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Frequently Asked Questions
How much does it cost, How long will it take, Who owns what, and other excellent questions.
How much does it cost to develop an application?
Rough costs for development - If you look through our portfolio, the applications you see took an average of 3 weeks each to write and debug. We have a 4 person application team; a physics programmer, a general programmer, an artist who has a combination of skills (including the ability to communicate effectively with the programmers), and me, the guy who handles all the administrative details of getting the project out the door, commercializing it, and keeping the office running. Our studio costs run about $200 an hour. If we are efficient with our development process, our average app costs between $5,000 and $10,000 per platform.
What is your development process like?
We use the agile development method. Although different projects have used it in varying ways, we keep as small a loop as possible when developing new ideas and features. Although we create design specs, design docs, and paper maps, and we still use a large and active white board to help plan our productions, we focus a lot of our energy on creating “quick specs” for new features. We like to get a rough version of the app together as quickly as possible. A quick, working prototype and an open iterative process allows us to test and refine our concepts quickly and efficiently. This means we can show our client daily progress and make changes immediately. For us, the flexibility of constantly evaluating what's working and what's not, and making changes quickly, represents the true power and efficiency of agile development.
Will you prepare the description and coordinate with the iPhone App Store and the Android Marketplace?
We will prepare all of the marketplace documentation and images, and upload the application to Apple’s iStore, the Android Marketplace, and the Amazon App Store. We will also assist you in making the application downloadable from your site.
If needed, could your company provide weekly meeting/daily reporting/monthly reporting?
We will adhere to whatever reporting schedule works best for you. We have found daily reports with screen shots, working prototypes, and concept art is the best way to guarantee our clients are getting exactly what they want. Once the application is released (version 1.0), we provide weekly bug reports and monthly download reports.
How long you have been developing mobile applications?

ActionXL began life as the application division of Kionix, Inc., a MEMS accelerometer and gyroscope manufacturer in Ithaca, NY. The application division was formed in early 2003 to design and create demonstration software to promote the use of accelerometers and gyroscopes in consumer electronics.

The application demos we created spanned several different markets including video games, health and fitness, medical monitoring, and rescue services. Although the demos were well received and aided the Kionix sales effort, customers wanted complete applications. The application group grew to incorporate the skill sets required to deliver finished games and applications.

ActionXL was officially formed in 2006 as a wholly owned subsidiary of Kionix. We focused our development efforts on designing and creating video games for our USB motion sensing game controllers, and started concepting games and applications for cell phones and handheld gaming systems.

By 2008, accelerometers had found their way into a wide range of consumer electronics; cell phones, game controllers, cameras, binoculars, navigation systems, MP3 players, and handheld gaming devices. Many of our initial concept demos were turned into finished games and commercial applications.

In February of 2010, ActionXL was acquired by the original employees and became an independent game and application development studio. We expanded our platforms to include Android and iPhone, and began promoting the branding of our cell phone games and applications.

We remain committed to the same best practices we have employed since we first started creating applications in 2003. Our business relationships are founded on trust and credibility, and we go to great lengths to help our clients be successful.

What apps do you have in the app store?

Please visit our Portfolio page for our current listing of applications, the markets they are in, and their current download numbers.

Can you develop the mobile app for all platforms?

We only develop applications for Android and iPhone.

What is your required timeframe for developing and implementing the mobile app?

Most of the applications you see in our portfolio took between 2 and 4 weeks.

May I talk to a couple of clients for whom you have coded apps?

Absolutely. We are happy to provide you with a list of previous clients.

Who will own the proprietary rights to the app?

Each of us will retain all IP rights we had prior to execution of a contract. You will own all IP developed for your application. The content of your application is proprietary information, and will be kept confidential by ActionXL and not disclosed to any third party without your consent.

Will we be able to make our own updates to the app?

You will be able to change content on the web site, if that is your primary delivery vehicle. Alterations to the phone source code would require our participation. We will provide a detailed quote for any updates, changes, and added features.

Do application advertisements generate much income or is the majority of revenue from the application itself?

Our apps don't generate much income and the data we see says the majority of independent developers don't. Advertising revenue from our most popular application (~200,000 downloads) is about $75 a month. We also sell a couple of our apps. None have generated more than a few hundred dollars. Needless to say, we're not getting rich on our banner ad or direct sales revenue.

Our business model relies on creating new applications for clients, branding our own applications (the story on our site about Johnson Level & Tool is an example of how that works) and licensing engines (e.g.. CRADAR) to 3rd parties.

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