What’s mobile app development?
Mobile application development is the set of processes and procedures involved in writing software for small, wireless computing devices, such as smartphones and other hand-held devices, Mobile development was a stranger almost a decade ago and now it has become a Huge industry where millions of people and billions of dollars are spent continuously trying to deliver a better mobile experience, Actually, nowadays there are almost 2 billion smartphones all over the world with activation rate more than the rate of babies born per day which is shocking, especially after the COVID-19 Pandemic people are spending more time on their phones, Now I’m gonna take you through the process of mobile app development step by step.
Overview on the stages of mobile app development.
As simple as it sounds but all the great apps started with a crazy idea, For me, this is the most vital part of the process, You should invest enough time in brainstorming to come with an idea that will make people interested in your app and willing to use it, and nowadays mobile apps are used in almost every industry.
- Educational Apps.
- Lifestyle Apps.
- Gaming Apps.
- Entertainment Apps.
- Social Media Apps.
And much more categories to be considered.
Discovery is the stage at which you discuss your idea with the field experts to talk about app goals, define core functionality, decide on features, plan the development cycle, and set the roadmap straight.
By the end of the discovery process, you should be able to a mock-up of your app or anything that makes you visualize the final product tangibly, and those experts must have the skills to complement your vision for your app.
At this stage, you need to plan for your app’s success. One of the best places to start is by identifying your competition. See if any other apps serve a similar purpose and start analyzing their performance on different platforms, the main purpose from this stage is to learn as much as possible about your idea and your competition as making mistakes is time-consuming, expensive, and of course, frustrating so take your time in studying and planning your idea in order to avoid making mistakes.
At this stage, you must know that the competition is out there and it’s not an easy one so try to find gaps and areas where people intentions are not fulfilled by the existing options there you can shine easily and build your own audience
User-experience design “UI/UX Design”
In this stage, you should be testing your user experience strategy on high-fidelity simulation before your app goes into the coding process and make sure that your simulation provides a quality user experience in terms of:
- How the users will interact with your app.
- Making sure your users have a smooth navigation experience.
There is a lot that goes into your app UI/UX Design. you need to define your app and who’s your audience.
After the design process ends, your developers team starts handling your app and starts writing the coding process, For me, this is a mystery but this process of mobile app development usually goes poorly. Perhaps this is due to many organizations and agencies only providing design or development services or the sometimes combative relationship between designers and developers no one knows, that’s why you have to choose wisely.
This process goes hand in hand with the development stage where your quality engineer starts checking the code for bugs and errors, This process must go in parallel with the developing process to fix mistakes in the early stages to make sure the delivery goes in time, there are many types of testing:
- Speed performance testing: your app might be functionally working but it takes ages to load a simple list, well that’s bad news as most probably nobody will use it.
- Functionality testing: This test is to make sure that your app is working properly according to the requirements.
- Usability testing: This test is to make sure that your app is user friendly.
- User acceptance testing: This test is done by you as an app owner or your future users and collect their feedbacks.
and there are many other tests but I’m just giving some examples as a conclusion by the end of this process all the problems should be found and solved and all the issues closed.
There are two main components to launching your app to the world
- API (Server): Mobile apps require a back end server to functionally operate, and to transfer data from and to your application, you have to make sure to choose a scalable server in order to avoid getting your server overloaded and accordingly your app will stop working, but if your app is launched to a scalable server it should be able to handle traffic spikes.
- App Stores: Finally you need to make sure that your app are properly configured for release and you should fill some forms for each app store, possibly they will require some changes to your app but you can discuss that with them to launch it as it i.
CONGRATULATIONS, Your app is out to the world, now you have to keep monitoring your app and making sure it’s operating smoothly and keep in mind further improvements and iteration and now I’m gonna give you an introduction to your app development teams.
Who’s is your app development team?
Project Leader or Manager
Your project manager will be the key to success or the whole process as he’s the one that connects all the strings together in order to deliver the product you’re seeking and he’s the one that connects you with the whole designing and developing team and keeping everyone in the project in the same page.
Mobile app development manager responsibilities:
- Planning: your project manager is responsible for planning everything related to your project including timeline, scope, procedures, communications and resources.
- Leading: A project manager is responsible for leading all the teams together in order to meet the deadlines and the quality of the product including designers, developers and quality engineers.
- Execution: The project manager will responsible for the execution and success of each stage of the project through monitoring, reporting and regular team check-ins.
- Time management: Keeping the project within the time line is a crucial part of the success in any project and keeping the project within the timeline is crucial that’s why a project manager must be expert in in risk management and contingency planning to ensure achieving progress when there’re roadblocks.
- Budget: Your project manager is responsible for estimating a quotation for your project, making sure that it’s as close as possible and work on keeping your project within this budget through moderating amounts spent and re-allocating funds.
With such roles, your project manager must have leadership skills, great communication skills, critical thinking, diplomacy, and creativity.
After your project leader “manager” comes UI/UX Designer who will be capable of visualizing how your mobile app will look and feel once it’s made, you need your designer to build you a prototype and get your developers a heads up on what they need to do as well as making sure your app looks good and your customers happy.
UI/UX Designer responsibilities:
- Creative thinking and having the ability to visualize your project in an authentic way.
- Determining the information architecture of your app making sure its easy for your customers to easily find what they’re looking for.
- A fair knowledge of coding is a plus as it’ll make easier for him to coordinate with your development team.
- Design user flows and wireframes.
Your developers are those who bring out those designs to life, the ones who master programming and writes the code for your app, for your project you’ll need at least two developers to work on your application as there are two different primary platforms which are IOS/Android that uses two entirely different programming language and different technologies for developing and publishing an app.
Nowadays modern technology offers another alternative which is cross-platform solutions that allows you to design and develop one app and publish it on both platforms as well as other smaller platforms, For that you’ll need to find an expert developer in cross-platform technologies like React and Flutter.
Developers key skills:
- SDLC : Expert and skilled developers usually break down the development process into smaller procedures, analysis, study, design, coding, testing, and launching, understanding the app development life cycle make it much easier for the developer to handle the entire process and coordinate the necessary services at the right moment.
- Team Player: You can have a developer with magic fingers but missing the right attitude, this might be not what you’re looking for, You need a developer that coordinates with other departments, accept feedbacks and comments.
- Cross platform technologies: When your choosing your developer try to find one who knows about developing for cross-platforms.
- Proven Experience: When choosing your developer you must look for those with previous projects as they have faced different problems from various projects and a plus if they’ve worked with apps in the same field you’re targeting.
Quality Assurance Engineer:
While your mobile app is cooking and after it’s done your quality assurance engineer has to make sure your app is doing what it’s supposed to do without errors, bugs nor problems, A professional quality assurance engineer should be testing your app regularly during each process to report any errors, bugs or problems and report them at earlier stages in order to make sure that your developers stay on track.
Quality assurance engineer key responsibilities:
- Running regular check ups through automated and manual testing.
- Keep tracking bugs through out the whole development process.
- record and report test progress.
- Develop testing protocols.
- Identify any potential future threats and avoiding them.
- Having experience with different testing tools like Test Complete, Selenium and Robotium.
- Paying attention to details and dedication for quality.
Now we’ve gone through the app development process and teams, you can now start brainstorming your ideas and find a place in this competitive industry and keep in mind that every success came from a brilliant idea.
If you still have any inquiries or wanna have a deeper dive feel free to contact us for a free consultation.