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It's probably good to start the explanation of what a 'Spec App' is by offering a definition of 'spec'. This is from Wikipedia which captures the gist of our thinking.
"Spec work" or speculative work, work done "on speculation" ("on spec"), meaning that the person or company that did the work did so at their own expense, with the hope that the demonstrable results would spur sales, convincing customers to pay for future such work.
So in a sense, a spec app is one we build at our expense against the promise of future sales and payment. Let's delve a bit deeper.
'Spec apps' are risky for us, we invest the time and technology to create an application. Because of that we need to be selective in what we create and how large a project we take on. We also need to make sure it fits our current technology tool set and skills. We will not work outside of what we currently use. There are too many platforms and we invest our time and energy into a just few of them.
We need to understand how this application is different from those in the marketplace, the target market, your vision for it, and more. Once we agree to to do the project as a 'spec app or spec work' we need to agree about recovering our development costs. How will we get paid in the future is the question we need to ask and answer. There is no single method that can work so it needs negotiation and agreement.
While we will create the application, we will not market it nor be involved in business operations. That’s not our 'thing' as they say. We do however expect that you to explain how you see marketing the solution to the target audience. Like you, we live or die off of future sales. Understanding how those will happen is important to us.
Hope this helps, if you have an interest in exploring the possibilities please contact us.