#Featured

Dropping out was best decision: Harshita Arora, 16, App Developer

post image

Education is important but the medium isn’t of much worth when you find your aim in life. Harshita Arora, who is merely 16 and grew up in a small town of Saharanpur in Uttar Pradesh, found her interest in life when she was only 14. She was still in school then, but she met a teacher who introduced her to the world of technology. It changed her life in such an enormous way that she quit school, started experimenting with developing smartphone applications and currently owns one of the most successful paid apps on crypto currency called ‘Crypto Price Tracker’.

THE BEGINNING

Harshita went to three schools, in total, during her short stint. Talking about it she says, “I left school because I wanted more time to focus on learning programming and working on projects. It turned out to be one of the best decisions I made, so far.”

She studied the longest in Pinewood School where she met with her Computer Science teacher who became her first inspiration to get into the world of technology.

“He was the one who sparked my interest in tech in around 7th grade. He’d give out-of-the-box projects in UI design like designing posters, imaginary apps and websites, covers for the school magazine, animated videos like this one, and much more. Mithun Sir then taught me basic programming concepts. He also introduced me to Google Scratch and MIT App Inventor where I learnt to build software,” said Harshita to SheThePeople.TV.

UNDERSTANDING TECH AND MAKING APP

While one would think that making apps requires a lot of resources and education, Harshita is very clear about it. “I think developing apps usually don’t require access to a lot of resources. AI, hardware, science research, etc. actually require more resources. I made Crypto Price Tracker app in my bedroom in 2 months with nothing but my laptop, an Internet connection, mentors, and lots of books.”

She got started around two years ago with her first internship at Salesforce in winter 2016 where she worked on multiple projects. “I attended MIT Launchsummer program, where I built my first iOS app with 3 other friends – Universeaty. That was the first time I tried my hands at iOS apps and loved how much faster it was to build tangible products and see results of my work when building mobile apps. Bringing my ideas to software was much easier and more fun!” Harshita recalled her experience of diving into the world of software for the first time.

ALSO READ: Tamil Nadu Teen Girl builds Satellite to Study Air Pollution

CRYPTO PRICE TRACKER

After trying her hand out in making apps, she made an app on Crypto currency which is such a new creation and more than that people her age don’t bother about it. Then how did she manage to inform herself about it and make an app on it? Harshita responds, “I first learned about cryptos and blockchain in 2016 while reading my favourite tech magazine (Digit). It had a pretty comprehensive overview of what bitcoin and cryptos are and how mining and blockchain work. I was intrigued by the tools and knowledge available for building software on the blockchain framework. But I never got around to it as I’d been working on other projects at that time.

In 2017, cryptos were all over my Quora and Facebook feeds and generally all over the internet and that’s where I felt that I could develop something that solves a market need in this space. I researched a lot and tried out crypto apps. I personally felt that most apps for price tracking, price alerts, and portfolio management were horribly-designed and were giving me inaccurate price alerts.”

developer Harshita Arora

#1 in the top charts

She added, “I started talking to more people about the apps they use for crypto price tracking and what they wish was better about them. And just hearing 20-30 people share their list of ideas for features was an overwhelming amount of inspiration. I realised that a new and better-designed app for cryptocurrency price tracking, price alerts, and portfolio management is something people wanted. And I knew I was going to build that app.”

It took Harshita two months in total for product development – one month for design and one more month for development.

PARENTS SUPPORT AND HER LIFE

Talking about making an app that is successful and that too at such a young age, Harshita smiles and says, “It feels awesome and often surreal to see my work getting recognition in the tech and crypto world. To be honest, I’d never expected, nor planned for the amount of traction it got. Paid apps usually don’t get too many downloads. But Crypto Price Tracker did really well because it addressed an important market need.”

I realised that a new and better-designed app for cryptocurrency price tracking, price alerts, and portfolio management is something people wanted. And I knew I was going to build that app.

Her parents are her greatest support system in all the decisions she has taken, says Harshita. “They supported me through my decision to drop out, to travel all alone in the US when I was just 15 and so much more! I’m pretty fortunate to have them.”

She likes to read in her free time—tech and non-tech. books, Medium, Quora, Twitter, Hacker News, blogs, and a lot of other stuff. Harshita also likes to write and have shared her knowledge on Medium and Quora.

On her friends and teenagers her age that surround her, she is of the view, “Most of the teenagers I’m friends with are way smarter than me. Friends from MIT launch, other young innovators I met on Quora, etc, are all really smart and have done amazing things in tech. My friends are also making apps, some of them are doing research, some of them are working as freelancers, some are starting startups, etc.”

FUTURE PLANS

Harshita is evaluating acquisition offers for the Crypto Price Tracker app. “I plan on moving to the US this summer. As for the next project, I’ve been hacking something on the side in health and food, but it’s still pretty early stage. Whatever the events are, I’d be working on more software and building startups since that’s something I’m passionate about.”

When passion and knowledge combine, age doesn’t matter in creating something that one would think is beyond your capacity. In Harshita’s case, it stands truer than ever.

More Stories by Poorvi Gupta

post image
Dropping out was best decision: Harshita Arora, 16, App Developer
post image
Amul Girl Cries Over the Atrocities Against Indian Women
post image
Relief for Teen Girl as her Acid Attacker gets Life Imprisonment
post image
No one has the blue print, agility is the game says Yash Samat of GREY