Brayden Gogis Has Developed 10 Apps by the Age of 20

From downloading games on the App Store to publishing his own, Brayden Gogis has won Apple’s coding competition, Swift Student Challenge.

Brayden Gogis Has Developed 10 Apps by the Age of 20 (Courtesy of Brayden Gogis)

Brayden Gogis grew up loving video games, but in the 5th grade, he took his love for technology and coding to the next level and created his first-ever app.

Now, the Indianapolis native is a sophomore at Taylor University studying biochemistry and engineering, and his interests in app development and coding have only grown. 

It all started when his father, a graphic designer, introduced him to computers and technology. But, when his family got an iPod touch for Christmas, and he was introduced to the App Store on the device, he knew he wanted to create something similar. 

He liked to play games “specifically on the iPod Touch because it was something you could hold in your hands. It just felt so accessible,” Gogis said. “I was in second grade at the time, and so I took to Google and started searching how to make games for iPod Touch. And so with that, that kind of started off the journey.” 

His journey did not come without obstacles; he expressed that in the beginning, he had to figure out licensing and other regulations to have his app on Apple’s platform, as well as find funding for an updated computer to code on.

“I needed to be able to get licenses and things to be able to put apps on the app store and I needed a new computer because I was using a really old one,” he said. “The monetary boundary there, which now I think there’s a lot more avenues to get something like this but even still like if you need a computer, you need a computer.”

With the help of his dad, he created a Kickstarter campaign to help raise money for a computer. 

“The response to that was really great. I got more than we asked for, so I was able to get all the things that I needed to get started and put stuff there. So that was a big thing, and once you’re past that, it’s now possible,” said Gogis.

Through his research on coding languages and app development, he landed on Swift, Apple’s coding language. After becoming familiar with the language and turning 13, he entered the Swift Student Challenge, a competition created by Apple for youth developers and coders nationwide. As a part of the competition, participants are required to develop an app. 

In his second year entering the competition and his first year of high school, he was selected to go to the Worldwide Developers Conference in California by Apple, which provided insight into app development and networking, and he was able to meet other youth interested in coding as well. 

“I’ve always kind of treated the competition as a way to learn something new,” he said. “It was cool because I’m sending it to Apple for judging, and these are the people who make the stuff on my phone, the people who made the programming language I’m using.”

He created a card game and “with the encouragement from the people at the conference, ended up releasing that card game as a game on the app store.” 

With Apple’s support, he landed a partnership with Nickelodeon and Apple Arcade years later to create a Spongebob-themed version of the game he originally submitted to the competition. What started as a joke as far as the name flourished into Gogis creating the SpongeBob SolitairePants app — “a take on the traditional game Solitaire for a new generation.”

Gogis won the Apple’s Swift Student Challenge in 2019, 2020 and 2021. 

Youth interested in coding and developing should keep at it even though it may be intimidating, he said. Gogis has released nine apps and is gearing up to release his 10th. 

“It still is crazy every time; I mean, the night before an app release, I can barely sleep because it’s almost like Christmas but in reverse,” he said. “It seriously is such a cool blessing and opportunity to see something you’ve made on someone else’s phone.”

Ariyana Griffin is a graduate student at Morgan State University in Baltimore, Maryland. She is a California native and a graduate of Clark Atlanta University. Follow her on X: @Ariyanaaganee and Instagram: @ari.yana.g..

Edited by Nykeya Woods

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