10 Things You Didn’t Know about Planet of the Apps

10 Things You Didn’t Know about Planet of the Apps

10 Things You Didn’t Know about Planet of the Apps

Steve Jobs probably turned in his grave when he saw what was happening in the company he founded with the premiere of “Planet of the Apps.” We were all expecting Apple to outdo itself as it always have, but viewers felt the series was not up to par. If you did not watch it maybe because the negative reviews discouraged you from doing so, here are ten facts about it that might interest you.

1. It was not intended to be Apple’s debut series

Sometimes we should listen to our gut instincts. If Apple had, the big disaster in the name of “Planet of the Apps” would never have seen the light of day, probably. The series was not supposed to air on June 2017 and instead “Carpool Karaoke” was. However, for reasons best known to Apple, “Carpool Karaoke” was pushed to August 2017, and it aired for two seasons.

2. Contestants sometimes got more capital than what they were seeking

Imagine asking for a loan and getting far much more than you applied for in your account? Well, that is a rare occurrence, especially since not many financial institutions are willing to lend you money if you are only starting up your business. In “Planet of the Apps,” the contestants were competing for a slice of the $10 million from Lightspeed Venture Partners. With the detailed calculations that any lender does, some contestants were surprised to get more money than they were seeking. One developer told Entrepreneur that she received $5 million; an amount that was beyond her expectation.

3. Its venture capital partner

Lightspeed Venture Partners committed over $10 million as capital for the first season of “Planet of the Apps.” Although the pitch to the venture partner was not aired in the show, some contestants revealed that it took only about 15 minutes for Lightspeed to decide whether you deserved the funding. The firm dates back to 2000 and provides capital for businesses in technology and consumer space in their early stages. With over $4 billion assets currently, Lightspeed Venture Partners became the first outside investor in Snapchat.

4. Its panel was accused of lacking magnetic personalities

Despite the comparison to “Shark Tank,” one thing remained incomparable: the energy that the sharks had while listening to the pitches. Kevin is primarily known for being a hungry shark and will do anything to get some royalties. In “Planet of the Apps,” the advisors chosen barely said a word. The rigorous grilling we are used to on “Shark Tank” was absent, and PCMag tries to explain that it is because the four advisors are reserved people. It credits Vaynerchuk for his efforts, but the rest preferred to portray their best behavior causing the show to have minimal impact on the audience.

5. Contestants went through three stages

Filtering the more-likely-to-succeed apps from the definite failures was done in three steps. Pitches were done in an elevator such that within 60 seconds as the contestant rode down, the advisors would have heard enough to make the decision. With the help of an iPad, any advisor who liked the pitch would swipe the device to green while those who were not interested swiped red. In the next stage, the app developer would continue pitching. The advisor who had liked the idea at first was free to reject it while those who were not moved could show their interest. In the final stage, the contestants would choose the advisor they preferred to take them through the fine-tuning process. Of course, those that had all the advisors swiping red went home in the first stage.

6. Time taken to fine-tune the chosen app

After an advisor selected a contestant’s app, then they had to partner to refine it for six weeks. As with anything that needs money, one mistake could cost the app developer the much-needed cash. Therefore the six weeks were necessary to ensure that the funds sought for was obtained; after all, you only get one chance to make your first impression. The venture capital partner only needs to listen to your first five minutes to determine if your app is worth investing in or not.

7. It borrowed its concept from “Shark Tank”

There is nothing as frustrating as waiting for a new series only to find out that it is imitating what others have already done. Apple has for long been reputed as a creator of original products and services but with “Planet of the Apps” it did a significant undoing of its stellar reputation. The company announced its upcoming show in March 2016, but even the title itself gave away the lack of its creativity. After all, we all have watched “Planet of the Apes.” Further, it was highly criticized as a cross-breed between “Shark Tank” and “The Voice” with some branding it a bland knock-off of “Shark Tank.”

8. Its popularity

“Planet of the Apps” did not have a positive reception that Apple hoped for, and it ended up airing for only one season. One advisor, Gary Vaynerchuk, went ahead to opine on what could have caused the series to be a massive flop among Apple’s offerings. According to Gary, the show did not make use of the marketing opportunities it had in people like him and Jimmy Iovine as he disclosed on MacRumors. Besides, the fact that it started limiting its audience to the Apple Music subscribers negatively affected its popularity.

9. Its search for stars

As with any show about to start production, Apple had to find its stars long before it started filming. Therefore even if the series aired in June 2017, it had looked for the contestants a year before. In March 2016, Apple announced it was searching for any app developers who wanted exposure and money to kick start their business. The search deadline was August 26, 2016, so that filming could begin in Los Angeles as 2016 ended.

10. Its first episode was free

When “Planet of the Apps” aired its first episode on the midnight of June 2, 2017, it was free on planetoftheapps.com and iTunes. Unfortunately, the other nine episodes aired on Apple Music only as a perk to the subscribers. Maybe the company was hoping to get the viewers hooked with the premiere episode and then make some cash. The tables turned on them, and $9.99 proved too much for a show that was dubbed as an imitation.

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