Mobile apps are a dime a dozen these days. There are hundreds of thousands of apps out there, all of varying quality. Some of these apps stand head and shoulders above their competition, while others are poorly designed and barely functional. That’s to be expected in such a saturated market, but what does it really take for a company-oriented app to really stand out? What kinds of features should you include in your own apps if you want to get noticed?
There really aren’t any hard and fast rules to designing an application for a mobile device. You should be mostly okay as long as your app is functional and does what it’s supposed to do. However, there are still some features that a good app should have in order to be successful, especially since there are so many apps available today. Here are some things to consider when developing your app:
Consistent performance is the most important feature of any app. Simply put, an app needs to be able to function reliably and do what it is supposed to do every time it is used. This means going through a rigorous testing process during development and taking into account every aspect of its performance. A top-selling mobile app will work perfectly without consuming too much battery power or memory. This should be obvious to any developer, but a surprising number of apps do manage to slip into the market without proper testing, and they are almost always failures as a result.
A good app should naturally be compatible with the operating system it is being designed for. Once again, this sounds like a no-brainer, but many apps fail to make the jump from one platform to another because of compatibility issues. You should always make sure that your new app runs well on a particular platform, even if that means redesigning it from the ground up.
Short Loading Times
It’s probably safe to say that nobody likes loading times. Modern technology has evolved enough to minimize the issue, but larger apps often still need to load before they can be used. This is often unavoidable, and many users have come to expect it, but any loading time over five seconds is often too long for a mobile app. Users tend to get impatient if they have to wait any longer than that, and that can kill an app’s marketability.
If your app must have a loading time, do what you can to keep it short. As we said before, most users won’t mind waiting a few seconds, but some programs and apps have been known to load for as long as a minute.
A good app will be usable and able to solve some kind of problem, even if the “problem” is a boring couple of minutes that can be spent playing a game. The most successful apps can do things like report the weather, direct you to a nearby restaurant, or do all sorts of things that technically aren’t needed but are welcome nevertheless. They are also very intuitive; anybody should be able to download a good app and immediately start using it without any problems.
This article was provided by CJ Gordon, recent Computer Science graduate and app developer. If you need help with developing your own company’s mobile app, CJ recommends FuelFX, a top choice for mobile app development in Houston.