- 26 Aug
When you want to build mobile application for your enterprise, you must think about these points first
When we first discovered cell phone, we only thought about how we can bring our telephone wherever we go. Then, we started to think about mobile phone that can help us in sending messages, instead of making call. Phone call and message were the only things we thought about mobile phone when it first came. We never expected that it will go this far when almost all people from all countries use smartphone as part of their life. Today, it looks like impossible when someone can find people hanging around without holding a phone at his/her hand or pocket. These advanced gadgets, like tablets and smartphones, have completely distorted our point of view about devices.
The world has not only abundant advanced devices today, but also their manufacturer. In each continent, except the most distinct ones, there is likely one big manufacturer we can name. Each of these manufacturers comes with their idea about gadgets even though it does not always mean original idea. There is one company or more which try to ‘duplicate’ someone’s success with its product. Well, regardless the way they choose, everything has begun to change today, including how businesses look at mobile technology and how it may affect their company.
Let’s use this simple analogy to understand how business works: as long as it has matter with a customer, profit, and company, it is crucial for any enterprise in this world. All business owners and stakeholders will do everything they can eliminate any threat, optimize any resource, and hire the best person they can get as long as it will do good things for the company. Now, the same case happens when enterprises should face the undeniable, rapid growth of mobile technology.
Everyone has understood the importance of this ‘new’ technology and demand for its presence for the office, but as long as we can learn from the fact, it is never as easy as flipping a card when you must create a mobile software at enterprise scale. Unlike personal application that often uses one or maybe two technologies at the same time, business solution needs multiple technologies to complete at the same time. Well, it is not the only obstacle waiting for developers on their way before they can create a form. In addition to them, developers should also deal with highly-distributed environments and computing networks which some companies or developers tend to build on a hybrid network infrastructure. That is when the great problem begins. A hybrid infrastructure often forages its legacy systems with something new in the field.
Well, try this simple trick. You give some ‘extra’ pressure during the application development which involves the vast range of gadgets, and you will reveal in instance that your idea may not get even minor interest from people sitting in the room.
If you look for a mobile application for your business whether as information channel for your customers or drivers of your employees’ productivity, there are some typical mistakes application developers make. Not all of them come with fatal impact to your business, but all of them are still worth for your eagle-like eye.
In order to keep enough distance between you and the mistakes, here is my list about what things you should do and avoid.
You must keep these things
1. User’s experience
Regardless which gadget you use as the media, mobile devices hold distinct differences with laptop and desktop computers. The simplest means of this statement urge you not only porting any application or website you have at desktop computer level, but completely re-develop it for mobile users.
In fact, you must realize the presence of form factor mobile devices have which are different from a laptop computer. The same thing applies on the same way with the screen size. Luckily, building application for mobile devices mean you need less resource and simpler mechanisms than a desktop application until you get the application is fully functional. There is another ‘alternative’ you may hear from some companies, but I will never recommend this thing. You may have heard about application interface copy which they believe will save your time. Well, do not believe their words, because making duplicate is easy, but you cannot expect good result to come. As I said previously, mobile devices use the unique platform which is entirely different from the desktop application. Trust me: it will not work. It is just like you ask a horse to live at a bird nest.
As the conclusion part of this first you-should-remember point, I must remind you to remember about user’s experience. It is crucial core of any application, no matter which platform you choose as the foundation of your application.
2. Sensor and form factor incorporation
If you want some people to put their interest on your mobile application, start thinking about what they probably need from the application. If you have gotten the answer, start looking for a firm reason people should choose your application instead of other similar applications they can find on the market.
It is crucial to know the reason, but it will never enough even though when you have stored it in your mind. Give users easiness in using the application with some useful features. I must suggest you to using at least 3G, LTE, camera, accelerometers, GPS, WiFi, and Bluetooth as the standard features. It is okay if you come with more features, but please keep these standard features as your minimum requirements.
3. Make the content and services contextual with your client’s need
People are crucial, not even you or your business. The only thing you should think is about how to satisfy them with your services. It is important, but sometimes no matter how hard you try to serve them, it is never enough. You need someone else to help you. Take some third-party applications and pick the best one among them for you to merge with your application. It will not be easy then because you must use something that does not come from your mind. However, as I said previously, it is all about your customers. As long as you believe the third-party features will help them, it is too worthy for you to miss. Get the application and provide them directly.
4. Empower your users
There are two crucial things about mobile application: reachable and personal. People will use your enterprise application if they believe it will generate personal benefit to then, but still there are other options they can choose: your competitor’s product. In order to deal with it, make sure your program is reachable which means it can reach everyone’s need better than other companies in the market.
It is even more important than just maintaining status quo of your mobile application. If you ever have the firm intention to build your version of mobile application, get a thorough preparation before even you step at the first project. Think about something simple that will help people in their life or maybe change how people live their life. That is how people will accept your application.
5. Real-time is crucial
Today when almost everyone holds at least one mobile device wherever they go, mobile devices have become our ‘life companion.’ They keep both us and the world in connection for the whole day. This fact only means that you should only develop an application that can help people or businesses in becoming more responsive than ever in their operations.
In order to achieve that goal, real-time update integration is crucial, and you should do it once more with your business application. The use should become a valid proof that people can give an appropriate response over various conditions based on information they get. It can be anything, and that is the reason you should prepare for both the best and worst situation.
Now, keep away from these things
1. Do not develop an application if you get no reason
Today, when it is easy for everyone to build his/her application, reason to develop your enterprise application blurs. So, unless you get strong reason to get your application, leave it, or it will only drain your budget.
2. Learn from other application, but refuse the duplicate-it temptation
The world has thousands or even millions of active mobile application users nowadays. This is the first crucial fact you should know about mobile application. During the enterprise-application development process, there is a lot you can deduce from the application. I suggest this action to you because it can help you in improving the application functionality, but you must be aware for not letting the simple and slick features blind you.
Sometimes, when you believe its existence is necessary, offer your users various features which come with deep and rich functionalities.
3. Some things exist to stay non-mobile
It is important to provide the mobile version of one or more functions that come from your business, but it does not always mean you should turn everything you get into a mobile application. Some features should remain non-mobile.
Well, I cannot tell you which exact service you should keep because it will depend on business niche you choose to run. Thorough analysis will be the sole ‘tool’ you need to identify which sector you should turn to the application and which one you should not provide the mobile version.
4. Governance and security are necessary
In previous today, we never concerned about security as long as we stand near around the object, but today everyone can steal anything you have even though you stand near the object. Well, we must say our ‘gratitude’ to the presence of internet because it ‘helps’ everyone to access any information anyone has without any obstacle.
With this fact taking presence, you have more than enough proofs to understand the urgency of application security and governance. No matter how simple you develop an enterprise application, it should ensure people that they will not lose anything especially their personal information if they choose to use your application. This is crucial. So, you should never forget it.
5. You should develop mobile application, not a desktop one
The first reason for this fifth point is, of course, you are developing a mobile application, not desktop application at the contrary. Even though all of us realize both of them have the same root, they live and grow in totally-different environments.
Desktop version becomes useful when people can only find specific information you provide after they spend quite-a-long time in front of the computer.
Mobile application is different. People need to do everything quickly and efficiently. So, all features should support this benefit.