HU student to publish tech book

First-year Harrisburg University graduate student, Anuj Mahajan, recently learned that his book, “The Billion Dollar App,” will be published by New Degree Press in December.

Anuj Mahajan

The Georgetown University graduate’s book looks at some of the biggest business lessons learned from the best mobile apps launched during the last decade.

“The Billion Dollar App” chronicles stories, lessons, and other takeaways from some of the top-selling apps and how they survive in a tough competitive marketplace.

It also includes case studies for Spotify, Duolingo, Tinder, and Pokemon Go, showing how the apps rose to success, and continue to do so year after year.

We recently caught up with Mahajan, who is earning his M.S. in Analytics at HU, to discuss what led him to write “The Billion Dollar App.”

Q: Tell us how the idea for the book came about?

A: It started with an internship at OfferUp (the largest local marketplace mobile app in the US which has 80+ million downloads) as a monetization PM. Going into the internship, I couldn’t find many resources that could prepare me for the role. I wanted to know how great mobile apps made money, but also maintained a seamless user experience. Usually, you see mobile apps do annoying advertisements or force users to sign-up into subscription plans which no one really wants. When the opportunity came along, I thought about writing this book on my learnings and research and sharing what I know with the world.

Q: Tell us about the writing process? When did you start and finish the work? How did you go about getting it published?

A: This sounds like a testimonial, but this is absolutely true. My business school professor at Georgetown and one of his ex-students run this publishing company called New Degree Press. They guide/mentor a lot of people who want to write books on just about any topic they are passionate about. So, my book journey started with signing up with them at the end of 2018. At the time, I had a vague idea of how I was going to write the book. But, as I went through the program, it became a lot simpler and bite-sized, something that I could tackle. I just had to make sure that I stayed consistent with the writing and not give up midway. It is still a huge undertaking after all. I finished the content part, i.e., about 40,000-plus words of manuscript in May of this year. Currently, I’m working with my editor to get the book ready for publishing in December 2020.

New Degree Press really supported me from the beginning of the process and will continue to do so even after the book is published.

Q: What will readers gain from reading the book?

A: My book is for business as well as tech enthusiasts who want to know how to create a successfully monetized mobile app. My readers will gain 3 things from my book:

  1. How the mobile app industry really works.
  2. The biggest lessons from the successes and failures of major apps in the last decade.
  3. How to create an app that people really want to download and pay for.

Q: Will the book be available in December? How can interested readers find the book?

A: Yes. A week or two before Christmas. Interested readers can sign-up for early chapters and the inside scoop by supporting me on my Indiegogo page.

You can also reach out to me directly on my LinkedIn account.

Q: Tell us a little bit about yourself and your education background?

A: I’m a product manager with experience leading large-scale consumer products. Most recently, I led the Booking and Commerce team for Marriott’s Mobile App in a Senior Product Manager Role. I also have a Georgetown MBA and a background in Computer Science and Engineering. Currently, I’m a Master’s in Business Analytics student at Harrisburg University and live in the Washington D.C. metro area.

When I’m not geeking out on obscure mobile apps, I like to work out and swim. I also want to legalize afternoon naps for every working professional.

Q: Do you have any other books in mind?

A: I don’t have any plans for another book yet. I’m going to see this one through December. But the next one will probably be a podcast. I’m excited.

About Harrisburg University

Accredited by the Middle States Commission on Higher Education, Harrisburg University is a private nonprofit university offering bachelor and graduate degree programs in science, technology, and math fields. For more information on the University’s affordable demand-driven undergraduate and graduate programs, call 717.901.5146 or email, Connect@HarrisburgU.edu.