To say that mobile apps have profoundly changed our lives would be an understatement. Today it is very hard to imagine a world without apps like Twitter, Facebook, Whatsapp or Instagram.

Many people check their smartphones as soon as they wake up – and most of the time, what they’re looking at is the content of different apps.

Statistics on smartphone usage show that the average person spends 2 hours and 51 minutes per day on their mobile device. But that’s not all: 22% of people check their phone every few minutes, and 51% check it several times an hour.

An app can be an incredibly successful consumer product. But it can also become a driver of change within an organization, offering companies the opportunity to become more agile and to reorganize their internal processes.

If you’re thinking of building an app for your business, you’re probably wondering where the biggest ideas in mobile development history have come from. This blog post gives you a complete list of steps to take to come up with a new app idea that will only disrupt the market.

10 steps to find a new app idea

how to find a new application idea

Step 1: Identify an issue for which there is no application yet

One of the most common scenarios among successful app founders is that they were faced with a problem that they felt no app could help solve. Consumers and businesses constantly face different issues. What’s the easiest way to share files? What’s the fastest way to buy an item? These are just a few of the problems consumers and businesses face every day.

Look at your life and take a closer look at your day, analyzing every moment. You might find that there are, in fact, a lot of issues that still need to be fixed – and that there aren’t any apps that do yet. Which is the most painful? Can it be solved with an app? Bingo, you have just come across a potentially valuable application idea.

Step 2: Don’t think about the business side of things (yet)

Even the best idea doesn’t translate into an amazing business, at least during its early days. The best apps are those that have been designed to convince people. If the users of your app just love the experience that your app provides, you can always find new ways to make money later on.

Did you know that Whatsapp didn’t make any money at first, although at the moment it’s probably the most used app in the world? Don’t be afraid to go this way and create traction for your app right from the start, without worrying about monetization just yet.

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Step 3: Adjust an existing application

Is there an app you use when you actually hate the experience it offers? Are you wondering how it is possible that it was so successful? This could be your idea for an app. Take a closer look and think about how the experience could be improved.

Is there a way to further improve an existing application to solve a given problem?

You can always find areas for improvement. Take the example of Instagram. Instagram copied the stories feature from Snapchat. But today, no one remembers it, because Instagram made the feature so good.

how to find a new application idea

Keep your eyes and ears open! Conversations you hear standing in line at the grocery store or on the bus can be a great source of information about the kind of apps that would make people’s lives easier.

Step 4: brainstorm ideas

Many great apps have come about from the combination of two totally disconnected industries. For example, Uber for groceries is InstaCart. And you could say Get Around is like Airbnb for cars. By combining different ideas and brainstorming them, you could get a lot of new creative material. Keep doing this exercise and you will get better every day.

The advantage of this method is that you can do it at any time of the day – for example, when you are commuting to work or standing in line. Observe your surroundings closely; they are often an excellent source of ideas and opportunities. You might come across a good idea because you saw a situation in a supermarket or overheard a conversation between two people by pure accident.

Step 5: Browse the app stores

A good place to search is the Google Play Store or the Apple App Store. The fact that the mobile scene is overcrowded can be a good thing. To avoid competition, you have to have a really good idea.

Check out different apps that solve a similar issue you had in mind and check out the reviews. If these reviews are bad, then it’s a chance for you to improve the experience with your own app. For example, you can find a lot of travel booking apps, but only a few of them are widely used by people because they provide a good experience.

Find out what your competition is doing well, but also what they are doing wrong.

You can also develop a successful app idea by targeting a niche. For example, you can create an app, especially for business trips or book luxury hotels.

Step 6: Keep an eye on the startups that are funded

Another way to approach mobile app development is to explore ideas that seem to be of interest to investors. Keep a close eye on investors you think are knowledgeable in the field and determine their investments. Many VCs and Accelerators are looking for startups that realize ideas with a lot of potentials.

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They share their investment ideas and news on their websites, blogs and social media. You can also take a look at the investor portfolio pages and develop an investment landscape map to understand which companies gain attention and manage to secure substantial funding.

Knowing which business areas are getting a lot of attention, you might come across an idea that offers a unique take on what is already gaining traction.

how to find a new application idea

Browse app stores and social media for inspiration. You don’t have to come up with a whole new app idea. Sometimes building something better than the competition is just enough to find a loving audience and be successful.

Step 7: seek inspiration on social media

There are a few places where you can find incredible inspiration for new products and services. Instagram feeds, Reddit feeds, Facebook groups or LinkedIn groups are some really amazing places to energize your creativity.

Social networks are a gold mine for a better understanding of your target audience.

You can check what people think, listen to people’s weak spots, and better understand your niche. Take advantage of the information shared by people who are already looking for solutions to their problems.

Step 8: Build a long-term vision

Create your own vision of the future by playing with app ideas. Some of the best app ideas came about when the founders got really innovative and thought ahead of their time. Apps like Uber or Airbnb play a key role in the lives of consumers and are radically changing industries precisely because of this. Their founders created ideas that offered a future vision of the services that already existed.

So let your imagination run wild and think about the future. Your idea may not be instantly relevant to the present time. That is why the real challenge is to keep your flame alive and wait for the right moment to reveal it to the world. Take action as soon as you can. If you wait too long you might be too late and someone will claim this idea for themselves.

Step 9: Take breaks to get away from the problem

Take regular breaks and get away from the current problem. Keep an open mind to new ideas.

If you get too involved in the process, you risk losing sight of the big picture.

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So get out of your home or office, take a walk, jog in the park, or walk your dog. As you do so, focus on what is going on around you.

How do people interact with the space around them?

What can you do to help them become more effective at solving a particular problem?

How can you do it differently from others?

By keeping an open mind and asking such questions, you will slowly come to the problem which could be exactly the idea you were looking for.

Step 10: Do your research

Finding a new app basically comes down to researching your niche. When looking for ideas, research e is inevitable. This not only allows you to get closer to new concepts but also to explore the potential market for your mobile application.

If you’re playing around with a business idea but aren’t sure where to start, it’s a good idea to strip down that idea first and create a proof of concept, pilot app, or minimum viable product (MVP). They all help validate ideas in the marketplace and test them with real users.

how to find a new application idea

Confused about where to start with building your new app? Consider outsourcing R&D services. In software companies like Napollo, there are many experts ready to help you with your project – from idea to design to development.

Outsourcing of R&D

To validate your app idea, consider teaming up with a software development agency that offers research and development services. This is especially important for founders and business owners who are looking to launch a new product but don’t know how to start the process to make it most effective.

At Napollo, we offer R&D services backed by many years of success to help our customers find new ideas, validate them in the market and move through the different stages of product development together. With this kind of support, you can be sure that your idea has a good chance of success.


We hope this article shows you how easy – and at the same time difficult – it is to come up with a great idea for a new app.

It is undeniable that the application market is overcrowded and there are many applications competing with each other. However, by coming up with a unique idea and building an app using a modern technology stack, you can increase the chances of its success in the market.

Contact us if you want to start refining your idea; our consultants can assist you at any stage of product development so that you deliver the best possible product to your target audience.

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