Basic Functionality Is Still Too Much Functionality

One trap I always fall into when developing a product is trying to deliver a product rich with features. Most of the time I catch myself, and step back to the basic functionality that I suspect the user would expect, this is often referred to as the 80/20 rule:

“80% of your customers will use 20% of the features”.

The problem is that the basic functionality that the user expects is still far more than I can usually handle to develop when starting a new venture. The trick is to forget what you think the user would expect and just go with the core value add. So more like 90/10 rule.

Google Maps today released a feature to suggest alternate routes more than 4 years after its initial debut. Not taking into account all the other cool features they’ve released over the years, I would have assumed this to be a basic feature.

When developing our Clickable Video studio, we thought that it will be too much work for the user to make videos clickable manually using a simple interpolation algorithm. So we set out to develop a tracking feature: letting the user select an object only once, and the computer doing the rest. One year of development later, we lost focus and motivation, even though we ended up developing the feature.

Get your product out to the user as fast as possible and feed on the feedback as motivation.