As per a Statista report, the total number of mobile phone users in the world would cross 5 billion by 2019. Another report by Smart Insights says that almost 90% of the mobile time of the consumers is spent on mobile apps. If we compare the top mobile operating systems, Android clearly leads the market with a share of more than 85%.
What do all these statistics suggest?
As a business owner, you cannot ignore mobile anymore and it is time for you to have your own Android mobile app or you’d easily lose most of your customers to your competitors.
However, the mobile app landscape is highly progressive and changes more frequently than what the developers and businesses would like. Something trending now would already be gone in a couple of months and something new would be trending then. As a result, it is very important for every developer as well as the business owners to keep themselves updated with all the latest happenings in the app world and deliver the best to their users.
But while the trends change frequently, there are a few best practices that have been around for a very long time and are expected to remain the same in the future too. Every developer, as well as businesses looking for Android app developers for hire, should know these practices to ensure that their app ticks all the important boxes and is a treat to use.
These best practices that experienced Android app developers would follow are:
1. The Goal of Your App
No matter if you are an Android app developer or a business planning to build an app, the first thing to know is why you need the app. What function will the app server? Isn’t there already apps in the market offering the same features? How is your app different from others? What kind of features your users would like? Every app development project should only begin once you have honest answers to these questions.
Market research and working on the idea rigorously is the only way to succeed in the current cut-throat competition. It is highly recommended that even before you start investing your resources in the Android app development process, study the competitors, their app offering and know how your app can beat competition.
2. Design of the App
Once you know why you need the app and what purpose will the app server, it’s time to think about the design of your app. The design aspect of the app needs to be completed before the coding begins. For Android app developers struggling with the designing part of the app, Google offers a great guide to their visual language, Material Design. The style guidelines available here would make sure that your app feels and looks like an original part of wider Android user interface.
The design of your app is the first thing that users will see and thus, it is very important to ensure that the app looks compelling. A common reason for users not using an app is its poor design. So, even if you have a well-thought app with great features, if the design is poor, the users might never really try what you are offering.
3. App Security
When you hire Android app developers and the development process begins, make sure that the security of the app remains the main focus throughout the Android app development process. As per a research by Arxan, 1005 of the popular paid apps on Android platform had been hacked at least once. This fact alone is more than adequate for you to focus on the security of the app from the beginning.
Some important aspects that Android app developers should focus on are:
• Data transfer
• Data at rest
• App distribution
• Version check
• Application tampering
• Code security
Android app developers can use methods like content control for limiting the copy/paste actions and make use of the ‘open in’ feature to make sure that the app does not open any kind of dangerous content. Also, ensure that the code is tested in the real world through download and installation process verification.
4. Testing is Uber-Important
When you hire an Android app programmer, you also need to make sure that the app is tested at every stage. The performance of the app should be tested with real users and their feedback should be appreciated. Based on their feedback, changes can be made to the app to offer a great product to the users. Also, feedback mechanisms like social media pages should also be used along with application analytics to understand how users are actually using your app.
Most of the developers only use Android Studio Emulator for testing the app. But while the emulator is great for development and debugging, it is not 100% similar to a working mobile device. While basic environment features can be assumed with the help of the emulator, actual devices should be used for testing. While this can be a big investment for the Android application developer, it is sure to make the whole testing and development lifecycle more efficient.
5. Focus on Scalability
If your Android app is not designed to target a particular niche, it has excellent potential to attract thousands and even millions of users. A lot of times, app developers and businesses are not prepared for success. While they have a great product in place, they don’t really know what they will do if the app receives widespread popularity. Make sure that this doesn’t happen to your app.
Right from when the app is being designed, factor in scalability and know what you’ll do when your app is being used by a huge number of users. Only getting people to download the app is not important but retaining them is. Even if the app is being used by a lot of people, everyone should experience the great convenience.
With Android Oreo already launched last year, Google has made it easier for the mobile manufacturers to offer ongoing Android updates. The new version of the OS is a game-changer in many ways and is sure to offer great opportunities to the developers and businesses to reach the most number of users through apps which are more secure, work better, and offers long-term revenue to the app owners.
If you are planning to hire Android app developers, keep these practices in mind and your mobile app would be set to achieve great results.