App Development – Things You Need To Know

We are surrounded by the world of Apps. We have an app for ordering food, for traveling, for reading books, for playing games and what not. The whole digital world is in our palm and making our life easy.

Apps are easily available on mobile phones and tablets. Any business is impossible without Apps. Every Business is evolving and transforming itself with an increasing implementation of Apps for its valued customers. Apps are covering almost all the niches of various businesses. Apps engage the customers far better than websites because they can be accessed on the go.

What is the Need?

More and more companies are leveraging Mobile Apps to connect with their customers and create a successful brand. It cuts down the marketing cost as it reaches a wide number of the audience at a lesser cost. These mobile apps act not only as an investment but a long-term asset for the business. Let’s find out how:-

Quick and Portable –

Websites are heavy for smartphone devices as they take a lot of time to load. On the contrary, apps are light, quick and provide ease of access.

Effective Marketing Tool –

Because of the widespread use of smartphones and the interactive nature of apps, the reach that apps have in tremendous. This, no doubt, helps in creating awareness through app campaigns to promote your business and through this, apps are a highly effective marketing tool.

Competitive Advantage –

It reduces the possibility of lagging behind from your competitors in business and provides a close edge to them.

Customer Data –

Mobile Apps are a source of useful data about preferences and typical behavior patterns of the users. So, it helps in making better business decisions and improves the overall experience of the users.

Mobile is the TREND –

Every third person in the world is the use of smartphones. So, if all the customers are the mobile users, then why not take advantage of this.

Types of App Development

Majorly, there are 2 types of mobile apps development: –

Native Apps –

Such applications are produced for a solitary versatile working framework, hence they are “local” for a specific stage or gadget. Applications for frameworks like iOS, Android, Windows, Symbian or Blackberry cannot be utilized on a stage other than their own. At the end of the day, you won’t have the capacity to utilize an Android application on iPhone.  

Hybrid Apps –

They are built using multi-platform web technologies like HTML5, CSS, and JavaScript. They are mainly website applications disguised in a native wrapper. Hybrid multi-platform apps are fast and relatively easy to develop – a clear advantage. The single code base for all platforms ensures low-cost maintenance and smooth updates.

Tools for App Development

There are various numbers of different tools available in the market for the development of mobile apps.

Let’s have a look!

1- Android

Google Play store has over 3 million Android apps available for download. There are a few Android development tools that tend to show up over and over again on Android developer’s ‘favorites’ lists.

a) Android Studio

Android Studio provides code editing, debugging, and testing tools – all within an easy-to-use drag-and-drop interface. It is free to download and is supported not only by Google but also by a large and actively engaged community of Android developers

b) IntelliJ IDEA

JetBrains, IntelliJ IDEA is designed for ultimate programmer productivity. It’s extremely fast and features a full suite of development tools right out of the box.

c) Eclipse

Even though Google no longer offers support for Eclipse, many developers still use it to create Android and other cross-platform apps, as it works very well with different programming languages.

2- iOS

The App Store is a digital distribution platform, developed and maintained by Apple Inc., for mobile apps on its iOS operating system. The store allows users to browse and download apps developed with Apple’s iOS software development kit.

a) Xcode

It is an IDE for macOS containing a suite of software development tools developed by Apple for developing software for macOS, iOS, watchOS, and tvOS.

b) AppCode

AppCode is an integrated development environment (IDE) for Swift, Objective-C, C, C++, and JavaScript development built on JetBrains’ IntelliJ IDEA platform.

3- Hybrid –

There are a few tools which provide hybrid app development.

a) PhoneGap

It is a software development framework by Adobe System. PhoneGap produces apps for all popular mobile OS platforms such as iOS, Android, BlackBerry, and Windows Mobile OS etc.

b) Ionic

It is a complete open-source SDK for hybrid mobile app development which provides tools and services for developing hybrid mobile apps using Web technologies like CSS and HTML5. Apps can be built with these Web technologies and then distributed through native app stores to be installed on devices by leveraging Apache Cordova.

c) Xamarin

It is the front-running cross-platform mobile app development framework which supplies businesses with several benefits like cost-efficiency, reusable code base and access to native APIs.

d) React Native

It lets you compose a rich mobile UI from declarative components. It builds a real mobile app that’s indistinguishable from an app built using Objective-C or Java.

Latest Trends in App Development

Mobile App Security

Security is the biggest aspect. With companies working more and more on cloud and sharing their sensitive information online, it becomes important for developers to secure the entire ecosystem before hackers prey on it.

Cloud-Based Apps

They are secure, require less storage space, load faster which reduces the bounce rate and most importantly, can run across mobile platforms, browsers and devices. Their demand is likely to grow with the prediction that they will drive 90% of the mobile traffic in the upcoming years. Here is the list of best cloud storage for apps 

Artificial Intelligence (AI)

It is one of the most advancing areas of the software industry. Tech Evangelists and Application Designers are constantly discussing its growth, advancement, and impact on the development of mobile apps.

Internet of Things (IoT)

Concepts like smart homes, smart cars, smart cities and industrial IoT are opened by IoT with opportunities that can make a difference to our routine. While there is a lot to be tapped on, it remains on the top list of mobile app development trends.

Augmented Reality (AR) and Virtual Reality (VR)

Not just entertainment and gaming, AR is set to transform industries like healthcare, sports, retail, real estate, lifestyle and more. It has already put their foot on the accelerator showing a trailer of what VR is capable of by their in-house VR-enabled devices. The demand for such devices is on the rise and will break all records in the coming years.

Cost Factors

There are several factors which define the total cost of your app development. Some of them are: –

App Platforms and Environment

Building for all platforms substantially increases the cost. This is because Apple iPhone uses Xcode IDE and the Objective-C or Swift Programming languages and Android uses Java and Windows uses C#. The cost of development will be doubled or tripled because of the amount of time that is needed to build the app using different programming languages for each platform.

Complex Animation

Complicated animations that do not provide any practical purposes can also slow down your app and frustrate the user. So, staying away from complicated animations that do not serve any practical purpose not only means you don’t have to pay for such content but also increases the efficiency of the app.

E-commerce and In-App Purchases

In-app purchases and dealing with money add more time to develop because additional time is needed to make sure that the calculations are accurate, transactions are perfect and the app is secure.

Customizations vs using Standard App

The more customizations you make, the more time it takes to develop your app. When using the standard convention, the app development cost will be more cost-effective.

Integration with the Third Party APIs

In many cases, the developer cannot assess the amount of work that is involved in interfacing with third-party APIs until he/she spends some time learning the API and interfacing with it.

Offline Support

Developing offline support functionality can be time-consuming and in turn will increase the cost of development.

Challenges while Developing Apps

Grabbing Users’ Attention – This is one of the biggest challenges that companies face; whilst apps provide an undoubtedly strong marketing platform, the increasing competition and decreasing attention spans of the customers demand the most creative and impactful content, products & services to grab users’ attention.

Building great UI/UX – Enhancing the UI/UX is another piece in the puzzle. Everyone wants to create the best user experience for their apps.

Adhering to Best Practices – With evolving mobile and OS standards for the development of mobile apps, sometimes it becomes tedious for developers to maintain the standards.

Clean Architecture   – Application with a good architecture will give a good performance because you have put all materials code in the appropriate place.

Mobile Content Management- The call of the hour is to include rich content – videos, images, animations etc. However, the performance fails in wireless networks as rich content consumes a lot of bandwidth and suffers from frequent connection drops, making it difficult to deliver.

Performance vs Battery Life- Besides design and interaction, App performance and Battery consumption are also important aspects. The challenge is to design a well-performing, bug-free app which runs on minimum power consumption. Different users perceive app performance differently. Too many images or visual effects, flooding the cache or using integrated sensors may disrupt the performance of your application on older versions of mobiles.

To App Or Not To App

It’s important to collect feedback and reviews from app users to find out what they think and want, before developing a mobile app. Also, keep in mind the latest trends and developments taking place in your desired niche so that you can deliver the best results to your app users. Always Keep Your Customers Happy!!

About Author:

Nick Piolotto’s top priority is to provide his readers with content that offer novel insights into topics that are noteworthy and easy to understand.

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