What a Week, What a Week, What a Mighty Good Week

by Heather on March 12, 2012

We released Spinterest on the Android market mid-day on Saturday March 3, I was in San Francisco for work with Method & Home-Ec 101. I used the opportunity of being on the West Coast to catch a recording of TWiT; after the show I found my spine and I introduced myself and demonstrated the app for Leo Laporte and Eileen Rivera.

Since then there have been:

8,836 total installs (users) and 5,682 active installs (devices) of the free version of the app.
In only a week after going live in the market users pressed the Spin Wheel 110,000 times.
Holy cow, y’all are some spinning fools.

Sure there were some bumps, but Paul and I never expected the idea that began as an app for Pinterest to take off as it has.

Want to know how it started?

I emailed Paul a few months ago when I had the basic idea of what was Spinterest rolling around in my head. I am a casual Pinterest user, I see the appeal, but I’ve got the attention span of a coffee-guzzling squirrel and found the boards of Pinterest a bit overwhelming. I wanted a way to see one image at a time and pin it or not based on my taste. In essence, I felt it needed a little bit of serendipity.

I just wanted to know if it would be possible. I can’t remember his exact answer but it was something along the lines of yeah, probably. There was no API for Pinterest at the time, so I secured the domain and forgot all about it. Until February 8 when Kelby Carr (author of Pinterest for Dummies -you should buy this) forwarded me a link to Business Insider saying the Pinterest API was coming soon. Naturally, I pinged Paul with a “Hey, wanna try to see if we can hack together that app idea I had a while back.”

I’ve never heard Paul brag on himself, but we do live a hundred miles apart and he could be a completely different dude in Myrtle Beach for all I know, but the man is brilliant.

February 9 he showed me what was the rough draft of what is now SpinPicks and that was the beginning of something very cool.

I began to slowly invite my geekiest -and that’s a compliment in my world- friends to begin playing with the alpha test and their excitement fueled ours. We began to see that SpinPicks can be so much more than a web / Android / iOS app to randomly explore Pinterest. We realized that any platform with a strong basis in imagery was a candidate for our idea.

Now SpinPicks allows users to spin random images from:

  • Pinterest (duh)
  • TwitPic (thanks, Noah!)
  • Instagram (release that Android App already)
  • Flickr (CC-licensed)
  • Reddit: r/Pics
  • picplz

We can now allow users to use the Android App without even logging into Pinterest, which we think is pretty dang cool. We’ve evolved well beyond simply being a fun way to explore Pinterest, which makes the rebrand to SpinPicks an attractive option. We’re just waiting for instructions from the Android Market to learn whether we remedy the situation by uploading the rebranded app as an update or as an entirely new app.

Over the last week we’ve done 16 updates to the app to fix bugs and crashes and to deal with the unexpected Pinterest rate limit ( for which we now have a great solution). It was the rate limit causing people the inability to log in.

Thank you so much for being a part of our little startup. This morning’s change was just a bump in the road, if you don’t currently have the Android App go ahead and get in on the beta web for the web version. We’ll send out an announcement the moment we’re back in the market.

And don’t worry, we’re working hard on the iOS app.

Spin on!


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