A beginner’s guide: what you need to know before starting mobile app development

Today, it is impossible to imagine the life of a modern person without a smartphone. Lots of apps help you organize your work day or just simplify your daily routine. And every day there are more and more various applications, from which the competition among them grows. When creating any program for a smartphone, first of all, you need to decide which platform to work with: Android or iOS.

Which application platform should you use first?

The choice of platform depends on many factors. First of all, this concerns the preferences of the target audience, the complexity of the project and even the characteristics of the region where the product will be sold. To make the right decision, you need to evaluate all the advantages and disadvantages of the two popular operating systems – Android and iOS. Practice shows that very often effective interaction of mobile applications with back-end is required.

Android

Android

The OS occupies approximately 72.2% of the entire mobile market in the world. The platform is owned by the American company Google and combines a wide range of devices. The target audience is the middle class of the post-Soviet space, Europe, and the countries of the East. The main advantages of the platform are:

  • the process of checking and adding an application does not exceed 300 minutes;
  • low cost of device development (registration fee of $ 25);
  • one technology stack for different projects;
  • source availability;
  • the documentation is written at a high quality level;
  • an active community of enthusiasts, where a beginner can be trained;
  • Java is a great start for a developer;
  • wide range of applications (smart watches, Smart TV).

Among the minuses, a large number of devices should be highlighted in terms of performance, screen size, operating system versions, and other characteristics. Mobile app development where to start – this question is of interest to many people. It all depends on the complexity of the project and the available budget.

iOS

iOS

The OS is specially designed for iPhone and iPad branded Apple. The covered market share of 27% is predominantly concentrated in the countries of North America, Australia and Scandinavia. Target audience – people with high purchasing power. When developing applications for iOS, it is important to think over the concept, design and innovative solutions.

The main advantages of the platform are:

  • certainty in devices. The developer constantly monitors the current iPhone modifications, their technical parameters;
  • the presence of a large number of approaches in the development process. For each device (iPad, iWatch, Apple TV);
  • update transparency policy. The company is constantly monitoring the release of new guidelines.

Among the downsides is the more expensive $ 99 entry. Thus, the download of the application will be available until the next upgrade. Special attention should be paid to the authorization process through Facebook, which should also be carried out through Apple. The company’s harsh policy and tough rules for external developers are the main design risks. You should always be prepared for additional costs.

What analytics systems should be built in?

The presence of an analytical system allows you to quickly and efficiently process large amounts of information. When starting a new project, it is best to use free programs (Firebase). An alternative option is to use the paid software Mixpanel, Localytics.

When choosing a system, it is important to pay attention to the following parameters:

  1. Analytics in the context of events. The owner selects arrays of user actions that are of interest to him. If you are using the paid version, the final invoice size depends on the amount of data processed.
  2. Tracking URL. The analysis is used to monitor the effectiveness of marketing promotions. The project owner will be able to track the installation location of the application and determine the best options for conducting an advertising campaign (Facebook, review content, etc.).

How to test an application with real users before release?

The development testing process can be performed using a variety of tools. The most powerful options are:

  • survey of potential consumers. The application can be given for the “test” of a specific organization. Surveys in social networks, thematic forums are also objective;
  • soft start technique. A common technique is to test an application over a low traffic channel (up to 999 users). Thus, the presence of software errors, flaws and other bugs is determined. An important condition for placement is the lack of the ability to download software by users from other countries;
  • Alpha, Beta testing. Internal testing is done in the Play Console. This requires a personal gmail or G Suite account. The user selects the target group, scale, version number of the APK file in the control panel and thinks over channels for feedback.

It is best to check developments for iOS using special online services.

Among the most popular is Apple’s TestFlight.

Conclusion

Choosing a platform for developing an application is the starting point for implementing a project. If you are targeting a large audience, use the Android OS. For unique and thoughtful developments, iOS is suitable. Pay attention to data analysis and testing when launching the program.

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