Apple SVP Eddy Cue definitely thinks that Apple has “The Right Stuff”, as he unveiled a trailer for the show last night at the Recode Code Media conference. After watching the trailer below, you wouldn’t be far from the mark if you likened “Planet of the Apps” to a somewhat hollow mashup of “The Voice” and “Shark Tank”.
Developers present their idea for an app to a celebrity panel; one of which they select to help them bring their app concept to life. It’s an interesting-sounding concept, but the panel of celebrity mentors leaves much to be desired. You’ll find "big names" such as Gwyneth Paltrow, Will.i.am and Jessica Alba, which aren’t exactly the first names that come to mind when you think app development. The panel is anchored by someone who brings a lot more credibility to table, Gary Vaynerchuck, who is the CEO of VaynerMedia. Apple states that these are “four of the world’s most culturally influential entrepreneurs.”
Each developer that pitches an idea is only given 60 seconds to find a taker as they descend down a slow-moving escalator — yes, you heard that correctly. Those that make the cut can choose a mentor and work with their group of advisors to refine the product. Advisors from Yelp, Uber and musical.ly can be brought in to help to get the apps prepared for a final pitch to Lightspeed Venture Partners for a chance to score up to $10 million in funding.
Reaction to the trailer has been for the most part been mixed from the tech community, with RealMac Software founder tweeting:
Apple should be producing amazing content like Netflix Originals does. Not this garbage. I am disappointed.— Dan Counsell (@dancounsell) February 14, 2017
Tweetbot developer Paul Haddad added:
It’s like a super cringe worthy version of Shark Tank. And why do all the “devs” look like they are 20?https://t.co/QI70X8hVZ0— Paul Haddad (@tapbot_paul) February 14, 2017
Even Apple watcher Marco Arment got in on the beatdown, tweeting:
I’m sure Planet of the Apps will be a great show for all of those people who bug developers with their awful ideas. https://t.co/PORl3y4t1Y— Marco Arment (@marcoarment) February 14, 2017
What do you folks think? Does Apple have a chance here with Planet of the Apps, or should the company stick to what it does best: hardware and software?