When I started my first projects, I thought the process was:

1) Build your product. 

2) Show it to your friends. 

3) Get feedback, adjust. 

4) Continue 2 and 3 until you're ready to release to public.

I’m now firmly convinced that this is the opposite of what you should do.

For (what I believe is) fear of ruining your friendship, your friends will most likely do all they can to avoid using your product. Exposing something you’ve been working on to them means they might not like it, and in their mind, hurt the relationship.

What’s worse, is that asking your friends to try downloading your project, and them declining, is demoralizing! They are declining because they value your friendship, but it feels like they’re ignoring you because they think your product will be bad. Hopefully, they are just declining to maintain the status quo.

I now do my best to keep my friends from seeing what I’m working on, even while I release it to the public. I get actual feedback from the public, and because humans want what they can’t have, my friends that previously declined (or would have), now desire the product if they get a glimpse.