Saturday, June 1, 2013

Apps by Bangalore teen make it to Microsoft store

'Writing a bug-free C# code to develop an app' might sound distressing to many, but Pratik Mohapatra, 15, excels in the art. Born in a generation of touch screens and social media, the teenager has developed a number of major ideas, some of them finding space on Microsoft's app store as well.

The latest by the 10th grader from National Public School, Koramangala, is 'Calculator Hub' - an app with a combination of six calculators on one screen.

"This app gives a variety of options to the user, that too on the same screen of the phone. It includes a BMI Calculator with two options, and you just have to swipe to change, a temperature conversion calculator, a scientific calculator, an age calculator and calculators for simple interest and compound interest. This app was published by Microsoft very recently," Pratik explains.
Why a calculator app? "My dad bought an Android phone and told me he didn't like the calculator at all. He didn't find it comfortable to use and advised me to try and make a calculator app. I started developing apps for Windows phones as I had experience in C#. Moreover, there was no such concept before in the store. I think this is the first app to feature such a thing," says Pratik, who started developing apps at the age of 13.

He learnt C# on his own

His latest app is an updated version of 'Calculator+', which Pratik designed for Windows based phones, and has already received more than 350 downloads. "It was not an easy experience, and I had to learn C# on my own. I faced a lot of problems as I got a lot of errors while debugging. Then I realized I needed to learn more and read more books about C#. I knew there was no shortcut," says Pratik, who is an engineering aspirant.

This app-rentice is one of the few 'student developers' who design apps for Microsoft's App Store and one of the youngest to publish his apps.

"I enjoy coding and fixing bugs. I want to pursue BTech and would like to join BITS Pilani," says Pratik, who's developed a total of 10 apps till date.

The young developer is not here just for fun. "App developing also helps my pocket money. With each download I get for Calculator Hub, I earn Rs 55," says Pratik.

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