How to Build a Great Mobile App
It goes without saying that Smartphones and Tablets are ubiquitous in the world we live in today. According to a recent eMarketer report, nearly 80% of people of people will reach for their phone within 15minutes of waking, 62% will do so immediately, and 44% also use their device as an alarm clock.
Today however, we’re not going to talk about why people do these things, (while it is likely to get our morning fix of the internet) we’re going to discuss how you can BE one of those things ON their device that they’re so eagerly awaiting to ‘check’. With more than 1 Billion smartphones around the globe, and more Android devices being activated than babies being born, it just goes to show how fast this market is growing.
As a mobile developer, (a smart one at least) you’re aware of the many challenges presented in getting your app into the market, the decisions you need to make prior to even getting started, and what to do after launch. If those were the end of things you’d be lucky. Unfortunately, with 100’s of apps being approved every-single day, and over 1.5 Million others to compete with (across iOS and Android) competition is fierce. According to a recent survey, 1/4 apps are abandoned after their initial use and more than 60% of apps in the Apple App Store have never been downloaded at all.
So what is an App Developer to do?
Your users are expecting your app to work as advertised.
They also expect it to perform like apps on their desktops.
If it doesn’t respond or takes longer than 3 seconds to respond, you have a problem. 1/3 of Mobile device users said in a another eMarketer survey that they would switch to a competitors app if they had a bad initial experience.
That being said, there’s little room for error in the mobile app market. This means that, meeting or exceeding your users’ expectations is critical.
It’s important to gauge the quality of your user experience (UX) and find potential performance bottlenecks before they’re spotted by your customers (this is what closed, and open betas are for – or at the very least TestFlight). Crashes are unacceptable. Critical features failing to render because of any number of issues can also result in negative reviews just as easily as a crash will.
To prevent these things from happening..
- Build robustness into your apps from the start.
- Define your development requirements ASAP and use a systematic method to your development process.
- Be prepared to make iterative, incremental changes as you move forward.
- Gather as much data from your users experiences as possible.
- Test, Test, Test..
The mobile app market isn’t going anywhere but up. With that, the potential pitfalls will only become more complicated as the market matures. Planning ahead, following the steps above and providing the highest quality UX will keep your apps competitive in the fierce landscape.