The Process of Mobile Application Development – The need for a mobile application development process or mobile application for global business companies is very important in today’s digital era. Apps can generate billions of dollars in revenue through app stores or in-app ads. That’s an important factor why companies choose to develop a mobile application.
Mobile application development is one of the processes that are outsourced globally by business enterprises.
The problem is that when they try to take advantage of application development, they do not yet have the knowledge of how to make mobile applications.
However, with the support of a React Native app development company that is innovative and actively assists in the process of developing applications, this can certainly increase success and competitive growth.
Here are the mobile application development processes that are important to know, in order to provide maximum efficiency for your company.
6 Important Processes of Mobile Application Development
Typically, the application development process consists of a six-phase workflow, which you will explore in depth through this article. You can also find out how the process of developing a mobile application is complete.
- Mobile Application Development Strategy
Always define a strategy for your mobile application development process, this is to help develop a successful product. A large part of this can be invested in the overall application development process. Everyone has different goals in developing apps, but maybe you should follow the same thing to get a special impact from the app.
The strategy-based factors needed to develop a mobile application are as follows:
- Find out who the app users are
- Do intensive research on competitors
- Prepare goals and objectives for application development
- Choose the ideal mobile platform for the application
The average cost to develop a mobile app exceeds the $100,000 range and takes about four to six months to develop. This is why you need to build a strategy to have better focus and constant clarity in application ideas. So, you can dive deeper into the next phase of mobile app development without a second thought.
- Analysis and Planning for Mobile App Development Process
Your application will start at this phase. In this phase, the application use cases are defined and a detailed representation of their functional requirements.
A product schema is prepared to prioritize application requirements and position them as milestones in the mobile application development process.
If you have time, resource, or cost constraints, then it’s a good idea to define and prioritize a Minimum Viable Product (MVP) for an early launch.
In the planning phase, you must also know the skills needed according to your choice when developing the application.
Making your app available on the iOS and Android mobile platforms requires using a variety of different app development technologies. This means you have to hire or hire an iOS and Android developer as well.
Put a unique name for your app after doing your research, so you don’t use a name that’s already in use!
- UI/UX Design in Mobile App Development Process
Your app design should have a smooth look and make sure it provides a smooth and easy user experience.
When your mobile app is at its best and makes it a big hit among users, it means that they have successfully adopted and benefited well from all its features.
The main goal of UI/UX design is to provide a great user experience that makes applications interactive, intuitive, and user-friendly.
(i) Information Architecture & Workflow
In the early stages of developing a mobile application, it determines how the application uses various data, such as the data displayed to the user, the data collected, the user’s interaction with the product, and the user journey within the application.
Workflow diagrams help identify all appropriate user interactions within the app and their navigation structure.
(ii) Outline drawing
Wireframes are like digital sketches designed by application designers for the development process of a mobile application. It helps bring up the conceptual layout of the application, also known as a low fidelity mockup to define a visual structure for the functional requirements of the application.
Wireframes focus more on app aesthetics and the way mobile apps develop for user experience rather than app color schemes and styles. This is a cost-effective and fast approach, so a mobile app should consider custom design across multiple devices to provide an intuitive and device-specific user experience.
(iii) Style Guide
A style guide is a “living document” where app design guidelines are defined through the mobile app development process, from branding regulations to navigation icons consisting of:
- the font the app text will use
- App color scheme
- Communicating the company brand through app design
The style guide helps develop the application strategy. If done from the start, it will form a style guide for improving the efficiency of mobile app developers. At the same time, you can maintain your app’s appearance and consistency by following these style guidelines. Try checking out the app design guide for Apple’s standards for iOS as well as Google’s apps for Android.
This is the final design of your app and is also known as high fidelity design in the scope of mobile app development. You can create a mockup by complementing the application wireframe with a style guide.
When finalizing the application design, the information architecture, workflow and aesthetics will be modified later. You can use the most common tools, such as Adobe Photoshop to generate high-fidelity mockups in the mobile app development process.
Mockups in app development are static designs that can bring out the functionality of your mobile app. It can be made into a click-through prototype using tools like Invision and Figma. Prototyping is important for simulating the user experience and application workflow that is expected of the finished product.
Although prototype development may take some time, the effort is certainly very important, as it can demonstrate the design and functionality of the application at an early stage. Prototypes are often helpful in the mobile app development process to identify changes to the functionality suggested by the app.
In particular, when the functional side of the application is not well thought out, some companies choose to develop prototypes at the wireframing stage. They also do this to review the app’s proposed functionality.
- Application Development
The most integral part of this phase is always planning. Before starting the actual process of developing a mobile app, make sure:
- defined technical architecture,
- You have chosen the technology stack, and
- developmental milestones are determined.
Three integral parts of developing a mobile application are back-end/server technology, API, and front-end.
(i) Technology Back-End/Server
All application functionality comes from the application development section supported by the required database and server-side objects. Sometimes modifications to the existing back-end platform may also be made to support the required mobile functionality.
The Application Programming Interface (API) is the mediator that ensures communication between the application and the back-end server/database in the mobile application development process.
(iii) Application Home Screen
For the most part, mobile applications consist of interactive user experiences using APIs and back-ends for data management. In certain situations, the application can be used for local data storage which allows the user to function without an internet connection.
Almost every web programming language and database can be used for the back-end in application development. The technology stack should be selected for native applications as it is required for every mobile OS. You can create iOS apps using Objective-C or Swift programming languages. The most common applications for Android are Java or Kotlin.
There are many programming languages and technologies available for developing mobile applications. So, always choose the technology that suits your application.
Rapid technological advances bring new versions of mobile platforms. Moreover, every few months a new mobile gadget is available. Agility is critical for mobile app development in a timeframe and budget when platforms and devices are constantly changing.
Use agile development methods if the time to market is a priority. This method allows periodic updates of the software with its full functionality. The definition of developmental milestones is part of a rapid development strategy that helps in the iteration of your mobile app.
When each app development milestone is completed, it will be transferred for validation to the app testing team.
Thorough software quality assurance (QA) testing in developing mobile applications ensures applications are reliable, useful, and secure.
You must first develop a test case that covers all components of the application test to ensure a complete QA process for the application.
Just as use cases drive the mobile app development process, what drives mobile app testing are test cases. Test cases include test steps, software quality evaluation that will record findings, and retesting performed by tracking improvements.
The QA team should be involved in the Analysis and Design phase of application development as a best practice method.
(i) User Experience Testing
An important stage in mobile app testing and app development is ensuring that the finished app is consistent with the user experience created by the app design team. The app will give the user an immediate picture of its visuals, workflow, and interactivity.
Make sure to use consistent fonts, styles, color schemes, data pads, icon designs, and navigation in the app. Also, make sure the app adheres to the original design guidelines for a good impact on user adoption during the mobile app development process.
(ii) Functional Testing
It is very important to ensure the success of mobile app features with their accuracy factor. The behavior and usage situation of each end user is also not easy to predict.
So, to cover as many test situations as possible, the app’s functionality should be tested by as many users as possible. If two separate users try the same function but receive different results, you have a problem. Both users can, for example, fill out identical forms, but they can provide different data, which causes crashes.
Functional testing in the mobile app development process is designed to verify that users can use the app’s features and functions without any problems. This can be further divided into system testing which ensures the entire work of the application and unit testing to ensure the correct operation of each application function.
If you’re creating a mobile platform app for iOS and Android, a comparison between the features of the two versions of the mobile app should be included in functional testing.
(iii) Performance Testing
You can measure application performance through several quantitative criteria:
- How well does the application respond to user requests?
- What is the loading speed of the app screen?
- Are apps draining phone battery or creating memory leaks?
- Is the application efficient in using network bandwidth?
- Is the app bigger than it should be from the mobile app development process?
Even if your app meets basic performance standards, you’ll be testing your app, API, and backend to load and simulate the maximum number of simultaneous users. Even with spikes in use, the application must be able to manage the load and perform it effectively.
(iv) Security Testing
For enterprise mobile application development, security has the greatest significance. Any weakness can lead to hacking. Many companies employ external organizations for rigorous security testing. The QA and development team can take some easy steps to protect the software.
If the user must log in, the login session on the device and backend must be monitored.
The system must terminate the user’s session if the user is idle for an extended period of time (usually ten minutes or less on mobile apps). When developing a mobile app, you should guarantee that using a trusted service if the app stores user credentials on the device to easily reconnect them. For example, In the iOS app development platform, for example, the Keychain function can be used to store user account data in a specific app.
To verify there is no data leak, the data entry form within your mobile app must be thoroughly validated.
(v) Device and Platform Testing
New mobile devices are marketed with new hardware, software and designs every 12 months on average. Even every few months, the mobile operating system is also updated.
Several mobile device manufacturers including Samsung, LG, HTC, and Motorola use Android but personalize it on their mobile devices (because Android is open source) with the process of developing applications. Devices are available in various sizes and shapes.
Compare this to Apple, a much more regulated environment, as the hardware and OS are under their control. However, there are several iPhone & iPad (Apple iOS) devices on the market.
Testing differs substantially from testing on web apps during the mobile app development process. Testing your web application in a Windows environment, using only the Chrome browser may seem easy. However, mobile apps should be tested for the smooth running of all users using multiple mobile devices or device emulators.
The complexity of testing mobile apps on multiple mobile apps, ongoing maintenance costs, and the complexity of mobile device management are the main reasons why businesses choose to develop their mobile business applications on a single mobile platform (and often provide mobile devices to their users). Most companies initially develop mobile apps with Apple’s iOS mobile platform and only build Android apps when necessary.
Testing is critical to the future success of your app and covers an important part of the overall mobile app development process. A comprehensive mobile testing approach is required to provide quality mobile applications.
There are many methods by which application development methods can be distributed to testers during the testing process. Testflight is used for iOS apps and for Android apps via email or Over Air (OTA) updates.
- Deployment & Support
You must submit the original app before it is released to the Apple App Store for iOS apps and Google Play for Android apps. However, before launching the app, you must have a developer account as part of the Apple App Store and Google Play Store.
The release of an app in the app store involves preparing metadata such as:
- Application Title
- launch icon
- Screenshot of the app store
Once uploaded to Apple’s app store, iOS apps go through a review process that can take from a few days to a few weeks depending on the quality of the apps and how closely they comply with Apple’s iOS guidelines for developing mobile apps. You must provide Apple with a test user account as part of the release process when your app requires users to connect or sign in.
There is no review procedure with Android apps and after a few hours of submission, they are available on the app store.
Keep track of app capabilities in the App Store, check app usage using mobile analytics tools, and analyze app success via key performance indicators (KPIs). Check crash reports or other user-reported issues frequently in the mobile app development process.
Encourage users to offer company feedback and application proposals to improve them. Users are offered fast support and application software are often coupled with critical updates that keep users engaged.
Unlike web-based apps, where patch releases are directly accessible to users, mobile app upgrades must go through the same submission and review procedures. You should also keep abreast of technological advances with native mobile app development and upgrade apps for new mobile devices and OS platforms on a regular basis.
The mobile application development process is an ongoing process that will improve the application based on user feedback and additional features after the first launch. Leading app development companies can supply businesses from any vertical or sector with quality apps. They can make sure to follow the above approach to make the app work.