10 Burning Questions with Gaurav Kalra, developer of Nextgen Reader

Say hello to Gaurav Kalra, the 24 year old developer behind Nextgen Reader. Chances are you’ve probably heard of Nextgen Reader, it’s a very popular RSS feed reader. It currently has 4.5 stars in the Marketplace with over 830 reviews. We asked Gaurav some questions and got some great responses from a pure Windows developer.

1. How did you get started with Windows Phone?

When I saw Windows Phone 7 for the very first time I fell in love with it. It is one of my favorite videos and as you see, the Windows Phone user experience is terrific.

The design language (Metro) is very, very special and seeing it grow over all other Microsoft products is great, particularly Windows 8.

So, I decided to develop Nextgen Reader as I’ve been interested in many of the Microsoft technologies earlier.

2. What phone do you personally use?

I use a Samsung Focus (Also, thanks to Microsoft for providing a Nokia Lumia).

3. What was your biggest challenge in developing Nextgen Reader?

For me, the biggest challenge is always the next version. Also, I’m working hard to bring the nextgen experience on both Tablets and PCs running Windows 8.

4. What made you create an RSS reader app?

The simple fact that RSS feeds are not time critical. Even if you’re offline for a few days, Reader will continue to gather posts and once you are back – you have all the new posts waiting to be read. Combining the cloud (Google Reader) with read later services (like Readability/Pocket/Instapaper); it is very simple and comfortable to read all the news across your different devices. For example, Instapaper delivers your article to Kindle.

5. Monetization: in terms of driving revenue, can you tell us about your experience, your strategy, and the overall potential? (We know this is a touchy subject and confidential issue, but we appreciate any details you’re willing to share)

It is okay at the moment but I believe with WP8 coming soon, there is a huge potential. I’ve tried only one strategy from beginning which is trail/paid version. However, I guess many developers have better success with ads. Although I never really liked the current form of advertisement in apps and hope somebody brings a smarter way in near future. I’d happy to integrate it rather soon. Regarding download numbers, Nextgen Reader is expected to hit 40,000 by end of this month.

6. What do you want to see in Windows Phone 8?

As a consumer, I’d like to see more fragmentation (in a controlled way) that is devices with different resolutions and better hardware choices.

7. Do you develop for other platforms and how does Windows Phone compare to those platforms?

No, I haven’t developed anything commercial for other platforms.

8. If you could give one tip to fellow Windows Phone Developers, what would it be?

Just keep on improving the app – the tiny details matter the most. And try to release an update once in every 3-4 months.

9. Tell us one thing that most people don’t know about you.

I’m an avid sports fan (and I’ve quit my job to develop for Win 8).

10. Mac or PC?

100% PC. Between I can’t wait to purchase my next favorite device which is Lenovo IdeaPad YOGA Windows 8 ultrabook/tablet.

Thanks Gaurav! You can follow Nextgen reader on Twitter @ngreader, and download Nextgen Reader for $1.99/free trial from the Marketplace.

Are you interested in taking part in Developer Appreciation Month? Let us know bycontacting us with the subject “Developer Appreciation Month”. We’d love to feature your app.

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