App of the Week

For Hype Machine, iPhone is Cash Register, Android is Sandbox

anthony volodkin web For Hype Machine, iPhone is Cash Register, Android is SandboxIt took the team at Hype Machine 18 months to complete their new iPhone app, but just one day to become the #2 program among paid music apps.

“We were working on a lot of different things at once, and with a small team that really slows you down,” says Hype Machine founder Anthony Volodkin. Moving a big portion of the teams work to MongoDB really helped. “Now that these things are done, we can create new things faster.” The app released today was built in just a few months.

An Android app is on the list of projects, but Volodkin says the approach will be very different. “I think for us, the Android will be more about collaborating with the developer community and having them come up with cool things to build using our API.”

Apple’s ecosystem is a curated experience in which users are much more likely to pay for goods and services. Android is a bit wilder, more fragmented, but with a freedom that makes it ripe for experimentation. “There are a number of challenges there, but I think it’s a cool playground,” says Volodkin.

The more rigid constraints of iOS were helpful, says Volodkin, for building his first mobile app. “We are used to building on the web, where there is more flexibility, so to find a good way to boil down the Hype Machine experience to its core was difficult. The iPhone really makes you prioritize.”

Volodkin has found the mobile app changes the way he listens. “I found I pay more attention,” he told Betabeat. “When you are using the website, it’s so easy to jump to something else the moment your mind wanders, that it’s easy not to leave the same amount of space in your mind for the new music. The app’s flow is different, so you get more focus.”

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