Dr. Mohan Noone, a doctor of neurology, developed a strong interest in programming while in school. Inspired by the app industry’s fast growth and the accessibility of the Android platform, he created a functional app called Indian Train Status. To reach more users and maximize revenue generated by the app, Noone partnered with Google and AdMob. After listing the app in the Google Play store and optimizing AdMob banner ad placements, app downloads jumped to more than 5 million and revenue increased 10X.
Turning an idea into reality
In 2011, Noone came across a service that provided live train status updates. As a commuter, he saw the value in this service – as a developer, he saw even greater opportunity in bringing that information to mobile devices. Noone began building a more accessible and functional app: Indian Train Status.
Noone purchased an Android phone and a book about how to develop for Android. After a few weeks of learning and building, his app was ready to use. Now, he faced a new challenge: bringing his app to market and capitalizing on his creation.
Getting the word out with Google
Noone made sure that his app provided a unique service to stand out among other similar apps by providing live train status updates. He also made the user experience his primary focus by creating a simple, yet functional, interface. By emphasizing ease-of-use, Noone kept the app compact and streamlined at only 390kb.
As a hobbyist and independent developer with limited resources, Noone was drawn to Google’s open and accessible platform. He listed Indian Train Status in the Google Play store, where he was able to promote his app to a much larger, tailored audience. In just 3 years, Indian Train Status has grown to over 5 million downloads and is used more than 500k times each day.
Google has created an amazing collaborative economy which creates a massive opportunity for people to reach a global audience with their ideas. I am extremely grateful for this opportunity and it has been the defining story of my life!
, Founder , Indian Railway Train Status
Monetizing for success
Several months after release, Noone began to look at ways to earn revenue from his popular app. Noone decided that implementing a variety of AdMob ad formats would be a good fit. First, he incorporated banner ads. After adjusting the banner ad location, his results skyrocketed, increasing revenue 10X.
Next, Noone added interstitials to the mix. The results were impressive, tripling revenue overnight. Noone believed it was important not to overwhelm users with ads, so he decided not to show interstitials in every session. Instead, he randomly triggered the loading, which he has found to be more widely accepted and appreciated by users.
Climbing to the #1 spot
Indian Train Status has undergone impressive growth over the years, thanks to Noone’s dedication to a positive user experience and his partnership with AdMob. Indian Train Status eventually climbed to the number one position in Google Play’s Travel & Local segment in 2015.
Today, Noone has more than five apps in the Google Play Store and he uses AdMob’s house ads to cross-promote his offerings, leading to continued success.