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can't_think_of_a_name

app question

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I have come up with an idea. Without going into too much detail the idea is to rent products in your area. I would create a mobile app. People would rent the product. Each transaction I would make money off of. The problem I am having is how would I confirm the transaction went  through and confirm the product was returned?

Also I know the basics of coding but never made a mobile app or anything really. I was thinking of starting off as an apple app  but eventually developing for android. Is there a way develop for both android and apple?

One problem is copycats could easily be created. Do you think the best way to avoid copycats is to get funding, assuming I could get? The app couldn't really be used until after covid is cured so it is far off.

Also how do you build an app that doesn't crash when it has too much traffic? Is it very hard to get funding? I am also planning on partnering with someone I assume I should pick someone in the same city. 
Hopefully I didn't give away the idea.

Does anyone know any good languages to create it in?

I just realized this could go in computer science area.
 

Edited by can't_think_of_a_name

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Your problem isn't going to be copycats, imo. The people who own these products you want to rent out could easily arrange something like this, and cut you out as the middle man. The owners of the product don't have your administrative problems with confirming transactions and returning the goods, so they can do this more cheaply than you can. 

The motivations to rent as opposed to purchasing are tricky. And you have to be careful, since some of the same customers who prefer to rent a product do so because they're hard on products, and expect a replacement at no charge when they break it. 

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48 minutes ago, Phi for All said:

Your problem isn't going to be copycats, imo. The people who own these products you want to rent out could easily arrange something like this, and cut you out as the middle man.

I agree; Over here we have at least one example of a concept store where there is no middle man at all. But maybe there is room for a developer to provide a platform shared by many if the middle man adds value. 

image.png.017b6abe4a5256df3c45653cb795bb54.png

But if OP wishes to compete with platforms that connects individuals to individuals rather than companies to individuals then copycats could be an issue. We have at least two such apps around here. As an individual I prefer/need a man in the middle that handles the transactions, advertising, insurance etc but I could easily with to a copycat who provides a better experience.

@can't_think_of_a_name your questions are good but tricky to answer without more context. The business in the picture could use sensors etc to automate checkout and returns. In case individuals rent from each other there are different solutions available in different countries. The apps here rely heavily on local infrastructure.

Edited by Ghideon

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11 hours ago, can't_think_of_a_name said:

Also I know the basics of coding but never made a mobile app or anything really.

Then you should start from something simpler..

Quote

I was thinking of starting off as an apple app  but eventually developing for android. Is there a way develop for both android and apple?

Check Xamarin. It is Microsoft framework.

https://dotnet.microsoft.com/apps/xamarin

 

11 hours ago, can't_think_of_a_name said:

Also how do you build an app that doesn't crash when it has too much traffic?

Apps don't crash when there is too heavy traffic to the central server but they can't connect. App should have proper network error handling code. e.g. disable wifi or LTE network in your smartphone and app can't connect, so you can test how it behaves in such situation.

11 hours ago, can't_think_of_a_name said:

Hopefully I didn't give away the idea.

Your idea is nothing novelty.

I can give you another app idea for lost items with location from gps where somebody found something, e.g. keys, phone, wallet etc. one person tells in the app "I lost this in that area (gps)" (it is send to the central server), somebody who found something tells in the app "I found this in that area". If thing matches there is made connection between people.

Edited by Sensei

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11 hours ago, can't_think_of_a_name said:

Does anyone know any good languages to create it in?

(higher level languages)

On Android you make apps in Java, Kotlin or C# (Xamarin).

On iPhone you make apps in Objective-C/C++ or Swift or Kotlin or C# (Xamarin).

ps. Or you can make web application (HTML5, CSS, JavaScript, jQuery, AJAX), which will work inside of any modern web browser..

 

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5 hours ago, Ghideon said:

I agree; Over here we have at least one example of a concept store where there is no middle man at all. But maybe there is room for a developer to provide a platform shared by many if the middle man adds value. 

image.png.017b6abe4a5256df3c45653cb795bb54.png

But if OP wishes to compete with platforms that connects individuals to individuals rather than companies to individuals then copycats could be an issue. We have at least two such apps around here. As an individual I prefer/need a man in the middle that handles the transactions, advertising, insurance etc but I could easily with to a copycat who provides a better experience.

@can't_think_of_a_name your questions are good but tricky to answer without more context. The business in the picture could use sensors etc to automate checkout and returns. In case individuals rent from each other there are different solutions available in different countries. The apps here rely heavily on local infrastructure.

Do you know the name of the store or apps so I could see what they are doing? Also sensors are expensive. I was thinking everyone who uses the app has a phone. So each phone would have a code that uses something like Bluetooth or NFC and send out a random generated code that isn't ever reused. During the rental of the item the code would be registered and the return would be registered. But this relies on good faith. Most people will follow good faith but a percentage won't. A friend suggested a rating system. I guess you could ban people below a certain star. But would that work?  

 

5 hours ago, Phi for All said:

Your problem isn't going to be copycats, imo. The people who own these products you want to rent out could easily arrange something like this, and cut you out as the middle man. The owners of the product don't have your administrative problems with confirming transactions and returning the goods, so they can do this more cheaply than you can. 

The motivations to rent as opposed to purchasing are tricky. And you have to be careful, since some of the same customers who prefer to rent a product do so because they're hard on products, and expect a replacement at no charge when they break it. 

Well I can think of a few ways around that. 1 only make money on the advertising on the platform. Can you make money off of that? 2 at a later date create an subscription fee. I assume you could create a subscription fee at a earlier date but would that work? 3 create a retail store front where everything is stored. I don't like 3. Is there anyway people would be okay with fees without cutting out the middle man as in me. Thoughts? 

Edited by can't_think_of_a_name

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Many people will pay you if you drive traffic to them. For example, if your app drives a customer to a store that rents equipment, you can earn a commission on the rental.

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24 minutes ago, can't_think_of_a_name said:

Do you know the name of the store or apps so I could see what they are doing?

The web site and app hygglo.se is one that connects individuals. Their web page is in Swedish but scroll down to the bottom to change language. Then access their FAQ to check how payment, credit check, insurance, identification etc works.
The store I mentioned above does not have an english site. They have an app where you book and pay and the phone is used to open the box containing the tool. It can be used even if the store is closed.

As for your technical question/suggestion I have no immediate feedback. Locally available infrastructure for identification and payments etc would have to be known first. Any suggestions I would make also greatly depend on the business model* and the kind of service you intend to provide. 

 

*) It may not be a good idea to post that here

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