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What are citizen developers?

In 2009, Apple ran a series of commercials that put the phrase “There’s an app for that” in the minds of millions of Americans. Almost a decade later, there are even more apps that do even more specific tasks. But while there are apps that can tell you in a pirate’s voice where you parked or prevent you from drunk-dialing an ex, many need apps that are so specific and customized that they have to develop them. This is particularly true with departments or teams operating inside of a business or organization.

What are citizen developers?

Plenty of computer whizzes are fluent in a number of programming languages and can develop a custom app that can help increase efficiencies in a supply chain or help a project management team rein in a complex project. But increasingly, the trend is turning towards citizen development to create these apps.

A citizen developer is someone who doesn’t necessarily know any programming languages and who might not even have a background in computers, but who nonetheless can piece together an app or a website that traditionally required specialized coding knowledge.

Virtually anyone can become a citizen developer. For example, people who create their own website though Squarespace or Wix are citizen developers. When you set up a page through WordPress or Tumblr you’re a citizen developer.

Similarly, AppSheet allows people with no specialized knowledge to create their own apps. With a spreadsheet and an idea you can become a citizen developer and create an app to suit your unique business needs.

Why kind of apps are they creating?

Who’s developing and using these custom apps? AppSheet data shows that users come from all sectors of the economy, which is evident by looking through some of the sample apps on their website.

As far as what industries use AppSheet the most, the top two are Education (12.4% of total users) and Non-Profit (15.2%). Other major industries include Business Services, Construction, Medical, Technology, Manufacutring, Retail and Transportation.

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Within these various industries, AppSheet app creators come from almost every department (see more details in the pie chart below).

App by Function-1.png

We hate to bog you down with all these numbers, but they are proof that virtually anyone with a need for an app can create one to suit their unique business needs.

More than 12,000 people are using AppSheet apps daily, with time-on-app averaging between 15 and 20 minutes a day. This proves that not only can you create customized apps, but that people will use your apps.

You’ve probably spent some time customizing your Facebook page or Twitter handle. Creating your own app is only slightly more complicated, but much more useful!

More about Citizen Developer and AppSheet App Creators:

Free Sample Apps

Posted by Gwen Chen on Aug 22, 2017 7:01:00 AM