mobile application developers,iphone application development company,mobile development company,android app development company iphone app development company,iphone app developers,mobile game development company http://appmuse.com Thu, 20 Aug 2015 16:57:49 +0000 en-US hourly 1 http://wordpress.org/?v=4.2.4 The Importance of Continual Improvement in App Development http://appmuse.com/appmusing/the-importance-of-continual-improvement-in-app-development/ http://appmuse.com/appmusing/the-importance-of-continual-improvement-in-app-development/#comments Thu, 14 Aug 2014 12:06:47 +0000 http://appmuse.com/?p=2599 After you develop an app, strive for continual improvement, remembering that your app can always be tweaked to provide an even better user experience.

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There aren’t many better feelings than those which come after you identify a problem or need and successfully design an app to address it. Using your faculties, you’ve created a new product and, whether or not it’s successful, that in itself is something to be proud of.

A better feeling, though, occurs when you do everything mentioned above, release the app, and voila, people start downloading it in droves. Not only did you see an idea through to fruition by building something out of nothing, but also the audience you had in mind when you conceived and designed the app is supporting your endeavor. Your app is popular and is gaining traction. You feel as though you’ve finally made something of yourself.

The Merits of Continuous Improvement

But as the saying goes, it’s vital that programmers never rest on their laurels. Just because you’ve designed an app that is becoming more and more popular doesn’t mean that your work is done. In fact, your work is never done. As a programmer looking toward the future, you should embrace the philosophy of continual improvement, churning out quality and consistent updates to your app in order to remain relevant and on the cutting edge of technology.

The Japanese have a term for such a philosophy: kaizen. It is this philosophy of continuous improvement that the Japanese originally applied to manufacturing and engineering. It has now become so pervasive that it can be applied to anything. Everything can be improved upon in some way, and by always striving for excellence and growth, you are certain to never become complacent and irrelevant.

Kaizen in Action

Imagine you are a programmer who has designed an app that allows executives to access and navigate a plethora of quantitative market researchdata so that they can better understand the market in which they find themselves. Such research could include information pertaining to market segmentation, brand position, prototype testing, customer satisfaction, and price points, among other things.

There’s undoubtedly a lot of money to be made in providing an easy way to make sense of such immense research, and you’ve released the first app that specifically caters to this need. After some time, support for your app continues to grow and you start to realize the financial implications that come along with releasing a popular app.

This is not to say that you shouldn’t pat yourself on the back and be proud of your initial accomplishments. After all, you’ve thought of something that addresses a specific need. Your original inklings were proven correct as executives and decision makers across the globe download your app onto their smartphones.

However, the celebration should be short because it’s only a matter of time before another programmer downloads your app, studies it intently, and begins brainstorming ways to make a better version that provides users with even more utility. Just like Pepsi exists as a proverbial thorn in the side of Coke, so too will there eventually be an app that was created just to capitalize on the market you’ve founded.

So stay on your toes and continue to think about your app and the ways in which it can be improved. Those suggestions can come from your audience via the feedback and ratings they willingly provide, from conversations you have with friends and colleagues, or from your own mind as you brainstorm about your app.

Remember that there are a ton of opportunists out there – even in the world of app development. If you are the first programmer to release a certain kind of app, you’ve got the strongest hold on the market. But becoming complacent can change all that. So strive for continual improvement, remembering that your app can always be tweaked to provide an even better user experience.

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Becoming an ‘Appreneur’ – How to Develop the Perfect App for Your Business http://appmuse.com/appmusing/becoming-an-appreneur-how-to-develop-the-perfect-app-for-your-business/ http://appmuse.com/appmusing/becoming-an-appreneur-how-to-develop-the-perfect-app-for-your-business/#comments Fri, 29 Nov 2013 11:12:07 +0000 http://appmuse.com/?p=2560 Need a mobile app for your small business? Of course you do. Not sure how to start the development process? We can help.

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Thanks largely to the ever increasing popularity of the iPhone and other smart phones, apps are bigger business than ever. There are now over one million apps on the Apple app store alone.  As observed by Gene Marks over at Forbes, more people own a mobile device than a toothbrush.  These statistics suggest significantly more businesses than in previous years were investing money into app development. In fact, of the large business brands in the US, over 90% are now estimated to have a mobile app, proving that there is indeed a considerable market out there; a captive audience of app purchasers who want to connect with a brand and discover more about its products and services. With only an estimated 10% of smaller businesses investing in app development, it’s clear there is a large gap in the market. Discovering the right company who can work with you to create an app, at a budget that suits you, may well, at this particular point in time, be the best move your business ever made. But how can you ensure that you develop something that actively works for your company, helping to generate revenue and increase brand awareness? How can you ensure that you avoid the pitfalls so many other companies fall into?

Do the Groundwork and Know Your Market

Before you even pick up the phone to talk to an app developer; think carefully about what you want to achieve with your app. It is important to do this research first; and this doesn’t just mean browsing the existing range of apps and seeing what’s available. It is important to download apps — try them out and familiarize yourself with their functionality. If you find yourself enjoying a particular app, ask yourself why. What is it about that app that works for you? Ask for the opinions of friends, family, and even further afield, to get a sense of what people expect from a business app.  Consider your competitors.  If they have an app; download it and explore it thoroughly. If you want to become an ‘app master,’ it is also important to think like an entrepreneur. Think about what results you want to achieve — how much revenue can you realistically generate and what is the likely impact on your company? There are many excellent guides that will help with this initial (not to mention completely vital) preparation.

Turn the Vision into a Reality

Once you’ve given considerable thought into your app, your next step is to talk with a reputable app developer.  Preferably, the developer you consult will be upfront about costs and will work within your budget. A good app developer will listen to your vision and help you to translate it to a workable reality, while also helping you to avoid some of the most common app-development pitfalls, such as being too ambitious in the initial stages, or not considering aesthetic appeal. The developer will also help you to identify your target audience more clearly and, if necessary, narrow your focus in order to generate more effective results. Best of all, a good app developer will have the creativity to come up with ideas that perhaps you hadn’t considered — ideas that may really appeal to your potential customers, such as push notifications an other in-app features.  This is an area where we can help – the developers in our network can help turn your vision into reality.

Get Your App ‘Out There’

Marketing your app is perhaps one of the most overlooked aspects of the app development process; yet it is undoubtedly every bit as important as the app itself. Consider this phase carefully, before even embarking on developing your business app.  Take time to think about how you will launch it to your target audience and how best to promote it to ensure that it is as appealing as possible. This may be an area that you are comfortable undertaking yourself, but if not; or if you simply do not have the time to take on the task; consider employing the help of expert app marketing consultants; experienced marketing professionals who are already familiar with the market and can assist you in promoting your app as powerfully and productively as possible.  Again, this is an area where we can help.

Let us help you develop an app for your business. Appmuse has wide range of network of those highly experienced and potential mobile app developers who have created mobile apps for corporate clients in the past quite successfully. We help our customers in getting ball park quotes from 3 different mobile app companies by filling up our quote request form.

 

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Do I Really Need a Mobile App for My Business? (Part 2) http://appmuse.com/appmusing/do-i-really-need-a-mobile-app-for-my-business-part-2-2/ http://appmuse.com/appmusing/do-i-really-need-a-mobile-app-for-my-business-part-2-2/#comments Tue, 12 Nov 2013 12:10:26 +0000 http://appmuse.com/?p=2555 Businesses should have their own mobile apps, but those apps need to be useful. How to go about just that?

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Two weeks ago we ran a post summarizing the debate over whether or not businesses should develop their own mobile apps, or whether a mobile-friendly web-page would be enough.  Our conclusion seems to be the consensus; that is, developing a native mobile app is absolutely worth it, as long as the app itself substantially enhances your customers’ experience.

The question that remains, of course, is how exactly should a business go about doing that?  Cheryl Connor of Forbes recently offered a few ideas, and today we’re going to take a look at a few of those and draw our own conclusions.

The most important thing to remember is that it’s not worth developing a mobile app for its own sake.  The mobile app needs to enhance the experience, and for that to happen, you need to create a reason for your consumers both to download the app and to use it regularly.  The first step in the process is to offer deals and promotions that can only be redeemed through the mobile app itself.  This not only accomplishes the first goal of consumer engagement, but also allows you to track the popularity and effectiveness of the promotion you’ve offered.

Secondly, in your mobile app you’ll want to develop the architecture for a loyalty program.  Legion are the consumers who opt out of loyalty programs simply because their wallets aren’t spacious enough to hold all the cards for all the businesses they frequent, which can’t be said of smartphones.  Make sure you integrate tangible and worthwhile benefits for customer loyalty (including customer referrals) into your mobile app to increase engagement with both your app and your business.

So far we’ve been using the phrase “your business” in the strict sense, but when it comes to engaging users with your mobile app, the next piece of advice can apply to just about any enterprise.  Specifically, we’re talking about push notifications for upcoming events.  To give an example:  perhaps your church has a charity drive coming up that you want your congregation to know about, but it’s been stormy the last two Sundays and attendance has been sparse.  Event notifications pushed directly to your congregation’s smartphones could make all the difference.

Appmuse has wide range of network of highly experienced and potential mobile app developers who have created mobile apps for corporate clients in the past quite successfully. If you would like to get ball park quotes from 3 different mobile app companies, Kindly fill up our quote request form..

If you have any other ideas for creative use of business apps, let us know in the comments!

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Oh Happy Day for Air Travelers! http://appmuse.com/appmusing/oh-happy-day-for-air-travelers/ http://appmuse.com/appmusing/oh-happy-day-for-air-travelers/#comments Tue, 05 Nov 2013 11:29:18 +0000 http://appmuse.com/?p=2553 The FAA finally allows electronic devices below 10,000 feet…rejoice!

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Rejoice, holiday travelers!  After getting the approval of its advisory commission, after months of pressure from Senator Claire McCaskill, and after getting back up to speed after the shutdown, at long last the Federal Aviation Administration announced that “passengers will be able to read e-books, play games, and watch videos on their devices during all phases of flight, with very limited exceptions. Electronic items, books, and magazines must be held or put in the seat back pocket during the actual takeoff and landing roll.”

At first glance, the right to use electronic devices between zero and 10,000 feet might not seem like that big of a deal, since a great many passengers have been doing it anyway prior to the rule change.  But for something so seemingly inconsequential, the reactions have been overwhelming.  Flight attendants are delighted they won’t have to play “hall monitor” any longer, business travelers will be able to remain productive throughout the flight, and parents can settle their kids in with digital games and movies.  Amazon even reduced the price of its Kindles by 15% to celebrate the news.

But … there are a few things travelers need to understand before they whip out their iPads with impunity.  First, individual airlines will have to submit implementation plans before they’ll be able to incorporate the changes, though the airlines are quite keen to do so, considering it makes their passengers incalculably happier while costing them nothing.  Also, smartphones and tablets will have to be in airplane mode, though one assumes that flight attendants won’t be asking to check every device in the cabin to make sure they are.  (It’s probably worth noting that passengers should set their phones to airplane mode anyway, as an active cell phone will continue pinging for cell towers, which drains the battery considerably in flight.)  And last, in-flight telephone calls were not included in the change, and for courtesy’s sake, with any luck they won’t be (this restriction likewise applies to VOIP services like Skype).

We’ll have to wait and see what effect the new rules have on demand for airport paperbacks and Skymall sales, but suffice it to say that we at AppMuse are overjoyed at the change.

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Do I Really Need a Mobile App for My Business? http://appmuse.com/appmusing/do-i-really-need-a-mobile-app-for-my-business-2/ http://appmuse.com/appmusing/do-i-really-need-a-mobile-app-for-my-business-2/#comments Tue, 29 Oct 2013 10:28:38 +0000 http://appmuse.com/?p=2550 Do businesses need mobile apps, or are mobile-friendly websites enough?

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Lately we’ve been noticing the resurrection of a debate concerning mobile apps for business.  Specifically, do today’s businesses really need their very own mobile apps?  The world is going mobile, that much is certain, but there seem to be quite a few commentators out there who believe that the mobile web is sufficient to meet most business needs.

Take, for example, this commentary by Art Wittman at Information Week.  The article’s tag line says it all:  “Unless your app truly is a special snowflake, think long and hard about adding it to the pile – lest it get buried.”  While Wittman does a capable job of summarizing the debate, for an app to be “buried” in the vast number of other mobile apps in the stores would imply that a business’s mobile app is in independent competition with other apps on its own merits.  Of course, if all your business is conducted virtually then you’ll definitely want a mobile app, a mobile-friendly web page, a traditional web page, the whole nine yards.  But in most cases, the mobile app is meant to serve as an enhancement for an existing brick-and-mortar business operation.

And Wittman is right about one thing:  if the mobile app doesn’t serve to enhance your customers’ experience, then you need to head back to the drawing board.  John Gruber of Daring Fireball added to that:  while the app store upload and approval process can be irksome to developers, it’s not so for consumers.  “User experience matters,” writes Gruber, and “in 2013, even the best-crafted mobile web apps come nowhere near the quality of experience of the best native apps. In fact, with but a few exceptions, the best mobile web apps today still don’t approach the quality of the first batch of native iPhone apps from 2007.”

There are of course a number of more complex factors to consider when making a decision to develop a mobile app for your business, the pros and cons of which have been expertly summarized over at VentureBeat.  But were we to sum up our own opinion on the subject, it would be this:  anything worth doing is worth doing well, so if you’re planning on developing a mobile app for your business, make sure it’s something special enough to bring real value to your customers. Appmuse has wide range of network of those highly experienced and potential mobile app developers who have created mobile apps for corporate clients in the past quite successfully. We help our customers in getting ball park quotes from 3 different mobile app companies by filling up our quote request form

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A Spooky Mobile Success Story for this Halloween http://appmuse.com/appmusing/a-spooky-mobile-success-story-for-this-halloween/ http://appmuse.com/appmusing/a-spooky-mobile-success-story-for-this-halloween/#comments Tue, 22 Oct 2013 10:47:05 +0000 http://appmuse.com/?p=2548 A former NASA engineer reinvents the Halloween costume with integrated mobile tech.

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As a mechanical engineer for NASA who was part of the team responsible for putting the Curiosity Rover on Mars, Mark Rober had a pretty cool job.  And indeed he did, but in 2011 he came up with a Halloween costume that would lead him to take on the arguably cooler job of mobile app developer and costume designer.

Two years ago, Rober made a costume that involved strapping two iPads to his chest and back, and then entering those iPads into a FaceTime chat with one another.  The result is a costume where the wearer appears to have a hole in himself, which we have to admit is a pretty creative (if a little grim) use of mobile technology.  (Rober made a YouTube video about it at the time, which has since acquired well over 3 million views.)

In his spare time, Rober and friends started a side business called Digital Dudz.  Customers would purchase one of several t-shirts, download the Digital Dudz free mobile app, and then place the phone in a special pocket inside of the t-shirt in such a way that its illustrations would come alive with rapidly moving eyeballs, beating hearts, etc.  If you’ve never seen one of those shirts in person, the effect can be a little … destabilizing, which is what most people are going for when making a Halloween costume.

Of course, everyone keeps telling us that wearable tech is the Next Big Thing, and indeed, according to a report published by Juniper research, it’s expected to become a 19 billion dollar industry by 2018.  However, when most people think of wearable tech, they’re thinking of gadgets like Samsung’s Galaxy Gear, or the inevitable iWatch, devices that will bring a new functionality to mobile technology.

Until Rober’s costume designs went mainstream, however, no one was considering the whimsical, purely aesthetic possibilities of wearable tech.  There are hundreds of thousands of mobile apps in the various stores, so some might be tempted to think that everything’s already been done.  But if Rober’s designs and mobile apps are any indication, with a little creativity and a lot of work, there’s still ample opportunity for mobile app developers.

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Should We Get Rid of Landlines? http://appmuse.com/appmusing/should-we-get-rid-of-landlines/ http://appmuse.com/appmusing/should-we-get-rid-of-landlines/#comments Tue, 15 Oct 2013 10:26:46 +0000 http://appmuse.com/?p=2545 Getting rid of landline infrastructure seems like a good idea, but the devil (as usual) is in the details.

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Mobile phones are probably the best example of the concept known as “leapfrogging,” whereby communities with slower technological development can skip entire generations of often costly hardware and infrastructure innovations and implement newer standards that are cheaper and more convenient.  It costs a lot less to build a cell-phone tower than it does to lay wire down to every residential address, for example, so peoples of the “developing” world can bypass that bit and move directly into mobile technology.

What’s somewhat less talked about are the costs involved in maintaining those outdated technologies once newer ones take them over.  According to a report produced by the Internet Innovation Alliance (more on them in a moment), only 5% of Americans use “POTS” (“Plain Old Telephone Service”) exclusively, compared to the rest of us who use a combination of landlines, wireless, and VoIP (think Skype or services like it).  If we take those numbers at face value, then it looks like a no-brainer:  let’s get rid of landlines and sell all the copper to China.

Wait a tick, says Forbes.  First of all, the Internet Innovation Alliance receives an “undisclosed amount” of funding from AT&T, which could see a massive windfall in the event that landlines were to disappear.  Second, the 5% figure mentioned above is fantastically misleading.   And third, the same companies that want to do away with the expenses associated with landlines don’t really want to pony up for the accompanying upgrade in cellular services, which could rise as high as 350 billion dollars.

There’s a lesson from Hurricane Sandy in all of this.  Part of the crippling economic damage wrought upon Fire Island included the copper wiring that delivered phone and DSL connections to local residents.  Verizon initially opted to replace traditional POTS infrastructure with a service called Voice Link which, unfortunately, can’t handle fax, modem, alarm systems, or broadband data.  After (and only after) a rather loud and rather predictable hue and cry from the residents who, like the rest of us, really like to have access to the internet, Verizon agreed to implement FTTH (“Fiber to the Home” or fiber optic cables).

It’s of course worth having a discussion about our telecommunications infrastructure, but it’s also worth bearing in mind that if somebody tries to sell you something as both cheap and easy, it’s probably neither.

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One More Reason to End the Shutdown http://appmuse.com/appmusing/one-more-reason-to-end-the-shutdown/ http://appmuse.com/appmusing/one-more-reason-to-end-the-shutdown/#comments Tue, 08 Oct 2013 11:12:45 +0000 http://appmuse.com/?p=2533 The FAA might be able to ease restrictions on mobile devices on airplanes, if only it’s allowed to return to work.

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Over the last few months we’ve chronicled the series of hints and rumors indicating that the Federal Aviation Administration might remove or relax restrictions on mobile devices in commercial aircraft.  Most passengers (including the notorious Alec Baldwin) find it difficult to believe that aircraft technology is so fragile it can be thrown off by a cell phone, and if you look around the cabin you can see the collective eye-roll when the flight attendants repeatedly remind everyone that setting mobile devices to airplane mode just won’t cut it.  This is probably why many passengers ignore the warnings altogether.

That’s all about to change.  After a year of deliberations that included representatives of the FCC, pilot groups, flight attendant groups, and airline and passenger associations, a report issued by the Aviation Rulemaking Committee issued a report recommending the expanded use of personal electronic devices at all times while in flight.  According to the report, interference with aircraft navigational devices has been reported “hundreds” of times, but those reports were anecdotal and established no clear causal link between the use of mobile devices and the alleged problems.  Of course, the committee stipulated that the sort of radio communications generated by text-messages, cell phone calls, and WiFi would still be out of bounds; in other words, airplane mode will cut it just fine, thank you very much.

Unfortunately, however, the federal government is closed for business, so the FAA administrators who would have to read and hopefully implement the recommendations in the report are furloughed for the time being.  Of all the effects of the shutdown, this is obviously a minor one, but for those of us who travel frequently and are really sick of reading backdated issues of SkyMall between 0 and 10,000 feet, the implementation of the report couldn’t come fast enough.

Of course, if the federal shutdown/showdown continues for another week and a half and the U.S. defaults on its debts, then it may not matter that much, since we’ll all be taking ringside seats at the Thunderdome. So in the interests of being able to play Angry Birds on the tarmac and avoiding global financial apocalypse, let’s hope it doesn’t come to that.

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Will iOS 7 Revolutionize App Development? http://appmuse.com/appmusing/will-ios-7-revolutionize-app-development/ http://appmuse.com/appmusing/will-ios-7-revolutionize-app-development/#comments Tue, 01 Oct 2013 10:19:06 +0000 http://appmuse.com/?p=2528 iOS 7 looks different, but behind that new look is a commitment to function over form. Will this change the mobile app industry?

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With the release of the new iPhone and the corresponding update in its mobile operating system, for the last few weeks we’ve been up to our necks in Apple news.  Now that the dust is beginning to settle, however, it’s a good time to take a step back and consider the implications these new releases will have on the mobile ecosystem.

By now most of us are acclimated to the significant visual alterations in iOS 7, and many see these changes as merely cosmetic.  However, in a fascinating post over at Wired, Kevin Manhemert argues that iOS 7 will have a revolutionary effect on mobile app development for the iPhone.

First, Manhemert contends the visual changes aren’t gratuitous.  Rather, he considers the history of the iPhone, tracing it all the way back to 2007 when the Blackberry ruled the roost.  To compete with a device that had 30 to 40 physical buttons on it, Apple had to populate its screens with icons that looked like actual buttons, thus favoring the “skeuomorphism” we’ve seen in Apple’s hardware up ‘til now.

Now that mobile app developers no longer have to fret about “having to bounce fake light off a lickable button,” Manhemert argues, it will prove significantly easier for a good idea to become a mobile app without having to go through the process of mastering some of the more “esoteric” features of Photoshop.  In other words, developers can focus on producing quality apps without having to dedicate time, resources, and training on making it flashy for flashy’s sake.

The Wired piece takes as an example Apple’s native spirit level app.  (If you haven’t found it yet, it’s on page two (swipe to the left) of your compass app.) Prior to the iOS 7 release, that app would have had to graphically generate an actual bubble to resemble a physical spirit level, whereas now it concentrates on its function as a spirit level without losing any of its visual appeal.  For that matter, the compass itself has undergone a similar change:  we require a compass to point north, nothing more, but what we don’t need is for that compass to come with fake wood grain as though it belonged on the bridge of some Victorian-era sloop.

In other words, the visual simplicity and elegance of iOS 7 allows developers to concentrate on function rather than on skeuomorphic aesthetics.  It will be interesting to see how this will affect the industry over the next few years.

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What’s New With iOS 7 http://appmuse.com/appmusing/whats-new-with-ios-7/ http://appmuse.com/appmusing/whats-new-with-ios-7/#comments Tue, 24 Sep 2013 11:25:47 +0000 http://appmuse.com/?p=2520 Some of iOS 7’s new features are obvious, and others, not so much. Here are a few of the ones you may not have heard about.

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If you’re one of the 200 million people who downloaded the new iOS update, you probably formed an opinion about it one way or another.  It’s made tech geeks laugh, it’s made children cry, and somewhere in the middle there’s a consensus to be found.  What we’ve discovered, however, is that while many users are getting used to the new interface, there are quite a few features that you might not know about.  Here are a few worth checking out:

Of course, iOS 7 comes loaded with hosts of new features, so be sure to play around with as many as you can so your iPhone can achieve its full potential.

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