Monday, June 25, 2012

GoMobileKC Recap: Mobile Entrepreneurs & App Developers Ready to Change the World

“We live in a different world now…do you guys see it? The world has changed and as a result of it we have to change.”  These were the opening words from Vince Vaughn, CEO of Why Status Quo and host of the GoMobileKC mini conference last Thursday.  GoMobileKC was a component to One Week KC, a 9-day endeavor to make Kansas City the most entrepreneurial city in the nation. 

This event brought in app developers and mobile entrepreneurs from around the Midwest who were ready to do exactly what Vaughn stated at the beginning of the conference—change.  More specifically, the attendees were ready to create change for others through the use of mobile technology.  The conference also showcased two of the city’s best mobile talent—Captain Dan Stratman, mastermind behind the Airport Life app and Kirk Hasenzahl, CEO of Rarewire

The old adage, “Do what you know” was all the inspiration Stratman needed to create his app in 2010.  As a former pilot, he utilized his knowledge of the airline industry as his competitive advantage among the pre-existing airline apps and since then has seen it grow to 21,000 downloads without any formal marketing.  Stratman advised the crowd that creating an app was a long and frustrating process full of challenges.  He noted that if an entrepreneur decides to develop an app, it’s important to be passionate, learn everything there is to know about the business world, use marketing, learn technology and most importantly, do not be afraid to ask for help.

Hasenzahl’s inspiration did not come from a quote but rather a device; Apple’s iPad.  The size of the screen spawned the idea for his company Rarewire, which provides a service that allows others to create apps without being a programmer.  With 10 billion app downloads in 2011 and an expected 185 billion downloads in 2014, it is no doubt Hasenzahl joined the right industry two years ago.  “It’s a gold rush,” he said, “and you want to be the guy selling the shovels.”  Hasenzahl predicts industry growth within app promotion, rich media ad service, and mobile/app security and promoted inspiration for individuals pondering the app world to get out there and go for it.

The conference ended with the announcement of an iPad 3 winner and what Vaughn described as a “Town Hall meeting” type discussion.  Attendees and speakers were able to interact through open forum and share expertise on various components of the mobile industry. 

Want to see what you missed out on? Check out Why Status Quo’s live stream from the conference!   

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