Comercial J2ME product
Thursday, May 12, 2005
J2ME applications are bound to become popular at some point. It is taking a while, though. Let's see how J2ME applications do in the next couple of years now that RIM is almost as popular as sliced bread.
The advantage of the BlackBerries, for us Java developers, is the fact that we don't have to worry about the JVM - We can assume it is pre-installed.
I've developed a couple of custom J2ME apps in the past (2002). One of the most interesting ones was a prototype
application to read from a serial port into a J2ME enabled phone (Motorola i85) and store the read information into a J2EE application via HTTP. Pretty cool stuff, I think. This particular application is too specialized to be sold commercially and needs too much customization.
So, I decided to try the J2ME shrink wrap application market with a couple of application I'm currently developing.
The first application I'm currently selling is a Histogram Calculator for J2ME
devices via Handandgo
Handandgo is an interesting software distribution company. They take 40% of the sale and 60% goes the creator of the software. It's definitely not cheap to distribute your software on handango, however, they take care of all cost of distribution and payment fulfillment.
For small software vendors (like myself, currently) it is a "good" deal. I.e. marketing software can get quite expensive and time consuming.
So, for the $9.99 sale price of my application, handandgo gets $3.99.
I'll keep track of how many sales my program generates. To give you an example of my expected revenues, if my application were to be sold 250 times:
Total: $9.99 x 250 = $2,497.50
Jose's money: $2,947.50 x .6 = $1,498.50
Handandgo's money: $989.00
Not bad, but, this application would have to generate many thousands of paid downloads to make this whole experiment profitable. And unless there is an extremely high demand for mobile statisticians, I don't think I'll stop the other aspect of my current career
. But, you just never know. Did you know you need a Histogram Calculator for your mobile device? :)
In the end, I'm doing it more for the experience and to keep up to date with J2ME market. It's bound to really pick up.
I'm also a great believer of merging the large with the small. In this case: J2EE with J2ME - I'm predicting that phone banking will be as big as web banking is now.
BTW, I realize that if I wanted to sell J2ME application on Handango for a living, I should start inventing better looking apps or just create J2ME games that are part instant messaging programs/part shoot them up game, that let you take pictures of you while playing, and download music tones that play constantly as your reward.
BTW2, if you buy it and send me an email, I will send you the source code, which is worth much more than $9.99 - I.e. J2ME doesn't calculate Normal distributions given than java.lang.Math.exp() doesn't exist in the CLDC profile.