I am currently working for a start-up and our first product has been in development for several months. We have reached a fork in the road and I would like to ask the OnStartups community for some sage advice.
Some background information:
Our first product is a personalized content application and we are currently developing for Mac OS X. We are currently testing our private beta with select users and should have a public beta available in the next several weeks. While our initial demos and concept tests have gone well, the sizes have been very small and we have still not unanimously reached the "acceptance of concept" stage. Regarding our strategic vision, we have always had the intent of being a cross-platform application and plan on aggressively expanding across platforms once our product has been tested and accepted by the market.
Now with the question:
We are trying to decide our development strategy moving forward. We are split between two options:
Option 1: Focus solely on initial client until the market has accepted it. While we have not defined metrics yet, we assume this means steady growth and continual usage. Once we achieve these goals, it verifies that we are on the right path and we move full speed ahead developing as many clients as possible.
Option 2: Continue development and "fine-tuning" of initial client while beginning development of additional clients (web, Windows). This will allow us to attack more markets faster and thus gain more user data which will make our overall product better. By launching a light-weight web application in tandem with our Mac OSX client, we offer more options, can market test with more users, and get an overall head-start. While option 2 focuses on creating a web client, it also optionally includes beginning Windows development as soon as we can hire a Windows developer.
Option 2 Supplement: We are in a unique situation within our incubator because it provides several "shared services" between the start-ups. One of the services is a web developer who could temporarily join our team and develop our web client for us free of charge. I have included this to emphasize that money and talent are relative "non-issues" regarding this decision.
Any advice would be greatly appreciated. Thanks in advance for the help.