The demand for mobile apps and mobile app development is at an all time high. Companies are realising the benefits of being able to place their brand/product directly into their customers’ pocket.
In order to understand this level of demand here are some industry statistics (Google June 2011):
- 1 in 3 UK adults now use smartphones
- 27% of the UK population own a smartphone
- Smartphones expected to increase from 23% of total phone shipments in 2010 to 45% in 2015
- 2 billion people worldwide will own at least one smartphone by 2015
- Mobile app downloads to reach 48 bil by 2015
- 1 in 4 respond positively to mobile ads
- Mobile media users pick up their phone 18 times a day to consume content via apps/browser
- 62% of smartphone users have made a purchase on their handset within the last 6 months
- 11.5% of all UK shoppers use mobiles to research before they shop
App Development Options
The route to building a mobile app for your business or service can be a complicated one. With our years of experience in the field, our staff are able to offer the best advice and guidance with choosing the right path to reach your target audience.
Whether it be targeting the right platform and/or specific devices we will be able to advise on the options available to you through one or more of the following paths:
Native App Development
Each mobile platform provides an SDK to allow developers to create apps specifically for the supported handsets. These offer feature rich UI controls and access to core device hardware and software features.
Developing a native application is the ideal route to provide users with a first class experience. The UI will be quick and responsive and have access to ALL the platform’s features.
This route can have its drawbacks when it comes to targeting multiple platforms, as development time may double for each supported SDK targeted.
Cross Platform Apps
There is a strong argument for the use of cross-compiling mobile app platforms and the various approaches that they take, with the biggest being the cost saving.
Most development packages fail to offer a true native user experience and instead wrap up a mobile web site within a native shell. In our opinion, this is cheating. We feel that you should either offer a true native experience or focus on the capabilities of your mobile-friendly website, if such a route is taken.
More advanced solutions offer a multi-platform native user experience from a single code base. However these solutions come with restrictions as to what SDK features are made available. They may also impose additional loading overheads and design constraints.
Developing a website to be mobile friendly is becoming increasingly important. Whilst most smartphones offer a “full” web browsing experience, it is neither an ideal nor efficient way for a user to interface with your website. Many websites can be easily tailored to offer their mobile users a much higher quality experience without reduction in service or content.
To find out how suitable your website is or what approach your business should take into the mobile industry please contact us.