Tag Archive for: app development

Agile And Waterfall Methodology: 5 Things To Know

As a business leader, you’ve probably deliberated over the differences between the Agile and Waterfall methodology. And if you’re an app developer, you’ve likely adopted one of these two methodologies to complete your projects. 

But you’ve probably heard project managers and industry insiders throw the terms ‘Agile’ and ‘Waterfall’ quite liberally. Thus, often giving the impression that both are similar, even though this isn’t necessarily true. 

Sure, both are popular methodologies that involve the planning, realization, and keeping track of projects as they advance. However, there are several glaring differences between the two that we need to understand clearly.

So, what are the differences between the Agile and Waterfall methodology? There are several, but we’ll focus on one key difference right now. 

Agile relies on continuous iteration whereby the development team works simultaneously on a project, making it a flexible model. However, Waterfall requires the team to complete each stage of the project linearly, and thus, it’s way more rigid. 

But let’s be clear about one thing, neither methodology is better than the other. Project managers must pick the one that best suits their needs. And to better understand the differences between the two and which to pick, we’ve compiled this handy list below to help you make the right decision! 

1. Agile Methodology In A Nutshell

Due to the more strict nature of Waterfall, it soon became necessary for an alternative. And thus, Agile made its way into the world of project management to address a common problem. Since it often takes many years to complete most common software projects, technology undergoes tremendous change. Henceforth, development teams cannot realistically complete their projects while keeping up with customer demand with the Waterfall methodology.

But with the flexibility of Agile, it’s easy to make changes, even late during the timeline of a project. Moreover, company stakeholders, management, and customers may request changes or new features. It’s even possible to implement these additional changes or features without hindering the project significantly. 

And that’s because Agile allows the team to complete several phases concurrently and frequently. Another benefit of Agile is that the team determines the project’s direction instead of the project manager. Ultimately, this energizes the team and helps increase productivity, but it also calls for more team independence.

2. Understanding The Waterfall Methodology

Projects with a known outcome benefit immensely from the Waterfall methodology due to its linear approach. Before a team can move forward, it must first meet the set requirements and complete the deliverables of the current stage of the project.

However, the project lead must have a well-defined vision for the app. More importantly, no major alterations may occur during the development process, as this will likely derail the project. Unlike with Agile, it’s difficult and costly to course correct with the Waterfall methodology.

And before a project commences, the project lead must have a clear picture of the budget and timeline. Any deviation from this during the development process will put the project at risk. However, this does not necessarily make Waterfall projects riskier than Agile projects.

3. Agile And Waterfall Methodology Impact Client Involvement

Depending on the scope of your project, you may decide to involve your clients. If that’s the case, then Agile is a great choice. And according to the Principles behind the Agile Manifesto, customer collaboration plays a vital role. Furthermore, it encourages collaboration between developers and business people and face-to-face discussion on a frequent basis.

With Waterfall, if you’re the project lead, you’ll hold weekly or monthly meetings with your development team. And you may share progress reports with company stakeholders, but you won’t collaborate with clients. Furthermore, you’ll only share information on a need-to-know basis with the right people in your team.

4. Rigid Versus Sprint Planning

With the Waterfall methodology, the planning phase takes far longer than with Agile. And that’s because the project lead and company stakeholders must evaluate the feasibility of the project. In most cases, the budget will be higher, as a Waterfall project must be completed in its entirety before it’s shipped.

Furthermore, there’s very little wiggle room, if any, for changes at a later stage. Any decisions taken during the planning phase must be adhered to during the entirety of the project. And to ensure that the development team remains committed to the project, the planning phase also includes the monitoring procedure.

Agile is an entirely different beast, which doesn’t prioritize planning. Instead, projects are broken down into sprints, and decisions that will impact the project occur before each sprint. These sessions are also known as sprint planning. And while Agile offers plenty of flexibility, major project changes may not occur during an active sprint.

Keep in mind that Agile requires constant engagement by the project manager and team members. Therefore, stand-up meetings have become customary for teams to stay informed. All attendees must meet regularly for small durations and must stand while the project lead updates the team in front of a whiteboard. 

Stand-up meetings may occur every day or several times per week. In most cases, stand-up meetings work remarkably well. But difficult to implement with large teams spread across multiple locations. Also, holding too many stand-up meetings may disrupt the workflow of the team. 

5. The Waterfall Methodology Is Losing Popularity

As you’re probably aware by now, Agile seems to have advantages that make it very attractive to development teams. And given the shift to Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) from packaged software, Agile makes perfect sense. But it doesn’t end there, as many mobile app development teams rely heavily on a continuous iteration process.

Most savvy mobile app developers start with a prototype or a minimum viable product (MVP). And if these gain traction with users, then they’ll scale up to a full-fledged product. But given the constant introduction of new mobile devices and app store requirements, most mobile apps are not truly ever done.

And let’s not forget that users have become accustomed to receiving features that will keep them engaged after each app update. Therefore, the Waterfall methodology isn’t suitable for most mobile app development purposes. It’s better to adopt the Agile methodology and introduce new features and updates during every active sprint.

But don’t write off Waterfall entirely, as it may prove useful if you’re developing a premium mobile game. Most paid mobile games have high-quality visuals, gameplay, and features that make them closely resemble console games. And thus, it’s unlikely that you’ll introduce new content and features later unless these come in the form of downloadable content (DLC) or in-app purchases (IAP). 

Even so, most premium games have a limited lifecycle, so don’t necessarily require continuous iteration. Their high budgets, long development cycles, and the necessity for specialist team member roles make the Waterfall methodology the right choice here. 

In Conclusion

Understanding the key differences between the Agile and Waterfall methodology places you in an advantageous position. It allows you to opt for the right methodology that best suits your project. However, company stakeholders will also affect your choice.

For example, if these stakeholders will support the project long-term and closely involve themselves, Agile is the way to go. But if these stakeholders prefer a more hands-off approach, consider Waterfall instead. Contact NS804 to learn how we’ll help you complete your upcoming project on time using the most suitable technologies and methodologies.

IOS Development Richmond, VA

IOS development is a critical step of any mobile app development process. That’s because there were more than 1.2 billion iPhone users globally at the start of 2022. And this number is expected to grow soon. The APP Store gives users from every part of the world the opportunity to discover and download apps that meet the highest levels of security, quality, and performance.

This is exactly why developing an IOS mobile app with quality in mind is critical. App Store prioritizes and gives preferences to seamless, smooth, and quality apps that answer the most pressing of customers’ questions. So, if you’re a mobile developer or running an enterprise that ultimately needs one, you’re in the right place.

This article will explore some benefits of IOS mobile app development and give you tips on how to approach mobile app development – of course from an expert. In addition, if you need some mobile app development services in Richmond, worry no more because we already have you covered.

Why IOS Mobile App Development Richmond?

1. Elegant user interface

The first impression of an app is critical in its adoption and overall usability. That’s why it’s the responsibility of every mobile app development company to provide a superior user interface that’s appealing and satisfying.

A smooth user interface works proportionally for the customer. The smoother and more appealing, the stronger the relationship between the business and its target customers. Therefore, if you’re looking for IOS mobile development, in Richmond, ensure that the development project delivers an elegant user interface.

2. Tech-savviness

The iPhone has clearly distinguished itself as a tech-savvy device for like-minded users. That means that the typical iPhone user is a tech-savvy consumer who’s attracted to and impressed by innovative products.

So, if you’re developing an IOS app, think of developing a product with robust features. iPhone lovers are highly receptive to innovative and equally evolving products and apps. Your goal in developing a mobile application is to produce a product that will cause turbulence in the market and keep your head afloat from the competition.

3. Strong security

One of the primary advantages of IOS development is the high-end security protection provided by IOS. There’s no denying that every app developer must consider the security safeguards that protect data against theft, duplication, and encryption.

The primary purpose is to protect customers against phishing and hacking attempts, thus preserving their data, privacy, and security. So, it’s the responsibility of every app developer – customers, developers, and companies – to prioritize security in the IOS mobile app development.

4. Capital returns

Did you know that IOS app users are more likely to pay for an app than Android app users? So, developing an IOS app gives you better monetization opportunities than Android. However, it’s always advisable to consider a cross-functional app that can function in Android and IOS.

In addition, every app in the App Store must meet stringent criteria of security, usability, and experience. This means that every app in the App Store is worthwhile and helpful. Investing in an IOS development project will not only give you returns on investment, but will help you retain a large chunk of your clients.

5. Superior user experience

50% of customers uninstall their apps a week after installing them because of usability issues. Fortunately, this is not the case with IOS mobile app development. Apple has built a superior product for its customers because of fantastic software, superb customer service, and faultless hardware.

In addition, the contentment that Apple users derive by using such a superior product cannot be downplayed when considering whether to invest in Android or IOS development. Investing in IOS development fits into Apple’s overall culture of quality, functionality, and superiority.

Mobile App Development Services, Richmond

Richmond is a thriving capital that boasts hundreds of small, medium-sized, and large businesses. As an independent city with slightly over three hundred thousand people, Richmond Virginia is the fourth most populous city, and thus a business hub in the region.

Running a business in Richmond demands thrust, creativity, and innovation. This is because Richmond is home to one of the world’s leading brands – Walmart, Amazon, Infosys, Deloitte, and many more.

Luckily, mobile app development services will ensure that your business gets both a digital and physical presence. Mobile app development has been lauded as one of the most creative elements of modern-age businesses.

This means that leveraging mobile app development services will enable you to succeed in your digital marketing efforts by capturing an upstream of online customers.

Some of the benefits of IOS mobile app development in Richmond include:

  • Target customers. IOS mobile app development enables you to zero down on high-value customers. That’s because Apple users are tech-savvy and highly receptive to innovation and evolving technologies.
  • Returns on investment. It has already been established that iPhone users pay more for apps than Android users. That automatically means that your IOS app stands in a better monetary position than a typical Android app.
  • Quality. IOS mobile app development process is complicated and requires the latest software version. However, the results of IOS mobile app development are superior and superb, giving you better functionality and app control than a typical Android app.
  • User experience. Did you know that on average IOS apps are better and more impressive than Android apps? Investing in IOS development gives your app an edge, especially in a highly competitive and ever-changing landscape.
  • Faster development process. Unlike Android app development, IOS app development is faster, easier, and less expensive. However, all credit goes to Apple’s excellent programming languages that make app development a rewarding experience.

It’s critical to note that IOS development remains the best mobile app development for new and upcoming owners who want to remain ahead of the pack.

NS804 – Trusted IOS Development, Richmond

NS804 is a seasoned developer of superior mobile app solutions for Android and IOS. However, our years of designing and experimenting with IOS apps enable us to prefer IOS apps to Android apps because of speed, functionality, reliability, and security of IOS.

So, if you’re starting or simply looking to reinvent an existing mobile app, you’re in the right place. NS804 works with talented software developers and project managers who can design your app from concept to completion.

In addition, we provide a minimum viable product allowing our customers to experiment with a prototype of the app before going full-flung. Part of our provision is a mobile app calculator that lets you determine how much you will pay for a specific type of app.

So, whether you’re starting or improving on an existing project, NS804 will support all your IOS development efforts with precision and expertise.

Contact NS804 for superior IOS mobile app development solutions.

Troubleshooting Play Store Downloading

Android is one of the most popular operating systems with over a billion users spanning over 100 countries. In 2021, Google Play users downloaded 111.3 billion apps from 78 billion in 2018. Play Store, Google’s leading app marketplace, continues to enjoy a significant reputation among mobile app users, especially owing to its ability to offer free and paid apps.

So, if you’re a play store user and are stuck when downloading an app or your Google Play Services keeps stopping, here’s a basic troubleshooting guide.

1. When you can’t open the Play Store on your phone

If your app can’t load or crashes when it opens, check whether you have a strong network connection. You can also check your storage space and whether there are any Android system updates.

2. Troubleshoot problems with only one app

In most cases, you’ll be dealing with one app at a time. So, when faced with an app bug or problem, uninstall and reinstall the app. Firstly, check whether the app is available for your device, then install it. A simple uninstalling and reinstalling will do the magic.

3. Force close the Google Play

Sometimes force closing the Google Play Store app is all you need to get an app up and running. You can force close your Google Play App by swiping away on the multitasking app switcher. You can also do this through the settings.

  • Open app settings app
  • Go to apps
  • See all apps
  • Tap on Google Play Store
  • Hit Force Stop
  • Okay

Force closing the Google Play App is an effective troubleshooting technique if your Google Play Services keep stopping.

4. Turn on Airplane Mode

Turning the airplane mode on and off can get an Android app up and running. This is not a complicated process and it’s safe. So, next time your Google Play Services keep stopping, try turning on airplane mode.

5. Restart your router

You’ve fixed a Wi-Fi issue once or twice by simply restarting your router. While it may not make sense, give it a try and you may fix an app issue if your Google Play Services keep stopping. Restarting your router gives your phone a refreshed internet connection, allowing all apps to download and operate seamlessly.

6. Restart your phone

Something as simple as rebooting your phone may do magic. Restarting your phone may solve some serious smartphone problems and may only take a minute or two. So, next time you’re facing a serious app issue when play store downloading, try rebooting your phone and installing and reinstalling the app. This trick will automatically fix the problem.

NS804 – Fixing Play Store Downloading Problems

NS804 provides custom mobile app development solutions for both Android and IOS. We strongly believe that one of the most common problems with apps is poor design and poor implementation. That’s why NS804 is interested in individual developers, aspiring app owners, and businesses to deliver trusted app solutions.

So, if you own an app and you’re experiencing a problem, look no further. At NS804, we provide custom mobile app fixes, allowing your app to answer your customers’ most pressing challenges.

Contact NS804 for time-to-value Android mobile app development solutions.

Want Flawless API Implementation? Here Are 3 Tips

The application programming interface (API) is essential for all forms of software development, and that’s why you want flawless API implementation. But how do you do this with so many APIs in existence? And don’t you need vast knowledge to work with so many different APIs?

The good news is that you’ll only ever use a handful of APIs during your development endeavors. And no, there’s no need to know these intimately, as these change regularly or occasionally become deprecated. Though it never hurts to have relevant background knowledge and experience.

However, API implementation is something you need to do well and consistently. So we’re providing these few handy tips to help you with this matter below.

1. Check The Documentation Before API Implementation

The quality of documentation plays a crucial role in whether or not you should use an API. And that’s because poor documentation, or lack thereof, makes API implementation incredibly challenging. And in some cases, utterly impossible!

So, always check the documentation of an API to see that it’s clear, concise, and detailed enough. It should have enough information to help you implement it easily and quickly. Fortunately, most popular APIs, especially those developed by tech giants such as Apple, Google, and Microsoft, come with well-written documentation.

But things can get dicey when dealing with open-source APIs or those made by amateur developers. Another common problem with open-source projects is that documentation will suffer once a project loses steam. At least with those backed by large companies, their documentation will regularly get updated, so long as these APIs aren’t deprecated.

2. Verify The Stability Of The API Beforehand

Always check the version number, release notes, and reported issues of an API beforehand. Also, search developer forums to see if other developers have experienced issues with the API you’re about to implement. Contributors of these developer forums will often provide solutions to known problems.

While no API is perfect or bug-free, you’ll want to avoid any API that will break your app. And you’ll also want to use APIs that offer a certain degree of backward compatibility. After all, you don’t want to rewrite your entire app just to get it to work with the latest version of an API.

3. Easier Is Always Better

API implementation should never be too difficult. Your team simply shouldn’t waste valuable time trying to implement an API when they could be working on the features that add value to your app. Thus, your preferred APIs should offer ease of use and flexibility.

And implementation must be so easy that it makes sense to use a particular API in your other apps when necessary. Thus, you won’t waste company resources learning new APIs or having to undergo yet another onboarding process.

The Bottom Line

Every mobile app relies on several APIs to make it functional. And there’s an API for every use case, from drawing graphics on the screen to transferring data to the backend server. Therefore, API implementation is one of the most important tasks that mobile app developers can’t ignore. Contact NS804 to learn how we’ll help you develop phenomenal mobile apps the right way!

Best Programming Languages For App Development — Our Top 10 List

Every developer wants to know what the best programming languages are for a number of reasons. Firstly, it’s always interesting learning about the languages that rank high on GitHub, Stack Overflow, and TIOBE Index. Secondly, high adoption rates of a particular language impact how easy it’s to find and hire skilled developers. And thirdly, knowing which languages are most suitable for specific market segments, helps us make better decisions.

Below, we’ve compiled a handy list that pinpoints the best-in-class programming languages for app development. A few of these choices may surprise you, but we laser-focused on the languages that are the most useful and relevant.

1. Kotlin

In 2017, Google announced that Kotlin would become a first-class citizen for developing Android apps. And during these past five years, Kotlin has become the preferred language for Android mobile app development. But what does this mean for Java — is it still relevant? Yes, many developers still use Java, and it’s still possible to develop Android apps using this language.  

However, Kotlin is modern and offers several time-saving features that help developers be more productive. And coupled with Google’s Jetpack libraries and easy-to-implement Kotlin APIs, there’s never been a better time to develop for Android. 

Given the popularity of Android on a global scale and its proliferation on a wide range of devices, it’s a platform that no app developer can ignore. Therefore, if there’s one programming language that will open many doors, it’s Kotlin. And that’s why Kotlin is in our number one spot in our epic list of best programming languages for app development!

2. Swift

Similar to how Google is replacing Java with Kotlin, Apple has a similar strategy. The company is heavily promoting Swift as its flagship programming language, even though it’s possible to develop for iOS using Objective-C. And that’s a good thing, as Objective-C is a dated language that not every programmer enjoys using. 

What Swift brings to the table is a cleaner and simpler syntax, which allows developers to enjoy substantial productivity gains. Therefore, if you were to start developing for iOS today, you’re better off choosing Swift over Objective-C. Not only will you complete your projects faster, but your code will be more readable and maintainable. 

Another advantage of Swift is that it’s native to iOS, which means it’s more performant than third-party languages. Generally, always opt for a programming language native to the target platform unless this isn’t financially feasible or there isn’t anyone on your team that’s skilled in the language.

3. C#

Microsoft may not have made a significant impact in the mobile space. After all, they failed to respond quickly to the rise of smartphones, and their Windows Phone failed miserably. But where Microsoft does shine is in their development tools and releasing the powerful and versatile programming language — C# (pronounced C Sharp and not C Hash).

Designed by Anders Hejlsberg — the author of Turbo Pascal and lead architect of Delphi — C# closely resembles Java but has more quality of life features. And similar to C++ and Java, it’s also an object-oriented programming (OOP) language, ideally suited for business applications and games. 

C# programmers that want to develop for Android and iOS can do so with the Xamarin framework. And it’s possible to achieve near-native performance on both platforms, as long as these programmers are skilled at taming the rather complex .NET garbage collector (GC). Mobile game developers can also use C# together with Unity to create stunning-looking 3D games.

4. C++

C++ is one of those languages many developers prefer to avoid using whenever possible. And that’s because it’s incredibly complex and hard to master. However, C++ is the lingua franca of the game development world. So, if you’re developing a game engine or using Unreal Engine for your next mobile game, you’ll need to know C++. 

And while Unreal Engine has the Blueprints Visual Scripting language, it has a steep learning curve and doesn’t offer the same level of performance as C++. But it doesn’t end there; Google recently released the Android Game Development Kit (AGDK), which allows developers to code in C++ while taking advantage of the Jetpack libraries. 

Another area where knowing C++ comes in handy in dealing with application programming interfaces (APIs). You’ll find a large number of APIs written in C++, and these can range from networking to app monetization modules.

5. OpenGL ES Shading Language (GLSL)

OpenGL ES is a free-to-use cross-platform API owned by the Khronos Group. Also, it’s one of the most indispensable APIs any Android developer will use, as this handles 2D and 3D rendering. That’s why having sufficient know-how of GLSL not only comes in handy; it’s essential for any graphically intensive apps. 

But what exactly is GLSL, and how does it work? GLSL is a programming language resembling C (a low-level language that precedes C++). Furthermore, GLSL commands will execute on the graphics processing unit (GPU) instead of the central processing unit (CPU).

6. Metal Shading Language (MSL)

Not to be outdone by its rivals, Apple has created a proprietary API for hardware-accelerated graphics for its platforms. Known as Metal, this API only works on Apple’s devices, unlike the OpenGL standard, which is cross-platform. But it’s possible to cross-compile GLSL to Apple’s MSL standard via the SPIR-V transpiler. 

MSL allows Apple developers to achieve similar results to what their Android counterparts can do with GLSL. And thanks to the Metal-cpp interface, C++ programmers can easily code for Metal or port apps and games from other platforms. Developers accustomed to Microsoft’s DirectX API and High-Level Shader Language (HLSL) shouldn’t find it difficult to adopt or transition to MSL.

7. Java

Java is a language that remains useful for Android and enterprise developers. And knowing the ins and outs of Java is still helpful for those getting to grips with Kotlin and even C#. Furthermore, developers may need to maintain existing Java apps or port these over to a more modern language, such as Kotlin. 

And surprisingly, Java is a decent language for mobile app development coupled with a good framework. The open-source libGDX game development framework is lightweight and versatile, making it relatively easy to develop 2D and 3D cross-platform games. However, libGDX also works with Kotlin, which is likely the better choice for newer projects overall. 

8. Structured Query Language (SQL)

Now, SQL may not seem like the most interesting of languages. And some may think that it should never have made it to our best programming languages list. However, if your app uses a database extensively — and most do — then knowing SQL makes sense.

The language is powerful and versatile enough to handle large amounts of data and complex queries. But it should be coupled with the framework that best suits your needs. And that’s the tricky part, as there are many flavors of SQL and NoSQL (not only SQL) databases out there, such as Amazon DynamoDB, Cassandra, MySQL, PostgreSQL, and SQLite, to name a few.

9. JavaScript 

Over 16 million developers use JavaScript, which often ranks as one of the world’s most popular programming languages. So why does it rank so low here? Well, JavaScript is a web-based language designed primarily for client-side web pages and never meant for mobile apps.

But that doesn’t mean you can’t use JavaScript, as long as you don’t mind creating a hybrid app instead of a native one. You’ll need to use a framework such as React Native or Ionic Framework. And while these frameworks promise amazing results, it’s unlikely they can perform as well as native apps developed by professional studios such as NS804.

10. Python

Many newbie developers and script kiddies probably consider Python one of the best programming languages for app development. And there’s no shortage of YouTube tutorial channels that have generated much hype for Python. But it’s not the be-all and end-all of programming languages, not even close. 

Unfortunately, the fanboyism surrounding Python may cause some developers to opt for this language instead of more appropriate alternatives. And while often touted for its machine learning (ML) capabilities and ease of use, Python seldom matches the performance, look, and feel of native apps made with Kotlin and Swift.

But it’s not all bad, as Python is still a good choice for creating prototypes and minimum viable products (MVPs). And it’s possible to complete smaller projects using frameworks such as BeeWare or Kivy relatively quickly.

In Conclusion

Our top 10 list of best programming languages for app development was carefully considered. Mainstream popularity and hype didn’t affect our choices, as we focused exclusively on the languages that truly facilitate the app development process. And we placed languages native to a platform or offer near-native performance right at the top, and the least performant languages at the bottom. 

Contact NS804 to learn how we’ll help you create native apps with the best-in-class programming languages and tools!

10 Reasons Why Your Restaurant Needs a Mobile App

The ability to view, click, and order is on the rise. The ‘click’ trend is slowly taking a toll on almost every enterprise – from retailers to hoteliers. Today, restaurants are looking for ways to differentiate themselves, thanks to new mobile capabilities like online ordering and delivery.

The hotel industry has experienced a boom over the last decade due to a corresponding growth and uptake of technology. For instance, mobile apps are helping restaurants grow their brands in almost unimaginable ways.

In addition, e-commerce capabilities enable hotels to access fresh produce, thus powering up vital operations in traditional hotels and restaurants – from sourcing products to delivering them to consumers.

Reasons Your Restaurant Needs an App

So, whether running a small food kiosk at the corner of a busy city or handling multiple hotel chains across different geographies, having an app is mandatory.

So, here are ten reasons your restaurant needs a mobile app.

1. Online slot reservation

Today, mobile apps connect clients to their desired restaurants and provide adequate information to make a reservation. Restaurants are leveraging online forms to enable clients and customers to make reservation requests.

In addition, smartphone apps allow your customers to book reservations and identify whether there’s a slot or not. So, instead of traveling miles only to miss a seat, restaurants can inform potential guests of any available seats.

2. Digital menu card

Do you know that most customers wouldn’t mind accessing the menu digitally, especially when it’s easily accessible and with a good interface? Well, if you don’t know, consider making your digital menu card as appealing and attractive as possible.

Today, most restaurants (like Foodlitter) allow customers to place orders using digital menu cards. This capability enables users to make their orders online without much hassle and with just a few clicks on their phones.

Digital menu cards provide end-users with immense accessibility and a convenient experience. And while many restaurants have menus in their mobile apps, few have digital menus uploaded to these apps.

So, your restaurant needs a mobile app to enable digital menu capabilities.

3. Ordering online

Mobile apps are indispensable for restaurants that offer online ordering and online delivery options. For instance, fast-food chains like Mcdonald’s, Subway, Wendy’s, Taco Bell, and Checkers provide online ordering capabilities, filling hunger bites when they occur.

What mobile apps do is that they eliminate the role of mediator in booking orders and online reservations. So, you can directly go to your app and place an order. And immediately, you’ll receive a call confirming your order details and delivery information – location, address, phone number, recipient(s), and more.

4. Location-based deals

The location-based feature is a relatively new app feature but incredibly satisfying to restaurants that want to close fast deals.

For instance, Apple’s iBeacon uses this particular feature. This feature sends a push notification to a customer near your restaurant.

With this feature, you can tempt your customers by offering unbeatable deals on mouth-watering delicacies they can’t refuse.

5. Customer-friendliness

Perhaps the leading reason behind the adoption of mobile apps is that mobile apps are customer-friendly. Mobile apps offer a superior customer experience making apps a darling to many people.

Online ordering has enabled most restaurants to handle their peak hours efficiently. Online ordering reduces the pressure and queue, assisting restaurants with orders even when customers are seated at home or in offices.

And thanks to online ordering, most people nowadays can avoid the pain of standing in long queues waiting for meals. And with the option of ordering their meals online, they can easily order meals when they’re in traffic or when picking up their children from school.

So, there’s no denying that the customer-friendly nature of mobile apps in online ordering has been a feat to its adoption.

6. Customer outreach

Mobile apps provide ways to connect to new customers. By using mobile apps, restaurants can advise their offerings and reach out to new and existing customers.

And while there’s no proven way to connect to customers, you can always use mobile apps because they’re cheap, customized to customer needs, and less spammy. Mobile apps offer soft push notifications that don’t appear as a bother to consumers.

So, mobile apps remain indispensable in creating targeted communication with customers.

7. Brand positioning

You cannot undermine the power of apps in building a compelling brand image. Mobile apps exist on consumer devices, are easily accessible, and can be customized to address consumer needs using purchase patterns, purchasing behavior, and other operative metrics.

So, restaurants are slowly understanding the potential of mobile apps in building a good brand and image. Mobile apps act as your restaurant’s beacon outside. For instance, if a customer is not ordering directly from your restaurant but has your app installed, they can receive push notifications which ultimately build your brand.

8. Social media presence

No matter what sector your business operates in, it’s critical to have your presence on social channels such as Instagram, Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, and WhatsApp.

Declaring your presence in social channels is one way of going with the trends and ensuring you gain a competitive advantage. And provided you give it an effective online marketing campaign, your social media presence will surely attract a large following.

So, restaurants use mobile apps to strengthen their social media presence. Mobile apps can be integrated with social channels and portfolios, reinforcing a brand’s overall digital strategy.

9. Online promotions

There’s no denying that mobile apps have helped restaurants improve their online promotion approaches in numerous ways. For instance, through online promotion programs like ‘check-in’ features, clients or consumers can notify their friends and family about specific restaurants they’re dining in.

The check-in promotion feature helps friends, family, and workmates connect and meet in specific restaurants or locations.

So, if you’re running a restaurant and considering a mobile app, ensure it encompasses the ‘check-in’ feature to enable your restaurant’s clientele to tag in their friends and allies anytime they wish.

You can also use mobile app push notifications to notify customers about new offers and specials. That helps to improve your communication and ultimately increases your chances of improving your ROI on specials.

So, restaurants are now using mobile apps as leverage to improve the return on investment, especially on special treats.

10. Loyalty programs

Loyalty programs provide a win-win situation for the business and the customer. The programs help restaurants target and retain new customers while extending value to clients.

According to a study, 86% of consumers are likely to purchase from you if you provide discounts or offers periodically. To do this, you can give your clients discounts on every 10th or 5th visit, which will help enhance retention.

NS804 – Transforming Your Restaurant’s Digital Posture with an App!

NS804 is a trusted provider of superior and quality mobile apps. We have helped businesses across various sectors – hotels, restaurants, banks, insurance, healthcare, and education – design the best apps that answer their clients’ questions.

At NS804, we can help you identify your restaurant’s needs and design an app that best answers your clients’ questions.

So, do you own a restaurant, and would you like to transform its operations using a mobile app? Well, don’t worry, we have a solution for you!

Contact NS804 for mobile app development solutions – whether you’re running a restaurant or planning to own one.

Minimum Viable Products: How to Find Ideas & Innovate with Your MVP

Minimum viable products, when done right, can help companies validate products and new ideas with limited financial risk. Often referred to as MVPs, these products offer users bare-minimum functionality. Moreover, they’re implemented by startups to attract early adopters and to test their most feasible ideas.

But as an appreneur or enterprise, should you develop minimum viable products? The short answer is a clear yes! And that’s because you’re never sure if your next app idea will resonate with users. So, you don’t want to invest money and time into a fully-fledged app that has the potential to fail. Instead, you want to ascertain whether or not your app will succeed, and that’s only possible with an MVP.

Now, if you decide to forge ahead with an MVP — how do you find ideas and create an app that will stand out? That’s the challenging part, but we provide a few handy tips below to help you get started!

1. Minimum Viable Products Solve Real-World Issues

What are some of the most famous brands in the tech space that began as MVPs? They are Airbnb, Facebook, and Twitter, which have become multi-billion dollar enterprises. And all of these started from humble beginnings intending to solve a problem.

The founders of Airbnb experienced problems with renting apartments but eventually discovered that short-term accommodations were the way forward. Thus, they created the Airbnb platform to facilitate the convenient and relatively frictionless process of renting accommodations via their website or app.

Facebook allowed college students to communicate with each other and post messages on their boards. And while Facebook wasn’t the only network that did this, it was user-friendly enough to attract a wider audience and grow exponentially. Today, it’s the largest social media platform with 2.9 billion monthly active users globally.

And in Twitter’s case, it began as an internal micro-blogging platform for Odeo, a startup operating in the podcast space. The platform improved employee collaboration to such an extent that its developers decided to treat it as a stand-alone product.

A common trait of Airbnb, Facebook, and Twitter was that they all solved a unique real-world issue, and they solved it well. And what we can all learn from this is that the best MVP app ideas come as a response to pain points we experience frequently.

2. Never Assume, Always Test Your Ideas

You may have lucked out on a great and unique idea that would make your closest competitors green with envy. So you assume that if you forge ahead with development, you’ll end up with a killer app. Unfortunately, that’s likely wishful thinking, especially if you haven’t released an MVP and received feedback from users.

Even the most rudimentary features and updates should undergo testing. Don’t forget to implement analytics in your app while concurrently collecting user feedback. The more data you have about your app and users, the better informed you’ll be about whether your ideas work and if you need to make any other changes.

3. Follow The MVP Improvement Cycle

In order to innovate, you must move quickly and adopt the MVP improvement cycle model. And that’s especially true if you want to create apps that will sustain interest long term. Thus, it’s wise to commence with rapid development, conduct user testing, then continuously improve your app.

Along the way, especially during the user testing phase, you may encounter harsh criticism from your audience. Don’t be alarmed or discouraged, as this feedback may pinpoint serious issues with your app that you need to look into further. If you’ve become accustomed to the MVP improvement cycle, you’ll implement these changes quickly and possibly innovate on your base idea.

In Conclusion

Minimum viable products truly do help appreneurs and enterprises validate their ideas without having to invest heavily. And if an idea does resonate with users, then the door is wide open to take the MVP to the next level. Meaning, that it can become a popular and profitable app that engages users worldwide. Contact NS804 to learn how we’ll help you transform your best ideas into phenomenal apps!

iOS Vs. Android: Which To Use?

When choosing the ideal mobile platform, we often jump into the common iOS Vs. Android debate. And that’s not necessarily a bad thing, as we should attempt to weigh the pros and cons of these two leading platforms.

But we know what some of you may be thinking: it’s a done deal, iOS is the better platform, and we should move on. After all, it’s no secret that iOS is the slicker and more user-friendly platform with many satisfied users worldwide. However, it’s wise not to rush to conclusions without investigating the Android platform rigorously.

Due to the open nature of the Android platform and the need to support devices from different manufacturers, the user experience isn’t as polished as on iOS. But Android presents developers and users with a few advantages unique to the platform. 

The ability to distribute and sideload apps on Android outside of Google Play is a boon for enterprises and open-source developers. Unfortunately, the same cannot be said about iOS, as Apple prohibits sideloading and app distribution outside the App Store.

Another benefit of Android is the sheer size of its global market share, which stands at 69.74% as of January 2022. And that’s not surprising considering the wide availability of cheap Android devices that appeal to users in developing countries. So, it’s an important platform that no developer that wants to target a global audience can ignore.

But there are many more considerations in the iOS Vs. Android debate that we need to look at in more detail. Below, we reveal what those are and how they may impact your choices as an app developer.

iOS Vs. Android: Don’t Allow Fanboyism To Influence You

We all have biases, and these often influence our choices in life. But these biases may prove detrimental, especially when making crucial business decisions. As an appreneur, developer, or business leader, you need to think clearly about the types of apps you plan to make and what platforms you wish to target. 

In most cases, the answer is simple: you will likely target both Android and iOS. But there are situations where you should target a single mobile platform. And the mobile platform that you ultimately choose should align strictly with your business goals.  

So what does this mean exactly? Ideally, you want to maximize the reach of your app by targeting the platform where it will likely find its target audience. 

Thus, your decision-making process should consist of reliable mobile platform statistics and rigorous research of your target audience. This may sound like a lot of work, but it’s well worth the effort to maximize your app’s success.   

And the last thing you should ever do is base your decision on platform fanboyism. Perhaps, you love Apple and all its products and can’t wait to develop an app for iOS. Or you’re the proud owner of high-end Samsung Galaxy smartphones and only want to target Android.

No matter how much you love a brand or product line, don’t allow this to cloud your judgment. Instead, put the interests of your business and users first!

1. Foldable Devices

The introduction of Microsoft’s Surface Duo and Samsung’s Galaxy Z Flip & Fold devices have revolutionized the smartphone space. And that’s because the additional screen real estate helps enhance productivity. 

Consider how much better apps such as Office 365 or Trello work on foldable phones than they do on standard smartphones. Users now have additional workspace to get work done far more efficiently. And that’s because they won’t need to scroll as much as they would on non-foldable devices.

So if you’re developing a productivity app that targets foldable devices, you’ve only got one choice — Android. Currently, Apple hasn’t released any foldable iOS devices, but they have announced the iPhone Flip. But there’s no set release date yet, though it’s speculated for a 2023 or 2024 launch.

2. Hardcore Gaming

Both Android and iOS are excellent platforms for gaming, especially for casual pick-up-play titles. But in recent years, there’s been an emergence of hardcore mobile games and gaming smartphones. 

Manufacturers such as Razer have been instrumental in pushing forward powerful devices that utilize high-end components. And that’s resulted in their devices featuring impressive GPUs and high refresh rates reaching 120Hz and beyond. Given their proficiency in manufacturing powerful PC gaming laptops, much of that know-how has gone into their Android devices. 

But what does all this mean for mobile gaming? Firstly, this shows that the mobile gaming market has matured significantly, as users crave experiences close to those found on PCs and consoles. And secondly, it’s the Android platform leading the way in hardcore gaming device choice and titles. 

However, this doesn’t mean you shouldn’t release a hardcore game on iOS. But you’ll need to target Apple’s flagship smartphones, as these have the specs capable of powering intensive games. And that’s a limited market segment given the high cost of these flagship devices.

3. Marketplace Diversity

When it comes to iOS, there’s no marketplace diversity as users can only download apps from the App Store. And from a user’s point of view, it’s great to have one convenient and secure place to get hold of apps. 

But things are different on the Android platform. Users can download from several stores, such as Google Play, Amazon Appstore, APKPure, Aptoide, and F-Droid. Furthermore, Huawei AppGallery and Samsung Galaxy Store cater to those using devices from the respective manufacturers. 

And given that it’s a relatively simple process to sideload apps on Android, there’s no need for an app store. Any developer can distribute their Android apps directly from their website or another channel.

The freedom to distribute apps in such a manner should appeal to developers that create custom apps for enterprises. Or even enterprises that want to install their in-house apps on employee phones without relying on any app store.  

4. Security Considerations

If you’re developing an app that needs to be on a more secure platform, then iOS is a good choice. Due to the closed nature and tight integration of iOS, it’s an operating system that offers higher security than Android. However, this doesn’t mean that iOS is hack-proof or not susceptible to malware and viruses. 

And given that Google and Samsung have gone to great strides to improve security, the gap between iOS and specific Android devices isn’t as wide as it used to be. But iOS still has an edge in the security department for the time being.

5. User Demographics And Engagement

Android enthusiasts may not like to hear this, but the hard truth is that iOS users are a lot more valuable. And that’s because iPhone users fall in a higher income bracket and spend more on apps. Not only that, but they also engage more with apps, especially in the entertainment and games categories. 

However, Google Play is where most new apps get discovered and downloaded at a higher rate. And generally, Android users prefer to download and engage with social apps such as TikTok. 

If you’re planning on developing mobile games or paid apps, iOS should be your first port of call. But if you’re launching a social app, you’ll find your audience on Android.

The Bottom Line

When we deliberate the iOS Vs. Android question, we’re often looking for an easy answer. We covered several of the most critical factors when deciding on a platform. And we pointed out where one outshines the other and where they’re almost equal. Therefore, you’ll need to consider all these factors and how they’ll line up with your upcoming app project. Contact NS804 today to learn how we’ll help you create stunning apps on either iOS or Android. 

Is An App Really Worth The Investment?

How do you know if your upcoming app project is worth the investment? Well, there are no easy answers if you don’t know what indicators reveal the potential success of your app project. And given the propensity for media hype to center on the most popular apps, this only muddies the waters.

One way to test whether your app idea will hit the mark is by creating a minimum viable product (MVP). But this isn’t always a feasible option, especially if you’ve already started developing a fully featured app. 

Or you may already have released an app that was languishing in the app marketplace. Then you decided to update it and noticed an uptick in downloads and user reviews. However, you’re still unsure whether this updated app warrants further investment. Below, we reveal several of the most pertinent reasons for whether an app is worth the investment

Invest In An App To Stay On Brand

If you’re trying to promote the company brand or an appreneur that develops apps for brands, an app is worth the investment. And that’s because you’re trying to reach customers in as many avenues as possible. Furthermore, you want your brand identity and messaging to be uniform across the board. 

But how would you stay on brand with an app? Well, it’s likely that your company already has a website. It’s also likely that the graphic design, photography, and user interface (UI) reflect the identity of the company brand. 

So, when you decide to develop an app, you’ve already got a blueprint of the design language. The colors, gradients, fonts, icons, user experience (UX), and art assets should follow a standardized format. Once you release your app, customers already familiar with your website will have an easy time navigating your app.

Apps With High Retention Rates Are Worth The Investment

We may have entered the post-COVID-19 phase of the pandemic, but the work-from-home trend continues. That means that many workers won’t be going back to the office or have little desire to return. And that’s a good thing for appreneurs, as having millions of people working from home opens up many opportunities.

Not only that, business, education, and fitness apps boast the highest retention rates. And if you’re targeting any of these market segments and solving a real need, your app may be worth the investment. Moreover, since users will spend significant time with your app, it’s yet another opportunity to promote your brand and stay on brand.

Take Advantage Of New Hardware Features

Smartphones and tablets constantly evolve, especially when manufacturers such as Apple and Samsung release their premium models. Users of these devices expect developers to take advantage of their additional features and innovations. 

And it’s now possible to deliver content and experiences that wouldn’t seem out of place on a powerful desktop PC. So, if you’re a boutique software developer specializing in specific app niches, consider if these are a good fit for premium devices. 

For example, you could be developing an illustration app that takes advantage of the 120Hz refresh rates of these devices. The higher refresh rate allows for smoother drawing when using a stylus, which isn’t possible on 60Hz screens found on lower-end models. Such an application would attract and satisfy professional users willing to pay for using your app.

The Bottom Line

Companies that invest in apps can further increase the stature of their brand across the web and mobile. And new hardware and the work-from-home movement offer appreneurs many opportunities to spread their wings and develop apps that truly are worth the investment. Contact NS804 to learn how we’ll help you develop apps that will excite and satisfy your users!

How to Achieve App Store Success: Tips and Tricks

Even seasoned developers need a few tips and tricks to succeed in today’s crowded app marketplace. According to Statista, there are approximately 2.2 million mobile apps on the App Store and 3 million on Google Play. Now, let that sink in!

But if you go in prepared with a well-conceived plan, you can enjoy phenomenal success in 2022 and beyond. There’s no reason why the mobile apps you’ve worked so hard on should fail to find their audience. Below, we provide several helpful tips and tricks to make app store success a reality.

Have An App Store Optimization Checklist Handy

One of the most crucial tools at your disposal is the app store optimization checklist. And that’s because it will help you focus on the key processes that lead to success. Without this checklist, you’ll waste valuable time figuring out what works and what doesn’t. Here are the ten things your app store optimization checklist should contain:

  • App store SEO tools
  • Keyword research
  • Adding local keywords of the target market
  • Checking on competitors and their keywords
  • Creating engaging icons
  • Creating impactful videos
  • Capturing screenshots
  • Picking a catchy and distinctive app name
  • Updating app description
  • Encouraging user reviews

Tips And Tricks On Getting Featured On The App Stores

The above checklist will go a long way in securing some level of success. But if you want your mobile apps to steal the show, there’s only one way to do this — and that’s by getting featured on the App Store and Google Play. While this isn’t easy by any stretch, it’s more than worth the effort. 

First and foremost, you’ll need to create a high-quality app that’s meaningful to users. That’s an app that runs smoothly and takes advantage of the latest OS and mobile phone features. Furthermore, you’ll need to quash any bugs and closely follow the developer guidelines set by Apple and Google.

Then, put in the time and effort to localize your app for all target markets. Optimizing for local languages and cultures not only wins over new audiences but also increases your chances of getting featured in foreign app stores. 

More importantly, listen to your audience and update your app regularly, as this will improve your ratings and downloads. Both Apple and Google take performance metrics seriously and will usually only feature apps with 4.5 stars or higher.

Network And Build Relationships

For the majority of developers, getting featured is a long-term process. But it’s possible to speed things up by networking and building relationships with key people in Apple and Google. That’s why you should always budget for travel expenses and ticket costs to attend Apple’s WWDC. Currently, Google keeps its Android Dev Summit a free online virtual event.

Attending such events helps keep you informed about upcoming developments that will benefit your endeavors. But they also present opportunities to connect with the right people that can play a decisive role in your success. Familiarize these people with your company and the apps you develop and build a relationship based on your mutual interests in releasing amazing apps

If it’s not possible to attend these events, always reach out via LinkedIn and other social media channels. Better yet, try to locate the app store contact responsible for your local or target market.

The Bottom Line

The tips and tricks we’ve provided will help narrow the gap between an app fading into obscurity and one bound for success. It’s hard work creating mobile apps that connect with today’s audiences and breach those vaunted top app store rankings. Contact NS804 today to learn how we can help you develop apps that rank and succeed.