Wednesday, 25 November 2015

How to Select the Right Platform for Developing Mobile Applications?

There are a number of considerations that go into the selection of a platform for building mobile applications. Yet, it may not always be clear which app platform is best for creating a mobile application. Each has its own pros and cons. Since not all mobile apps are at par with each other in terms of quality, the platform chosen to develop and launch the app can make it or break it. Prior to selecting one, there are some key considerations that enterprises need to take into account. Paying sufficient attention to them will enable businesses in making the right choice as they embark upon the process of developing an app. These considerations are:
  • Identify the Target Audience
Some of the most important questions a business should ask itself are: Who are our customers? Are they also our target audience? Are members of the target audience Android, Windows or iOS users? Depending on the answers to these questions, pick the development platform. Typically, Android and iOS have the largest user base irrespective of geographical location. Although demographic data does reveal that Android's market share comes mainly from South East Asia. So, if your target group belongs to this region, you know what to choose for your application.

  • Earning From Your App
iOS is said to be a high revenue generating platform. iOS developers tend to make comparatively more profits than the average Android app developer. Also, the revenue/app download is greater for iOS than Android. This is primarily due to the fact that most Android apps are free in contrast to the iOS app store. However, both the OSs offer the benefit of a large and ever expanding user base. Therefore, the financial rewards will continue to differ depending on the choice of development platform.
  • Time Required To Develop
If speed is a crucial requirement for your business, it becomes essential to understand the time taken to develop an app for/on various platforms. Some experts believe that Android app development takes longer compared to others. This may be due to the fragmentation present in it. Additionally, unlike Apple's Xcode, Android development frameworks such as Android Studio are not very mature - one factor that adds to the development time. Some organizations may choose to use an alternative route. Cross-platform mobile development using Xamarin, PhoneGap, Sencha and Telerik are increasingly being used for building cross platform mobile apps.
  • App Store Convenience & Popularity
Developers are of the view that it is easier to publish apps to Google Play than it is to the iOS App store. Google Play has a fewer rules in place where Apple follows strict guidelines before any application can be published to its iOS store.

Another aspect to think about is - what category do you want your app to fall under? This also determines the choice of platform. For example, studies have shown that more number of iPhone users make online purchases than Android users. In such a scenario, a retail business can be better off in building their app on an iOS platform.

Ultimately, the enterprise decision makers need to weigh its business priorities and decide which platform works best for them. If speed is a factor, a business should consider Xamarin or PhoneGap. Similarly, small and medium sized businesses (SMBs) who want an app that works across platforms can choose either of the two. Large companies who need attributes, may go for the latest in iOS or Android development. Thus, a careful evaluation of enterprise needs and the points described above will help enterprises in the right platform to build their next mobile app.

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