As a founder, I'm a Hacker News addict. It's one of my goto sites whenever my brain is hungry for content. For all its classic simplicity and lovability though, the HN experience isn't great on mobile.
We're changing that. Today, we released Akepa. It's our take on what a modern, deliberately designed HN client should be (on a side note, it's 100% Swift).
Given the demographics and nature of HN, we were sure that there had to be a good HN app. So we looked. It was a crowded marketplace. There are two iPhone 6 screens worth of HN apps that I tried out. Many weren't serious projects, and more still no longer loaded data. Lots had pre-iOS 7 interfaces. Some had intrusive ads. There were a few that we actually liked (MiniHack, NewsYC). But with utmost respect and love to the other indie makers out there, nothing clicked.
Reddit has a pretty spiffy app, so why not HN we thought? You can guess what came next. We set out to create a HN client that would do the community justice.
Users of the app would be doing a lot of reading so information had to be structured and presented in an obvious, low friction manner. Aesthetically, we needed a pleasing design that paid attention to the little details. A few months of design and development passed, here we are today. As it stands, there is much more that we actually wanted to be in the app. But what is here is our MVP.
Akepa is a free download, so you can try it with no risk. There is a Pro unlock for users who want to post/vote. We would love to hear your feedback. Oh, and see if you can manage to figure out the hidden threads of meaning in the app icon.
Will we make money from this? No. We worked out the numbers. You'd laugh. This is us doing our part for a community we cherish.
Before signing off, I'd like to give a shout out all of our beta testers - your testing and feedback was invaluable.