Making the best choice when choosing a mobile app developer

Choosing the right mobile app developer for your company or project is a complex challenge. These guidelines and best practices will help insure a successful app development project.

MAIN ISSUES
  • The number of app developers is growing every year, how will you know which one is right for your needs.
  • There are several hidden factors to app development that can cost not only money but also precious time.
  • The need for mobile apps will continue to grow.
  • Mobile technologies will also grow, change and increase in complexity, making it difficult to standardize on a single approach.
  • Developer viability is too difficult to evaluate.

THE SOLUTIONS
  • Select developer that best match your company‚Äôs long term goals.
  • Select development companies, not individual developers who might be moonlighting.
  • Create minimum standards for all vendors for the long term.
  • Choose a development company with proven track record of apps, and references.

KEY POINTS
  • Within a year, mobile app projects will outnumber PC projects by a 4-1 ratio.
  • A mobile strategy is essential to a businesses success.

INTRODUCTION
The popularity and pace of innovation in the mobile space is increasing dramatically every few years. Another major consideration is cross-device development. As mobile requirements evolve, companies will need large numbers of mobile apps moving forward. Consumers will demand native iPhone and Android apps. Finding a good app developer with cross platform experience for your projects will become even more difficult.

EVALUATING POTENTIAL DEVLOPERS
The mobile developer market has evolved greatly over the past few years. Developers are popping up over night. With this growth comes confusion and risk.

BEST QUESTIONS TO ASK POTENTIAL DEVELOPERS:
  • How many projects have been completed over the last 6 months? What is the customer base of these projects?
  • Ask for the customer testimonials and references.
  • How many sub-contractors does the developer use?
  • Are sub-contractors domestic or foreign?
  • How long does it take to port an app?
  • What does their partnership ecosystem look like?

RISKS VS. COST
Apps create the opportunity to evolve new business practices and revenue streams. But, with great opportunity comes great risks. One of which is allowing your business to get locked into proprietary developer tools. A poor app design could lock you into a costly development cycle.

A FEW MORE QUESTIONS TO ASK
  • What experience does your potential developer have with backends?
  • How is data synchronization handled?
  • The best apps store some data offline so that it can run without a connection.
  • Can the developer handle internal customizations to an existing backend?
  • What UI/UX design services do they offer? Usability, gestures and data flow help the user experience.
  • Is the platform cloud-based? How big can the user base be?
  • Are there any additional charges for scaling up the user base?
  • What is the pricing model? Is it flexible? How are upgrades handled?

By outsourcing to a proven app developer, you can shorten the learning curve for your internal team.

CHOOSING THE RIGHT PLATFORMS
There are good reasons for create mobile apps in a variety of platforms. The main platform you decided on will depend on the end-user and their needs. Does your developer offer training? How is the training offered? A good developer will communicate and ask many questions before a project is even started.

-- Groove Development, Portland, Oregon