Writing by Peter Hilton

Start-up ideas for apps

Apps that someone else is going to sell if you don’t 2018-06-29 #startups

Janko Ferlič

  1. 2014 ideas
  2. 2015-2017 ideas
  3. 2018 app ideas ←
  4. 2018 development ideas
  5. 2018-2019 ideas
  6. 2020 ideas
  7. 2021 ideas
  8. 2022 ideas

Back in December 2014, I explained why Start-up company ideas are cheap, and included a bunch of free ideas by way of illustration. Once you’ve started recognising silly ideas as no less plausible than VC-funded start-ups’ business plans, it’s fun to keep sharing them. Here are some more, just for app developers.

The usual rules apply: these ideas are free, because it’s execution that counts. However, if you get funding to pursue one of these then you’d be smart to hire me as an innovation consultant.


Email app that automatically identifies versions of the same document, to make attachment-oriented version control easier.

Email client that learns what salutation I use for each of my contacts, so I don’t have to laboriously type ‘Hi Bob!’ etc.

Mail client that de-duplicates corporate legal disclaimers that accumulate at the bottom of email reply chains.


Twitter client that automatically hides duplicate tweets that plagiarise tweets you’ve already seen.

Twitter client that automatically records which tweets made you laugh, and how much, so you can browse recent funny tweets.

App that searches social media to find and credit the original source of the popular new jokes that immediately get ripped off.

A version of Twitter for people writing in Dutch and German that allows 50% more characters.

Twitter/Facebook client that automatically hides fake news stories and hoaxes that have already been debunked by Snopes.

Eating and drinking

App that generates a unique one-time Starbucks name, maybe using What’s My Starbucks Name?.

Chef Stalker - app that notifies you when a chef/sommelier quits a restaurant you (used to) like to start a new restaurant.


App that measures how wonky your table is, and 3D-prints specially-sized little feet to make it flat and stable again.

Re-release old text-only adventure games in chatbot format.

Mobile app for writers that feeds daily word count to health apps as activity data.

List-sharing app that generates a whole website full of listicles with clickbait headlines. For no reason.

For more occasional start-up ideas, follow @PeterHilton on Twitter.

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