As the number of people using smartphone’s increases exponentially, there is a need to design applications that are responsive to the changing needs of the people. Previous must undergo review to improve on their features and usability. Software developers are under constant pressure to make decisions regarding applications, hardware, and software issues. Sourcing for funding, marketing, and competing with existing products not forgetting security issues are some of the major hurdles in application development.
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Which type of application to develop?
Native applications can only run on specific devices or software platform as opposed to hybrid and web applications. A decision must be made on which software application framework to use. Which applications category to develop and hardware device to use is a major challenge in the development of applications. Moreover, competition in the various mobile app categories is very high and getting your application to stand out among the rest is an uphill task. Games, business, education, lifestyle, and entertainment applications are the top five and most popular applications with a large market base. Utilities, travel, books, body fitness, and nutrition applications come last in the popularity ladder. Whichever category you choose as a developer, you will notice that each category is crowded with applications already in the market.
To compete favorably in the existing market, developers are constantly under constant pressure to come up with innovative and high-quality products, which are unique but are also valuable to the life of customers. Developing an application that duplicates the functionality of already existing applications will not be of any value to society. Is the application easy to use and how expensive is it?
How competitive is the application?
App stores are crowded with mobile apps some with duplicate functionalities regardless of which category they fall. The success of any application depends on its market penetration. The relevant target market segment must clearly be defined before implementing the application. Marketing of the application, after it is developed, is a major challenge to developers. To attract more downloads and retain a large customer base, developers need to come up with applications that do not only address the user needs but also capable of running across different hardware and software platforms. If the device can run on different hardware devices around the globe to reach as many, people as possible. Is the application easily discoverable by users among the other apps listed in the application stores? How easy is it to download and install? How easy is it to retain users of the applications?
How to source for funds?
Mobile app development is a very expensive venture. Attracting funding or an investor to support your idea is an uphill task. Raising capital to finance the development of the application from financial institutions remains a challenge. The funds raised must be adequate to finance the full development and deployment of the application to the end-users for success. Even after developing and marketing the final product, collecting revenue and retaining loyal customers remains a challenge as well.
Which technological platform to use?
Whether to go for a hybrid, Native or web platforms are some of the challenges a developer has to grapple with. Deciding on whether to prefer apples’ iOS to Android-based the platform is a major question at this point. Poor decision making on development technology has its shortcomings, which may include budget overruns, not to mention poor application performance and usability issues. Optimizing the mobile app to run on diverse devices with different screen sizes is a major technological challenge a serious developer must overcome.
How secure is the application?
Regular and prompt bug fixing across different platforms in response to user feedback is a vital aspect of retaining user confidence. After deploying an application for use in the market, regular updates are necessary for response to security concerns raised by users in the course of its life. Hackers, malware, virus, hardware, and software fragmentations are some of the major security challenges in the life of the application. Vulnerabilities to security threats are enough to render an application unusable in the market. Data and information security are at the center of any mobile app development plan. Any lapse in the security is enough to render the application obsolete and unusable. Hackers, malware, and viruses are real threats to the performance and reliability of an application.
In summary, coming up with an application is not a walk in the park. Any developer must decide on the category of the app to develop depending on the area of interest or profession. Sourcing for funds for development, deciding on the technological platform to embrace, the security of the application and marketing issues remains the top five major challenges affecting developers. Any serious application developers must consider these factors before deploying an app in the market.
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