Top 5 Factors In Mobile App Development
Understanding the top 5 factors in mobile app development is critical if you are either looking to create a great app or considering hiring someone to do it for you. Apps have exploded in the marketplace in conjunction with the mobile explosion, as more and more companies are realizing how important it is for customers to be able to access their businesses from a mobile platform and the need for quality app creation has never been greater.
Of course therein is the challenge; creating a quality app that meets the consumer’s needs. So what are the top factors that you should be considering?
The Big 5 Factors
- User Interaction – We list this item at the top because in our opinion it is the most critical factor. Having years of experience building websites taught us that the user experience is critical to user satisfaction and interaction is part of the experience. So how do you do that? First it involves creating an environment where the target users are comfortable in understanding how to navigate and use the app which means using an intuitive design, easy to follow instructions, enhanced touch features and good performance. Actions should be natural and fluid to make the interaction as easy and enjoyable as possible. After the design phase, complete testing is essential to ensure you are hitting the nail on the head in regards to what users really like or enjoy versus what might need improvement.
- Processor and Battery Drain – The crux of numerous apps! There is nothing worse than an app that is a huge drag on the battery or that eats up all of the processing power. Often the two go hand in hand. The problem this creates is that users will want to use the app less and less or sometimes only when they know they can charge their phone. Even more concerning is negative reviews regarding this problem which could lead to users hesitating to download the app, regardless of how useful it is. Some people need to have a phone that lasts all day without a charge and that means apps that drain the battery are not welcome. For a truly optimal experience, battery and processor usage should not be a concern for the user.
- Phone Integration – There is a lot that a phone can do these days. With speakers, a camera, internet access, GPS, flashing notification options along with vibrations you have a lot of ways to use a device aside from just making calls or texting. You can easily integrate standard functions into what you create for a more interesting experience. Understanding what is available and then using that within the app you are creating for an even greater experience is the hallmark of a fantastic app that gets people excited about the possibilities of technology and say, “That is so cool!”
- Screen Density – Similar to phone integration, understanding how to work with different screen densities is very important. In some cases apps can lock up when trying to switch between different pixel densities. For example some phones only have a 120-dpi while the Retina displays Apple uses are 300-dpi and up. If you don’t understand this or don’t design accordingly you face the issue of some phones or tablets not working well with your app.
- Devices or Platforms – Quick question, how many phone brands can you name? How about tablets? While we talk a lot about Android versus iOS operating systems (and occasionally Blackberry), there are also lots of device types out there because we do have somewhat of an open market to contend with. New designs are also being released all the time. Aside from basic functions that might be different, you also have screen size, screen resolution, density, processing ability, battery life and memory to contend with. Those are a lot of variables to factor into app development but you need to do so if you truly want to create something great.
The Bottom Line
Apps are a hot commodity; we are talking molten lava hot. Developing an app, especially a great one, is not as easy as some people might want to make it seen. It’s not so easy that a caveman can do it. However, if that caveman has a background in graphic design, computer programming, app design basics and has read our top 5 factors in app development, he could probably create something phenomenal!