The global market for mobile application technology should top $25 billion by 2015. If you’d like to get a piece of this action by developing and marketing an app, experts recommend that you take these steps:
- Follow the rules. Starting any business requires following a series of steps (from registration to hiring employees). These 10 Steps to Starting a Business will help you check all the necessary boxes.
- Expect to be monitored. Apps come under intense scrutiny. Negative reviews from consumers and experts, complaints, and horror stories can be fatal. Although regulation of the mobile market is in its infancy, online apps fall under the scrutiny of truth-in-advertising and data privacy laws regulated by the Federal Trade Commission’s (FTC) Bureau of Consumer Protection.
- Disclose all charges up front. Developing a custom app can be costly. If you try to recoup some of this investment by charging users, state these fees clearly and completely. Full disclosure is essential if children will use your app. If parents learn their child has racked-up unauthorized fees because your policy wasn’t clear, you’ll face a customer relations nightmare.
- Consult a lawyer. Because every app start-up is unique, get advice from an attorney who specializes in privacy and consumer protection law.