haven’t given up on programming video games, but it’s hard to find the time to be coding games. I do plan to jump into it pretty soon though, once I have a better grasp on my time. I’m always learning new technologies, and I’ll probably dabble in Unity to make a mobile game in a couple months.

Anyways…. I digress, this isn’t a programming / technology blog, and it’s time to unveil the application I developed.

Android Application: Whereabout 

After all the talk of video games you’d probably think it’s something at least closely related, well… you couldn’t be more far off. It’s a pretty simple utility program, but I take pride in having developed, published and released it on the store. Just so you all know, it is FREE to download and use.

The application I developed is called Whereabout, and you can download it for free right here. I developed this as much as just to learn about programming using the Android SDK in Java, to testing my capabilities. While it isn’t anything fancy, I dedicated the better part of a month to creating, tweaking and finalizing it. Any revenue I’d earn from it would be through AdMob (the Google AdSense of Android applications), and a potential Pro version I plan to release in the near future if any interest is displayed – but I’ll probably do it either way, just to say I did. I don’t expect much of a revenue stream from this, but it definitely opens doors to future development as I now know what the process is and can spin off a couple more rapidly in the future.

Whereabout is described as “the quickest and easiest way to send your location to your friends and family”. You can send your exact location, provided by your device’s GPS, to anyone in your contact list, or any one on your social media platforms – whatever you’d like to do, you can. Your location will send as a text message, facebook message, twitter post, etc.

Android Application

When the recipient clicks on the message you sent them, the location you sent will open up in their Google Maps application, and automatically set up a direct route to them. So, as soon as you click on the location your friend sent you – you’re set on your way to get to them.

We like to advertise the fact that you are sending your location; a route to exactly where you are; in only two taps of your finger. That’s literally convenience at your fingertips!

If a pro version were to be released, there are already a couple things that could be included, and have already been coded but not packaged up correctly into the application for public use yet. One neat thing is the user can send their Street View location in addition to their route; this means when you send your location, the recipient clicking on it will also see the street or building from where you’re sending it!

We’ll See What Happens…

While I won’t be disappointed with whatever results this project may yield, it was a great learning experience and got my feet wet in the mobile application scene. I’m sure it will propel me into other projects once I have a couple more designs. There are a few from which I can choose now, but I’m going to take a bit of a break, and I’ve been taking blogging more seriously recently; it’s really quite enjoyable.

Hopefully I muster up the drive to release the pro version soon, and will have a write-up if it is released. Until then, I’ll continue with the blog side hustle and any other forms of passive or semi passive income I can discover and muster! There ain’t nothing better than getting paid after the fact, while you sleep, eat, or read a book. 

Dividend Beginner

A 22 year old Canadian dividend growth investor striving for early financial independence; building as many passive income streams as early as possible.
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  • Interesting app. Congrats on the launch.

    I am a software designer by profession – but never really got into mobile apps. I looked into them a few years ago, but never really learned/explored the idea enough. Maybe one day… 🙂

    Best wishes
    R2R

    • Hey R2R,

      Thanks. I’ve been wanting to develop and release an Android application for years now, finally just sat down and did it! That’s really all there is to it, along with so many other things in life, I’m coming to realize: You just gotta sit down and do it.

      What kind of software do you design? What languages do you code in, if any?

      Best regards,
      DB

    • Hi DD!

      Thanks, we tried to make it as slick as possible and keep it elegant yet functional. It’s pretty minimalist now, but it sort of adds to the beauty of it. Will let you know once it’s ported to iOS! Boy, that’ll be a project and a half.

      Best regards,
      DB

  • Talented Blogger. It looks like you solve the problem of worried mother, worry wife, etc. I can see a lot of people would use this app.

    I’ll have to update my laptop before I can do any programming. I’d love to get back into it. I know java.

    • Hey Vivianne,

      I appreciate the compliment! I noticed I was having the problem myself when trying to send my own exact location instead of having to explain the intricacies of the route.

      But we knew a bit target market would in fact be worried mothers! Your child can’t even lie to you if they send their location with the app. Didn’t think of the worried wife but yes that works and gives me some advertising ideas, haha.

      That’s really cool that you know Java. Personally, I’m not much of a fan of Java. I’ve taken interest in AngularJS & Cordova recently – and will use these technologies for my next app. You can write web apps, which will compile natively to mobile apps on Android, iOS, Firefox OS, Windows Phone, etc, etc. without having to port to each individually!

      Let me know if you ever get back into the coding scene!
      DB

  • Congrats on the release of your new app. It looks fun, clean and easy to use. I know you mentioned you want to release a pro version. What would that offer that the free version doesn’t. Thanks for sharing your slick new app.

    • Hey DH,

      Not completely sure yet, as I’ve been focused on just getting functionality for this one to run properly. Now that it’s released will look into more potential features, I know we wanted to add street view (which I’ve already programmed, just not packaged), possibly sending your own pictures as well, tagging custom locations to send, automatic custom messages, the list goes on. Will decide sometime this or next week.

      Thanks for your interest!
      DB

  • Hey DB,

    Nice handy app, although I haven’t got any use for it at the moment.
    Perhaps when I have kids that are lost in the forest..? 🙂

    Anyway, it’s good to have this experience, because this taught you how to create the next Whatsapp, Snapchat or Candy Crush.. =)

    Good luck,

    DfS

    • Hi DFS,

      Or when your kid is out late at night, or when you have to pick them up somewhere and they don’t know directions, or when you’re meeting a group of friends.. You know, just a couple other uses…

      Definitely hear you on the experience, it’ll be much easier to release another app after having this under my belt. Not bad to put on a resume, either.

      Best regards
      DB

    • Thanks Tawcan!

      I do my best bud; if you have any ideas maybe we could discuss them and see how feasible they’d be. Programming apps isn’t too complicated, especially if you have any coding background.

      DB

  • Great job on the App. Now just keep as many re-usable modules, and create similar apps. And other apps that can use the same code.

    Get 100 apps out there, and you will start to have a solid user base.

    Of course, if you can develop an app that is 100% useless, but has fart noises or cute puppies, that will go viral.

    • Hey NNL,

      That’s the plan! I’d love to just have a stream of apps out on the market. I’d enjoy it just for the coding, creation and practice, etc. Making some side income would definitely be a plus, and I’d probably focus on that side of things more once I become a little more versed in app development.

      Best regards
      DB

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