All app development is not created equal, but the process from idea to app store is generally the same within the program design community. Ready to take a digital dive into app development? Know that app discovery and programming moves almost like clockwork (give or take the occasional major delay), so you’d better start a timer on your smartphone and get ready for each of the following phases. Begin by outlining your project according to the parts of the application development lifecycle.
The Planning or Ideating Phase
This is more than just the “big idea” phase. You’ll need to take a holistic approach to outlining and brainstorming the components of your app. In this initial phase, you should be able to answer the Who, What, When, and Where of your app’s concept before you move onto the following phases — which are essentially the How. Here’s a breakdown of the questions you should ask of your app and your team:
- Who – Who is your target market? Who will use the app: individuals or businesses? You should first know who will download your app so you can style the user experience accordingly.
- What – What will your app do and what need will it satisfy? What are the most basic parts of its interface? What’s its genre or niche? The kind of app you’ll create will determine your design and development strategies.
- When – What is your timeline? When do you hope to release the app? The “When” of your app will decide the amount of time you’ll invest in the project over a given period.
- Where – Where will users find the app? Will it have cross-platform compatibility or will it be available for only one type of smartphone or device? Where the app ends up has a lot to do with programming.
The Design Phase
From user experience and general accessibility plans to overall aesthetics, in the design phase you’ll create all your apps assets, such as buttons, animations, and other significant graphics.
The Development Phase
The development phase represents the nuts and bolts of your app, while the design stage represents the metal that outfits the machine. A programmer will develop code your project per the app’s platform or OS (operating system).
The Testing and QA Phase
In the testing and QA (quality assurance) phase, you’ll confirm that the app’s ready for consumers. This is usually accomplished via the SDKs (software development kits) for the devices that you’ve developed your app for. In this phase, you’ll look out for bugs and other anomalies by exploring multiple user scenarios.
The App Store Release Phase
Prior to the release, you’ll need to submit your project to any relevant app stores for approval. Depending on the app store, an additional fee may be required with your application. Once you’ve obtained approval, app hosts may also charge per download for your listed app. Note: Charges typically apply to only those apps that charge users, as well.
The Updates and Maintenance Phase
App development never ends. Once you’ve released yours, continue to consider everything from user reviews to OS updates for its future development. Many factors can impact how your app is perceived and used, which will influence its number of downloads and ultimately its lifetime. Continue to test your app and develop updates according to feedback and more.
Want to work with a team experienced in the application development lifecycle? Let us plan your project from idea to app store. Give us a call today and find out how we can offer you expert app programming and design.