This week I’ve been focusing on mobile apps for radio stations. Yesterday I covered the essential features of any radio station app and prior to that I wrote about reasons to create an appToday’s post will help you build an app.

You’ve explored the reasons to build a mobile app, and worked out what key features you need to include. Now comes time to look at building the thing. Here are the two ways you could go about it:

1. Hire a Developer

This is the most common way to get an app built. Firstly, you need to write a functional spec. This involves detailing every screen and the exact functions of each screen, button and widget. Those of us with a development background know that you need to be highly specific here or your expectations won’t be met.

You then need to go through the process of finding capable contractors, interviewing candidates, and narrowing the list down to one person or company. You then need to oversee the project, perform extensive bug testing, look after the release onto the app store, receive reports of obscure bugs from end users, then go back to step one for the next version.

Seems like a lot of work, doesn’t it? Trust me, it is. A good developer will make the process a lot easier, but there’s still a lot of work and a fair amount of risk that the developer can actually do what he promised.

2. Use an off-the-shelf ‘template’ app

This is the cheaper option. Over the years, there have been a few companies offer a ‘template’ app for radio stations. For a few hundred dollars they will customise their app for your branding. Some are as basic as one screen with your logo and a play/pause button. Others offer multiple pages and some reasonable level of customisation.

The trouble is, these apps can be fairly limiting. What happens if you have a couple of streams, multiple podcast feeds, perhaps the desire to repurpose some articles from your website, and maybe even a donations form (for not-for-profit stations)? And what happens if you need to change something on the fly? Do you have to re-contract the original company to change it and re-release the app into the various stores?

A lot of the time you can’t be this specific. You get one stream. One podcast feed. Maybe a program guide and contact form. And the original developer is always involved.

We have a solution, and I think you’re going to like it.

Over the last few months, Media Realm has been developing a highly flexible template for radio stations. The idea is simple:

You can add as many modules as you like, change the graphics, and pretty much customise everything within the app without the need for a developer. And you never need to re-release the app onto the store.

It supports iPhone and Android (version 2.2 and upwards).

You get full access to the entire source code in the event you want a developer to make some advanced changes.

It costs less than $1000!! (With no recurring fees)

We call it Crosswired.

Crosswired App Template (Small Icon)

You can inquire right now and get sent the full specs and pricing details. There’s no obligation.

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Your Radio Station

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I'm Anthony Eden, and I'm a IT Professional, Broadcast Technician, Software Developer, and Solutions Engineer. I've been working in broadcast media since 2008, and developing software and websites for just as long. Right now, I provide freelance services through Media Realm - in particular, to the media and not-for-profit industries.

Follow Anthony on Twitter: @anthony_eden