PALMER, Alaska (KTUU) - An app that allows users to include Alaska-themed images or ‘stickers’ in text messages was briefly ranked seventh on Apple’s list of top paid sticker packs last week, according to a Monday press release by Palmer-based digital firm Alopex Interaction Design.
The app ‘Alaskanisms’ offers 30 uniquely Alaskan stickers that can be added to text messages sent through iMessage on Apple products. Huskies, bush planes and wads of PFD cash are among the many Alaska-centric stickers available.
The sticker pack was first launched on Nov. 9, but the company waited until the following Monday to formally announce its release. Alopex director Kyle Fox said he didn’t expect the app to collect more than a couple hundred downloads during its first few days.
“When we did this we really didn’t expect to even recoup the costs of illustrating them,” Fox told Channel 2. “It was more of a proof of concept.”
But within the 12 hours following the announcement, the sticker pack was downloaded about 500 times. That was enough velocity to propel Alaskanisms to seventh place in the App Store’s list of top sticker packs. That's alongside Disney and other popular sticker sets.
Fox first learned of the app’s success the following morning, when he woke up to see a text message from illustrator Zane Ogle, who designed all of Alaskanisms’ stickers. The message showed a screenshot of the Apple rankings with Alaskanisms sitting in the seventh spot.
“When I looked at my phone, I thought he’d photoshopped the screenshot and I didn’t believe it at first,” Fox said.
The sticker pack enjoyed its top spot on the national stage for a few days but downloads have since tapered off. Still, the app is averaging about 20-30 downloads a day and is on track to reach 1,000 downloads total, Fox said.
With Alaskanisms quickly achieving an unexpected level of success, Alopex is encouraging local artists to contact them with design ideas. According to Fox, the company hopes to collaborate with Alaska Native artists to design more Alaska-themed sticker packs in the near future.
“We have thought for a while that perhaps this would be a beautiful merge of futuristic tech with a very ancient culture,” Fox said. “It would be very cool to see something like that being sent through text messages.”
Alaskanisms is available on the App Store for 99 cents.