Wednesday, April 29, 2015

5 Tools That Simplify Mobile App Design for You

Design of the app is crucial to ensuring its performance in the market. A good design ensures that users continuously use the app, not just visit it once and move on. The main aim of your app design should be to create a better user experience. At each stage of design and development, you must ask yourself, how is it going to benefit my customer? And if what you’re going to do doesn't, then better be done with it. This is how you identify what stays and what gets out. So, without further ado, let us look at the 5 tools that simplify mobile app design for you.

Android App Patterns – This website offers a wide range of impressive designs, exclusively designed for Android. It has in total 31 categories that contain more than 16,000 screen shots of attractively designed and functional apps.

Pttrns – Offering more than 3K iPad and iPhone user interface patterns, this site is akin to a curated library. The popularity of this site can be attested to by the fact that it’s got over two million views till date. The website is already quite popular among users and has over 2 million page views per month. When designing your app, this provides one of the best platforms to get a design inspiration. The designs of this can be adapted for android apps too.

Unsplash – Photographs form an important feature of every app irrespective of its type. Unsplash is a great resource wherein you can find good quality stock photographs free of cost. You can avail these high-resolution photographs, free of copyrights, use it for app and its associated micro site. In addition, for iPhone app marketing also, adding catchy graphics and photographs is of great value.

 iOS Fonts – This resource features a collection of iOS fonts with above 260 faces for iPad and iPhone. Here, you can have the visual of all of the available fonts and gives you the ability to enter text and view result in preview box how it overall appears.

App Icon Template – Yet another good resource to create exciting designs, App icon template lets you create app icons for just about any version of iOS. It is a free Photoshop tool that has built-in textures, colors and gradients with easy to export actions that delivers a smoother output. Having an appealing app icon along with an impressive design, plays a great role in iPhone app marketing as well.

If you seek a development partner who can create mobile apps for your company with the tools like these, then reach us at – 212.209.1537!

Tuesday, April 28, 2015

8 Tips to Make a Mobile-Friendly Website!

A mobile-friendly website is not something to be decided upon today. Post Google’s search ranking update, it has become imperative for everyone to have a mobile-friendly website. But for those of you who have not begun it yet, there is still time left as Google’s is only a real-time dynamic update which means you can recover any lost traffic provided your website becomes mobile-friendly soon.

Making a mobile-from website is not as complex as it is made out to be. In fact, the key is in keeping it simple. Simplifying content and streamlining the design process are key to getting your strategy right. Here’s what you should remember while designing a proper mobile website.

1) Keep things simple. It is important not to use too much content on your website as it puts off users. Whenever you want to detail an issue to the user, use a video. It always clicks.

2) Choose the foremost information to include: direct means of communication (e.g. phone numbers, click-to-call function, online booking); main information about services; locations on a map. Long bios and other texts of secondary importance should be left solely for a desktop website. Include only the things your visitors are most likely to look for.

3) Users need to access the pages they need as quickly as possible, and with minimum actions. Enable easy navigation. This means users must have sufficient space so that they don't click the wrong icons or buttons.

4) Do not ask your users for too much text input. They don't like it. Not one bit.

5) Reduce the number of pages without stuffing in lot of information in one page. Ensure that your design allows your users to tap and swipe around your website easily. Also avoid excessive use of images, popup and Flash.

6) Liberally use your company logo and colours in your website. Making good use of images is an essential component of a good mobile-optimized site.

7) Keep in sight a link to the desktop website. Many visitors may want to proceed there for the information that is left out in the mobile version.

8) Check how your website works on a number of mobile devices: Smartphone’s and tablets running various platforms. Screen size is important when you’re dealing with mobiles.

These are just some of the things that you need to keep in mind as you go along. But once you get these basics right, you can rest assured your development strategy is on the right path.

Monday, April 27, 2015

Benefits of Payment Channel Diversification for Mobile Banking

Technology has developed greatly in the last two years and it is mobile that has led from the front.  Advances in technology, especially in regards to devices, computers and other forms of modern communication have seen great strides and advances in the last couple of years. Modern technology now allows mobile phone owners and users the ability to access the internet, shop and undertake many other activities that were unheard of just a couple of years back.

One of the most recent developments is the use of mobile banking and the ability to make mobile payments. Mobile banking is the process of performing banking activities from the comfort of the home or office by using a compatible mobile phone. This means that by using a mobile phone, a customer can access their bank account, check their account balance, transfer money to other accounts, make payments and be alerted whenever money is deposited or withdrawn from their account. This is a huge development that introduces convenience to bank customers. The customers are saved the time and effort of having to travel to the bank or ATM machine to perform any simple transaction.

The ability to make mobile payments basically implies that a shopper or customer at any establishment can use their mobile phone to make payments for any goods, products or services they have bought. There are certain applications that enable users of hand-held devices to have money on their mobile phones which they can use to purchase goods and products, make payment for services, pay bills or even send cash to their friends or family.

There are plenty of benefits and applications of these two banking systems. When using mobile payments, a customer can safely spend their money without the added risk of carrying physical cash on them. This reduces the risks of theft or loss. Payments using mobile phones are fast, safe and secure. They can be safely used to purchase and make payments online at any time, with no need for a cashier. The technology used in mobile money systems is quite advanced and has ensured that very little opportunity exists for breaches of the system.

Mobile banking has found applications in many different areas. In developing countries, remote areas that have little or no access to amenities can undertake mobile phone banking services. This ensures these residents have an opportunity to enjoy regular banking services without the need to go hundreds of miles in search of a physical bank.

Friday, April 24, 2015

How Your Mobile Website Development Should Work?

Mobile development has altered the course of technology, innovation and communication. But behind every successful app, Smartphone, and mobile website is a lot of strategising and nerve-wracking effort. Only a combination of hard-nosed designers, developers and testers along with business analysts can ensure that an efficient and different mobile app is created. This is a complicated process that involves workflows that vary from organization to organization. In this article, we look at some of the basics that your organization should stick to in order to ensure your mobile development is efficient.

1. Inspect the website

You, as the developer should make a careful study of the website’s design and content. Knowledge of the business objective, brand value and service orientation with additional plugins to be integrated would help you redesign the website if necessary. To accommodate mobile users, the major changes necessary are layout of the website and its content framework arrangement.

2. Consult with the client

Post the initial analysis, programmers would typically get back to the client and work out the preferences for the mobile website. Here you must remember that mobile devices are not like desktops. So you need to highlight the areas you want to market first, like the logo or the company’s tagline or its speciality. You need to ask the client if he wants a new image or only the featured content from the mobile website.

3. Design and execution

This is where it gets really technical and the real nitty-gritty work starts. Depending on the demands of the client, the time taken to develop the site can be anywhere between two to four days. But this really depends on the layers of programming the site requires. If the site involves complicated functionality, it would obviously take longer. Some of it also depends on the time taken for the testing of the website.

4. Final product

Once approved, you can test the mobile site live. The final product is the live mobile website. Its effectiveness can be easily monitored by the client. It is the amount of traffic it generates! Further monitoring is not necessary unless the client has asked for CMS etc.

Thursday, April 23, 2015

5 Mistakes You Should Avoid In App Development

Creating engaging and innovative apps is an article. It’s also a systematic and steady process that involves ingenuity, perseverance, attention to detail and above all, the zest to achieve. That was about what you needed. But what should you avoid? What are the common pitfalls that developers encounter when they set out to develop mobile apps? And how can you avoid them? That’s what we’ll be looking at in this article.

Mistake #1 Not focusing on end users 

Mobile apps must be building keeping user experience firmly in mind. You must never once take your eyes off it. You may have put a lot of work into building your app but all of it will go down the drain if the end user doesn't find your app engaging. At every stage of development ask yourself, how is this going to benefit the user?

Mistake #2 Not using existing Smartphone functionalities

Don't develop an app just because you want to see a profit. You must come up with an idea that is new and offers some value to the end users. Innovation is very much appreciated by the new mobile users and you should give precedence to this when you develop your app.

Mistake #3 Not understanding the difference between development environment and real world.

An app may work in the lab, but need not do so in the real environment. Mobile app development is typically done in a simulated environment and even tests are carried out on emulators. So, you may not be fully aware of the problems that an end user might encounter. So, do extensive research before your app goes live.

Mistake #4 Ignoring scalability and integration issues

Your apps must be scalable and ‘integrable’. By ‘integrable’ we mean your app should require very few tweaks post release. Your app should be loadable on different devices running the same operating system and users must not feel that the app is actually behaving differently in another device. The mobile app development company should be able to ensure that the app remains usable even after multiple operating system upgrades.

Mistake #5 Not knowing how to limit app features

Extensive mobile apps are good, but there are thousands of feature rich apps that are untouched mainly because they are too complex to comprehend for end users. The mobile phone app development should have a single focus for every single app and adding a few customization options is acceptable. However, pushing it too far will only bore the end users because they won't recognize the purpose of the app.

Wednesday, April 22, 2015

4 Things You Should Integrate With Your Mobile Payment App

Most mobile apps today are made with a good UI and functionality. But what assumes greater important with growing customer demand is the features that have been integrated along with it. This could well be said to determine even the success or failure of the app. For example, users of Starbucks would know that it is not just a mobile payment app. Combined with a loyalty program, debit note and store locator among many other features integrated into it, it is no wonder that it continues to perform much to the chagrin of its competitors.

Experts would tell you that you should think carefully about how your mobile payment app would fit in your overall enterprise mobility program. This is in contrast to the unplanned approach that many organizations take. In this article, we look at four things that you should be looking at integrating with your mobile payment app.

1. Integrating rewards programs

A survey by Compete shows that no less than 30 percent business firms who sold their products electronically integrated loyalty apps with their enterprise apps. This is not only a money saver, but a great time saver too.

2. Tracking financial records

One common feature among mobile payment apps is that the payment is reflected in the financial statement immediately. A survey conducted by Accenture shows that 60 percent of users would pay through a mobile payment app if they kept track of receipts.

3. Focus on UX

A casual reading of the reviews of an app would tell you that it is the UX that most often brings you negative reviews. Set the toughest parameters to ensure UX issues are chaffed out well before the app reaches production. This is extremely important as once the app is out there, no amount of post-facto correction will set right the damage done by a bad review.

4. Security

This goes without saying. Security is paramount not only for payment apps, but also for the rest (in fact, the entire enterprise mobility program), as users today are extra careful about data theft and privacy issues. Since mobile apps access corporate service servers all the time, safety of the confidential data stored in the server is important.

Tuesday, April 21, 2015

5 Great Android Apps to Make Money While Shopping

Shopping can either be a truly joyful experience or an extremely harrowing one based on whether you are truly shopping with the right tools. On the app front, Android apps help you save money and increase your efficiency in shopping. These Android apps make shopping a really new experience based on their power and functionality. In this article, we take a look at 5 great Android apps that make your shopping experience a truly memorable one.


If you ever wanted to know more about something you saw on the rack, just use SnapTell to scan the barcode and you’ll get all the information you possibly needed. Information like how the price compares with other distributors can be done in seconds. This app could be a big time money-saver for you if you take the time to use it.

Key Ring Reward Cards

This app is very handy if you want to consolidate all your clutter in your purse while making sure you don't lose valuable loyalty cards. You just need to take a snapshot of the barcode of your reward card and enter a little basic information about the store and voila! You’re ready to use your phone as your reward card at that store in the future.

Our Groceries

This is the perfect app for the happy family of Android phone users. You can purchase items as easily as you can remove them on this app. This is a must have app to have for the new-age hyper busy, hyper tech families that are looking at efficiency.

OI Shopping list

OI Shopping list, much like the Our Groceries app, is for the singleton folks. Not that a family wouldn’t benefit from the app, but just that it’s got more features and it's not a perfect fit like the other app is for families that need a simple solution to keep up on their latest shopping needs. That being said, this app is a powerful workhorse and can really end up saving you countless hours and some decent cash at year's end.


This official app brings eBay to your Android phone. It might look a bit odd, but this UI is better than the actual website on my computer. It actually gives you an idea that this Android app was developed correctly and really hits the mark. That is, if you're an eBay fan; if you're not, apologies!

Monday, April 20, 2015

Mistakes to Avoid in Mobile App Development

If you had a killer idea and wanted to make it actionable, you would be developing a mobile app to implement it. That’s the easiest way to ensure that you’re idea is visible, taken note of, and most importantly, put to use by millions. What you require is a clear plan, good strategy, proper programming structure and user friendly implementation. But there are pitfalls even for the trained. We look at some of them in this article.

1. Be very clear about your platform

Android, iOS, Windows....reading them back and forth? Well, just look at who you want to target. If it’s the global market that you’re targeting, android must be your choice. If you are looking at a US centric market, you could go for iOS. Either way, avoid ambiguity on the platform front. If you intend to launch it on both the platforms, know that your engineering costs will double accordingly.

2. Mobile is NOT web experience downsized

A majority of website owners do not focus on developing a mobile application that is optimized for all mobile platforms. All that they do is rely on responsive website features or consider that mobile app development should be done with just few necessary elements and features of a website.

3. Don’t confuse the Designer for the Developer

Whatever it is that the designer creates; it will have to go through a developer. It is important the design follows the functionality since we often find that apps where design dictates functionality inevitable fail.
For example, if your app has been planned to include a search box, but the designer might envision one with a type-ahead search that generates live results as the user types. This is a nice add-on, but could mean significant undertaking for the developer.

4. Avoid overlooking User experience

Say Apple and ask people what comes to their mind first. The reply would be its elegance/user experience. So, it’s important to know that a mobile user is more demanding and intuitive when it comes to UX. This is borne by the fact that 26% of the are opened only to be never used again and 48% are opened less than 10 times. Make sure you test your app with Craigslist or better find early beta testers.

5. The app won’t sell by itself

When your app goes live, thousands of competitors are going to look at it and use it. If you do not have a well planned strategy to increase visibility, you are only increase the risk of your app disappearing into oblivion.

Friday, April 10, 2015

Top 5 Tools for Cross-Platform App Development

You must be aware of Google’s latest update on mobile-friendly websites. This has got companies in a rush to ensure that their websites are tailored to mobile devices. But developing mobile-friendly websites alone would not do. It is important to ensure that your apps are cross-platform as well. What are the cross-platform applications that help you design such websites? There are many, but with each operating system having its own features and functionalities, to design an app that delivers optimum performance on all of these is indeed a tricky task. So, this article does you the favour of listing out the best cross platform mobile application out there:

1. RhoMobile – This is an open source framework that is ruby-based. It helps you build native apps that run on iOS, Android, Windows Mobile, RIM, and Symbian devices.
With RhoMobile, you need to write code just once for all major operating systems. RhoMobile makes use of all your Smartphone’s features and builds the perfect cross-platform application.

2. Appcelerator – This is used to design applications for mobiles, tablets, and desktops. To create applications with Appcelerator, simple programming languages like HTML, PHP, JavaScript and Python would do.

3. PhoneGap – This FOSS framework allows developers to create applications for the iPad, iTouch, iPhone, Android, Palm, BlackBerry, and Symbian mobile devices. Using HTML and JavaScript, PhoneGap lets you gain access to hardware features of a mobile device like camera, GPS data etc.

4. WidgetPad – WidgetPad allows you to create Smartphone applications using standard programming languages like HTML5, CSS3 and JavaScript. It is typically used to create apps for WebOS, iOS, and android. Project management, source code editing, collaboration, distribution, debugging, and versioning become easy with WidgetPad.

5. MoSync – Another FOSS framework, MoSync uses JavaScript, PHP, Ruby and Python for cross platform mobile app development. MoSync probably supports the largest number of operating systems including Android, Symbian, Windows Mobile and Moblin. Support for iOS is provided through MoSync 2.4.

6. Whoop – Though Whoop cannot be featured among the top tools used for cross platform app development, it is nevertheless quite an interesting framework. Even a developer who is not trained in the app development would be able to use Whoop to publish cross platform apps. Actually, Whoop is the ‘tool for non developers'.

The Whoop Creative Studio uses the WYSIWYG editor to allow dragging & dropping of mobile app elements while designing applications for Windows Mobile, Android, BlackBerry, RIM, and iOS.

Monday, April 6, 2015

How You Can Execute App Built to Perfection?

How to decide if your mobile app is well-built? How do you know you do not need any external assistance when you build an app amidst all roaming security threats? Irrespective of the Open Source platform under discussion (be it iOS or Android), or other internal mobile app project, a single gifted developer can create simple design and develop the entire app with the available online tutorials, Google searches, and some genuine novelty.

However, it is very important to consult SMEs (subject matter experts) to make sure that the app you build is a successful one that earns you a good profit and satisfies your needs. Are you found wanting in any area where new app development project requires assistance? In this article, we look where you might require external assistance most and why.
Areas where you may require help (specifically on the Execution front)
Multiple Mobile Platforms
It may make sense to build for multiple platforms such as iOS, Android, Windows Phone depending on the type of mobile application you need. Approaching a professional app development company only lets you use a “one-stop-shop” and you can receive valuable advice on the various nuances of each platform too.
Rich Media Tools For User Experience
Features like animations, calculators, Infographics and dynamic data display or visualizations are the best tools that enhance user-experience. Each of these can efficiently execute your vision but anything the same time; can also expose potential errors in the process.
Visual Appeal for Branding
One of the most critical areas for a mobile project is Visual designs. Starting from professional photography, intense branding, illustrations, even videos- to handling visual design on your own without an experienced app developer results in inconsistency.
Complex Back-end Structure
Whether to present data from multiple existing “legacy” systems or to save profile information for your users and customize their interaction with the system or to add e-commerce to your app, you will need to build a back end server system to go with your app for added security measures. This is where you might find the need for external assistance most pressing.
There is no substitute to handle these hurdles. Nerds have and still come up with ingenuous solutions to track issues, identify bugs and troubleshoot them time and again. But for us, building an app that sells must come before everything else and hiring an external firm that specialises in apps won’t be all that bad.

Friday, April 3, 2015

5 Steps to Scale Your Android Development

As Android developers, you must have thought a lot about how to scale your Android development processes to ensure that our code is clean and bug-free. While there are no perfect solutions as to how to scale your Android practice, there are general standards that can help you greatly.

1. Keep Things Modular

Keep Objects and classes on tasks they were designed for. For instance, don’t try and perform network tasks in a Datastore class, and the like. The more you separate your logic, the easier it will be to update individual classes later. A good rule of thumb is to keep your method sizes less than 50 lines and your classes less than a few hundred lines.

2. Implement a Consistent Code Formatter

On Android Studio; you can set up your preferred format style under Preferences/Code Style/Java. You can export it and share it across your team once you have a custom template. Any team member can then apply it to a project, and your code will be automatically rearranged. This will save you hours of time and improve readability.

3. Test your code throughout your Android development project

Unit tests are a key part of implementing a test-driven development strategy (TDD). This is absolute necessary to ensure that your code performs the way you expect it to. There’s a minefield of useful information regarding unit testing on Google’s Android Developer site.

4. Add Automated Code Checking.

There are several tools out there to help you code and make sure that you are following the industry’s best practices. The most common ones are PMD, FindBugs, and Checkstyle. You could learn from GitHub repo of as to how to implement FindBugs, Checkstyle, and PMD checks in your app.

5. Go With an MVP Approach.

Using an MVP method in development means separating the Model, View, and Presenter in your code (not to be confused with ‘Minimum viable product’). This is similar to the MVC pattern that’s talked about in iOS.

The fundamental idea is that the View layer should never contact the Model layer directly — because that’s what the Presenter is for. In dissecting the presentation layer from the logic, the way you layout the data on screen becomes modularized and separated from how you pull the data from a server or a database. This style lends itself to easier testing, higher readability, and more seamless collaboration overall.

Thursday, April 2, 2015

7 Tips for a Successful Mobile App

Creating a successful mobile app is on everyone’s mind. So much so that almost every business has one on either of the mobile platforms these days. But how do you ensure that your app is successful? That’s the question we’ll look to answer in this article. The ingredients of a successful app are:

1.       Emotional connect with end-users
You can’t create an app with a rich user experience by simply replicating the desktop content on a touch screen. So you need to optimize the performance, look and feel of the application according to the mobile device. In short, your app needs to touch an emotional chord with the users.

2.       Compatibility
Most apps target a particular mobile OS. But the user may access the app on a variety of devices like tablets, Smartphone’s, etc. This is why it is necessary for businesses to ensure compatibility and optimization across devices.

3.       Make the app customizable
It is now common experience that customized apps achieve greater popularity as users love to change the app’s colour, font, outlines, and privacy settings according to their preferences. This delivers a user-centric experience.

4.        Make the app work offline
All the users may not have unlimited access to the internet and they will look for apps that can work even in the absence of an internet connection. So, make sure your app works in both the online and offline modes.

5.        Focus on end user-experience
Your app might be simple and easy-to-use. But does it serve the purpose it was designed for? The app must deliver on this count. Optimized and hassle-free user experience is a necessity for a successful app.

6.        Monitor app usage
An app can be used in a number of ways. So you need to understand how your app is exactly being used. Track users using engagement analytics and identify features and functionality that need to be improved in the app.

7.        Focus on high LTV

As a business, you need to focus on the high lifetime value (LTV) of your application. Your advertising revenue directly depends on your LTV. For your app to be successful in the longer run, you need to focus on higher returns on investment (ROI) and average revenue per user (ARPU) to build a solid base of users.