AdMob

Introducing our AdMob Student App Challenge judges

Now that we’re two months away from the deadline of June 28, 2016 to submit your app and business report for the AdMob Student App Challenge, we’d like to introduce our judges via a three-part blog post. They’re a panel of six industry experts who will judge the final round of the judging process and decide the Grand Prize winner.

The Grand Prize winner will score a week-long trip to San Francisco, including a visit to Google’s headquarters in Mountain View, as well as have their app featured on the Google Play store. To help you better prepare, we’d like to share some of the insights we gained from getting to know them as well as what, in their view, makes a great app!

Introducing our AdMob Student App Challenge judges 1

Chris Akhavan

President of Publishing @Glu Mobile, a leading global developer in gaming


What is your background and experience working with apps?

I'm currently the President of Publishing at Glu Mobile (we make mobile games like Kim Kardashian: Hollywood, Racing Rivals, and Cooking Dash), and prior to that I was the SVP of Partnerships at Tapjoy (a mobile ad network I joined in the early days and helped grow from 10 people to 300+ and $120MM+ [revenue?]/year). 

What is the most important thing you look for when reviewing an app?

A simple and clean user experience. Great mobile apps immediately delight users within the first 30 seconds and deliver value with ease.

What tip(s) would you would give to a new app developer building their first app?

The biggest mistake I see new developers make is forgetting that they are designing for a very small device. I often see new developers using tiny fonts that are hard to read on a phone, and placing too many intricate buttons in the UI. Look at apps like Instagram and Clash Royale for inspiration on clear and simple mobile design.

Anything else you want student developers to know?

I'm excited to check out your apps!

Introducing our AdMob Student App Challenge judges 2

Purnima Kochikar

Director of Business Development for Google Play, Google


What is your background and experience working with apps?

I lead the team that works with all the apps and games developers on Android/Google Play globally. I was also a software engineer in my past life and wrote apps - but that was a LONG time ago.

What is the most important thing you look for when reviewing an app?

  • Utility (does it have a clear purpose - and that could be fun)
  • Beauty (is it well designed?)
  • Creativity (is it an innovative solution for the problem being tackled?)

What are some golden rules of good app design? 

The rule I like best is the 1-minute value - the user should get the full sense of your app within a minute.  Uber is a great example - within a minute you get all the information you need about finding a ride. To be able to do that Uber has reduced input required from the user by using the sensors on the device - such as GPS.

Anything else you want student developers to know?

Follow your heart - build something to solve a problem or create an fun experience that truly matters to you. The best apps are those that come from a deep-rooted interest in the topic.

Well folks, there you have it! We hope that these tips and advice can help guide you as you continue to build your app! Stay tuned for two more posts about our judges in the coming weeks.

If you’d like to learn more about the judging process please visit our AdMob Challenge judges page for more details. Lastly, remember to continue to follow us on Twitter, and keep an eye on #AdMobSAC16 too, for regular updates on the challenge.