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How A Custom Mobile App Widens Your Target Audience

Growing Your Audience With a Custom Mobile App

The information era is in full swing and is widely roaring forward. In fact, the last year acted as a massive accelerant into the age of digitalization. This is because, in part, so many people stayed inside during the breadth of the pandemic. However, even as things open back up, it’s unlikely that the age of digitalization subsides. Evolving, adapting, and going with the flow are some of the best traits that a business leader can exemplify. For businesses in the modern economy, this means preparing to go digital. One way to do this is by building a custom mobile app.

Custom apps are different than your everyday run-of-the-mill application. First of all, a custom mobile app is, well, customizable from the top to the bottom. Rather than using a template application that limits your creativity, functionality, and presentability, a custom app gives you full control. Plus, certain app templates won’t work across all devices and screen sizes.

Therefore, to ensure that your mobile app works for everyone, regardless of device type or size, it makes sense to go with custom.

Testing

Beyond scope, design, and function, a custom mobile app undergoes far more testing than freelance or template mobile applications do. A custom app designed and developed by a legitimate agency will be tested across a broad spectrum of demographics, target markets, and devices. This significantly widens the reach of your mobile application and in turn, grows your audience.

Final Thoughts

Bringing your modern company into the digital era is no easy task. Especially because keeping up with technology is going to be an ever-shifting strategy moving forward. Launching a custom app for your organization, however, is a great first step to take.

For more information on custom app development, keep browsing NS804’s content library.

Increase App Retention: Why Users Abandon Apps

Every appreneur wants to increase app retention, especially in today’s highly competitive environment. And with more users becoming disenchanted with apps, no appreneur can rest easy. After all, it doesn’t take much for users to abandon apps, even moments after downloading them. Glitches, mandatory logins, and poor UX design can dissuade users from continuing their journey. Below are several things that can make your app unappealing.

1. How Poor UX Design Ruins A Great App

One of the fastest ways to lose users is with poor user experience (UX) design choices. After all, users have access to many slick and responsive apps with excellent UX. Thus, they don’t want to waste their time on any app that doesn’t deliver these expected features.

But let’s take a deeper look at what poor UX design is and how it hurts an app, even if it seems promising. When users launch an app for the first time, they expect a simple onboarding process. A complex and obtuse UX doesn’t facilitate such an outcome and will only hinder users from proceeding. Furthermore, users shouldn’t be exposed to any unnecessary information, as this only confuses them.

Also, UX designers should avoid implementing buttons and icons meant for the desktop on a mobile app. That’s because these aren’t sized correctly or have the correct design language for mobile devices. And a poorly organized user interface (UI) with low-quality images will put off even the most patient users. Ultimately, an effective UX minimizes the amount of data users need to input to proceed. Every appreneur and UX designer should always be thinking about how to increase app retention with great UX.

2. Why Mobile App User Retention Falls With App Glitches

Have you ever used a bug-ridden application that frustrated you so much that you uninstalled it from your device immediately? If that’s a yes, then you’re well aware of how a couple of glitches can completely ruin an app. And glitches only make an app look unprofessional, especially when compared to more polished alternatives.

As an appreneur, your reputation is largely dependent on the quality of your apps. That’s why you should quash as many bugs and glitches before shipping. And when users do discover a glitch, make sure that you respond quickly with updates and fixes. The more you approach development in this manner, the more likely you’ll increase mobile app retention.

3. How Focusing On The User Helps Increase Mobile App Retention

While a mobile app can help you achieve specific business goals, don’t do this at the expense of your users. For example, you may create an app that promotes a new clothing line with its unique augmented reality (AR) component. And your marketing team may want to capitalize on the wow factor of this technology to attract users. Yet only a small percentile of your users care about this when they’re clamoring for instant checkout within your e-commerce app.

Mobile app user retention is all about listening to user feedback and responding to their needs. Moreover, delve deeper into your analytics pipeline and carefully study user data. With a more user-centric approach, you’ll roll out the features and improvements that users want and won’t waste resources on anything unnecessary.

4. Why Users Hate Mandatory Logins

When users launch your app for the first time, they don’t want to see a login screen. Worse still, they don’t want to deal with mandatory or social logins. Users don’t want to feel compelled to use an app by signing in, as they may not commit to its long-term use. Furthermore, they may not wish to share their social data with you or don’t have a social media account.

And even if they have social media accounts, they may not have the same ones that you’re accepting. Since you want to increase app retention, you should always decrease the barriers to entry. Therefore, ensure that logins are optional and not mandatory and rigorously address security concerns.

5. Why Pestering Users Is Never A Good Idea

Today’s users are neither patient nor forgiving. They’ve downloaded a ton of apps and subsequently seen their fair share of ads and notifications. And the situation is so concerning that app fatigue has become a real problem. Users are no longer excited about the latest apps, and many no longer want to download apps.

Thus, if developers want to increase mobile app retention, they should stop pestering users with ads and notifications. Don’t inundate them with anything that wastes their time or uses up bandwidth, or you risk losing these users.

6. Are You Giving Users A Reason To Come Back

Users can quickly become bored with your app and eventually abandon it. Of course, you want to avoid such a scenario by giving users a reason to come back. Depending on your business model, it may be feasible to offer an incentivization or loyalty program. Alternatively, you could implement a robust communication system, making it easy for users to connect with your brand in a meaningful way.

7. Why You Should Always Listen To Feedback

Another good reason to have a robust communication system is that it allows you to receive user feedback constantly. However, you must respond to this feedback immediately and never leave your users in a lurch. And if you can’t roll out updates and fixes within a short amount of time, do notify users that you’ve listened to their feedback and provide them with a roadmap. Ultimately, they need assurance that you’ll provide the necessary support so that they won’t abandon your app.

8. Is Your Mobile App Too Innovative

Users have become accustomed to the UX and workflow set by the most popular apps. Now, you may want your app to stand out by implementing innovative features that competing apps don’t have. However, this isn’t necessarily a good idea because too much innovation can be counter-productive. You risk intimidating and scaring off users with features that seem too unfamiliar. Therefore, if you don’t want to negatively impact mobile app user retention, it’s better to play it safe!

9. Are You Offering Anything New

You should have a long-term strategy to increase mobile app retention. Look at how game developers implement season passes, in-game events, loot boxes, and prizes to keep their games fresh and relevant. By offering something new at regular intervals, users will keep coming back to your app. Furthermore, you’re showing your users that you’re still committed and invested in your app and care about the end-user experience.

But also introduce something new when the latest devices launch. Your app may work great on current smartphones but doesn’t take advantage of the extra screen real estate found on foldable devices. Inevitably, you’ll need to release an updated version of your app with an enhanced UX and additional features to keep the next generation of users satisfied.

The Bottom Line

As we’ve already revealed, there are several ways to increase app retention and keep users glued to your app. Nowadays, users have become increasingly disenchanted with applications because of mistakes that could’ve been avoided. Contact us today to learn how NS804 can help you develop brilliant apps the right way.

Increasing App Reviews To Become A 4.9 Rated App

Increase App Reviews to Boost to a 4.9 Rated App

Every developer wants their app to be a 4.9 rated app. Business reviews and referrals have been an operating currency in the economy since the days of barter-systems. That’s because, as humans, we tend to trust the voice of other humans. Especially those who are close to us. Therefore, if we get a direct recommendation from someone that we consider a close friend or loved one, our motivation spikes. This is why so many business 101 classes talk about the request for referral. Even if every sales call you make in a day is ending with a ‘no’; the request for referral is a common practice.

Essentially, the request for referral is exactly as it sounds – rather than simply accepting the ‘no’ and moving on, talented sales people find a way to ask the individual to recommend friends or family in need of their offer. The same is true for online reviews of businesses and stores. The route to a 4.9 rated app is through app-reviews.

Encouraging App Reviews

People are much more likely to respond to a prompt than to speak up without prompting. Therefore, including encouragement within your app for users to leave reviews is a great approach to gain more user insight. On top of that, more often than not, users want to have a voice. Some line of communication between them and the developers programming their applications. This is another function of app-reviews. Providing a platform for users to speak directly to developers.

Beyond encouraging app reviews within the application though, developers can actually incentivize honest reviews. Since many mobile apps use an in-app currency, it makes sense that developers would offer a bonus bundle of in-app currency, or some other rewards, to users who took the time to give their honest feedback on an app.

Following Through On Feedback To Become a 4.9 Rated App

Convincing users to give honest and thorough feedback on applications is really only the first half of the conversation, though. Developers and programmers need to put their time and money where their user-feedback is. In other words, reviews are meaningless if they aren’t acted upon and listened to.

Besides, if the point of application-reviews is to encourage discussion between users and developers, then ignoring this feedback tells users you don’t care and you won’t listen. This is a sure-fire way to drive your users into the apps of your competitors and find your applications dropping in ratings.

Showing your users the firm’s commitment to them, however, through taking actions and developing updates that address their feedback will speak miles to your effort and dedication to delivering the best experience possible. This, in turn, will also lead to an increase in user loyalty.

Grow The User Base and Implement In-App Support

Finally, a great way to increase your app-rankings and reach that 4.9 rated app is through a larger user base. The more users you can attract through marketing and other efforts, the more likely it is that your app will get high ratings and strong user feedback.

Be sure to also include an in-app support for users to look to for single-use issues, or other one-off use-cases.

For more information on how to boost your app ratings, keep browsing NS804’s content library. NS804 is the mobile app developer of the everyday person.

7 Steps To Build An Android MVP App

Are you sitting on the fence of whether or not to build an Android MVP? Given the global proliferation of Android smartphones and other devices, it makes sense to support the platform. But it’s also a platform that’s harder to develop for than iOS, making some developers balk at the thought. While Android development does have its fair share of quirks, it’s still worth supporting in the long run. Follow these 7 steps to build an Android MVP app and reach users around the world.

1. Why You Need An Android MVP App

The market for Android apps is dynamic and ever-growing. Unlike Apple’s tightly locked iOS ecosystem, Android is truly open. While most users download their Android apps from Google Play, that’s not the only choice available to them. Popular Android digital storefronts such as Amazon AppStore, Aptoide, and GetJar are several good alternatives. And smartphone manufacturers such as Huawei and Samsung have their brand-specific app stores, namely: Huawei AppGallery and Samsung Galaxy Apps.

Also, the Android platform makes it easy to sideload apps, allowing users to download and install apps from any source, including directly from the developer’s website. Undoubtedly, all these storefronts give developers ample opportunities to leverage their apps and grow their respective audiences further. Moreover, these storefronts make the perfect testing ground to try out new app ideas.

What all this means is that you should be developing an Android MVP if you’re targeting this platform. An MVP will allow you to reduce your costs and risks by focussing strictly on essential features. Then, you can test the viability of your ideas on a variety of markets and audiences. And once you receive feedback and analyze all relevant data points, you can then iterate your app MVP accordingly.

2. iOS MVP Example Takeaways

While Android’s a platform that every app developer should consider supporting, we have a few takeaways regarding iOS. From recent findings, iOS apps have higher engagement and retention rates. Furthermore, iOS users buy more purchasable apps and spend more on in-app purchases than Android users. And from a developer’s standpoint, it’s usually a faster and smoother process to develop and test iOS apps. Thus, iOS is better suited for creating an app MVP in most cases.

And to give you a brief idea about what this entails, let’s go over an iOS MVP example. NS804 developed Brew Trader, which is an app aimed at craft beer enthusiasts. The app helps them track down fellow aficionados located nearby and trade bottles in an efficient manner.

To develop this app, we set out to make our MVP ideation as simple as possible. While we initially listed down plenty of cool ideas, we eventually narrowed these down to the most relevant. The Brew Trader MVP ended up with three screens: a map showing bottle locations and the latest offers, a user profile, and a messenger so that users can DM each other. We built this MVP using the modern Swift programming language and by implementing a view controller design pattern.

3. Start With A Clear Purpose

One lesson that the above iOS MVP example offers us is that having a clear purpose is vital. As we’ve already revealed, Beer Trader is a simple and incredibly focused app. And that’s what defines most of the best and successful apps in the marketplace.

Before embarking on Android MVP development, you’ll need to ask yourself what problem you’re trying to solve. Ideally, you’ll come up with a no-frills solution that solves this one problem exceptionally well. Never try to solve many problems in your MPV, as it will lack direction and suffer feature creep.

4. Define Your Audience

We’ve mentioned how Android’s wide variety of storefronts make it easy to target a large audience beyond Google Play. However, audiences vary widely from storefront to storefront, and they all have different expectations. For example, Amazon AppStore users are more accustomed to purchasing apps and games in particular. But that’s not true for Aptoide users, who predominantly seek free apps without any geo-restrictions. On top of that, Google Play’s audience is incredibly diverse given the popularity of the platform.

So, what’s a busy Android developer to do? As always, you’ll want to keep things as simple as possible. Don’t try to target all these users and stick to one or two app stores initially. If you’re developing a premium app with in-app purchases, it makes sense to target Google Play and possibly Amazon AppStore users.

But you’ll need to narrow down your target audience even further. Perhaps you’re creating a VR architectural visualization app that depicts Brutalist architecture. In that case, you’ll want to target architects and designers based in Canada, the Czech Republic, the USA, the UK, Russia, Serbia, and Sweden, where this type of architecture is prominent.

5. Think About What To Scale Back

Scaling back and finding your true minimum is one of the most important things you can do. But you should be careful, as you don’t want your Android MVP to be so devoid of features that it becomes useless. Aim for the least amount of features but ensure that they all work flawlessly. Be sure to implement or retain all core functionality relevant to your app and avoid or remove any fluff. While there are no guarantees, most users will find such an app valuable.

6. Create A Detailed Explainer

Clients, users, and stakeholders will want to know what your app MVP is all about. This presents the perfect opportunity to create a detailed explainer. Carefully lay out your plans, even if they don’t all make it into the MVP. Also, consider adding a roadmap so that your audience knows what you have planned in the months ahead. And use video, especially if your MVP relies heavily on graphics and other visual elements.

7. Design The UI and UX

You’ve worked hard on creating the logic for your app, so don’t skimp on the design work either. Ensure that you’re following best practices and guides aimed at Android developers. As you go about building your user interface (UI), consider how your app bar, bubbles, dialog windows, menus, pop-up messages, and other UI elements work together. Ultimately, you want a clean and cohesive UI that flows naturally. And look closely at engagement and usability, as these correlate with your MVP’s user experience (UX).

8. Choose Your Language

A key benefit of Android development is that you can choose from several programming languages to create your project. Most developers will probably go with Java since this is the official language of the platform. However, in recent years, Kotlin has been gaining popularity since it’s similar but easier than Java.

For game developers, C++ is an apt choice, especially when optimal performance is essential. But Unity that uses the C# language has become a popular option amongst cross-platform and mobile game developers. And for simpler 2D games where performance isn’t a big concern, JavaScript and LUA are valid options.

9. Create A Testing Group

Try to create a community that backs your app as early as possible. Even if you only manage to gain a small following early on, these users can be invaluable. Entice them with competitions and insider early access initiatives to test your app. Then, set up a robust feedback pipeline so that these users can conveniently share their thoughts with your team. Keep track of all this feedback and ensure that your team makes the necessary iterations. Finally, always thank and credit your users for all their contributions.

In Conclusion

Developing for Android can be a challenging yet rewarding experience. However, it’s possible to overcome the more challenging aspects of the platform by following these 7 steps. Contact us today to find out how NS804 can make your next Android app simply amazing.

How To Become The Next Big Appreneur

Steps To Take Toward Becoming The Next Big Appreneur

The next big idea is already out there. However, that doesn’t mean it’s realized yet. Rather, just that it exists. And with the right home, it could blossom into a world-changing concept. Innovators, inventors, and appreneurs alike dream big, and reach for the stars. Don’t lose hope, though. On the contrary, this should inspire you, push you to join the statement-makers and trend-setters and leave your mark on the world in the form of the next game-changing application as the next big appreneur.

Most of the greats start from humble beginnings. This is the same for mobile app developers and programmers as well, and to become the next great appreneur, it serves well to start at the very beginning: research. Research and data are two of the strongest tools in the toolbox of an appreneur. No matter the development phase. To get get on the right track to becoming the next big appreneur, here are some tricks of the trade to master.

Developing Effective MVP’s Quickly and Efficiently

Developing an MVP should be one of the first app development phases that you study and work to master. Unlike in sports, MVP in the world of application development stands for Minimum Viable Product. MVP’s are undoubtedly one of the most integral ingredients to recruiting interest in an application, and securing funding. As such, having a process in place to develop MVP’s quickly and efficiently will lead to a higher percentage of your application development projects taking off.

MVP’s are the first comprehensive representation of what an application will be. Therefore, they’re essentially responsible for the first impression that your application leaves on potential partners and other interested parties.

Be a Wise Appreneur – Only Work With Trusted Agencies

While some development firms take on the entirety of a development project, it isn’t often the case. More common, though, is the combination of internal and external developers working in concert. With that level of collaboration on development projects, trust is absolutely vital. Surely, trust is vital in any relationship, but this is especially true when it comes to business partnerships.

Working with trusted agencies for external development purposes protects your firm from a slew of liability. Shady development firms could leave you with an application that’s simply riddled with bugs. Furthermore, freelancers or under-reviewed development agencies may even falsely advertise the level of their programming and application development skills, wasting valuable time and resources both.

Know The In’s and Out’s of The App-Stores

Research, research, research. It was already mentioned earlier that data and research are two of a developers best friends. This is certainly the case when it comes to understanding the app-stores and your applications placement within them. The app-stores are real-time marketplaces that almost live in a bubble outside the rest of the economy. Operating with a completely different set of metrics and KPI’s than would be seen in certain more traditional markets.

Therefore, dedicating time and committing to learning the in’s and out’s of the app-store in depth will help you in placing and marketing your application. Ultimately, helping you climb the ranks as one of the influential appreneurs of today. Beyond understanding some of the current trends of the users in the app-stores, there are other metrics to look for as well when conducting app-store research.

Importantly, developers want to pay attention to the algorithms that app-stores are using. Now, these algorithms are hardly ever going to be publicly available, but if your development team can find some patterns, this too will lead to a higher rate of success on building the popularity of your applications in the app-stores, and therefore the popularity of your brand and development firm.

Be An Original Appreneur Or Risk Bad Press

As a true inventor, innovator, or appreneur, it takes more than just regurgitating what already works and what’s already popular. Rather, it takes a new and fresh approach to things. A re-invention of current technology or a spark of imagination that leads to something entirely brand new. While it makes sense that a lot of mobile app developers and appreneurs would seek to recreate the success of others. Afterall, thi is often how companies are built in other industries as well; one business person sees a way to improve upon something another business is doing and alters the methodology or the business model, and voila.

As an appreneur, however, the market is too saturated for this, and rather than helping build your reputation as the next great appreneur, it could lead to a slight setback in your path toward successful apprenurship. Especially if it’s viewed as a simple copy-and-paste approach.

Pay a Close Watch to New Mobile App Development Trends

This goes hand-in-hand with the earlier section about conducting in depth research into the mobile app-stores. While earlier we discussed the benefit of watching the mobile-app stores and letting your team attempt to decipher the algorithm, here we delve into users. Understanding the users that make up the mobile app store communities will yield impactful insights that are sure to help you and your firm market applications more successfully.

Gaining insight into the latest mobile app development trends will help your team in many ways. One way is by ensuring you’re building apps with features and designs to which users respond positively. Another way this helps is by reducing the bounce rate of users in your app. That’s an important metric, because it speaks to the sustainability and loyalty of your user base.

New Device Features

Each year our smart-devices are getting smarter. As an application-developer then, it’s vital to make sure you’re aware of all the latest device features. Since new features on the smart-devices themselves often lead to interesting, unique, and innovative new ideas for applications. Therefore, make sure your programming and development teams are all up to speed when it comes to what’s available on the latest smart-applications.

Take this a step further and encourage your team to start working on pitches for new applications based on new device features as soon as they’re reported.

App Review Research – In Your Niche Market

It really can’t be stressed enough how important accurate and current research is to app developers. Going back once again to understanding how to leverage the app-store, development firms can learn a lot from app-reviews on other applications in their same niche. This activity offers double-the-insight as well, since most of the applications in your niche market will also be direct competitors.

In other words, by actively researching reviews on applications in your niche market, your team can gain valuable insight. Insights such as, mistakes that competitors are making, what features customers are asking for, and what users like about existing apps.

Master Marketing – Pre-Launch, Launch, and Post Launch

Marketing has long been the pillar of a strong company. Understanding how to position products or services among the competition is an art. For an appreneur, this means learning how to market your application from concept to launch, and beyond. No matter the industry, marketing is truly a skill, and market trends are in constant flux. Become a master of marketing, and it’ll only be a matter of time until you’re the next big appreneur.

For more information on how to become the next appreneur, keep browsing the library of NS804. NS804 is the mobile app developer of the everyday person.

How COVID is Changing Custom Business Apps

Ways COVID is Changing Custom Business Apps Permanently

A recent study into the post-COVID business climate revealed some insight into the draining effects of Zoom meetings. Zoom, of course, is the popular video-conferencing application. Businesses and individuals have turned to using Zoom all over the world because of the pandemic. However, with such up-close pictures, and a limited range of mobility, Zoom meetings have proven to be even more stressful than their in-person counterparts. Zoom isn’t the only business application getting attention, though. Rather, custom business apps are becoming more and more popular as the work-from-home wave continues on.

Custom business apps are changing the way that companies and organizations operate entirely. Instead of being told what features are available in a one-size-fits all enterprise application; your company is king when it comes to designing a custom app specific for your organization.

Developing Your Custom Business App

After making the decision to invest in a custom business application, there’s a lot to consider before getting started. For instance, a major decision organizational leaders have to face is whether they want to go with a professional app designer, or a more cost-effective choice. Now, there are obvious benefits to both sides; cost-savings on one, and a more professional end-result on the other.

Keeping in mind the use-cases of your custom business apps, it makes sense to prioritize quality over cost when it comes to choosing a designer. Choosing a cheaper route could result in unnecessary bugs that bog down your application, or glitchy and unreliable operations. Either way: not ideal results for the application your remote teams are going to rely on.

Furthermore, choosing a professional app designer to build your custom business apps guarantees a more sleek, modernized, and updated application – ultimately boosting your remote teams instead of hindering them.

Must-Have Features

Once a designer or design firm is chosen; your team can begin looking at what features they want to include in their custom business apps. Depending on your industry, your business needs, and your general workflow; business apps can look vastly different from organization to organization. However, there are a few features that are pretty staple to include in custom business apps despite organizational or marketplace differences.

One feature that your team needs to include in your custom enterprise app, almost without saying, is an instant messaging platform. Instant messaging is a must have. This is because remote workers and teams need to be able to quickly and effectively communicate with one another. Not to mention management and business leaders.

Another must-have feature in your custom enterprise app is scheduling and video-conferencing. Folding project management and video-conferencing capabilities into your custom business apps will bring the tools that your team needs to them, no matter where they’re located. This is a huge advantage in the new economy, as the work-from-home and remote-work era is here to stay.

Wrapping Up

Custom business apps are a great way to build a framework in which remote teams and remote workers are able to thrive. As we’ve seen over the past year, a functional remote work-force is vital to long term stability. For more information on the impact of COVID and how it’s changing the economy; continue browsing NS804’s content library.

How Much Time it Takes To Learn Android App Development

Exploring More Languages: Learn Android App Development

It’s widely accepted that our prime time for language learning is in the formative years of our life. Because of this, young children who learn multiple languages early on, are often bilingual or trilingual for life. This is true in many cases. In general, the further along we are on our life journey, the harder it is to learn something entirely new. Coding languages are a whole different ballpark altogether. However, the same principle applies. As such, in the last few years, educators have placed a higher emphasis on STEM and computer sciences in the early phases of education. For many, though, it makes more sense to seek external help than it does to try to learn android app development from scratch.

There’s nothing wrong with challenging oneself; and in fact individuals who prioritize mental-fitness often retain a sharpness into their deepest years of life. But for anyone looking to produce android apps on a more efficient schedule, utilizing an android app developer might be the preferred avenue.

Trying to Learn Android App Development

Those curious enough to pursue fluency in coding may want to start elsewhere. In coding for Apple devices, developers use a language called Python. Python has a strict set of definitions and a rather formal dictionary. These elements make learning Python more accessible and easier for beginners to latch onto. With a more rigid structure and semi-less customizability, Python is a great language for novice coders to start with. Allowing them to learn the ins and outs of programming, and get into a natural flow.

In trying to learn android app development, however, there is a lot more flexibility. Rather than a single coding-language with strict definitions and a rather formulaic approach to running and writing code; android app developers pride themselves on thinking outside the box, and doing things a little differently.

In trying to learn android app development effectively, one can’t just focus on a single language. Instead, a developer needs to possess knowledge over an array of coding languages, in addition to understanding how those languages relate to and play off of one another. As such, the coding can quickly become complex, convoluted, and hard to read for novice developers.

Working With Professionals Simplifies Things

While everyone should work on learning something new and keeping their minds active; some things in life are just simpler with outside help. When it comes to your business or app development company, using a development firm or professional designers will simplify the process significantly. Where trying to learn android app development yourself is a long and trying process. Therefore, collaborating on projects with design professionals who already know the ins and outs of android coding, will streamline the process. Not only that, but using a professional designer or firm for your mobile app will ensure that there’s a minimal amount of bugs and glitches that infest your application.

Wrapping Up

The market for applications in all their forms is bustling right now. From enterprise apps to mobile gaming apps and mental-wellness applications; the app market is thriving. Get started on your app-development journey with the professionals at NS804, ready to make your ideas into realities.

SaaS Mobile Apps Vs Custom App Development

Weighing the benefits of SaaS mobile apps vs custom app development is worthwhile for several reasons. With rapid digitalization underway, every enterprise should consider what type of apps they need. They also need to look at costs, customization, integration, time to implementation, and scalability, to name a few.

Both SaaS and custom apps offer very similar benefits, which makes the decision-making process difficult. While a SaaS solution may be perfect for certain types of businesses, it may not be right for your enterprise. Below, we pinpoint the differences between SaaS and custom apps and what you should consider before coming to a decision.

1. What Are SaaS Mobile Apps?

Most of us know what mobile apps are and know how indispensable they’ve become. But what exactly is SaaS (Software as a Service), and why does it matter? Well, if you’ve used a modern cloud service, you’ve likely made use of a SaaS. Dropbox, Google Docs, and Netflix are good examples of popular SaaS offerings that users find valuable.

And since these services are cloud-based, users don’t have to download and install large executables and packages. Thus, they avoid installation errors and the possibility of their devices becoming infected with malware and viruses. Another side benefit is that users don’t have to worry about updates, as these are done in the cloud. So, enterprises that hire employees that aren’t too technical can hit the ground running.

SaaS mobile apps offer all these benefits to users who mainly or only use smartphones for their daily business activities. As long as they have a reliable connection, they should enjoy uninterrupted service most of the time. However, many SaaS offerings have offline modes allowing users to continue using these services without breaking their workflow.

2. Top SaaS Mobile App Benefits

You may be deliberating whether to develop a SaaS or a custom mobile app. We understand that it’s not always a clear-cut decision if the app should fulfill many vital business functions. Therefore, we’ve listed a few of the benefits that you should be aware of when developing SaaS mobile apps:

  • Fast Implementation – If you’re leading a startup or need to deploy services rapidly, then a SaaS is the way to go. A SaaS allows you to bring all your ideas to the market far quicker than taking the custom app development route.
  • Simple Customization – SaaS apps are far easier and quicker to customize than custom apps. Furthermore, features are likely to fit your enterprise’s needs since SaaS apps are updated at more regular intervals.
  • Integration With Other Apps – Your enterprise probably relies on several third-party applications to function smoothly. A SaaS allows you to quickly and cheaply integrate all these apps since you can access its built-in APIs (application programming interfaces). For a custom app, you’d need to handle all integrations during development and incur additional costs if you integrate them later on.
  • Easy To Scale – Small enterprises with approximately 50 employees use between 25-50 SaaS apps. And larger enterprises with over 250 employees utilize more than 100 SaaS offerings. Furthermore, almost 85% of small enterprises have invested in SaaS solutions. The adoption of SaaS is partly due to how easy it’s to scale for enterprises of various sizes.

3. How Does Custom App Development Differ?

Developing a custom mobile app is a more elaborate process than creating a SaaS solution. The developer will have to consider the costs associated with back-end hosting, setting up a developer account, operating system updates, handle user feedback, support new devices, and offer maintenance and support. Of course, some of these costs apply to SaaS mobile apps but to a lesser extent.

But what truly sets a custom mobile app apart is that it makes use of a smartphone’s unique features. For example, a developer can add functionality that takes advantage of the Samsung Galaxy Note 20 S Pen. It wouldn’t make sense to add this functionality in a SaaS since it’s meant to work on a wide variety of devices.

4. Top Benefits of Custom App Development

As we’ve already revealed, SaaS mobile apps offer a wide variety of benefits that you ought to consider. The lower costs and quick implementations certainly benefit startups and enterprises operating on a tight budget. However, it would be a mistake to forge ahead without looking at what custom app development brings to the table.

  • Full Customization – Both SaaS and custom apps can be customized. But a custom app offers deeper customization since the developer can access more of a device’s APIs, hardware, and operating system.
  • Fits Your Needs Perfectly – Your enterprise’s unique needs can’t always be addressed by a SaaS. For example, storing data on the cloud presents certain security risks that you’d like to avoid. But your custom mobile app allows you to store and encrypt data on the device or offline.
  • Takes Advantage Of Device Features – Today’s smartphones come with innovative features that set them apart from competitors. And users choose a specific brand and model because they find its unique features desirable or valuable. Thus, you can make your app stand out if you take advantage of a device’s unique features and grow your audience.
  • Changes With Your Business – SaaS apps often become monolithic as they grow and mature. When an enterprise’s needs change, it becomes a monumental task to implement changes in such apps. But that’s not the case with custom apps since they don’t require any significant platform changes to adapt to your business.

5. Which Development Strategy Is Best For Your Needs?

Last but not least, you must consider your development strategy that best fits your enterprise’s needs. Developing apps is challenging and is fraught with risk, that’s why it’s important to make the right decisions. We recommend that you look at your costs, time to implement, and customization factors in more detail.

  • Costs – Consider all the costs of developing a custom mobile app versus that of a SaaS. Additional features, higher complexity, and sleeker visual elements will inevitably increase costs. And the longer it takes to develop your app, the more expensive it becomes.
  • Time To Implement – One of the key benefits of SaaS is how rapidly an enterprise can deploy and implement services. In most cases, a SaaS is the smarter choice for startups and smaller enterprises that don’t have the luxury of time.
  • Customization – Smartphones have become more advanced and sport features, which were inconceivable a few years ago. Furthermore, user expectations have risen, and enterprises may want to take advantage of features unique to specific devices. In such scenarios, it’s necessary to develop apps with deep customization in mind. That’s only possible with custom app development because the developer works directly on the hardware and not the cloud.

In Conclusion

SaaS solutions have gained traction in recent years as more enterprises embrace the cloud. And many smaller enterprises have invested heavily in SaaS apps, and this trend’s bound to continue. But for enterprises requiring high levels of customization and the ability to take advantage of a device’s unique features, only custom apps will do. Contact us today to learn how NS804 can develop powerful enterprise apps that will boost your business.

What Are The Best Tools For Android App Development?

When embarking on the Android app development journey, you’ll need to choose the right tools. Google provides several excellent tools at no cost to developers to help them get started. But third-party vendors such as Microsoft and Unity also offer Android developers powerful and versatile solutions. We’ll be covering these in more detail below.

1. Choosing The Right Tools For Android App Development

The world of Android software development can be fascinating and rewarding, provided you choose the right tools. Fortunately, there are several mature and robust tools on the market that facilitate a smooth development process. Here’s a shortlist of tools that every Android developer should have as part of their toolchain:

Android SDK – The official software development kit (SDK) that makes Android mobile app development possible. It contains several battle-tested libraries and tools for building, compiling, debugging, monitoring, and testing apps.

Android Studio – All developers need an integrated development environment (IDE) to make their ideas come to life. And Android Studio is the quintessential IDE for Android developers, even though there are many alternatives in the marketplace. Moreover, it’s the official IDE for the Android platform and comes with an emulator, image files, and SDK.

Unity – If you’re developing augmented reality (AR) and virtual reality (VR) apps or games, consider using Unity. It’s a versatile game engine, renowned for its powerful and user-friendly editor and ability to build games for the most popular platforms with a single click. To target Android, you’ll need to download the Android Build Support module together with Android SDK/NDK and Open JDK.

2. When To Use Another IDE Instead Of Android Studio

If you’re building native Android apps or targeting the platform exclusively, you’ll probably want to stick with Android Studio. But if you’re targeting Android, iOS, and Windows, you may prefer a cross-platform solution. And one of these is Xamarin, which utilizes Microsoft’s rich .NET ecosystem and tooling and offers native performance. However, Xamarin requires Microsoft’s Visual Studio 2019 IDE as a prerequisite.

3. Why You Should Consider Using Firebase

For a simple mobile app, you probably won’t need to access cloud services. But if you’re developing something more complex, you may require a suite of tools that allow easy integration to Google’s back-end infrastructure. And if you need analytics and authentication together with AdMob integration, then Firebase is a solid choice. Before forging ahead, consider Firebase’s pricing and hidden costs to see if it fits within your budget.

4. Always Profile And Test Your Mobile App

Your development team may be incredibly talented, but it would be a mistake to ship your app without profiling and testing beforehand. The good news is that both the Android SDK and Android Studio come with powerful profiling tools.

Android SDK includes the Dalvik Debug Monitor Server (DDMS) that allows developers to emulate phone calls, examine threads, profile methods, view the heap, and gather information about the CPU, GPU, and frame rate. And the Android Studio IDE offers real-time monitoring of the CPU, GPU, memory, and network.

5. Android Software Development Is Constantly Evolving

Without a doubt, Android app development will be around for a long time still. There’s a massive international audience with an insatiable appetite for innovative apps released on the Google Play Store.

And while most developers will want to support both iOS & Android, they can’t go wrong if they can only support Android at the start. Moreover, they’ll find that Android’s tooling will only get better and more diverse with time. Contact us today to learn how NS804 can help you with your Android software development endeavors.

What Is SaaS App Development?

SaaS app development has been gaining momentum in recent years. With the proliferation of cloud services, a growing number of developers are taking advantage of these. And the big winner has been the user who can now access powerful applications without a hefty upfront cost. But what does this mean for enterprises and developers considering a SaaS? Below, we delve deeper into the fascinating world of SaaS mobile app development.

1. Understanding SaaS

Back in the 80s and 90s, enterprises and desktop users requiring specific software would have to purchase it in physical form. Many popular software packages came in big boxes and featured thick manuals and one or more floppy disks or CD-ROMs. With online access becoming more common in the 2000s, software distribution switched from physical media to digital downloads.

But over the past decade, users have gradually made the switch from digital downloads to cloud services. Many developers have taken advantage of this proliferating cloud infrastructure and offer their applications as a Software as a Service (SaaS). The main draw of SaaS is that users can access these applications without needing to download them. Since SaaS applications run in the browser, users don’t have to worry about compatibility issues and updates.

And unlike packaged and downloadable software, SaaS users don’t have to pay a steep upfront fee. The majority of SaaS offerings operate under a subscription model and usually offer a free tier. However, one of the key advantages of SaaS is that all data is stored directly on the cloud. Enterprises have extra surety that they won’t lose data due to employee error or neglect. And since cloud services have become so robust and ubiquitous, they’re perfectly suitable for mobile app development.

2. How SaaS App Development Differs

Every developer embarking on SaaS app development should consider how it differs from custom app development. SaaS is a good choice for smaller developers that need to make an impact in the market. It’s easier to attract paying customers with a SaaS with a limited development and marketing budget. Furthermore, it’s usually quicker to deploy a SaaS than a more monolithic application or custom app.

But every paying SaaS user expects constant updates and the introduction of new features that enhance workflow. Thus, developers need to respond quickly by updating their SaaS at a regular cadence. They may also need to upgrade their cloud infrastructure to deal with the additional demand when necessary. Custom app developers usually don’t have these cloud-centric considerations. And they prefer to offer solutions that better integrate with an enterprise’s existing software.

3. How Do SaaS Mobile Apps Scale

SaaS mobile apps scale incredibly well, and it’s a key reason why so many enterprises use them. And given how powerful and robust cloud infrastructure has become, it’s possible to serve millions of users concurrently and continuously. So, any enterprise that plans to grow its business and reach new users should consider deploying SaaS mobile apps.

But how do custom apps hold up to mobile apps in this regard? Well, unless a custom app’s built to handle huge traffic spikes and high computational loads from the get-go, it will struggle to deliver satisfactory results. Furthermore, it becomes challenging to scale a custom app at a later stage.

4. SaaS Mobile Apps Have Limited Integrations

While SaaS mobile apps offer plenty of pros, we should discuss a few of their cons. Most enterprises use several applications for the smooth operation of their day-to-day business processes. Sooner or later, an enterprise will need to integrate all these applications with their flagship SaaS. But most SaaS platforms usually lack all the integrations and APIs to make this possible.

That’s why enterprises that use many applications should consider custom mobile app development. The developer can create integrations for each piece of software and make these work flawlessly. Therefore, enterprises can run all their applications without experiencing downtimes at regular intervals.

5. Maintaining SaaS Mobile Apps

In a general sense, it’s easier to maintain a SaaS mobile app than a custom alternative. However, this doesn’t mean that the SaaS solution is always ideal. Think long and hard about all the updates and upgrades that you’ll need in the foreseeable future. And the reason why this is so important is that most SaaS providers only offer a limited amount of updates and upgrades.

It’s never a good idea to have your enterprise applications so dependent on third-party vendors. They can change their roadmap and terms of service (ToS) whenever they like, and these changes can affect your business adversely. With a custom solution, you’ll be future-proofing all your mission-critical applications by ensuring that all updates and upgrades are always implemented when you want them done.

6. Why SaaS App Development Timeline Isn’t Better

Don’t jump into SaaS app development because you’ve heard that it’s faster to implement. While you may save time and money initially, your SaaS may fail if it doesn’t line up with your business needs. Take the time to carefully plan your app and determine whether to go with a custom or SaaS solution. Consider how secure your data system should be, and choose custom app development if you need maximum security.

7. Creating All In One SaaS Mobile Apps

If you’re planning on developing an all-in-one SaaS mobile app, you’ll need to consider a few things. Large, complex applications are difficult to pull off, especially for smaller and inexperienced teams. Furthermore, your SaaS should run flawlessly on a variety of devices. Some users may not have access to a smartphone and may prefer to access your app via a desktop or smart TV. It’s vital to accommodate all these users to ensure the success of your app.

Ensure that your all-in-one SaaS mobile app brings unique and valuable features to the table. And optimize these features so that they provide users a more efficient workflow. Ultimately, you’ll want to give users plenty of reasons to keep using your app over alternatives.

8. How SaaS App Development Affects Business Productivity

The success of SaaS applications largely depends on how well they onboard new users. And every good SaaS should also enhance existing business processes and facilitate productivity. In a best-case scenario, an enterprise should find a SaaS platform that suits its needs.

But every business is different, with its unique challenges, demands, and needs. And it may become difficult to find a SaaS platform that fulfills these needs. Therefore, it’s better to go with a custom solution designed for a specific business. Not only is this a more robust solution, but it can lead to better productivity since the custom app tightly integrates with existing processes and workflows.

9. Main SaaS App Development Issues

Mobile app development always throws a curveball or two, and the same applies to the creation of SaaS apps. Since every SaaS is reliant on the cloud, developers should always prioritize security. They’ll need to take extra care in how they store data and how they authenticate users. Any data losses or security breaches will tarnish the reputation of their SaaS and subsequently lose users.

Developers should also ensure that data synchronizes properly between their mobile and desktop apps. Moreover, calendars, documents, and task lists should synchronize without causing any conflicts or errors. The last thing you want is to frustrate users and ruin their workflow if the apps they use most don’t synchronize or work properly.

In Conclusion

SaaS mobile apps have been growing in popularity in recent years. And while they offer plenty of pros, they’re not always ideal for all enterprises. If your business has unique needs and requirements, you may want to go with a custom solution. Contact us today to learn how NS804 can help you develop versatile apps that solve business problems.