If you are planning to build a mobile app, the most important thing you need to consider is selecting the right technology and platform for your mobile app. Before you approach mobile development companies, you need to gain abasic idea of the technologies used in mobile app development which will ensure you will be comfortable in the discussion full of technical jargons. Here is some basic information of the technologies involved that will help you select best options that are available.
What types of apps work best?
There are different technology stacks available for mobile app development. Each development approach has some advantages and drawbacks. To ensure your objective of mobile app development is met, you need to find a perfect fit mobile architecture. Once you have narrowed down your architectural options, you can select the approach that suits best for your business needs.
The native approach refers to the development of a mobile app using the native code that is specific to the platform it is built for. The native app works perfectly on the devices running the operating system it is designed for. Native apps are downloaded from App stores and reside on your device. If you plan to select the native approach, you need to satisfy requirements related to accessibility, user experience, disconnected functionality, and device access. One of the biggest advantages of native apps is it has complete access to native user interface APIs that translates into smooth performance and rich user experience.
Also known Hybrid apps, these apps use a cross-platform network and they function seamlessly on multiple platforms. However, some functionality might not function on all platforms especially the ones that are specific to a platform. Cross-platform apps are reusable and the architecture follows web-based technologies that are ideal for big enterprise apps. Hybrid apps have several advantages such as pre-built integration with database and web services.
Mobile Web approach
Unlike native and cross-platform apps, the mobile web apps run on a central server and not installed on your device. Mobile web apps can be accessed from any device with anInternet browser. The primary advantage of mobile web apps is they are platform and device independent as well. Using mobile web apps, you can reach awider audience in lesser time with least effort. These apps are completely dependent on Internet connection and the user experience largely depends on the quality of the Internet connection. Mobile web apps need an Internet connection to work.
Key factors to identify the technology framework for your mobile app
Depending on your business niche, there are several factors that play an important role in deciding the right technology framework. A professional mobile app development company can help you identify what would be the best platform for you. Additionally you too need to ask yourself few questions and get answers for them.
Other factors that are important are the security of the application, portability to run the app across multiple platforms, the development time, and the costs of developing the desired mobile app. When you find the answer to these questions, you will find yourself closer to deciding the right technology framework for your mobile app. Here are some tips and guidelines for finding the right answers to some of the important questions above.
Purpose of the mobile app
Before bringing your mobile app idea into reality, you need to solidly define the purpose of the mobile app. You should be able to define the purpose of the mobile app in one or two sentences. If you are not able to do it, the app idea is bit confusing and it will be difficult to determine the target market for your app. Most mobile apps fall into three main categories
Many apps in the market exist to make things simple or solve some problems for their customers. for example, if you have a bookstore, the mobile app serves as an extension to your physical store where people can browse through the collection and purchase a book while on the move or without the need to visit your bookstore physically. Similarly, you have mobile apps that allow you to book tickets, and do lot more.
The game apps come under this category and the primary objective of the mobile app is to entertain. The success of the gaming apps generally lies in their global appeal and the scalability they provide to the users across the world. For example, the games are offered for free but the user can purchase the upgrades to reach higher levels of the game.
There are several apps that are designed to make our daily lives easier. For example, mobile apps like Twitter, Spottily, make our communication simpler and effective.
Who are the end-users of your app?
Identifying your target audience is the second step to in charting your technology roadmap. Analyzing your app audience will tell the platforms that need to be supported and the type of user experience to provide. Platform selection is of primary importance when it comes to selecting the right technology stack. For example, if your target audience is physicians in the US, the primary platform for your mobile app is iOS as 75% of US physicians use iPads. On the other hand, you might also need to consider the Android platform for adults working in the health-care sector as Android is the popular platform in these demographics. It is now easy to conclude that you need to consider iOS and Android platform when developing a mobile app for your target audience.
What type of user-experience is expected?
The user experience is an important factor to keep the users glued to your app. The native users offer the highest “stickiness” factor by delivering the richest and most impressive user experience by taking full advantage of capabilities of the mobile device. You need to focus on capturing user’s attention as there is nothing there to stop them to look for alternatives. For the multi-platform audience, you need to select cross-mobile platform where compelling user-experience is not that necessary.
What are the capabilities required in the app?
A convenient user interface and simple navigation are two requisites of a mobile application irrespective of the business niche. If the mobile app offers a potent combination of simplicity and efficient functional capabilities (whatever solution it provides), there is no reason for users looking elsewhere. The app needs to offer high performance and not keep the user waiting for any action or end result. As a mobile app owner, you need to continually optimize the app for higher performance. The security aspect of the mobile is important on both levels- user level and legal level. The app needs to follow industry standard security measures to protect user data at all costs. Not taking security seriously will invite legal actions that will mar the popularity of the app. An effective feedback system is a must to encourage open communication between the users and the mobile app developers.
Are there any industry-specific requirements?
Some industry requirements require you to focus on certain aspects when providing a solution.For example, for retail therapy apps, discoverability is an important factor. Sometimes it makes sense to push the user towards a better alternative to capture attention and retain an audience. For example, some companies build a mobile web app and native app to serve their audience. The native app works perfectly to serve existing customers while the mobile web app targets customers who use an internet browser to search for products. Mobile users who use the internet browser to shop are more likely to find the link to the mobile web app.
Native apps are most expensive among three. If cost is not a constraint, a native app is the best mobile platform for your mobile app that delivers best features and performance. If you are looking for “develop one and use anywhere” approach, a mobile web app is the best option. If you are looking to target audience on multiple platforms, you need to use cross-platform apps that can help you strategically reach important devices. Native and web apps complement each other and can be used by customers and employees. The right decision of the technology for your mobile app needs to consider all factors mentioned above including technical resources and a better understanding of your business to deliver mobile apps that are customer friendly and also cost-effective.
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