Beginners guide to mobile development
There are multiple ways of building mobile applications, we have the native and the cross-platform method.
The native is when you build an application using platform-specific tools. If you want to develop for Android you will have to make use of android studio, Kotlin, or java as the language. While for IOS you will have to make use Xcode, SwiftUI, and or Swift with UIKit. Using this method depends on you as a developer or company, if they can handle the cost of maintaining these applications because they will be running individually.
Cross Platform development is more like killing two birds with one stone. You build once and run everywhere.
Cross-platform development are tools that help us build Android and IOS applications with just one code base and it has less cavitate in the maintenance and development of the application, less cost, and less development power, meaning fewer developers to work on the project, faster build process and faster launching of the product.
We have a few tools that help in building cross-platform applications
In this article, I will be talking more about Flutter and React Native, because I have used them personally and I can say things I like and do not like about them.
flutter was developed by a team at Google. Released in the year 2017, Flutter is a mobile development UI kit, it makes building and shipping mobile applications faster and easy.
Flutter can also be used to develop applications that run on Windows, Linux, and macOS.
Flutter takes the approach that every element is a widget, it uses a programming language called Dart.
React Native is an open-source software framework developed by Meta. Released in the year 2015, React Native enables developers to build cross-platform applications using React framework and native platform capabilities. So if you are a developer that has React knowledge it will be a breeze for you to pick up React Native to develop native applications.
Regardless of the approach that is chosen, there are several key steps that are involved in the mobile app development process. These include;
Identifying the problem or need that the app is intended to solve.
This typically involves conducting market research to understand the target audience, as well as defining the specific features and functionality that the app will offer.
Designing the user interface (UI) and user experience (UX) of the app.
This involves creating wireframes and mockups to visualize the app's layout and navigation, as well as defining the look and feel of the app.
Developing the app's core functionality.
This typically involves writing the app's code, either using a native development tool or a cross-platform framework such as React Native or Flutter.
Testing the app to ensure that it works correctly and is free of bugs and other issues.
This typically involves conducting both internal testing (by the development team) and external testing (by beta users).
Launching the app and promoting it to potential users.
This typically involves submitting the app to app stores (such as the Apple App Store or Google Play), as well as implementing a marketing plan to drive awareness and downloads.
Overall, mobile app development can be a complex and time-consuming process, but it can also be extremely rewarding for businesses that are able to create successful and popular apps.
By understanding the key steps and considerations involved in the process, businesses can increase their chances of success and create mobile apps that truly resonate with their target audience.
If you have enough resources to build for both platforms natively, I will recommend you build natively.
If your product relays on application speed, I will also recommend you build with native tools.
If you are looking for faster build time, I will suggest you go for flutter, Because it will reduce the amount of time spent in development.
Image credit: Caspar Camille Rubin on Unsplash