Mobile app development: Selecting a partner
Mobile app development requires extensive experience, and you should consider many factors when searching for a partner. At Lanna Softworks we have earned a strong and extensive reputation for working with clients, using our experience and expertise to build to specifications dictated by our clients, and with advice from our extensive team of IT professionals.
Here are six criteria that you, as an IT Manager, Chief Information Officer or Chief Technology Officer, need to consider when searching and selecting a mobile app development partner for your next, or first, mobile app.
Can your mobile app development partner meet your deadlines, and meet them every time? Failing to complete your project on time can be hard hitting in terms of cost and wasted opportunities. You will need to be sure that the company that you may end up spending tens or hundreds of thousands of dollars with will make good on its promises.
One of the first things you should consider is the past work portfolio of the mobile app development partner. You may want to do this before you contact them. You need to see which brands they’ve worked with, in what industries, and the types of solutions they’ve provided. This will give you a good indication of what they can provide for your company. Client references are also important in this stage. Being able to hear from someone that’s previously worked with the company is extremely valuable. They’ll either be able to confirm everything the company is pitching, or tell you what really goes on after the contracts are signed.
Who will work on your app?
Many companies charge lower fees because your mobile app will be built by inexperienced engineers. Some clients will be okay with that, but others will expect a certain level of craftsmanship and professionalism that can only come with experienced talent. As the saying goes: “You get what you pay for”.
There’s also more risk with things going wrong working with an inexperienced company or mobile app developer. If completing your mobile app on time is a priority, experienced engineers and designers will be more able to finish your project and deliver on time.
Transparency and communications
Does the company’s process ensure that your mobile app will be delivered on time? If it doesn’t, is there a process to ensure you know why it’s behind schedule? This is valuable when you’re mid-project. A good company will have a process where they will be able to identify, mid-project, if it’s on track to be completed on deadline.
Process is important because it ensures that your app is completed on deadline and built right. From requirements gathering through to design, development, quality assurance and deployment, frequent status updates and demonstrations are critical. Look for a mobile app development partner that fully embraces the motto: “show early, and show often”.
Native versus Hybrid mobile apps
Native mobile apps are likely what comes to mind when you think of apps. A native app is one that is developed to be ‘native’ to a specific platform: Apple’s iOS, Google’s Android, Windows Phone or (decreasingly) BlackBerry OS.
The main advantage of a native app is that it optimizes the user experience; the mobile app will operate more quickly because it’s been designed specifically for that platform. The main disadvantage is that if you wish to build and launch your mobile app on more than one platform (e.g. a chat messenger) you almost need to start each one from scratch.
What makes an app a hybrid? A hybrid mobile app can be installed on a device like a native app can, but most hybrid apps that have been built to-date are built using HTML5 and run via a web browser. Recently though, new development platforms have emerged that allow hybrid apps to run just like native apps. Another advantage of a hybrid app is that you build it once but it can run it on several devices, at a minimum iOS and Android.
Discover if your mobile app developer team understands the ins and outs of these choices, and can work with you to help you select the best choice for you.
Look to build a long-term relationship
Mobile app development is rarely a one-time process. It’s a continuing cycle of development work. Consequently, you should be working with a company that encourages a long-term relationship as opposed to one time jobs. Look for established companies that you can feel comfortable establishing a long-term relationship with.
Lanna Softworks can help with many aspects of IT outsourcing and mobile app development. We have a strong track record of satisfied clients. Contact us today for a no obligation discussion about the IT services we offer to clients locally, regionally and globally.