30 Apr The 3 Most Common Questions About App Development
In the last quarter of 2019, there were more than 2.57 million apps on Google Play, and this number is growing fast. In 2022, consumers worldwide are projected to spend more than $34 billion on mobile apps via app stores, according to a report published by Statista. Mobile apps are in a prominent position for a simple reason, they connect your business directly with the customer.
Media Shark has been working with application development for a number of years and have the expertise and experience that can achieve great results. We have witnessed several cases of entrepreneurs establishing their businesses in the digital market and the benefits that this decision can bring.
We bring you the top 3 most common questions regarding app development:
1.How much does it cost to develop an app?
Is it expensive to develop a mobile application? How much does it cost to make an app like Deliveroo? How much do you charge for a simple application? What is the cost to make an app like Tripadvisor?
These are the types of questions that always come to us by email or over the phone. The right answer would be “it depends”. The cost will vary depending on functionalities, complexity and the number of integration points it has. As the complexity increases, so does the price.
Besides the functionality and complexity of the app, where it will be built also influences the price. There is a massive difference between hiring a freelancer, offshore development team, or an agency like Media Shark. If you are going to outsource development overseas, it will be cheaper. However, you will get what you pay for. There are some risks associated with this path. We explain the perks of hiring a local agency in another article.
Here are some aspects that will influence the cost of app development:
- What type of app are you building? (e.g. Android, iOS or both)
- Do people have to log in? (e.g. login not required or login using Email/social login)
- Do people create personal profiles?
- How will you make money from your app? (e.g. upfront cost, in-app purchases or free)
- Do people rate or review things?
- Does your app need to connect with your website?
- How nice should your app look? (e.g. custom buttons, icons and transitions)
One of the most common enquiries we receive goes along these lines, “How much will it cost to build a simple app like Uber” well, Ubers first round of funding was for $1,500,000 with a follow on round of even greater proportion. In all fairness, there are huge server elements with Uber and it would be quite possible for Media Shark to build an app that could offer the same features of Uber for under 100K but this would not be set up to be rolled out on global scale for millions of users, additionally how are you going to compete with a company that has built something better than your budget allows for? Even when budgets are not a restriction (and normally they are) we will generally recommend phasing the roll out of your app. Not every feature has to be released at the same time and its a great way to test the market and your audience and start gaining some real world user acceptance, this will assist greatly with how the next round of features are rolled out with your user feedback included.
I will give you an example of what a simple app looks like that Media Shark could build for under 10k;
The app will be free to download with no registration required for the user. Once the app has been downloaded to the users phone the user will be able to open the app and view the videos. The videos will be hard coded (no back end to add/delete) and the user can view by scrolling to select the video of choice and pressing play.
Half way through development the client decides, “actually I do want users to register and pay for some premium videos and I need to be able to add, delete videos myself from a back end”.
To the client these may be minor adjustments but in the world of development your app being built for under 10k is now much closer to 50k.
Feature additions here would include Registration, subscription management, backend development to update app and so on.
If you are thinking of creating the next Twitter or Deliveroo with a budget of 20k it is time to go back to the drawing board.
2.To Sign or Not to Sign a Non-Disclosure Agreement (NDA)?
Believe it or not but the sign of a Non-Disclosure Agreement (NDA) for mobile app development is one of the most controversial topics in the industry. Some entrepreneurs believe they have a revolutionary idea that needs to be protected.
On the other side, agencies that, having seen everything, came to an understanding that no idea is a new idea. Hence, the presence of NDA only restricts them.
But, there is an important consideration to be made here: signing an NDA with an app development company based overseas is pointless. If you hire a local app development agency, we strongly recommend you to sign an NDA because it will be a helpful instrument and it will be an important tool in defining confidentiality.
At Media Shark, we believe that having an NDA is essential to protect your idea and code. You can download it for free clicking on the button below.
3.What is the process?
When considering developing an app to your company, the process is a massive part of it. In all the companies that we see as successful, the execution is what made the difference, not the idea itself. Before Facebook, there were social networks like Orkut, Friendster and MySpace; however, what set Facebook apart from competitors was the execution and understanding its customer.
- Discuss the brief
The development of the application starts long before a programmer begins to develop the code. In fact, ideas for an app come up to remedy or avoid a problem as well as meeting your customers’ needs.
In this early stage, we will have a brainstorm meeting to discuss some key questions:
- What will the app solve?
- What are its features?
- How will you stand out from the competition?
At the end of this process, you should have the scope of work mapped and be ready to jump to the next stage.
- Project definition
This is where we initialize the project! Media Shark will understand how each module of the app will work and interact with the users. We address any requirements that we cannot implement due to technical barriers and find workarounds to achieve the desired result. This phase requires that all the parties involved collaborate and Media Shark receives the information requested on time.
In this stage, it is important to know how you want the user to navigate through the app and the necessary resources. This will help our development team to understand better what your expectations are.
Here the rule less is more is key! Be careful with the excess resources added so as not to make it too heavy and impair its functioning. That way, in addition to the application running lighter and smoother, you can save additional and complementary resources. After a while of the launch, updates with these new features may keep the public’s interest for longer. This will help to maintain initial development costs lower and reach a good market share more quickly.
The wireframe phase is when your app will really start to take shape. This means that, before preparing the layout, a kind of draft is created. That way, we can see how the final product will look. If something is wrong, you can adjust the sketch as many times as necessary.
Therefore, the wireframe serves as a guide to assist in the layout of the app. Despite being widely used at the beginning of each project, it can also be of great use when changes need to be made – such as the implementation of new functionality in the company’s app, for example.
Media Shark will wireframe the journey of the app, and we will then design and prototype the user journey.
- UI/UX & Prototype
Always put the user experience first. Creating an app the way you want it – just because you think it looks better and ignores the client’s opinion is a mistake that causes many apps to fail.
Design is not just about how your app should look – it is also about how the user will see and experience it. The design must be thought to make the technology useful and bring real benefits to users. Remember that having a beautiful app is not enough; it must be functional. If it fills users’ eyes but is not intuitive, it is better to redo your project.
With the scope defined and wireframes approved, it is time for development, which the production time will vary according to the complexity of the application, functionalities, integration and construction of APIs, among other factors. Media Shark host the progress on our staging server, allowing the client to view developed modules before completion.
- UAT Testing
User Acceptance Testing (UAT) is ongoing throughout the build. We would be performing the unit tests during development and complete regression testing after completion of the app. This is a crucial part of the process, as 65% of users say a poor mobile experience negatively impacts their opinion of the brand, according to customer loyalty research.
Here are some important questions to ask:
- Does the app crash?
- Do all the functionalities run well, smoothly, using the minimum amount of resources?
- Does the app exceed user expectations?
When performing a functionality test, we must give priority to navigation and interactions. It is also a part of checking if each button, link and system email is responding. After investing time and resources in developing your application, you certainly want it to work for your users as well as it did before it went live.
With the UAT feedback, it is time to fix the bugs and work on the points of improvement pointed out in the trial. It is a process that will require to be revisited as many times as necessary to make sure the app works smoothly and satisfies users expectations.
Following approval and testing of complete app functionality, we will deploy the back end to the client’s domain and servers. Mobile apps will be deployed to the App Store and Play Store.
Both the App Store and Play Store may require documents proving the identity of the application publisher. This process ensures that the person responsible for publishing is aware of the application and to avoid fraud and copyright problems. Stores also require an application approval period until they are actually available in the catalogue.
The decision to develop applications for your company depends on how you use it. To attract customers, it is interesting to bring a new value proposition that a responsive website cannot supply. For management and internal management, there are several applications for this purpose, but there may be needs that these generic applications may not be able to meet, requiring the development of an ideal solution for your business.
Have you ever imagined being in the middle of the development process and needing to redo the same things every week? Or even change the direction of the project or adding new items halfway?
The result of this is that the value agreed at the beginning of the project and the deadline for delivery of the final product will be much greater than what was estimated at the beginning. And nobody likes to waste time or money, right? Developing a proper scope of your project and having the right team is the best solution for the success of your app development.