Productivity apps comprise one of the hottest niches on the app store. For whatever reason, we simply can’t get enough todo list applications! The problem of course with these apps is that, despite being fairly simple, many of them can run you upwards of $70 by the time you purchase the Mac, iPhone and iPad versions. Even after spending all that money you don’t always get synced tasks between the various versions!
Wunderlist is the app that’s changing everything. It’s free, gorgeous, has professional features like list-sharing, exists on almost every platform you can think of and is always up-to-date no matter where you access it from.
We sat down with Robert Kock, the co-founder of 6Wunderkinder (the company behind Wunderlist) to see how they created such a successful app, why they can offer it for free and what other goodies we can expect to see in the future.
Tell us a little bit about 6Wunderkinder – where are you based, how many of you are there and how did you get started?
6Wunderkinder was founded in August 2010 by six friends in Berlin, Germany. We were running a web and design agency here in Berlin for several years and we worked together with many clients and different startups.
During that time we tried out tons of collaborative software tools and learned a lot about productivity. So we developed this idea for a productivity platform for everyone and literally two weeks later we found two business angels that helped us getting started. It was our dream coming true.
You created Wunderlist at a time when the market is nearly over-saturated with productivity applications. Why?
We ourselves have particular things in mind when it comes to great software. Fore example, good usability, mobility and, most of all, a good user interface design. We just didn’t find this one single tool that solved all of our task management problems, so we decided to make it on our own.
Wunderlist is dead simple, it looks beautiful and it provides synced and shared todo lists for every major platform. We tried to keep it clean and simple and cut every feature that is not necessary. On top of that, it is completely free. It is the combination of all these things that makes Wunderlist so wildly successful.
Wunderlist seems like it’s far too amazing to simply give away freely, how is this going to be sustainable in the long term? Should we expect to be charged for it in the future?
First of all, thanks for the compliment. We are happy about every single user and that is already part of the answer: our main goal with Wunderlist is to get as many users as possible. We just want pure growth and we want to build a huge fan base for 6Wunderkinder and our work. That’s why we give it away for free.
Nevertheless, there are thoughts about monetizing Wunderlist later this year, but we’ve decided nothing yet. We are planning to ask our user base about how we should do this. But no matter what the future holds, all the cool features like syncing and sharing will definitely stay free.
I read that you used the Titanium platform to help develop your iPhone app. Can you explain what this is and how it helped you?
Wunderlist recently crossed over a stunning one million downloads. What advice can you give other developers looking for this kind of attention?
There are two things I would recommend to everyone making software. The first one is: be honest with yourself. Do you like to use your own software? Do you really think it is good enough? You’ll probably find one or two things you want to change. Do it!
The second one is: show your application to your grandma and try to explain it to her. She doesn’t get it? Well, maybe she is just too old to understand it, but maybe you didn’t spend enough time thinking about usability and your user interface.
As you may have noticed, both pieces of advice are basically about the same truth: you already know the answer and often enough it is not really hard to find. It’s as simple as that.
You now have Wunderlist on Windows, Mac, iPad, iPhone and Android. What’s next for this great app?
We will make Wunderlist even better. We want to enhance the whole user experience, that means providing better usability, wiping out some bugs and implementing improvements and new features for the different platforms. Another big issue for us is localization. There are already many translations for the desktop apps and the web app, but parts of them are outdated by now and we still need translations for Wunderlist mobile. We are also thinking about new platforms, but I cannot say anything yet.
Your website mentions a new secret project called Wunderkit. Can you give us any hints about this new application and how it will be different than Wunderlist?
Wunderkit is the original concept of a perfect productivity platform we had in mind when we were starting. It is a platform for collaboration that will, hopefully, change the way people think about teamwork.
You can barely compare it to Wunderlist, because it is much more like an own ecosystem for productivity and not designed for a single purpose like task management. Anyway, we will reveal some Wunderkit secrets during the next weeks. I cannot say more right now, sorry!
We are extremely grateful for Robert’s willingness to give us some insight into what makes 6Wunderkinder and its products so awesome. We are super excited to see what the future holds for Wunderlist, Wunderkit and any other “wunderful” things these guys are dreaming up!
Head over to the 6Wunderkinder website to learn more about the company and download your free copy of Wunderlist, an awesome productivity solution that you’ll wonder how you ever lived without.