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Tapping into iOS Gold: Making Money with Custom Icons

From 0 to 6 figures in 6 days

In the ever-evolving digital landscape, opportunities for entrepreneurial success arise from the most unexpected sources.

One such opportunity emerged when Apple’s iOS update introduced the possibility of customizing iPhone icons. This seemingly small feature would go on to create a lucrative niche for content creators.

Follow the journey of making money with iOS by creating custom icon packs. We’ll delve into the impact of this newfound phenomenon, the success stories of designers who seized the opportunity, and the strategies they employed to monetize their creativity.

The Birth of a Lucrative Niche

In 2020, Apple released iOS update 14, accompanied by the Shortcuts app. These innovations opened up new possibilities for users to personalize their iPhone home screens with custom icons.

Prior to this, such customization was only achievable through jailbreaking. It was during this period that a talented designer, fueled by curiosity, stumbled upon the potential of this novel feature.

Recognizing the Potential

The designer, known as Traf, quickly grasped the incredible possibilities presented by the ability to create custom icon packs. Having previously explored similar avenues with jailbroken phones, Traf already possessed the necessary design skills and even had a collection of pre-made icon sets at hand. This prior experience proved to be invaluable as Traf embarked on this new venture.

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Seizing the Opportunity

Traf wasted no time in capitalizing on the newfound niche. The first step was to style a visually appealing home screen using custom icons, widgets, and wallpapers.

With an eye-catching setup in place, Traf shared a screenshot on Twitter, not anticipating the avalanche of interest it would generate. People were captivated by the customization and clamored to discover the secrets behind Traf’s creation.

Monetizing Creativity

Within a mere two hours, Traf packaged the icon sets, uploaded them to Gumroad (an online platform for selling digital products), and created a simple website using Notion and Super.

The response was overwhelming. Traf’s tweet gained hundreds of retweets and numerous inquiries. Recognizing the value of the icon packs, influential tech blogs such as iMore and Cult of Mac featured Traf’s screenshots and Gumroad site, further propelling their success.

The Game-Changing Video

The turning point in Traf’s journey came when MKBHD, one of the world’s most prominent tech YouTubers, released a video showcasing the customization of iOS with icon packs.

Traf’s creations were prominently featured, with a direct link for viewers to purchase them. This endorsement had an immediate and profound impact on sales.

Within a day, Traf’s earnings skyrocketed from $6,000 to over $40,000, marking the beginning of an extraordinary success story.

Inspiring Others

Traf’s remarkable achievements inspired a wave of designers to venture into the realm of creating custom icon packs. Many of them experienced substantial sales and success, further fueling the momentum of this emerging trend.

Notably, popular tech YouTuber Oliur ventured into this space and generated over $30,000 in sales within a short period.

I too tried my hand at designing and selling icon packs with some success.

The Trend Subsides

As with any trend, the fervor surrounding custom icon packs eventually subsided in the months that followed.

However, this does not mean that the opportunity disappeared entirely. Icon packs continue to sell, albeit at a more moderate pace.

The initial frenzy paved the way for a sustainable market where designers can still generate income from their creations.

Earnings and Potential

Traf’s story serves as a testament to the potential of making money with iOS by creating custom icon packs. Although exact figures may vary, Traf’s nine-month earnings update revealed a staggering $397,005 from a total of 14,915 icon sales on Gumroad.

This impressive income is a testament to the financial possibilities that emerged from this niche.

Strategies for Success

To achieve success in the realm of creating iOS icons, several strategies have proven effective. Firstly, designers should focus on crafting visually appealing and cohesive icon packs that resonate with users.

Additionally, leveraging social media platforms, establishing a strong online presence, and building a community of engaged followers can significantly enhance visibility and sales.

Collaboration with influential figures in the tech industry, as demonstrated by Traf’s and MKBHD, can also provide a substantial boost.

The Enduring Power of Content Creation

Traf’s incredible journey epitomizes the boundless opportunities for entrepreneurial success in the digital age. Making money with iOS by creating custom icon packs is just one example of the endless niches waiting to be explored.

It emphasizes the significance of staying attuned to emerging trends and harnessing one’s creative skills to meet the demands of an ever-evolving market.


The ability to make money with iOS by creating custom icon packs exemplifies the vast potential for content creators in the digital realm.

The journey of designers like Traf showcases the transformative impact of seizing opportunities, capitalizing on emerging trends, and monetizing creativity.

As we move forward, it is crucial to recognize that new avenues for financial success will continue to emerge, and embracing these possibilities can lead to remarkable achievements in the realm of content creation.

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