Mobile App Maintenance: The Importance Of Regular App Updates

Few first-time appreneurs and developers consider mobile app maintenance when laboring away on their debut projects. And that’s reckless, to put it mildly, as app development is a long process that doesn’t end at launch. Users and the app stores expect apps to receive regular updates months or even years after their initial releases. 

But why are app updates such a pertinent issue that appreneurs and developers must never ignore? The primary reason is that no app is perfect on release and will likely never be during its lifetime. There is a certain quality threshold that an app must meet before it offers a satisfactory user experience. Not meeting this threshold will cause users to uninstall the app and leave negative reviews and low ratings, hurting the prospects of the app. 

That’s why the savviest appreneurs and developers have a mobile app maintenance plan from day one. They know that they must set aside resources for the continuous upkeep of their apps. These resources often include the funding, staff, analytics, tooling, and training required for app maintenance. Furthermore, it’s necessary to have dedicated staff or contractors to handle communications, compliance, documentation, user experience (UX) testing, quality assurance (QA) testing, and user feedback. 

Now, that’s a lot to unpack and only drives through the message that app development is a long, costly, and challenging endeavor. But we don’t want to dissuade you from trying your hand at app development, especially if this will be your first attempt. Instead, we encourage you to move forward, partner with an experienced and reputable studio like NS804, and consider the helpful pointers listed below. 

 

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What Does Mobile App Maintenance Entail?

Mobile app maintenance is an ongoing process that involves multiple tasks that result in the continuous improvement of apps. These tasks include gathering user feedback, data, and analytics. These factors will let developers know whether or not their apps meet changing customer expectations. 

If apps don’t meet customer expectations, developers must modify their apps to bring them in line with these expectations. However, this is only possible by rolling out app updates at regular cadences. In the case of app-breaking bugs or security vulnerabilities, developers must release patches timeously. 

And even if an app runs smoothly and reasonably bug-free, it’s still necessary to respond to current market trends. For example, 2023 was a big year for artificial intelligence (AI) that the market couldn’t ignore. Soon after the launch of ChatGPT and other similar services, mobile app developers quickly launched new AI apps or implemented AI features in their existing apps. 

It’s not uncommon for appreneurs and developers to abandon apps if they’re no longer feasible. The app stores are incredibly competitive — if not downright brutal — making it difficult to justify the cost and effort to maintain underperforming apps. 

Yet, this is not the case with custom apps, especially those aimed at internal company tasks and business-to-business (B2B) applications. Mobile app maintenance is crucial for custom business apps, as regular security and feature updates are essential for the smooth functioning of organizations of all sizes.  

Why Do Users Care About Regular App Updates?

Today’s smartphone users are app-wise and can easily discern a good app from a bad one. Moreover, today’s users are part of a mature market gradually reaching its growth limits. We only need to look at the US smartphone market to understand the staggering difference between today and a decade ago. In 2013, there were approximately 173 million smartphone users in the US, but today, it’s edging closer to 315 million.

While we may be reaching the peak of the smartphone era, this doesn’t mean the app market is going away. It only means that there’s an increase in user demands that you must respond to if you’re going to succeed. But how can you succeed in such an overwhelmingly crowded market where users uninstall apps on a whim? The first step is to create an app that addresses a problem that users have and to make it sticky.

Of course, that’s not easy, and few developers get this right on their initial attempt. But let’s assume you are addressing a problem users are experiencing, but they’re still uninstalling your app — what now? 

That’s where your mobile app maintenance plan comes in, as you’ll focus tightly on your app’s performance and user data. Your analytics will let you know if your user journeys and flows are succeeding or failing. You’ll also know if technical issues make your app function inadequately. These are the most common reasons why users drop apps like hot potatoes and why post-launch analytics are so crucial.

Once you know what’s holding your app back, you can address all relevant issues. Then, plan your roadmap to release the necessary fixes and updates. And establish an effective communications pipeline to gather user feedback and inform users of new updates.

Why A Lack Of Updates Will Hurt Your App? 

Even your most diehard users will lose interest in your app if you don’t update it regularly. They will assume that you no longer have the interest or resources to roll out updates and will eventually move on to apps that seem more promising. There’s nothing worse than losing users due to not providing them with the features competitors have provided already. The current state of the app market requires that you respond to user needs rapidly. 

Look at the leading mobile apps in your segment, and you’ll find that all these receive regular updates. Every app update helps to reinvigorate interest, especially with those users who have started to drop off or become bored. But it’s also a great way to draw new users and media attention when app updates include innovative or highly desired features. 

A lack of updates will also hurt your app’s stability and usability, especially when users upgrade their devices. Furthermore, Apple and Google demand that developers update their apps to meet the requirements of their latest operating systems and APIs. Failing to do so will result in the removal of any un-updated apps from the App Store and Google Play. Third-party Android stores also have specific app update policies that you must follow if you publish on these. 

Security concerns around hacking and data breaches have become the norm recently. Since many people use mobile apps for financial transactions, you must ensure that your app never has any security vulnerabilities. Even if you’re developing a mobile game, you must never take security issues lightly since hackers exploit these also to gain access to user credentials. So, always roll out patches and updates as soon as you know of or encounter a new vulnerability.

How App Updates Help Keep Your Tech Stack Current?

You may be proud of your studio for using the latest technology stack to create your apps. But technology moves forward rapidly, especially in the mobile space. What’s trailblazing today can quickly become outdated in a matter of months. Therefore, you never want to stick to the current versions of your integrated development environments (IDEs), APIs, frameworks, game engines, backend technologies, testing, and deployment tools. 

Sure, your programmers may want to use long-term support (LTS) releases for a more stable development environment. But eventually, you’ll need to pull the plug and move on to the latest supported version. Your team may whine about such a decision since they will feel more comfortable with the older tooling. But ultimately, they must use the tooling that increases stability, usability, and quality.

The beauty of mobile development tooling vendors is they have close relationships with the device manufacturers. Thus, they build their tools according to current and future hardware specifications. And that’s fantastic because this means you’ll often gain a free performance boost and increased stability when building your app with the latest tools.

Furthermore, you’ll be future-proofing your app since it will run adequately on devices about to hit the market. So, you’ll have the assurance that your app will run on devices you haven’t tested for yet. But this doesn’t mean that you should ignore testing altogether. Always test on an emulator if you lack access to a specific mobile device. 

As part of your mobile app maintenance processes, ensure that you keep up to date with what your tooling vendors are releasing. Read their blog posts and release notes regularly, and update all your development tools timeously. 

What Are The Different Types Of App Updates? 

There are several kinds of updates you can roll out, but not all will be suitable for your app. We explain which app updates are best suited for which purposes here: 

  • Feature release updates: Your users will provide feedback about features they want, so you should roll out feature release updates with these additional features. If your app proves popular, you may need to implement these kinds of releases several times a year.
  • Functionality updates: You should roll out functionality updates when upgrading an existing function. The frequency of these updates will depend on how often you need to upgrade the functionality of your app.
  • Maintenance updates: If your app suffers from vulnerability issues due to a cybersecurity threat, you must release emergency hotfixes immediately. You may also release a preventative update for potential attacks, an adaptive update to deal with upcoming changes, and a corrective update for patching up quality issues.
  • Monthly updates: All new apps need monthly updates to gain and retain user trust. Also, it’s necessary to release weekly updates if your app suffers from serious usability, stability, and security issues.
  • Updates for watershed events: You can surprise and delight your users by releasing an update to celebrate the first year of its release. The update must include a significant change or improvement to set your app apart from competitors. 

How To Implement Mobile App Maintenance Successfully?

All the stages of the mobile app development process are challenging. But you can make the maintenance process of your app more manageable by following these steps:

  • Document your mobile app maintenance plan: Always keep notes and documents produced by all stakeholders involved in your project. Ensure that all team members can retrieve these documents easily when necessary.
  • Prioritize training: Ensure your team is up to speed with the latest app update procedures and technologies. 
  • Establish effective communications pipelines: You want to keep all stakeholders in the loop at all times. Keep your communications open and secure for all the relevant parties, and keep everyone informed of any crucial events that require their attention.
  • Keep ahead of compliance and policy changes: The app stores constantly alter their guidelines and policies, so you must adhere to these to avoid any nasty surprises. Furthermore, stay current on regulations in the different territories you publish.
  • Regularly test the effectiveness of your app’s UX: Always be mindful of the end-user experience by testing your app’s UX. More often than not, a bad UX is why most users uninstall apps, and it’s fixable with an update. 

 

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Why Do You Need To Partner With A Reputable Studio?

As you can tell, mobile app maintenance requires hard work and sticking to a tried-and-tested plan. If you already have prior experience with the processes mentioned earlier, you know what to expect. Yet, you may still need the assistance of a talented mobile developer to help you deal with all the complexities involved with regular app updates. And if you’re new to all this, partnering with a studio is undoubtedly the right choice. 

A highly acclaimed and reputable studio like NS804 will help you deploy your app updates on time and within budget. We’ll look at your plan, goals, and requirements with an analytical eye and offer solutions that will drive your app down a successful path. 

Furthermore, we’ll help you evaluate methodologies and development technologies that will lead to the best possible upkeep of your app. We’ll also help you implement new features, fix bugs, and optimize your app so you can focus on other aspects of your app development endeavors.

In Conclusion

Mobile app maintenance is a crucial part of the entire app development cycle. Never ignore this part, as your users expect you to deliver updates that will keep them stuck to your app. If you do this right, you’ll extend the potential lifespan of your app, driving additional revenue and business. Contact NS804 to learn how we’ll help you plan, prepare, and deploy app updates like a pro!  

Mobile App Development Mistakes: Impact Of Choosing The Wrong Developer

One of the costliest and most disastrous mobile app development mistakes you could make is to hire the wrong developer. Unfortunately, it’s an easy trap to fall into, given the plethora of app studios and freelancers vying for your projects. These entities will try to convince you they can complete your projects quickly and cost-effectively. 

In some cases, this is true, yet it’s the more established and experienced developers who make good on these promises. You can check if they’re up to the task if they have a comprehensive portfolio of completed projects, positive customer feedback, and even acquired awards for their work. Established mobile app developers like NS804 tick all these boxes, as we’ve built a reputation for creating phenomenal apps for our clients and have the acclaim to prove it. 

However, many developers are not in our position and are willing to oversell to secure client work. While we can all understand why they do this — it’s not in your best interests to work with them — and here’s why. 

With freelance developers, many are in the process of learning fundamental skills and building up their portfolios. It’s common for newcomers to follow several Udemy app development courses and then set up an account on Fiverr to sell their services to unsuspecting clients. These individuals are neither professionals nor comprehend software development best practices.

Then, many overseas and fly-by-night studios offer competitive rates but have poor code quality and less-than-stellar support. The potential cost savings, if any, will lead to a frustrating and stressful app development experience. As a busy appreneur or business leader — you don’t want this — so avoid the following mobile app development mistakes listed below.

 

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Misunderstanding The App Industry Leads To Costly Mobile App Development Mistakes

About a decade ago, anyone with rudimentary coding skills could release a fun and quirky application in the app stores. The barrier of entry was so low that bedroom coders and startups released tons of apps at negligible cost. Of course, the quality of these apps was often questionable, but these early efforts helped developers earn money and stardom. 

Most app users during that era were willing to put up with subpar apps since smartphones felt novel. Thus, they would download and try out the latest apps regularly, which created a near-endless demand for new apps. But the allure would fade since too many cruddy apps started ruining the user experience. 

Eventually, users became picky about what apps to install and soon lost interest in low-quality or uninspired efforts. Smartphones and tablets also became more standardized, leading to a homogenized look, feel, and feature set among brands. While consumers never truly lost interest in smartphones and apps, they did lose some excitement. But this is not necessarily bad, as it signals a maturing market. 

Sadly, many who wish to enter the app industry today haven’t fathomed these changes. They assume that the barrier of entry is still low and that a simple app developed in a few days or weeks could lead to vast fortunes. 

They haven’t considered the increased demand for quality from users and the app stores. App development today requires testing, a better user experience (UX), and a greater focus on marketing. Then, there’s the high cost and effort associated with user acquisition (UA), which is unavoidable in today’s super competitive app marketplaces. Therefore, it’s better to partner with a reputable studio to help you navigate the app industry as it is today. 

The App Stores Have Raised The Bar To Deter The Wrong Developers

Apple and Google don’t mess about when it comes to increasing trust with users. Both tech giants have taken bold and long-needed steps to diminish the number of low-quality apps from reaching the App Store and Google Play. They’ve long been aware of the glut of buggy, poorly developed, and opportunistic cash grabs filling their app stores.

Besides, many apps from unscrupulous developers also pose significant security risks, which have no place in app marketplaces. There’s always been a troubling amount of apps with malware and trojans available that unsuspecting users download onto their devices. Considering that many users do banking on their smartphones, these infected apps threaten their financial security and privacy. 

One of the most detrimental mobile app development mistakes you could make is to hire such a developer on a lark. The damage to your reputation and business would be monumental, not to mention the legal action against you from users. The developer you hire may not even be malicious but overlooks potential security vulnerabilities that could lead to a similar outcome.

Due to these issues, Apple and Google have constantly improved security measures in their respective app stores, operating systems, and software development kits (SDKs). But they’ve also raised the bar on what they expect from developers with tighter regulations. 

A good example is Google Play’s recent requirements for new Android app developers and those with personal accounts. These developers must have 20 or more people test their apps for at least two weeks before release. Understandably, many developers are venting their frustrations on Reddit and attempting to build test groups on Discord. But studios that have set up effective mobile app testing pipelines won’t face any issues with compliance.

Mobile App Development Mistakes Due To Unsuitable Tooling

You may work with a developer who uses no-code tools to build your app. The developer may insist on using such tools due to the increased speed they offer or because they lack programming experience. Either way, this isn’t necessarily a good idea, as no-code platforms often introduce performance bottlenecks.

While newer no-code app builders offer performance improvements, they still don’t produce apps that hold up to native-developed apps. And if your brand’s reputation hangs on the quality of your app, you shouldn’t cut corners. Work with a studio like NS804, renowned for building apps using native languages like Swift for iOS and Kotlin for Android. 

The snappy performance, consistency, and native user interface (UI) make the additional cost and effort to produce native apps worthwhile. It’s also much easier to debug, test, and scale native-built apps than those made with no-code solutions. 

One of the drawbacks of no-code solutions is that they’re rather esoteric and often made by smaller niche tool developers. Thus, documentation, code examples, and support are not on the same level as that provided by Apple and Google. It’s also harder to find tutorials and other training materials from third parties and online teaching platforms. 

Should you want to update or scale your app at a later stage and be unable to work with the same developer, you’ll be out of luck. You will need to rewrite your app entirely from scratch, preferably in a native programming language, to avoid this same issue in the future. You can diminish the potential for mobile app development mistakes by ensuring the developer you hire uses the tooling, programming languages, and best practices recommended by Apple and Google.

The Wrong Developer Relies Heavily On ChatGPT

You’ve probably heard of ChatGPT and the impact of the artificial intelligence (AI) platform on programming and other disciplines. As a tool to help developers write boilerplate code and conjure up solutions, it’s a fantastic time saver. But as some kind of silver bullet for developing complex, robust, and mission-critical apps, the answer is not so straightforward.

While ChatGPT can make all types of apps, even complex ones, it won’t necessarily deliver the best and most solid apps. That partly depends on how well the developer understands ChatGPT’s large language model (LLM) and what prompts to enter. Then, the developer’s comprehension of the code that ChatGPT generates also comes into play. 

If the developer can understand, tweak, and implement the code to fit the app project, the results will impress while cutting costs. But if the developer hasn’t taken the time to learn the nuances of ChatGPT, it will have the opposite effect. It’s also crucial that the developer has a good comprehension of the programming languages used in development, especially after the introduction of new updates and standards. 

Nevertheless, the developer should have the skills to complete apps without ChatGPT or any other AI platform. An overreliance on these platforms isn’t ideal, as the developer must know and trust the codebase. As impressive as these AI platforms have become, they don’t always generate the right solutions.

So, never trust a developer who relies exclusively on these AI platforms to make your app. Or a developer who gives a single glance over the AI-generated code before inserting it into your app during production. And you certainly don’t want your banking or internal business app to have code that hasn’t been thoroughly inspected and tested.

Partnering With A Developer With Little Mobile App Development Experience

It’s not uncommon for developers to jump across industries for various reasons. For example, web developers often become disenchanted with building websites and decide to try their hand at mobile app development. They may assume this route will be more fun or earn them more money. 

While web developers possess several skills used in mobile app development, it’s not always a smooth transition. App development is often more challenging than web development due to the differing hardware considerations and increasing requirements imposed by the app stores. The Android platform alone requires that developers test on a wide variety of devices, while web developers only need to test their websites on several browsers. 

Web developers use languages like JavaScript, PHP, HTML, and CSS to build websites. While it’s possible to develop mobile apps with JavaScript, it’s not a first-class citizen and will seldom deliver the performance of native languages. Another shocker for web developers is the higher costs and more involved procedures associated with app development. 

If you’re considering hiring a web developer who has recently transitioned to mobile app development, think twice before proceeding. You don’t want to work with someone likely to make common mobile app development mistakes. It’s also unlikely that this developer has enough expertise or understands the nuances between Android and iOS.

Instead, opt for an established app development studio that has dedicated Android and iOS developers on the team. You’ll have the peace of mind that your app builds will be equally good on both platforms. And when you need to roll out updates and patches, you have a team on hand to do the heavy lifting.

 

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Working With A Developer Lacking The Necessary Resources

Mobile app development is not cheap, so every competent developer must have the necessary resources to complete their projects. These resources include the funds, staff, office space, hardware, and development tools available to the developer. If the developer lacks these, they won’t be a good candidate for your next project.

But how can you tell if the developer has the necessary resources to tackle your project? It’s not possible to know every aspect of the developer’s business, but there are a few tell-tale signs you should look out for. 

Check if the developer operates from an office that you can visit if you’re nearby. If you can stop by the developer’s premises to meet the team and discuss your project, that’s a positive sign. And if the team lead gives you a tour of the office and a rundown of the development process, that’s extra reassuring. A well-run and properly equipped development studio means you’re dealing with a credible developer. 

But be sure to ask the developer what contingency plans they have in place should they fall behind schedule. Consider all scenarios that may cause delays, including outages, app store policy changes, API updates, staff turnover, testing issues, etc. Mobile app development mistakes often happen when teams haven’t prepared for unforeseen events or allocated the relevant resources to deal with these issues.

In Conclusion

Mobile app development mistakes often happen when dealing with inexperienced or incompetent developers. But you can avoid regretful outcomes by working with an experienced and established studio that has built a reputation for delivering high-quality apps. Contact NS804 today to learn why we’re one of the best app developers in Richmond, Charlotte, Denver, and beyond! 

Strategies For Effective Project Management In Mobile App Development

Project management is fundamental to the successful completion of any mobile app. But it’s a deeply involved process that requires careful planning, plenty of meetings with stakeholders, and constant collaboration. While there are several ways to approach project management, we’ve prepared this handy guide to help you focus on the most effective strategies. 

Why Project Management Is Crucial For Your Mobile App Projects?

Developing mobile apps consists of a series of laborious and complex tasks. To uninitiated developers, the opposite may seem true, considering the vast quantity of apps that hit the app stores daily. Yet, few of these apps make a dent in the marketplace due to a lack of project management planning. 

Successful mobile apps are seldom created on impulse or by solo hobbyists and freelance developers. Instead, they’re the products of visionary appreneurs who partner with talented app development studios like NS804. Quite often, other stakeholders like app publishers, businesses, and marketing teams will also contribute. Keeping all these entities on the same page is excruciatingly challenging — but necessary for the success of any app project.

That’s where project management planning comes in. It helps all stakeholders involved in your project understand its core concept, how much it will cost, and how long it will take until completion. Furthermore, the plan will detail all goals, expectations, resources, tools, and methodologies necessary for the project. 

Depending on the scope and needs of your project, the plan may include additional details. In all cases, it’s best to hash out a project management plan that is as detailed as possible. It’s also wise to detail a contingency plan or offer alternative solutions for project bottlenecks or missed milestones. Ultimately, the primary goals of project management are to deliver a completed project and reduce the risks associated with app development

 

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What Does Project Management Entail?

Project management includes all the details and specifications required to complete an app project. A common misunderstanding involves the ideation process of app development. Some team leaders will integrate this process into their planning, while others leave it out. So, which method is the correct one? Usually, it’s best to leave out the ideation process since this happens long before a development team will tackle the project. 

A good example is the appreneur who comes up with an app idea and commences with basic ideation on a handkerchief or piece of paper. Then, the appreneur approaches a development studio to discuss this idea, gain additional insight, and for further brainstorming. 

The studio will offer guidance and create a wireframe to flesh out the appreneur’s ideas. At this point, the appreneur and the studio’s development team have a basic understanding of what the app will look like. If necessary, the appreneur will greenlight the creation of a prototype for a better replication of the finished product. 

Once the appreneur is satisfied with the wireframe or prototype, it’s time to approve or abandon the project. If the appreneur decides to forge ahead, project management planning will take center stage. During this stage, the appreneur, the project lead, the designers, the development team, the marketing team, and any other stakeholders will commence a series of meetings.

Ideally, most initial meetings will occur face-to-face at the development studio’s physical premises. NS804 makes this easy as we have offices in Richmond, VA, Charlotte, NC, and Denver, CO. But we also make it easy for clients to stay in the loop via our Slack channels and to peruse the project management plan via Trello. 

Is Project Management Necessary For Mobile Game Development?

It’s essential to conduct project management planning before you start making your mobile game. Developing modern mobile games is hard, so it’s foolhardy to tackle such projects without a carefully conceived plan from day one. You must also prepare a game design document (GDD) that will contain the following:

  • A summary of your mobile game: This section includes details of the core concept, genre, target audience, and overall scope of your game. 
  • Gameplay details: In this section, you will describe all the objectives and challenges players will face. 
  • Core game mechanics: Describe all the physics, rules, and player interactions within your core game loop. 
  • Worldbuilding: This section will include information about your game’s characters, story elements, levels, and locales. 
  • Game assets: Describe the types of graphics, music, and sound effects that you will include in your game.  
  • Game development tooling: Include details about the game engine, graphic design software, and 3D modeling tools you will use during development. 

Set Realistic Milestones For All Stakeholders

One of the first and most essential steps of your project management plan is to set milestones. Ensure that all these milestones are realistic and that all stakeholders are on board. Conducting face-to-face meetings early on is a great way to confirm which tasks each stakeholder will handle during the development of your app. At times, it won’t be possible for everyone to meet physically, so you will have to rely on video conferencing. 

Verify that all stakeholders understand every phase of your plan and the timeframe of each milestone. You may use Trello, to-do lists, or spreadsheets to keep everyone on the same page. Regularly check to see that all stakeholders are meeting milestones, and message or email those that fall behind. If any team member isn’t meeting their obligations, remove them from the team and replace them with someone who will fulfill your plan.

Carefully Plan The Resources For Your Project

How you manage your resources will make or break your project. But what constitutes these resources, to begin with? These resources may include key team members, specific skills, hardware, software, and tooling. Additionally, include any cloud services, testing, and app deployment services you will use for your project. 

But be sure to assess only the resources you will use for this specific project and not for other projects you’re working on in tandem. You want to be as accurate and detailed as possible when you assess all the resources you will include in your plan. And that’s crucial because it will impact your project’s cost analysis. Many stakeholders, particularly investors, will eventually want a cost breakdown. 

Furthermore, conduct several meetings with the most experienced members of your team to pinpoint the most suitable resources for your project. Don’t assume that certain staff members or tools that proved effective in a previous project will also serve your upcoming project. Instead, be willing to switch things up based on deep and detailed analysis of similar projects, current development trends, and the current state of the app marketplace. 

Consult Your Team Lead To Set The Timeline

Ideally, you should have a team lead — but if you don’t — you must assume this role instead. But leading an app development project is challenging, so we recommend you work with a competent studio if you can fit this into your budget. 

Whether you decide to work with a team lead, hire a studio, or go solo, you must set a timeline. That’s because you don’t want your project to consume all your time and eventually burn through all your funding. 

But if you haven’t developed apps before, you may find it hard to determine an accurate timeline. More often than not, you’ll probably be way off in your timeline if you don’t consult a professional. Sure, you may watch several YouTube videos and read blog posts about app development, but nothing beats working with someone with hands-on experience. 

Your timeline must align with all your set milestones and be realistic and trackable. Also, consider all scenarios that will cause delays, such as staff members taking sick leave, holidays, internet outages, funding issues, API updates, backend integrations, troubleshooting, etc. 

Above all, hold all stakeholders accountable for meeting milestones on time. Stick to a weekly or bi-weekly routine to check everyone is committed to your project management plan.

Detail Usage Of All Communication Channels

Even the most rock-solid project management plan will fail without properly implemented communication channels. That’s because all stakeholders must communicate regularly during each stage of the development process. Any communication bottlenecks will delay or derail your app’s progress and even lead to a catastrophic outcome. 

To avoid all this, you must set up all the communication and feedback channels you’ll use during development and outline these in your plan. The good news is that there are many excellent paid and free communications services available, as follows: 

  • Chanty
  • ChatWork
  • Discord
  • Google Chat
  • Messenger
  • Microsoft Teams
  • NuovoTeam PTT
  • Trello
  • Troop Messenger
  • Slack
  • WhatsApp Business
  • Wrike

Some of these services also have integrated project management features. Take the time to assess the most suitable communications services for your app project. You may want to opt for an all-in-one solution to simplify your workflow. Alternatively, you may need more advanced or specific features, so you may need to rely on several disparate services.

Set And Follow Guidelines  

Project management relies heavily on team members following specific guidelines. You must decide on these early on and cover them in detail in your plan. These guidelines will cover multiple issues, like how your team will handle communications, app testing, and quality assurance (QA). 

Draw up guidelines that will facilitate a smooth app development process but also deliver a quality product. And ensure that you post these guidelines in all the places where team members will see them. Consider posting communications guidelines and etiquette rules in all your communications channels. 

Due to the complexity involved with testing, bug tracking, and app deployment, prepare documentation that covers all these aspects in detail. If there’s significant information that you need to cover, then consider creating several eBooks or PDFs. These will include guidelines and best practices that the relevant team members must follow. Most communications tools allow you to upload and distribute these files to reach the right people. 

You may decide to automate your testing process, especially if your team’s headcount is low. But this doesn’t mean you shouldn’t set guidelines for such a use case. That’s because setting up automated tests is an involved process that requires troubleshooting. Once set up correctly, automated tests will run flawlessly and scale to meet project scope.

 

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Choose A Project Management Methodology For Your App

Eventually, you’ll decide on a project management methodology that best suits the developments of your app. There are five commonly used methodologies, so you must pick one listed below: 

Agile

Agile project management is one of the most common methodologies used by developers. It’s popular due to its flexibility since project tasks consist of shorter phases. Thus, teams focus on completing projects on time and within budget while allowing for bug fixes and changes at every stage of development.

Scrum

Scrum follows Agile’s principles with an emphasis on short team meetings held daily. There’s also a greater emphasis on assigning tasks to specific team members and completing tasks in order. Therefore, it’s a good choice for teams that require clearly defined roles and responsibilities.  

Extreme Programming (XP)

XP is yet another methodology firmly within the Agile camp. It’s aimed at experienced software developers who value simplicity and good communication pipelines. Do keep in mind that XP is unsuitable for new developers or teams that struggle with transparency. 

Kanban

Kanban relies on to-do lists, columns, and cards to visually present project tasks and completion. Popular platforms like Trello are based entirely on Kanban, so it’s easy to onboard and expose team members to this methodology. Kanban is a good choice for teams that must roll out bug fixes, patches, and updates regularly. 

Waterfall

Waterfall project management is the simplest but also the most inflexible method here. Teams complete tasks according to a pre-defined and ordered sequence that flows downwards, hence its name. Therefore, it’s only suitable for teams that will follow a rigid plan with no possibility of implementing changes at a later stage. 

In Conclusion

App development is often challenging, complex, and risky. But you can reduce all these factors significantly by implementing the right project management strategies for your app project. Contact NS804 today to learn how we’ll help you complete your app on time and budget! 

7 Reasons To Find A Mobile App Developer In Charlotte

As a native of Charlotte, North Carolina, or the surrounding regions, you may have attempted to find a mobile app developer in the area. And you may have become overwhelmed by the sheer number of developers available to tackle your project. Now, having options is always good, and we’d always recommend you explore these options.

But you may have also wondered if any of these mobile developers in Charlotte are any good. We don’t doubt that there are many competent developers in Charlotte, given the enormous talent pool of the city. With a population of almost 900,000 inhabitants, a bustling commercial hub, and home to banking giants, it’s a city that means business. That means developers must bring their ‘A’ game to stay relevant.

While all this seems great, it doesn’t mean every developer in Charlotte can help you achieve your app development goals. A freelancer or even a startup may not have the experience, funding, or staff to tackle your app project, especially if it’s ambitious. Freelancers, in particular, may not be available or willing to roll out bug fixes and updates after shipping your app. You don’t want to deal with such a scenario if you expect your app to have a long lifecycle

Thus, we recommend that you focus on established and reputable mobile app development studios in Charlotte. Whether you’re an appreneur, business owner, or executive, you want to work with a developer that will help you achieve your goals while meeting your high standards. And given the complexity and demands of modern app development, there’s no room for half-measures. Below, we’ve compiled a handy list pinpointing the reasons to find a mobile app developer in Charlotte.

 

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1. Find A Mobile App Developer With A Proven Track Record

What is one of the easiest ways to determine whether an app developer can deliver quality apps on time? Start by looking at the developer’s portfolio of completed apps. You should find these on the developer’s website, and the list of completed apps should be reasonably long since this shows the developer ships apps at a regular cadence. Be wary of developers that don’t have a portfolio or only showcase a few apps. These developers probably haven’t released enough apps to garner enough experience to tackle more complex projects.

As a leading app development studio in Charlotte, NS804 has tremendous pride in the apps we’ve released since 2012. We build 10-15 apps for our clients annually, targeting several categories and demographics. We’ve released apps for branding, business, communication, dating, entertainment, productivity, and web design, making our output well-rounded. Our portfolio speaks for itself since it consists of a compelling list of apps, such as follows:

  • Bat Flaps
  • Béné
  • Brew Trader
  • C5G
  • EntreConnect
  • Horse Logics
  • Impower
  • KnowUs
  • Live Bet Boss
  • Paxis Pro
  • PreVue
  • Simpatico
  • Social Auto Transport
  • Text Surge
  • Trivia Monsters
  • Virginia Beer
  • Watermelon Festival
  • Wine Swap
  • Yards for Yeardley
  • Zoomerang

2. Partner With An Award-Winning Developer

Most established studios can push out many apps in a short space of time, so it’s not always a reassuring sign. After all, it’s common for some studios to focus exclusively on reskinning mobile apps and games. In most cases, their primary focus is to make a quick buck without caring about the quality or originality of their apps. If you want to develop an app for your business, these are the worst kinds of studios to partner with. 

Instead, you want to work with a studio that’s meticulous and passionate about the app development process. The kind of studio that takes app development seriously yet continuously raises the quality bar. At NS804, we think of ourselves as such a studio, and we’ve received the acclaim and awards to prove it! 

We’ve appeared regularly in media outlets like DC Inno, Fox 5, NBC 4, Sun Herald, Technical.ly, and Washington Business Journal. And we’ve regularly been featured and awarded by Clutch in the following categories:

  • Top App Developers – Washington D.C. 2018
  • Top Mobile App – Developers 2019
  • Top Mobile App – Developers 2020
  • Top Developers – 2021
  • Top B2B Companies – Global 2022
  • Top 1000 Companies – Global 2022
  • Top App Development Company – Richmond 2023
  • Top Software Developers – Virginia 2023
  • Top AR/VR Development Company – Richmond 2023
  • Top AR/VR Development Company – United States 2023

Receiving accolades feels good, and it reassures our existing and future clients that they’re dealing with a development partner focused on quality. Moving forward, we plan on winning many more awards, but above all, meeting and surpassing client expectations.

3. Prioritize Native Mobile App Development 

It’s always better to find a mobile app developer in Charlotte that specializes in native development. But what is native app development, and why should you care? Think of native apps as those created using a manufacturer’s recommended programming languages, development tools, and methodologies. In the mobile space, Apple and Google set the guidelines and provide the tooling for iOS and Android development, respectively. 

Apple provides the Xcode integrated development environment (IDE) and the Swift programming language for creating apps for iOS devices. Similarly, Google provides the Android Studio IDE and the Kotlin programming language for creating apps for Android devices. A native app developer will use these tools and languages instead of third-party tools that facilitate cross-platform development. 

While cross-platform tools make it easier, cheaper, and quicker to develop for Android and iOS, there are several disadvantages that we need to discuss. One of the main issues with cross-platform development is that it always introduces a performance cost. In most cases, natively developed apps load faster, perform better, and drain the battery far less than cross-platform apps. 

Another issue that will impact the quality of an app is its user interface (UI). Many cross-platform tools offer non-standard UI components that don’t always comply with Apple’s and Google’s standards. While several cross-platform tools have improved their UI in recent years, they’re still not as good or consistent as native UI tools.

Ideally, you want your app to look and feel identical on both Android and iOS. And that’s only possible if you partner with a developer specializing in native app development. It may cost more and take a bit longer to ship, but your users will appreciate the slicker and smoother experience your native app will provide.

 

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4. Find A Mobile App Developer In Charlotte That Pushes The Envelope

The mobile app market has matured, meaning it’s harder to attract, engage, and retain users. As an appreneur or business leader, you’ll want to bring your best ideas forward to make an impact. If you’re a trailblazer or often come up with unique ideas, you’re in a better position to succeed in an environment with hard-to-please users. 

But coming up with ideas is only one small aspect of the app development process. You’ll want to find a mobile app developer in Charlotte to present your ideas and receive feedback on whether or not it’s realistic to turn these into an app. And if your ideas seem unconventional or difficult to conceive, an experienced developer will help to ground these. The developer’s experience with multiple app releases will inform further brainstorming and ideation processes based on what works and doesn’t.

While we can’t speak about other developers, NS804 has often embraced ideas that drive mobile apps forward. We’ve worked closely and built fruitful relationships with clients that have come up with ideas that truly help users. Our close collaboration with 3ADVANCE, LLC and Red Canopy Holdings, LLC helped birth the Béné app. 

Béné is a digital tipping application for the hospitality industry that allows guests to tip hotel staff. Guests scan QR codes printed on cards inside their rooms and other hotel areas to send cashless tips without needing to download any apps. The simplicity and reliability of this system have made Béné a winner and a testament to how good ideas help shape industries.

5. Work With A Developer That Builds Next-Generation Apps

We’ve already mentioned that users have become harder to please nowadays. It’s no longer easy or even possible to draw these users with apps that they’ve experienced a hundred times before. Moreover, a growing number of users, especially younger users, expect more from apps. Old and outdated-looking apps just won’t do, and it’s up to you to look at new ways to engage these users. 

Fortunately, mobile app technology keeps moving forward, which presents savvy appreneurs and developers with plenty of opportunities to create the types of apps that weren’t possible in the past. We’ve reached a point where there’s greater demand for more immersive apps that utilize video or contain an augmented reality (AR) or virtual reality (VR) component. 

Recently, NS804 worked on the innovative next-generation PreVue dating app that smartly uses video. Our client wanted to make the online dating process more honest and authentic, and that was only possible with video. PreVue users must upload a short video of themselves showing their body language, personality, and overall vibe. It’s now easier to build trust with potential matches since users can no longer hide behind fake bios like in other popular dating apps.

The short-form video format popularized by Snapchat and TikTok served as inspiration. We were willing to put in the extra time and effort to create a next-generation app that would resonate with today’s users. PreVue is gradually growing in popularity and delighting users disillusioned with how apps have approached the online dating experience thus far. This has shown us that implementing the latest technologies is essential for app success moving forward.

6. Collaborate With A Developer For App Store Submissions

If you haven’t released an app on the app stores to date, you may not understand how these work. You may even believe that it’s a relatively simple process to release apps on the App Store and Google Play. And while there’s some truth to this, it’s probably more involved and challenging than you’d expect. That’s because Apple and Google have strict guidelines that developers and publishers must follow when submitting apps. 

While there’s nothing wrong with learning and tackling the entire submission process yourself — it will take time and may cause much frustration — especially if your app fails approval one or more times. If you’re running a business, there’s probably a significant opportunity cost involved in spending your valuable time trying to go through the submission process. It’s wiser to partner with a studio, such as NS804, to handle this for you instead. 

NS804 will ensure that your app meets all the criteria set by Apple and Google. We’ll look at your app content, quality, uniqueness, hardware compatibility, performance, security, stability, and styling, to ensure it passes submission. While Apple has the reputation of having stricter guidelines, it’s not uncommon to face significant challenges when submitting an Android build on Google Play. That’s because Android apps need to run on a wide range of hardware specs from multiple manufacturers.

7. Find A Mobile App Developer That Will Help You Scale

Perhaps your app’s meant to serve a crucial part of your business strategy. Or you’re planning on building an innovative music streaming service that will grow and grow. Therefore, your app’s never truly finished and will receive new features and updates regularly. But rolling these out requires that you team up with a reliable partner.

Ideally, you want to work with a studio that stays committed to your current goals but will also closely follow future roadmaps of your app. At NS804, we understand how important it’s to scale your app when reaching certain milestones and are willing to provide the necessary guidance to help you grow. We prefer to build a long-lasting relationship to ensure we always have a role to play during each phase of your app’s evolution. 

In Conclusion

If you’ve been trying to find a mobile app developer in Charlotte, you may have come across several studios. It’s likely that we’re one of these studios that have appeared during your searches or recommended by business associates. Whatever the case is, contact NS804 today to learn how we’ll help you create the phenomenal apps that will engage and delight your users. 

Fintech App Development: 9 Must-Have Features

Fintech app development has become increasingly popular over the past decade. After all, many startups and development teams are working on innovative fintech apps, especially in the mobile space. It’s a rapidly growing global industry estimated at a whopping $110 billion in 2020 and will likely hit $700 billion by 2030.

But why the interest in fintech worldwide? There’s not a single reason for the meteoric rise of fintech, but several developments have helped to transform this industry. The proliferation of e-commerce entities with the mass adoption of smartphones has led to the widespread use of secure payment processors. These payment platforms and other solution providers have forged ahead with various cashless digital payments and mobile wallets. 

Furthermore, advancements in artificial intelligence (AI), machine learning (ML), Internet of Things (IoT) devices, blockchain technologies, cryptocurrencies, data analytics, and favorable government regulations have helped grease the wheels of the fintech industry. And the traditional banking sector isn’t sitting on the sidelines either, with many notable financial institutions investing heavily in mobile banking apps.

The banking sector must also replace and upgrade aging systems designed for an era when customers had to visit bank branches or automated teller machines (ATMs) to complete most financial transactions. Also, many banks are reducing their physical footprint and offering more financial services directly on their banking apps. These apps have become so compelling because they provide an A-to-Z approach for customers to manage their finances.

And that’s why fintech app development is so crucial. It empowers users when they have access to essential features. Now, let’s delve deeper into what must-have features today’s fintech apps should include!  

 

What Should You Know About Fintech App Development?

Fintech app development is a multi-disciplinary process that often requires expertise in several key areas: 

  • Mobile app development
  • Back-end development
  • Software engineering
  • User experience (UX) design
  • User interface (UI) design
  • Application and network security
  • Cloud computing
  • Financial software systems
  • Payment processing APIs
  • Artificial intelligence
  • Machine learning
  • Blockchain

Since fintech apps handle large amounts of financial transactions and sensitive user data, security must come first. Therefore, every competent fintech app development studio must have one or more security experts available on the team. These security experts must deal with all present and future vulnerabilities that may occur within the app, the network layer, the back-end server, and the payment processing APIs. 

As for the latter, it’s unlikely that the studio’s security experts can seal off all security holes in third-party APIs. But they should keep tabs on all known and new vulnerabilities and ensure they provide enough security features and defenses within the app to counter these. However, when dealing with open-source APIs with permissive licenses, they can rewrite parts of the compromised APIs or contribute additional code that will harden security.

What Is A Fintech Application?

As a broad description, a fintech app may include any application that simplifies and automates financial services. The majority of fintech apps are almost always the products of the fintech industry, which is in itself a broad term. In the fintech industry, it’s not uncommon for app developers, venture capitalists, and financial institutions to collaborate closely on products, such as banking apps, digital wallets, and money lending apps.

Several technologies that make up a fintech app may include AI, IoT, blockchain, cryptocurrencies, and data analytics. In some countries, cryptocurrencies remain in a grey zone legally. Thus, fintech app development studios must comply with regulations in these countries and apply certain restrictions on cryptocurrency transactions. But most mainstream users will use fintech apps to manage their finances instead of trading and investing in cryptocurrencies.

Generally, fintech apps fit into the following four segments: Business-to-Business (B2B) within the banking industry, B2B bank clients, Business-to-Consumer (B2C) within the small business sector, and wholly consumer based. If you want to develop a fintech mobile app, you’ll need to focus on one of these segments before forging ahead. And that’s because trying to create an app that serves multiple business models seldom works when starting out.

Consider how PayPal began as a digital wallet for electronic payments back in 1999. And soon after this startup launched its initial public offering (IPO), it was rapidly snapped up by eBay — subsequently becoming the preferred payment option for users on the famous auction site. Over the past two decades, PayPal has grown by adapting to the needs of its users. Today, the company effectively runs a two-sided business model in handling financial transactions for merchants and consumers. 

 

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What Are The Most Popular Types Of Fintech Apps? 

One of the neat things about fintech app development is that appreneurs and developers can flex their creative muscles. That’s because there are already many types of fintech applications in the marketplace, and the list of categories will only grow in the foreseeable future. But if you’re new to fintech and wondering what type of app you should develop, then consider the following: 

  • Mobile banking app: You’re probably already using one or more banking apps right now. And you’re likely benefiting from the ease and convenience of handling many financial transactions through these. A side benefit of mobile banking apps is that they provide an indispensable service to formerly unbanked individuals, particularly in developing countries.
  • Investment app: People that don’t have access to large sums of money or a broker will use investment apps to generate some wealth. Several of the best investment apps provide tutorials and simulated stock markets to train new users.
  • Insurance app: Most people will experience at least one major mishap during their lifetimes. It may involve a car accident, a health issue, or lost luggage during travel. But even if insured, these are all stressful scenarios that cause people to hastily look for their insurance policies, wondering if they’re fully covered. Fortunately, today’s mobile insurance apps make it easy for customers to review their policies, make claims, and receive quotes.
  • Peer-to-peer (P2P) lending app: Financial institutions may not always provide loans at favorable interest rates or to individuals with a bad credit score. That’s where loan apps conveniently fill a gap in the market by bringing P2P lending to the masses. But to mitigate risk, these P2P platforms seldom loan out large amounts like the big financial institutions.  

Is Developing A Fintech Application Easy? 

No, fintech app development ranks as one of the more challenging categories in software engineering. Don’t be fooled by the plethora of fintech apps in the marketplace and the many freelance developers making bold claims about quick turnarounds on fintech projects. While the abundance of projects in this domain may make it seem easy, much can go awry by overlooking certain scenarios. 

The hard reality is that not all fintech products offer robust security or comply with mandatory financial regulations. Furthermore, freelancers don’t have the best reputation for tightening up app security or closely following the rules and guidelines set by regulatory bodies worldwide.

Since fintech apps deal with money, no developer should play fast and loose, especially with the law. Any security breaches that result in monetary losses may lead to jail time for the responsible parties, including the publisher or developer, for not following the necessary protocols. So, never place your trust in a freelance developer or a studio that doesn’t have a track record for quality apps and following best practices. Instead, partner with a multi-award-winning and reputable mobile app developer like NS804, which has already released over 100 applications.

Which Steps Must Every Fintech App Development Studio Follow?

We’ve already stressed how important it’s to closely follow best practices, government regulations, and security protocols. But what does that actually mean when developing a fintech application? Before adding innovative new features to your app, you should first ensure that your app adheres to several fundamentals. Be sure to include the following steps in your development process:

  • Legal requirements: Even during your early planning stage, you must know what shape your legal compliance framework will take. Moreover, you must comply with various privacy laws for different territories, such as General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) for the European Union (EU) and the California Consumer Privacy Act (CCPA). Consult a trusted legal advisor during every phase of your fintech app development process to ensure compliance with all regulations, regardless of how obscure or complex these may seem.
  • App security: Security will play a central role every step of the way during your fintech app development process. Toughen security with mandatory biometrics, one-time password (OTP), and two-factor authentication features. Ensure that your team rolls out updates immediately to patch up any security vulnerabilities that may occur.
  • API administration: Your fintech app must communicate with other apps and portals for smooth functionality. Thus, you’ll use APIs to connect these disparate applications. But you must ensure these APIs comply with the most stringent security protocols since this will impact your app’s risk factor.
  • User support functionality: Sooner or later, users will experience issues with your app. Create an intuitive user journey to smoothen the onboarding process. Include built-in training tutorials to help users learn how to use your app and an AI-powered chatbot to respond quickly to their questions.

Before Implementing The Latest Must-Have Features

Fintech apps have evolved considerably over the past decade. Even the most rudimentary applications come with impressive features meant to engage users. While that may seem like a smart move, it’s never a good idea to flood a fintech app with unnecessary features. Instead, it’s better to offer basic functionality that does actually meet users’ needs. You can always add additional features when you roll out updates and when you scale. 

Before commencing on expensive and risky projects, we always advise our clients to build a minimum viable product (MVP). An MVP is ideal for fintech app development because the focus is strictly on basic functionality. Moreover, it’s the perfect vehicle to test an app idea by bringing it to the market cheaply and quickly. 

If users resonate with the MVP, that’s a good sign that it has the potential to become successful as a full-fledged app. And by monitoring and analyzing user data and feedback, it becomes easier to pinpoint the additional features users want. Below, we’ll discuss in detail the various must-have features you should consider for your upcoming fintech project.

 

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1. Gamification

Until now, gamification was more of a nice-to-have feature instead of a must-have feature. But user expectations have changed due to the interactive experiences they’ve had with gaming. There’s hardly a user that doesn’t become incentivized by leveling up their character, achieving a high score on the leaderboard, or unlocking an additional skill on the skill tree. 

Gamification includes all these game-like activities and many more. And these have found their way into all kinds of apps, from productivity to fintech apps. But the real draw of gamification is that it helps to increase engagement by offering users a more fun and rewarding experience. For example, an investment app could award cool-looking badges when users meet specific investment milestones. 

2. Push notifications

Push notifications are not new and are standard in just about every category of mobile app. But it’s not only a matter of having push notifications but how you’ll use them to engage users. The core principles of fintech app development require that you provide users with security and keep them informed of any app changes at all times. 

Consider how users will want their banking apps to remind them of outgoing and incoming payments. And remind them about upcoming bills and alert them of any unusual logins or activity on their accounts. Push notifications are the quickest, easiest, and most reliable way to alert users. Emails and SMS messages sometimes go undelivered, and users may not always check these timeously or regularly. This may put them in a situation where they can’t respond to a potential security risk in time.

3. User Profiles

It’s crucial to let users customize your fintech app to make it more personal and accessible. Users love using apps that feel comfortable and will continue using those that seem designed specifically for them. 

You can do this with user profiles, which will contain each user’s individual preferences. Of course, you may also provide presets so that users can get up and running with a predefined UI, font style, and theme that they’ll find appealing. But customization doesn’t only need to affect the appearance of the app but also how it functions. Users may set their budget and spending preferences and save these in their user profiles. 

4. Blockchain

While not every fintech app benefits from a blockchain implementation, it’s worth considering if your app meets certain criteria. If your app must handle cryptocurrency transactions, you’ll inevitably use a blockchain. But it’s also necessary if your users demand a transparent and secure system to record all transactions without a central entity, such as a large financial institution.  

Where blockchain technology truly comes into its own is with any P2P network. So, if you’re creating a P2P lending application, your users will want to have the surety that there’s a record of all transactions on a distributed database. This way, lenders and borrowers will trust all transactions on your P2P lending app. And if there’s ever any discrepancy, the database will always reveal what happened with any funds after a transaction query.

5. Smart contracts

If you move ahead with a blockchain implementation, you should also consider smart contracts. The best way to think of smart contracts is that of smaller programs that run on the blockchain and automate tasks based on an agreement. And in their more advanced form, they may work with a central securities depository (CSD) to handle fungible assets like stocks, options, and bonds. Also, note that non-fungible tokens (NFTs) operate as smart contracts or under such a paradigm. 

Therefore, if you’re developing a platform to trade NFTs, smart contracts will become central to your fintech app development process. You’ll also need to integrate various digital wallets, crypto exchanges, and NFT marketplaces with your app.

6. Chatbots

We’ve already discussed why you should implement user support functionality in your fintech app. And we even mentioned the need for an AI-powered chatbot that will respond to user queries. Obviously, these kinds of chatbots are not new and are not only meant for fintech apps. But they’re essential to fulfill customer support roles, especially if you don’t have the budget and staff to provide support 24/7. 

Users will want to know how to set up and manage their accounts, get answers to technical issues, and learn more about new and specific features. And while they can find out this information by perusing your app’s docs or support forums, it’s better not to inconvenience them. Ideally, you want to keep users glued to your app and not look elsewhere, even your website, for information. 

An AI-powered chatbot can answer most user questions in seconds and in their native language. Users will feel more confident using your app, even its more advanced features, knowing that help is only a screen tap away.

7. Big Data Analytics

Financial applications live or die based on how well they handle large amounts of data. For example, the more data a banking app has about a customer’s spending habits, assets, and credit rating, the better it can assess risk for a requested loan. When an app feeds from the bank’s Big Data pipeline combined with analytics, it will know if the customer is trustworthy and may also detect potential fraud or malicious intent.  

Once everything is clear, the app can push through the loan request to the loan approval agent and notify the customer. And once the agent approves the loan, the customer will receive the fund in their account. This quick and frictionless way of applying for a loan without needing to call or visit a bank branch is only possible due to Big Data analytics. 

8. Machine Learning

It’s hard to think of fintech app development without becoming proficient at implementing machine learning. And that’s because there’s hardly a fintech application that doesn’t have a ML component in one form or another. Moreover, there are many ways that ML algorithms can aid various functions, even within a single fintech app. 

These algorithms can enhance an app’s fraud detection capabilities, predict market risks, and implement trading strategies. Bots powered by ML algorithms can also advise users on trades, upcoming investment trends, and market opportunities. However, it’s important to note that the quality and accuracy of the data these algorithms use will determine overall efficacy.

9. Multiple Digital Payment Options

No fintech app can function correctly without having at least one digital payment option. But users expect multiple digital payment options, so design your app for such a scenario. While it’s perfectly okay for your MVP or initial versions of your app to have one payment option, you’ll need to diversify payment options as your app matures. 

But what payment options should your fintech app have initially? Offer wire transfer, debit, and credit card payments from the get-go. Then, closely follow with PayPal, Venmo, Cash App, Stripe, Amazon Pay, Apple Pay, Google Play, and Samsung Pay. 

However, some digital payment processors prohibit risky speculative trading and investment products from accessing their services. Ensure that your fintech app complies with the terms of service (ToS) of any payment processor you plan on integrating. You may also add cryptocurrency payment options if your app’s meant for the crypto market.

In Conclusion

Fintech app development has come a long way yet still offers many opportunities for forward-looking appreneurs, developers, and financial institutions. Users have become accustomed to handling all their finances on their mobile devices. They seldom visit a physical location or call an agent to do their banking, submit an insurance claim, or invest in stocks. Furthermore, fintech apps make most transactions easy, convenient, and quick. Contact NS804 today to learn how we’ll help you build your next fintech app for a growing and promising market! 

What We Learned From Building The PreVue Dating App

At NS804, we love developing apps like PreVue that positively impact users. PreVue is a dating app that breaks the mold of what users have come to expect from online dating and modern dating applications. Nowadays, popular options include the likes of Bumble, OkCupid, Tinder, and many others. And while these have revolutionized modern dating by allowing users to meet those outside of their ethnic backgrounds, social circles, and even geographic locations — they’ve also introduced a lot of problems. 

The founder & CEO of PreVue — Lucanus J. Grady — briefly described these problems in his mission statement: “Dating app profiles had become just this fabrication to attract a quantity of candidates like it was a game. And it’s just hard, right? So I just kept thinking, there must be a better way! How do we filter out all the nonsense, cut through the heavily-doctored pictures, the wordy biographies, and just the genuine lack of honesty?”

Grady’s assessment regarding the current state of the modern dating app holds true, and there’s a real need for a fresh approach. Fortunately, Grady did approach things differently when formulating PreVue, a video-based dating platform. With PreVue, users take a short 22-second video without filters, showing off their true selves. The nuances in their facial expressions and mannerisms provide a far more authentic picture of who they are than edited photos, biographies, or text messages. 

We helped bring PreVue to life and feel privileged to have worked closely with Grady on his innovative dating app concept. Our partnership on this exciting project has been a relatively smooth process. However, we did learn several important lessons that we’ll discuss in greater detail below.

 

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Modern Dating In Crisis

Now, you may think that there are already too many dating apps flooding the marketplace — and that’s true. But have you asked yourself if these apps help or hinder users from dating successfully? And if you’ve been out of the dating pool for a while now, you may be shocked to learn that the modern dating scene isn’t very healthy, to put it lightly.

While apps such as Tinder make it incredibly easy for users to find matches in their area, that doesn’t mean these are quality matches. If anything, Tinder and many similar dating apps facilitate hook-up culture, where sexual encounters are at the forefront, and long-lasting relationships come last. Gen Z and Millenials in the younger age range may only be looking for short-term relationships or ‘situationships.’ And that’s perfectly fine for some but completely wrong for those wanting deep and meaningful relationships. 

Furthermore, things don’t look rosy for most American men under 30 who remain single. According to a study by the Pew Research Center, approximately 63% of men in this age bracket find themselves single compared to 34% of women. And if that wasn’t bad enough, fewer single American men are looking to date now than before the Covid pandemic (42% now versus 49% in 2019).

Things get worse still, as an overabundance of online pornography and OnlyFans models grab male attention and interest at a disturbingly high rate. And while we hope this trend will change at some point, it’s definitely an ominous sign that we can’t afford to ignore. From a societal and economic standpoint, it isn’t good if young men forgo dating and relationships, as this will lead to a demographic decline in the foreseeable future. 

How Does PreVue Solve Notable Problems?

The best and most successful apps solve problems that users often encounter. And as we’ve already covered in significant detail, modern dating is in crisis mode with plenty of problems. Moreover, the creator of PreVue, Lucanus J. Grady, has experienced the pain points of modern dating apps firsthand. With most dating apps, it’s too easy for users to enhance their looks via filters and present a false self through their biographies. 

And that’s why he set out to offer an alternative that allows users to date with intention, where they can see, hear, and get the vibe from a potential candidate before taking things further. Thus, it’s difficult for users on the PreVue platform to present themselves inauthentically, as the short form 22-second videos are great at conveying subtle changes in facial expressions and voices that accurately reveal the candidate’s appearance, emotions, and desirability. 

But another reason why video is such a powerful medium is that it’s become the number one way to distribute and consume content today. Platforms such as Instagram and TikTok have carved a path for creating and sharing short-form videos effectively, and it’s time that dating apps catch up! 

How Does PreVue Work? 

PreVue offers users a dead simple onboarding process that’s as frictionless as possible. This dating app only requires the most applicable information from the user, their location, and their dating preferences. Then, it’s time to film the 22-second-long video with no filters or uploads permitted. Once done, the user may access the portal with all candidates that match their criteria. Furthermore, PreVue will match users based on what they said and even the backgrounds in their videos. 

PreVue officially launched in Boston, MA, due to the city’s vibrant and ethnically diverse culture. This works well, as dating with intention is something that the people of Boston want in a dating app. And it’s a great success thus far, with over 7,000 downloads and 1,200 active users over the past two months. 

While it’s still early days, users have responded positively to PreVue. Many are happy with how much more natural matches feel compared to other dating apps in the marketplace. It’s also easier for users to initiate conversations due to how PreVue manages profiles, and there’s a refreshing lack of spam accounts and creepy users. 

And similarly to other dating apps in the marketplace, there’s a free version of PreVue available. However, users can opt for in-app purchases, such as PreVue Premier 1 Month at $19.99, Unlimited Connections 24h at $6.99, and Video Chat 1h at $2.99. 

What Surprised Us About The Target Demographic Of PreVue?

PreVue successfully eradicated issues commonly found in other dating apps, such as catfishing. And so far, it seems that users are having more meaningful interactions in PreVue than with other alternatives, which was one of the primary goals of this project all along.

However, we initially anticipated that college users between the ages of 20 and 25 would make up our target audience. But we resonated more with the young professional demographic instead.

At first, this was surprising, but it makes sense since younger professionals are more likely to seek long-term partners for fulfilling relationships. And PreVue’s video-based approach facilitates the pursuit of these types of relationships, as users can easily screen out the chancers, players, and other disingenuous candidates.

 

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What Was The Development Process Like? 

The development process went smoothly, but we could have benefited from an entirely Agile approach. In hindsight, it would have been better if we released smaller feature sets since we’re now making changes on the fly based on user data and feedback we’ve obtained. 

That’s why at NS804, we always recommend that our clients scale back on their concepts to get their apps to market quicker. Users will always reveal what they want, and we can always pivot quickly based on user feedback. 

However, we did proceed with simple and clean code that was modular and flexible from the early stages of the project. If there’s one thing that every developer should know is that planning proper architecture saves a ton of time.  

Our development team includes four members, two founders, a marketing team, and a public relations (PR) team. While the development team may seem small, it’s actually the right size for this project and managed to complete it successfully. The build process took 12 months, which included a very long BETA to ensure we gathered enough feedback to launch the best product possible. But without the BETA and the additional scope, it would have taken around eight months. 

Which Programming Languages Did We Use During Development? 

NS804 is fundamentally a native mobile app developer. That means we use programming languages, frameworks, tools, and APIs for creating native apps for Android and iOS. We could choose hybrid mobile app development tools like Flutter or React Native to reduce development time and cost. However, that would result in lower-quality apps lacking the native look, feel, and performance users have come to expect. 

And given that PreVue is a dating app that must deliver video content regularly and consistently, we had to go native since performance is imperative. Thus, we chose Swift for developing the iOS version and Kotlin for the Android version.

Both Swift and Kotlin are modern, high-level, and statically typed languages that are easier to debug and maintain than the languages they’re gradually replacing, namely, Objective-C and Java. A side benefit of using Swift and Kotlin is that they integrate flawlessly with the latest user interface (UI) toolkits, such as SwiftUI and Jetpack Compose UI. And that allows us to create attractive and responsive UIs that look and feel native on a wide variety of modern mobile devices.   

We also used the Structured Query Language (SQL) for our back-end relational database. And Node.js, as it’s an efficient and powerful runtime environment for creating servers, modular applications, and even video streaming apps such as Netflix. It’s written using the JavaScript (JS) programming language, which has played a pivotal role in front-end web development.

How Crash Reporting And User Journeys Helped Us?

While we did not have any bugs reported, we did implement crash monitoring and user journeys built into the app. So we know if any issues arise before users report these to us, which allows us to take a proactive approach and fix these issues. 

The user journeys allow us to see where users may drop off during the process. And this allows us to refine and tailor our offering that will best suit end-user needs. The ultimate goal of the user journey is to determine the optimal path within the app that will enhance the user experience (UX). Ideally, users must reach their goals quickly and easily without being stumped by an unintuitive UI or other questionable design choices.

Due to our user-centric approach to design, we’ve regularly updated the UI to meet users’ needs. To date, our users benefit from a clean, slick, modern, and highly intuitive UI. And this allows them to engage with our dating app in a fun way without breaking their flow since the screen isn’t cluttered with text and any design elements that cause confusion.

What’s Next For PreVue?

PreVue has made a notable impact in a short space of time, and the future bodes well for our dating app. As we’ve already witnessed, there’s a real need for a platform that makes the dating experience much more honest and meaningful.

So, what have we got planned for PreVue moving forward? Currently, it’s only available in Boston and Washington DC. But we will open availability to new markets and expand our international footprint. Furthermore, we’ll use Machine Learning (ML) to enhance our existing matching algorithm. We started with a basic algorithm designed for maximum matches while the user base scales. 

It will be a learning experience as we use tools that improve the matching process over time. Our goal is to ensure that PreVue users will only have candidates appear in their feeds that align perfectly with what they’re looking for in potential partners. 

And speaking of partners, Lucanus J. Grady shared a few thoughts about his experience working with us: “Top Tier communication. Excellent relationship with the CEO. Always extremely knowledgeable and eager to help. Has provided assistance outside of the scope of responsibility and is an intangible member of our team. The company and its founder are now personal friends due to NS804’s core ethos and incredible professionalism.”

The Bottom Line

Working on PreVue, coupled with our close and fruitful relationship with our client, has made the development process an enjoyable and eye-opening journey. Furthermore, it’s a privilege to work with talented people that have all contributed to a dating app that conforms with our client’s visionary approach. Contact https://www.ns804.com/ today to learn how we’ll help you create phenomenal and trailblazing dating apps!  

Android vs. iOS: Choosing The Right Mobile App Strategy

Every development lead must comprehend the pros and cons of the most popular mobile platforms. Therefore, it’s common to engage in lengthy and strenuous deliberations regarding the age-old Android vs. iOS debate. And yes, this may sound passé considering how firmly established both platforms have become and how often the fanboys on both camps have had to eat humble pie

But we’re not talking about fanboyism here, as that’s detrimental for any app developer. After all, the best app developers and publishers don’t pick favorites but focus on tangible results. And there’s no point in favoring Android over iOS, or vice versa, in an era when both platforms satisfy billions of users globally. 

Therefore, the wisest option is to target both platforms if that fits the budget and capabilities of the development team. But we do want to stress that it’s crucial to implement a different strategy for each platform. And that’s because Android and iOS each serve specific markets and demographics better than others. 

For example, Android is the mobile gaming heavyweight and has a far larger global audience. Thus, it makes good business sense for game developers to focus their efforts more on Android vs. iOS in most cases. These efforts could involve the game assets, code, testing, marketing, and ad campaigns. 

On the flip side, iOS users love apps that enhance their photos or help them edit videos. That makes sense, considering that iOS devices are known for their excellent cameras and are used extensively by content creators and social media influencers. Understanding these differences allows every development lead to stay on top of the Android vs. iOS discussion and even steer it toward a fruitful direction.

But What Is A Mobile App Strategy?

A mobile app strategy encompasses the early planning stages, development phase, marketing efforts, and release. Ultimately, it serves as a roadmap for bringing your app to fruition. Without a mobile app strategy, your team will have scattered goals and priorities, and your project will fail.

And this is a problem because too many small indie developers treat mobile app development as a feel-good endeavor. They watch several YouTube videos, then read some articles and Reddit posts, which convince them that app development is fun. 

And while app development is indeed fun, professional studios always focus on delivering results. That means the fun and excitement of app development take a back seat to work within the parameters of a carefully conceived plan instead. Clients who partner with studios such as NS804 expect high-quality apps that meet their requirements. Therefore, there’s no room for aimless “what if” scenarios or raw experimentation, which indie and freelance developers may embrace.

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Android vs. iOS: A Mobile App Strategy That Applies To Both

As we mentioned earlier, you’ll likely target both Android and iOS platforms for your apps. Therefore, when you start putting together your mobile app strategy, you’ll have to consider the following for both platforms: 

  • Research the marketplace to determine whether other apps already solve this problem. And if they do, can you implement a feature that innovates or improves on what existing competing apps offer users? If you cannot forge ahead with a better alternative, reconsider your app idea before entering a market with an oversupply of similar apps.
  • Conduct a SWOT analysis to identify the strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats your app business will likely face.
  • Draw up user profiles of the types of users who will likely embrace your app. Consider several demographic examples about these users, such as their age, sex, location, occupation, education, salary, and interests.
  • Define the capabilities of your app in detail, even if some of these don’t make it into the end product. Also, create a wireframe to prototype the user interface (UI) to show all stakeholders involved in the project.
  • Document all the data accessibility and management systems you’ll use for your app. And don’t forget to design your privacy and security protocols early on. Moreover, be sure your team’s up to speed with the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) if you’re releasing your app in Europe.

Android vs. iOS: When Your Mobile App Strategy Will Differ

The primary areas that impact your mobile app strategy for each platform relate to the app stores, marketing, monetization, and tech stacks. Let’s take a more detailed look at these factors below:

  • App stores: The App Store (iOS) and Google Play (Android) are where most users will download their apps. But given Android’s more open philosophy and a wider variety of device manufacturers, there are way more stores to download Android apps. However, all these stores have their own app store optimization (ASO) requirements and user expectations that developers and publishers must meet. A one-size-fits-all approach won’t work, but a different strategy for each app store leads to success.
  • Marketing: Brand positioning, public relations (PR), outreach programs, pre-launch promotions, sales offers, and even post-release strategies will impact the success or failure of your app. Also, ensure you tailor your marketing messaging specifically for Android and iOS users and your app’s potential user demographics.
  • Monetization: iOS attracts more affluent users, and they’re more likely to spend money on apps than their Android counterparts. Therefore, an iOS app can make money with in-app purchases, subscriptions, or even as a paid app. But an Android app will likely generate more income via advertisements. So, a completely different monetization strategy for each platform will work best.
  • Tech stacks: Apple provides its proprietary Xcode integrated development environment (IDE), the Swift programming language, and platform-specific application programming interfaces (APIs). And Google offers its Android Studio IDE & App Tools and the Kotlin programming language. Developers should use these two tech stacks, especially if they develop native apps for each platform.

Additional Mobile App Strategy Considerations

It’s not uncommon for app developers to utilize cross-platform tools and other handy tools that aid productivity. For example, a developer may use the Visual Studio IDE, the C# programming language, and Xamarin for cross-platform development. And such a tool allows the developer to focus on a single codebase while enjoying the benefits of native performance. 

But what would this do for the mobile app strategy? It would simplify it somewhat, as the developer won’t have to deal with the complexities and costs of maintaining two codebases. But the developer should still consider a contingency plan in case Xamarin is sunset during development or any similar scenario, even if it seems unlikely.  

Another factor that will seriously impact productivity and development costs is cloud infrastructure. It may save company resources to use a cloud-based testing service to run unit tests, especially for a startup. And even a more established developer may benefit from additional security and scalability offered by a good cloud service. 

Understanding the pros and cons and associated costs of all tooling ahead of time is a huge boon. But it’s equally important to document all these within the mobile app strategy from the get-go. Furthermore, it’s essential to detail when Android and iOS strategies will be similar or different.

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The Bottom Line

The days of getting into heated Android vs. iOS debates should hopefully be over. But that doesn’t mean that the development lead should ignore the core differences between these two platforms. In fact, it’s essential to understand these differences intimately and draft a mobile app strategy that works flawlessly for Android and iOS specifically. Contact NS804 today to learn how we’ll help you craft a strategy to bring your best app ideas to the market! 

3 Ways Internal Mobile Apps Can Improve Company Culture

Every business leader must improve company culture to retain valuable employees and increase efficiency. While this sounds challenging, it’s an achievable goal with the right internal mobile apps. Furthermore, there’s hardly an enterprise that wouldn’t benefit from deploying business apps that streamline several crucial business processes. 

But what business processes can internal mobile apps actually improve? Well, it’s not uncommon for companies to struggle with internal communication between employees, especially with the prevalence of remote work nowadays. How does any company get its onsite employees to collaborate efficiently with remote workers? While several solutions exist, mobile apps offer the most optimal pathway.

And that’s due to the wide adoption of mobile devices throughout all levels of the business hierarchy. It’s hard to imagine any company employee without a smartphone or tablet or not using these for completing vital tasks. Thus, the implementation of these devices no longer has to be ambiguous but work in tandem with company goals. Now, let’s take a more detailed look at several ways these apps can improve company culture.

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Improve Company Culture With Onboarding And Training Apps

It’s expensive and challenging to hire, onboard, and train employees. Moreover, it’s all too easy to get these procedures wrong — and ultimately — demoralize new hires or cause them to leave within days or weeks.

But internal mobile apps can handle these procedures efficiently, especially those aimed at onboarding and training. Onboarding apps can provide new hires with all the information they need, such as the code of conduct, company expectations, and a description of the company culture. 

To further engage the new hires, onboarding apps should provide demos of a company’s flagship products or services and mini-games or quizzes related to the company’s products, services, and mission statement.

Training apps should offer relevant training programs to new hires according to their job positions. These programs may include PDF files, multiple choice quizzes, videos, augmented reality (AR), and virtual reality (VR) training. Moreover, new hires should be able to contact a mentor or trainer and be encouraged to embark on ongoing learning.

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Internal Mobile Apps Make Communications Truly Internal

Nowadays, employees use all kinds of communications and messaging apps from multiple vendors. Some employees may use Skype, others WhatsApp, and several others Zoom. But there are problems with this approach related to the security and long-term sustainability of using these platforms.

While all these platforms offer convenience, they’re easy to hack, may sometimes go down, and their pricing model may not suit your budget. Fortunately, you can avoid all this via a custom-developed internal communications app for all your employees. You can homogenize your communications channel and make it even more secure than commercial alternatives.

Implement The Ultimate Collaboration Tools

However, your communications app should also make it easy for all your employees to collaborate on projects. All your onsite and offsite staff, and even remote staff, should have tools that facilitate collaboration across various locations and time zones.

The most basic tools should allow for the easy sharing of files and media, while the more complex tools should allow for real-time editing of documents, spreadsheets, images, sketches, or even 3D models. Whether staff prepare a presentation or design a logo, your collaboration tools should make all this possible. As they complete projects successfully using these tools, it will increase employee morale and improve company culture.

The Bottom Line

Internal mobile apps not only improve company culture but help streamline many vital business processes. And several key areas that benefit from these apps are communication, collaboration, and employee training. Contact NS804 to learn how we’ll help you build custom mobile apps for all your internal business needs.

Android Studios: Are There Any Experienced Mobile App Developers In Charlotte?

If you’ve been feverishly searching for experienced Android studios in Charlotte, North Carolina — you’ve come to the right place! Not only is NS804 one of the leading lights of the mobile app development world in the Queen City, but we’ve also received many accolades

And while we pride ourselves on being one of the most prominent Android studios in this dynamic city, we’re experts at cross-platform native app development. That means that we know both Android and iOS platforms intimately and are renowned for creating engaging and performant apps for either platform.

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However, you may not be interested in iOS and only care about targeting Android for your upcoming project. Or you’re thinking of releasing an iOS version of your app at a later stage but want to focus on Android for now. Whatever scenarios you’re currently contemplating, we’re here to help you make the right choices and accomplish your goals.

But now you may be wondering what to expect from one of the most prolific mobile app developers in Charlotte. And if you’re embarking on your first app project, we understand you’ll have many questions. Also, we know there isn’t enough information available about what Android studios can offer their clients. 

So, to make things easy for you, we’ve prepared this in-depth article to demystify a matter that may seem obscure. Read on to learn more about what one of Charlotte’s most talented Android studios can do for you!

The Best Android Studios Go Native 

We’re now living in the era of powerful cross-platform development frameworks. These include the likes of Flutter, Ionic, and Reactive Native. While the latter framework promises native performance, it’s still fundamentally a hybrid development toolkit. Furthermore, it requires a significant degree of optimization to create performant apps. 

Now there’s nothing necessarily wrong with using these platforms, especially for startups on a tight budget. Cross-platform hybrid frameworks make app development cheaper and faster but not necessarily better. And by better, we mean that hybrid-developed apps seldom reach the quality and performance levels of native apps.

However, if you’re targeting a single platform, especially Android, there’s little to no reason to opt for hybrid app development. And the best part is that Google offers exceptional native development tools to create engaging Android apps. 

They offer the Android Studio integrated development environment (IDE) and several robust tools free of charge. Furthermore, these include well-written documentation, tutorials, and even training videos to help anyone commence their app development journey. 

Therefore, there’s no excuse not to take advantage of all these free resources. But if app development seems too complex or beyond your capabilities, consider partnering with NS804 to complete your Android project. Our deep knowledge and expertise of Google’s entire Android development stack put us in a position to deliver apps according to your exact specifications.

Creating The Perfect Android User Interface (UI)

There are considerable differences between the UIs and gesture navigation systems between Android and iOS. Yet many cross-platform mobile app developers attempt to make them similar when targeting both platforms. Unfortunately, this is a massive oversight that worsens the experience for users in the general sense. 

That’s why we continuously stress the importance of native app development, as it impacts the overall quality of an app. It’s not just about performance but also how the app looks and feels. That’s why it’s crucial to have an experienced UI/UX designer on the team with intimate knowledge of Android’s native UI. 

Moreover, this designer should feel at home with Jetpack Compose — the official Android UI development toolkit that integrates fluidly with several Kotlin application programming interfaces (APIs). And what makes Jetpack Compose so powerful is that it helps designers make engaging UIs for small and large screens. 

Let’s not forget that the Android ecosystem is larger and more varied than iOS. When targeting Android, you must consider the multiple screen sizes of smartphones, tablets, foldable devices, smartwatches, smart TVs, notebooks (Google Chromebooks and Windows 11 PCs), and vehicle dashboard systems (Android Auto). 

But the most experienced Android studios know how to create responsive UIs that work with any device flawlessly. They can foresee when and where issues may arise while working on an early wireframe UI or prototype. Then, implement the solutions to deal with any bottlenecks to avoid costly and time-consuming workarounds that may occur later on.

 

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Working With Firebase

Without any doubt, you’ll likely need a backend developer for your upcoming Android project. You may need to store client credentials on a database, authenticate users, or even keep track of scores on a leaderboard if you’re creating a mobile game. In most cases, you’ll use either an SQLite or NoSQL database and work closely with the backend developer.

But you may want a more elegant cloud-based solution that minimizes the need for a backend developer. In that case, you may opt for Google’s Firebase solution, which includes several powerful analytics tools. Therefore, you can spend most of your resources working on and improving your app without worrying as much about the backend elements. 

Another reason why you’d want to use Firebase is for its Crashlytics feature, as it’s a lightweight crash reporting tool. It will give you real-time reports with in-depth insights into the health of your app. And it’s possible to conduct A/B testing and remote configurations via Firebase, which means you’ll cut down on tools for these additional tasks. 

Of course, if you’ve partnered with one of the leading mobile app developers in Charlotte, you won’t have to go it alone. You can rely on NS804 to integrate Firebase into your app development toolchain.

Making Mobile Games For The Massive Android Market

In 2023, Android ranks as one of the largest and most important gaming platforms. It also overshadows iOS significantly, even though Apple Arcade has made great strides as a game subscription service. Nevertheless, Android dominates, with 75% of all smartphones and tablets in the world powered by this operating system (OS).  

Then, there are Android gaming smartphones available in the marketplace, such as the Asus ROG phones. And devices such as the Nvidia Shield Android TV Pro gives gamers a console-like experience at an affordable price. Moreover, Microsoft’s Windows 11 OS can run Android apps and games from the Amazon Appstore. Thus, there’s no shortage of devices capable of running Android games, making it a truly all-encompassing platform.

And the world’s most popular game engines and tools vendors have responded in kind. Construct, GameMaker, Godot, Unity, and Unreal Engine all offer Android export modules. And Unity takes things several steps further by having the capability to run and export to Chrome OS (Google Chromebooks). A key benefit of Chromebooks is that they can run Android, Linux, and Windows apps and games. 

Making games is hard enough, but supporting all these devices requires the expertise of a professional studio. While an Android game should run on all these devices without issues — this seldom happens. It’s not uncommon for mobile games to run great on specific devices and perform poorly on others. However, the most effective Android studios know how to optimize mobile games for a wide range of devices, even those not commonly used.

In Conclusion

There are several mobile app developers in Charlotte, yet NS804 stands apart due to experience and reputation. Furthermore, we’re one of the top Android studios in Charlotte but also have a notable presence in Denver and Richmond. Contact us today to learn how NS804 can help you create Android apps that engage users on Google Play and beyond!

Mobile App Development Questions: 5 Things You Should Be Asking Before Partnering

It may seem like a technical matter to ask a professional studio several crucial mobile app development questions. But this is the essential first step that will help you assess whether or not they would make a good development partner. After all, you have specific needs for your upcoming app project and want to know if the studio can complete your project according to spec.

The studio’s portfolio of completed projects will undoubtedly play a role in your decision-making process. Another aspect that will likely affect your decision is the studio’s reputation and accolades. 

For example, NS804 has consistently ranked as one of the top app developers (2018-2022) and B2B companies — according to Clutch. And according to the Manifest, we’re also one of the most reviewed app developers in Denver. Furthermore, we’ve gained the trust of prestigious brands such as Dominion Energy, Luck Stone, and Wells Fargo Advisors, to name a few.

While that may seem like we’re tooting our own horn, we intend to pinpoint what you should look for early on. Does the studio you’re talking to have the ability, reputation, and track record to complete your project satisfactorily? Or are you dealing with freelancers or a fly-by-night studio that may not see your project through to the end? We’re hoping it’s the former scenario and not the latter.

But even if it seems that you’ve found the studio right for you, don’t sign on the dotted line just yet. Ask them the following mobile app development questions before making your decision.

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1. Which Of Your Apps On The App Stores Can I Download?

It’s all well for the studio to show you their portfolio, but that’s not enough. And that’s because you’re never sure if those apps shown in the portfolio function properly. You’ll only see several screenshots with hardly a hint of app functionality. However, more savvy developers will use motion graphics or make demos available.

While that’s a significant improvement from static app screenshots, it’s wise to ask for more. And we recommend that you ask the studio to provide you with download links to their apps in both the App Store and Google Play. Then, take the time to download and install these apps to try them out. Put yourself in the position of a user to see if these apps make good on their promises.

Furthermore, we advise you to read user reviews, view the ratings, and check if these apps receive regular updates. If these apps receive mostly positive reviews with high ratings, it’s already a good sign. But it’s also crucial that these apps aren’t outdated and are still supported, as that shows that the studio is still involved in maintaining them. 

You may also ask to see the studio’s Android apps in other stores (if available), such as the Amazon Appstore, Huawei AppGallery, and Samsung Galaxy Store. Quite often, users will leave reviews and ratings at these stores too. And you can also cross-check to see if the apps on these stores are on the current versions as those on Google Play.

2. Do You Specialize In Native Mobile App Development? 

Undoubtedly, this is one of the most important mobile app development questions you should be asking. But why is native app development so important, especially with the growing popularity of cross-platform frameworks nowadays? While these cross-platform frameworks and tools make development easier when targeting Android, iOS, and other platforms, they come with a performance penalty. 

Whether we like it or not, native app development is the only way to create the most performant apps. That means the studio should use Apple’s development tools and the Swift or Objective-C programming languages for developing iOS apps. And Google’s development tools and the Kotlin or Java programming language for making Android apps. 

Another benefit of native app development is that the studio will follow the best practices and implement user interfaces (UIs) native to the target platforms. Ultimately, your users will appreciate the high performance of your app and that it looks and feels similar to other apps on their respective platforms.

3. Can You Help Me With My App’s Monetization Strategy? 

If you want to develop a B2B or internal business application, you probably don’t want to monetize it. But if you’re targeting ordinary iOS and Android users, you’ll want the studio to help you with your monetization strategy. 

Since this will impact an app’s success, you need to know if the studio has the relevant experience to advise you every step of the way. Moreover, it must know as early as the planning stage if you’ll need to implement ads, in-app purchases, pursue a subscription model, or release a paid app.  

But the studio should also have the foresight to propose monetization strategies as you scale your app. For example, you may release a freemium app early on, but once you gain enough users, you’ll need to choose the correct monetization model. 

The studio will have already determined that in-app purchases will be the best way to monetize your app instead of ads. Thus, you’ll have designed your app for this eventuality at an early stage. So you won’t have to waste valuable resources trying different strategies to figure out what works best.

4. Have You Developed Apps For Devices Besides Smartphones And Tablets? 

You likely want to target smartphones, tablets, and possibly desktops. Most studios have the experience to develop apps for these platforms, but little beyond this point. However, you should ask if the studio can bring your app to other platforms, such as Android Auto, smart watches, smart TVs, augmented reality (AR), virtual reality (VR), and mixed reality (MR) devices.

These options will allow you to bring your app to a massive and diverse audience. And while it’s always challenging targeting multiple platforms concurrently, it’s worthwhile for the long-term sustainability of your app. Also, it’s not uncommon for apps to have a lackluster reception on one platform but enjoy phenomenal success on another.

Obviously, practice due diligence and investigate whether a target platform is feasible for your app. Budgetary bottlenecks may prevent you from pushing your app onto multiple platforms. But if the studio has the ability to port your app later on, you may adopt a staggered release schedule instead. This approach will allow you to stay within budget and limit the stress associated with multi-platform releases

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5. How Well-Rounded Is Your Team? 

Your list of mobile app development questions should always include questions about the studio’s staff. And you’ll want to know if they have a well-rounded team that can handle all aspects of app development. You don’t want to deal with a studio that will build your app but leave you high and dry when you require App Store Optimization (ASO).  

So, you’ll want to know if they have at least one Android developer, iOS developer, backend developer, mobile app tester, project manager, quality assurance engineer, and UI/UX designer on the team. If the studio is doing work for several clients, then they should have enough staff available to handle multiple projects. Be cautious of partnering with an understaffed studio, as it’s unlikely they’ll complete your project on time or at all.

Asking The Right Mobile App Development Questions Will Yield Favorable Results

Never be afraid to ask a succession of tough questions to any studio competing for your app project. Always remember that you’re in the driver’s seat and intend to partner with a studio that can deliver and not offer hollow promises. 

If you’re undecided or are unconvinced that the studios you’ve already contacted can bring your app to fruition, give NS804 a call today! With our long experience in app development and list of achievements, we’re sure we can develop the phenomenal app you’ve always wanted.