So the candidates are woken at stupid o’clock to be told about their next task: developing a new mobile phone app. They have 2 days to design, launch and promote the new mobile app. And the winner is the one with the most downloads in 24 hours.
Unfortunately the boys “appsolutely” can’t resist making lots of puns using the word app. Then Vincent Disneur demonstrates why he’s a salesman by asking if they’d had an apple. Not quite a pun now is it?
When the teams arrive they’re briefed at leading app developer Grapple by chairman John Clayden. He tells them that something like 10 billion downloads for apps are likely this year.
When it comes to choosing the boys project manager the obvious choice seems to be Leon as he’s already been looking at developing an app for his own business. And then Soupman (Jim Eastwood) weighs in and gives him his vote, which looks to persuade everyone else! So Leon gets the job!
Over with the girls there’s a distinct lack on people putting themselves forward as Edna Agbarha makes it clear that she want the role.
The teams will be pitching to a group of geeks at a convention at Earls Court Exhibition centre and 3 technology web sites (Wired, Pocketlint, Techcrunch (Europe)) to encourage people to download their app.
The girls go to the market
Felicity Jackson discovers early on her interviews that any app they create needs to be very easy to use, “idiot friendly.” I’d have also asked the people to show me the apps they use the most on their phone, after all actions speak louder than words.
When the girls get together with their friendly app developers Susan Ma breaks cover and discovers she can’t get her point across, even though she confesses she’s just thought of it and it’s a brilliant idea!
Felicity and the market research sub-team return to Edna, who has been struggling in an ideas desert. Felicity immediately suggests an interesting, although annoying app, where you have noises on your phone to annoy other people. So the app is sorted, all we need is a rubbish name – Ampiapp! The girls widen the sounds their app will provide to include celebrations and animal noises, including a cat’s meow done by Melody Hossaini.
After the app is developed each team will do a pitch at a conference where a load of geeks will be located.
Despite a reasonable suggestion from her team that as Melody sells to teenagers she should do the pitch Edna decides the one to do it will be… herself! Melody tries to help Edna by telling her that for 13 years she’s been giving presentation to upwards of 3,000 teenagers at a time. Now if it was me it would seem that the pitch should be done with someone with that vast amount of experience. But apparently Edna has weighed up her teams strengths and decided it’s better if she does it. A strange decision and if Edna doesn’t go this time she wont make it to the final.
When Edna does her pitch to 500 of the conference attendees she really does an extremely confident but strangely unappealing and weak presentation and without telling people how to download the app.
The boys don’t need market research
They certainly don’t seem to need market research as they have inventor Tom Pellereau coming up with a raft of ideas for apps. Even if one or two seem strange, like why would you be interested in the temperature a year ago?
Finally Glenn Ward comes up with an uninspiring insults with a regional accent app…ok, but I suspect whilst it appeals to boys/men women wont be particularly impressed by it, so cutting its download potential by 50% at a stroke.
Leon should really have squashed this idea at its birth as it was uninspiring and they should have all thought about whether everyone they knew would download it.
Soupman (aka Jim Eastwood) comes up with Slangatang as the name for the app. The slang they record doesn’t really sound particularly funny, yet the boys fall about laughing.
When they pitch Vincent comes unglued and makes what is probably the worst presentation I’ve seen for quite a while. Soupman managed to resurrect the dying pitch until Vincent actually thought it had gone down well.
Soupman takes over to do the pitch to the team from Wired who seem quite underwhelmed by the app that is presented and point out that it could be quite offensive because of the stereotypes it portrays.
When the boys do the pitch to the geek-fest there are a number of them involved and they really seem to get a good buzz developing about their app.
Back to the boardroom and firing
After welcoming the teams back Lord Sugar quickly asked for the results, which were:
- 3,951 Slangatang were downloaded for team Logic
- 10, 667 Ampiapps were downloaded for team Venture
Lord Sugar made the point that the boys app wasn’t good enough for the world. And zeroed in on the poor app description that Soupman had written but all the team had loved. Soupman stood up for himself and pointed out that everyone (including Leon) had loved his description.
When Leon selects two others to go into the boardroom with him, he includes Soupman. Soupman immediately argues with Leon that someone else should go into the boardroom instead. And weakly Leon agrees with him! Even though Superman’s description had contributed to the poor downloads. So Leon ends up with Alex Britez Cabral and Glenn Ward.
In the end Alex has the finger pointed at him and is fired, because Lord Sugar thinks Alex would be a passenger.
Was the right apprentice candidate fired?
Leon did show weak decision making as demonstrated by the choice of the app in the first place and then by changing his mind on who should go into the boardroom with him. However, Alex was the right person to be fired as he didn’t really seem to do that much and yet was very happy to fight his corner on the basis of no results, both in the soup and orange selling last week and the contribution this week.
Having said that Leon hasn’t done himself any favours and he needs to be doing something right next time to make sure the team he’s in doesn’t end up losing, otherwise he’ll get to face Lord Sugar again!