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Published Thursday, March 31, 2016

Local Teens Launch Bench Bro App

By Mary Markos

Jerry Freedman (right) and Pedro Leon (left), creators of the Bench Bro app, recently appeared on North Shore 104.9 radio.

Walking around with their faces buried in their phones, texting friends, listening to music, posting on social media sites, and downloading various apps, your average 16-year-old’s overbearing cell phone usage appears to be inevitable and over the top these days.

At first glance, Jerry Freedman, a 16-year-old sophomore at North Andover High School may not differ from the average teenager in this regard. However, Freedman, the creator of a new gaming app, channeled the addictive tendencies teenagers have with their phones into something far more productive.

Bench Bro is the name of the app. With more than 7,000 recorded downloads in the App Store and Google Play, Bench Bro has made the “leaderboards” in Hong Kong, Belgium, Malaysia, Brazil, Malta and more. He was recently invited to share Bench Bro with attendees at the Entrepreneur Expo at Endicott College in Beverly.

The Bench Bro app is available for free download at the iTunes App Store and at Google Play.

“IRobot CEO Colin Angle took special note of Bench Bro and acknowledged my son’s entrepreneurial spirit,” said Jerry’s father, Marc Freedman of Swamspcott.

Jerry Freedman created and launched Bench Bro about nine weeks ago. It’s described in the App Store as the ultimate finger tapping test during which you are required to tap the screen as quickly and precisely as possible in order to acquire improved gym equipment and achieve your dream physique. The free downloadable game has caught international interest and success. 

Freedman and his friends, Pedro Leon and Alex Saigen, came up with the idea during math class one day. They were discussing another free app that was popular last year, and how astonishing it was to them that a free app could rake in over $50,000 per day. “We started brainstorming ideas all day,” Freedman recalled.

It wasn’t until the three boys hit the gym after school that the idea came to them. “We saw the bench, the most popular thing at the gym and thought, hey! Let’s try a bench game.” After posting pictures and descriptions of the game on freelancer.com, the boys received numerous offers and picked a company called Ten Gaming out of India to code the app for them.

The free app creates profit through ads that pop up during the game. So far, they’ve made upwards of $400. All the profit they’ve made goes back into marketing and Facebook promotions. The boys also hung signs throughout North Andover High School marketing their app.

Freedman plans to continue working on the app, “I just want to see how far we can make this go, we created something from nothing.” He also plans to go to college somewhere that offers an entrepreneurial program.

The Bench Bro app is available for free download at the iTunes App Store and at Google Play.

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