How to build a great app: Technology
Defining your Technology for your app idea can be scary, especially if you are building your app from an exciting idea or you are a SME with a serious add-based business need. But luckily, it is actually one of the easiest sectors of the App Life Cycle to sort. You may run across some snooty developers that bombard you with über-technical questions like:
Q: What language do you want it built in? Java, C#, PHP…?
A: Erm, I was thinking English ?
Q: Do you want to go SOAP or REST ?
A: Erm, I dunno. How do I choose between cleanliness and sleep?
Q: What APIs do you want?
A: AP-what? (OK – this one is actually totally fair for them to ask, so what is an API? I’ll help you out. (Keep reading.)
Firstly, don’t let them scare you off. As the developer – this is their job, and newsflash – developers are not known for having the best bedside manner. From the outset, they don’t know what you know, so they can sometimes assume that you already know what they are talking about. As you work through your Project Brief, they should be able to work through and help you answer these questions within the context of your build because there is no single, correct, universal answer.
What you should be able to answer, and what you do need to define is as follows:
1] For which device(s) do you want to build your app?
Here’s a hint: you should know this by understanding your Industry. You basically have three choices: iPhone (iOS Apple in general), Android, or Windows. You may only have one app idea, but if you want to distribute across mulitple platforms, guess what? You are actually building three separate apps, so this may actually come down to an issue of budget. Build for your industry and know what that is BEFORE you make technology decisions.
2] Does your app need to work with any outside technology?
Basically, will your app stand-alone like Subway Surfer or will it need to work with, through or communicate with an external device such as a Wearable, a Bluetooth speaker, etc. You REALLY need to decide this from the outset as reverse engineering and “plugging in” an external device later is about as easy and pain free as passing a kidney stone.
3] What APIs do you want? (Agh! There it is again!)
If you have absolutely no clue what an API is, check out the post what is an api. Long and short, APIs are brilliant code-ish things of app-magic that help your app do 10,000 amazing things without you having to invent it all from scratch. Without APIs, apps would cost millions to build and 99% of them simply wouldn’t exist. Decide generally what you want your app to do and you will probably discover you can do things you haven’t even thought of: show maps, navigate around town, count steps, include pictures from the users phone, deliver video feeds, talk to external devices (ready to revisit Q2?), and pretty much anything under the sun.
Actually if you need some help with building your app, we have the answer for you!
Try out the App Cost Calculator to have an idea of the cost of developing an app. Its quick and easy, play around to get different estimates with different technology devices to give you better insights on app development costs.
If you're ready, learn about AppBuilder which helps you go through the whole process of building an app and finding quality mobile app developers.
Do you feel one more step closer to App-Guru status? I hope so!
Keep checking back to get timely updates so you and your app can be app-solutely sensational!