Mobile app development guide

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The Ultimate Mobile App Development Guide for 2023

The growth of the mobile app development market has been steady for the past few years.

According to the Statista report, the estimated worldwide revenue from mobile applications will be $935.2 billion in 2023. This unprecedented growth is predicted to witness a shift in demand for custom mobile app development among SMEs and startups.

There are more than 5.7 million apps on Google Play Store and App Store combined. Launching a new app in this clustered app market is not a seamless task. Despite the cut-throat competition, app marketers should take advantage of the opportunity to invest in a mobile app.

If you want to enter the app market but are unaware of the process, this post covers everything you need to get started. It includes information about the different phases of app development and how to promote your app to the right people.

Dive in, and start the journey to develop mobile apps for your business.

What is Mobile App Development?

Mobile app development refers to the process of creating software applications for smartphones, tablets, and other Android and iOS devices.

This involves designing, coding, and testing the app to ensure that it functions properly and provides a good user experience.

You can develop a mobile app using various programming languages and tools, such as Java, Swift, and HTML5. But it is a complex process and requires expertise in different areas like UI/UX design, programming, and testing.
That’s why most companies either hire professional mobile app developers or outsource their app development to specialized firms.

Why is Mobile App Development Important in Today’s World?

In today’s rapidly growing digital ecosystem, there is an app to serve every purpose.

According to the State of Mobile report, the year-on-year growth of the mobile landscape has touched +27%, and in 2020 brands spent close to $143B in the app store.

This number is growing rapidly. If you still don’t spend on app development and marketing, you’ll be losing opportunities.

Some of the advantages of mobile app development include:

  • Provides a better conversion rate 
  • Delivers an enhanced customer experience 
  • Provides better efficiency and increased revenues 
  • Saves time 
  • Improves customer loyalty and brand recognition

20 years ago, the question looming in the minds of businesses was – “Why should we develop a website or software solution?”

Today, this question doesn’t stand a chance as having an app or a website is not a choice but a need.
A Statista report highlights that in 2021, around 230 billion mobile apps were downloaded and 2 million new apps were released.

                                                                            Source: Statista

The demand for mobile apps has grown because of the rapidly changing consumer behavior patterns, business models, and processes across industries in the past decade.

Today, we have an app for every basic activity in life including opening a smart lock, ordering food, and medicines, watching television, and many more.

The penetration of the internet and the accessibility to smartphones have also changed the face of the app market worldwide.

According to another study, the smartphone user base growth has increased by 10.4% from 2016 to 2022. And it is expected to reach 7.7 billion by 2027.

Based on this observation, the rate of growth in the mobile app development market is expected to see rapid growth instead of a slowdown in the next 10 years.

Source: Statista

The Latest Trends in Mobile App Development

In today’s ever-evolving digital world, having a mobile presence is not enough. To survive in the dynamic environment, marketers need to keep updating the technology of the app and stay relevant.

Here are a few mobile app development trends that are making a buzz in the industry:

  • “Screen continuity” option for foldable devices
  • Improved customization and personalization leveraging the power of machine learning and AI
  • Introduction of extended reality technology in the form of AR filters
  • App integration with wearable tech gadgets
  • Growth in on-demand apps
  • Mobile wallet apps on the rise
  • Experimentation with the Beacons technology

The Different Phases of Mobile App Development

The mobile app development process typically involves several phases. These phases can vary depending on the specific approach you take as its development team, but some common phases include:

Phase 1: The Pre-development phase of your mobile app

This phase involves formulating a strategy for app development, analyzing the concept of your app, and shaping it into a real product.

    1) Identify the main objectives of your app
    This is the first and crucial step of the mobile app development process. In this stage, you need to define the “why” behind your mobile app development initiative

    You should ask yourself:

    • What is the app’s purpose? 
    • Who is the audience for the app? 
    • Who are your competitors? What features does their app have? How will your app stand out from them?
    • What are the goals and objectives of your app? 

    Answering these questions will help you get a clear vision behind your app idea and help you analyze its potential.

    2) Decide on the type of app you want to build

    You need to make some high-level strategic decisions on the technology to use and the type of app to build for your business.

    Two common options include:

    Native apps that are designed specifically for a particular operating system, such as Android or iOS devices. This allows them to take advantage of the device’s processor and other hardware features like the camera and microphone.

    Hybrid apps that are built to be compatible with both Android and iOS devices. But this type of app cannot access the device’s processor, so they rely on an internet browser.

    While hybrid apps offer cross-platform compatibility, they may not perform as well as native apps that can directly access the hardware of the device.

    To help you choose between native and hybrid apps, we’ve put together their pros and cons:

    3) Choose a platform for your app development

    When it comes to app development, it’s essential to avoid the temptation to build your app for all possible platforms. This is one of the biggest mistakes app developers make.

    Focusing on adding too many features or platforms can be counterproductive to your vision and will increase the initial costs of app development.

    Instead, it’s best to:

    • Conduct market research.
    • Choose a single platform to launch your app on. The platform could be Android, iOS, or Windows.
    • See how users respond to your app. Record customer feedback and evaluate the success of your app on that platform.
    • Once you are confident in the success of your app on one platform, you can plan to develop your app for another platform to increase its user base.

    4) Create a wireframe to guide your mobile app development process

    Starting without a direction can cost you money and resources. So, you should carefully plan the skeletal framework of your mobile app.

    This includes:

    • Mapping out the user flow – what steps a user will take to do something using your app
    • Creating an app flowchart before the design process
    • Identifying the key features and functionality of your app
    • Sketching out the layout and organization of each screen
    • Defining the navigation and user interface elements
    • Reviewing and refining the wireframe based on feedback from stakeholders
    • Using the wireframe as a guide during the design and development process

    5) Decide between in-house vs. outsourced mobile app development

    When it comes to developing mobile apps, there are two main options:

    • Developing the app in-house with your employees (You can hire experienced professionals)
    • Outsourcing your mobile app development project to a company that specializes in mobile app development

    The best option for your company will depend on various factors.

    If your organization already has experienced mobile app developers with the appropriate tech stack and capacity, then developing your app in-house might be a good option.

    However, developing a mobile app in-house has its challenges:

    • Hiring is an expensive investment as people with multiple expertise are required to execute the process of app development, starting from app development to market launch. 
    • Scalability is a limitation as it would require more resources with additional skill sets.

    Opt for this option only if you have a stable and efficient team of developers and managers, and the budget and cash flow to keep going.

    Outsourcing the project to a mobile app development company may be a better option. Especially, if the app is just one part of your business and not the core revenue driver.

    Why so?

    Here are some benefits of outsourcing mobile app development:

    • More cost effective
    • Has a comparatively lower lag time
    • Gives you access to advanced technology and improved solutions 
    • Comparatively more accountable 
    • Provides more exposure
    • Access to a larger pool of experts

    6) Choose a mobile app development company to outsource your project

    If you determine that outsourcing the development of your mobile app to a specialized partner is the best option for your business, focus on selecting the right partner.

    You should evaluate the potential app development partner by considering these factors: 

    Review the company’s case study, portfolio, and experience in mobile app development, specifically for iOS, Android, and web apps.

    Confirm that the development team is comfortable using the app development frameworks and programming languages that you’ve selected.

    Request information about the mobile app prototyping tools they use and how they can aid in the development process.

    Ensure that they are knowledgeable about the existing coding standards.

    Ask about their app development and release process.

    Verify their expertise in API integrations.

    Request information on the data security features they will implement during the development process.

    Inquire about their PCI-DSS certification and how they will comply with all certification requirements when designing payment gateways.

    Ask about their app testing process and the tools they will use for testing.

    You should also consider your budget and the domain of your app while finding app development companies that can meet your needs and suit your budget.

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