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Mobile Development

Android vs iOS: Where to Start?


The Importance of AppsIf you want to appeal to the largest audience possible, mobile applications are a must. The amount of smart phone ownership is only going up and up and up and releasing an application will multiply the exposure of your brand. While it is true that conversion rates are higher for personal computers than mobile phones, this trend is starting to change. Recent developments like blockchain technology are changing the status of mobile payments with increased security and user confidence. It is possible that mobile conversion rates will not just catch up to PC rates but surpass them.

Android or iOS, why not both?

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Android vs. iOSWhen it comes to mobile applications, how do you choose which platform to develop for? This question is easily answered; you need to develop for both platforms. In 2016 iOS devices made up 44% of users in the U.S. while Android devices held 52% of the market. The number of iOS users is higher in the U.S. than in other markets but the principle is the same everywhere; if you only choose to focus on one platform you are ignoring half of your potential market which is obviously not a good idea. So the real question is not iOS or Android but which platform should you develop for first?Where to Begin?Unless you are a large company with a correspondingly large budget, you will not have the resources you need to develop for Android and iOS at the same time. But fear not, there are actually advantages to developing for one platform at a time.When starting with just one platform you can learn from your mistakes and more quickly develop for the second platform once you finish with the first. If you start both at the same time you will make mistakes on two platforms at the same time which will slow you down and make development more costly. So which platform is easier to start with?Not so differentThe difficulty level and cost of development for iOS and Android is quite similar. Although Android has around 18,000 types of models around the world compared to Apple’s 20, there are solutions that exist to make this less of a problem. Also it is easier to find developers for Android than for iOS as Android uses Java which is one of most popular programming languages.When it comes to cost, buying Macs to develop for iOS can be a large up-front cost but does not make much of a difference compared to the overall cost of developing a project. In the end it is the amount of time it takes to develop something that affects the final price tag of your project. The nature of your project, its requirements, and the efficiency of your team is what will determine its time to market more than the choice of platform.Know your MarketThe real key to choosing where you start developing is to know your potential market. You need to do a little research and see which type of user is more likely to use your app. This way you can cater to the largest potential user base first and develop your business and then continue expansion with the second platform.Are Web apps an option?If your budget small, it is possible to just develop a web app that functions on both platforms. However, a web app is the lowest quality option. Compared to native apps, web apps are almost always slower and they do not have access to all of a phone’s hardware like the camera and microphone.It is possible to find a middle ground when it comes to web apps by developing a progressive web app. PWA’s are web apps that simulate the characteristics of a native app. They always open in full screen mode and can access more of a phone’s hardware than traditional web apps.In the end they still face similar performance issues as other web apps. Users always expect to have a seamless experience when using an app, even small amounts of lag can be frustrating enough to ruin the user experience of an application. However, if the app does not require a lot of resources to run, performance issues of PWAs can be a non-issue.PWA’s are an interesting option for startups who want to get their business up and running quickly. A PWA or web app can be the first stepping stone to creating a usable product and then if deemed necessary, native versions of the app can be developed as the startup itself develops.Now choose your platform and start developing today!Learn More:If you would like to learn more about mobile development first hand sign up to participate in our free webinar about the 10 mistakes you should avoid in a mobile app project. The webinar will take place on May 11 at 12pm ET, 6PM CET and if you miss it you can always watch the replay later.To learn more about mobile app development:Launch your iOS project in 2 weeksAndroid application developmentAndroid development rates & services

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