Mobile App Development Process: Full Overview Based on Strong Expertise

Difficulty: Intermediate

Estimated Completion Time: 7 minutes

While Elon Musk conquers space and the brightest minds in medicine fight COVID-19, digital business owners and startups try to bring something new to the world of software and, in particular, to the field of mobile applications. Recent years’ statistics clearly demonstrate the growth in the capitalization of the global mobile applications market and claim that these numbers will grow even more in the coming years.

Below, in our guide, we will look at all aspects of mobile development, find out what stages it includes, and understand what principles to follow when choosing a mobile development team.

Mobile App Development in General

Mobile application development is the creation of software specifically designed to run on mobile operating systems. Typically, mobile applications are created with the ability to access the Internet, even if their user-oriented features don’t imply its use (this is needed, at least, to update the current version automatically).

When it comes to the importance of mobile applications for businesses, they are in overabundance these days. Mobile users are beginning to uninstall outdated and inefficient applications massively, and their requirements for new mobile software are growing rapidly every day.

However, truly useful and trending software will always get the approval of its target audience and is guaranteed to bring good income to its creators and owners. The main thing is to find a profitable niche and stand out from the competition. Also, the team of developers who undertook its implementation plays a vital role in the success of your business idea. We will talk about this later.

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What Should You Do Before Launching the App’s Development Process?

In the last paragraph, we outlined the importance of a thorough approach to the mobile app development process. That is why you will have to complete some tasks long before the actual process begins.

Ideation

When you first start thinking about building your mobile app, you need to clearly formulate your idea and write a business plan. Here, you must specify your target audience, what pain points or needs you will eliminate/satisfy with your application, and how you will monetize your project. Be sure to include a time frame as well.

As for the idea itself, it should be relevant (that is, the functionality of your app should meet the modern needs of mobile users), but at the same time differ at least minimally from the ideas of competitors. That is why it is essential to conduct a marketing analysis after ideation.

Market analysis

The purpose of marketing analysis is to create a basis for making informed decisions in business planning in an uncertain market situation. Here are the main tasks of marketing analysis:

  • market research and justification of market trends;
  • analysis of the main factors affecting user demand;
  • pricing analysis and justification;
  • identification of real and potential competitors;
  • assessment of potential weaknesses and strengths of the project, its advantages, and disadvantages;
  • evaluation of competitiveness in general, identification of ways to increase competitiveness;
  • analysis of sales promotion methods and the choice substantiation for the most effective ones.

Choosing the platform

You have to understand that implementing an application for each mobile platform is a separate project that requires the work of different development teams and the individual UI design of each application. 

You will create not one application for two platforms, but two apps with different code and designs, very similar to each other. Therefore, before starting the app development cycle, you should evaluate all the pros and cons and choose the right option for you.

So ask yourself the following questions:

  • Will you develop an application for iOS, Android, or both platforms at once?
  • Which platform will be the first if you want to see the target audience’s reaction to your product first?
  • Does it make sense to create a cross-platform product?

Considering the future business prospects

Developing a mobile application is just the starting point for your business, which is obviously always aimed at making a profit. That is why it is vital for you to understand its financial prospects as the owner of a future software product.

In particular, your business app strategy has to consider the level of income in the first year after the release of the application and possible expenses (for example, advertising, technical support from specialists, server costs, etc.).

Hiring a dedicated team of experts

One of the critical factors for the success of your future mobile application is a team of specialists who will work on it. Here it’s essential to hire a team and not individual freelancers (who usually understand only the basics of app development). Without advanced skills in managing remote employees, you are unlikely to organize a smooth mobile app development lifecycle without breaking deadlines and other troubles. Of course, you have to consider your choice of platform (or platforms) – the specialization of your future contractors will depend on this.

8 Steps of Mobile Applications Development Process

So, it’s time to find out what stages the process of developing an app includes.

Ideation and marketing research

Although the finalization of the project idea and related market research is often done on the client’s side, these key phases are typically assigned to the development team in the case of small projects. They are responsible for identifying the target audience’s pain points, identifying mainstreams in your business niche, and compiling a rough list of application features. In this context, this is called the discovery phase.

Building a business strategy

Once the market data is collected, it is vital to develop a clear business plan that describes the goals for the next year (or several years) in terms of the profitability of the application for its owner. This significantly affects the choice of architecture and technology stack for the application in the future.

Compiling the list of specifications

Once the capabilities are matched against expectations, the development team lists the project’s specifications (technical and non-technical). They must be agreed with the product owner so that the team can begin the development process.

Choosing the tech stack use

The agreed list of project requirements and business goals together determine the architecture and technology stack of the future software. In particular, the chosen mobile platform, the need for further scaling, the timing of the project, etc., influence this phase.

Creating UI/UX design

Before developers start writing the bulk of the code, designers must create a few wireframes that must be shown to the product owner. This is necessary so that the product owner can see how the expectations for the project match the developers’ vision.

Coding and testing

After the application prototype is approved, developers start writing the front-end and back-end code. As small blocks of code are implemented, they are tested and revisited as needed to fix bugs. This iterative approach saves the product owner time and eliminates downtime for individual specialists.

Deployment

After all the app development stages are completed, the app is uploaded to mobile stores so that end users can download and install it on their mobile devices. The application will be in the sandbox for a while, but it’s usually only a matter of a few days.

Maintenance and support

Obviously, over time, some bugs may be found in the application, or the product owner may need to update the functionality/interface/compatibility with the environment. For this, the finished application has to be transferred to the development team for revision (in this case, the previous stages to build a mobile app need to be repeated).

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to be implemented to the maximum benefit for your business,

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What to Ask the Contractors Who Will Be Involved in the Process of Developing an App to Make It Successful

Now it’s time to figure out the list of questions you have to ask your potential contractors to make sure their capabilities meet your expectations.

  • Are the chosen application architecture and technology stack suitable for scaling? 

Not every project will stay forever in its original interpretation – the needs of end-users change over time, as well as the level of workload on your application. That is why it is essential to discuss the possibility of further scaling of the project at the beginning of cooperation with your contractors.

  • How will you interact with contractors after the project is released? 

Unfortunately, there are situations when it is challenging for the owner to reach the development team after the completion of the project. As a result, upgrades are delayed, and the owner’s business suffers losses. That is why it is crucial to discuss with contractors whether they will be able to provide technical support to an already completed project quickly.

  • How do you know if contractors have the experience you need in a specific business niche?

Although many development teams indicate on their websites the widest possible coverage of business niches, you, as a responsible business owner, should make sure for yourself that their words are not just big marketing promises. In particular, we recommend requesting a portfolio of projects from your business area.

  • Considering technical support and associated costs for maintaining server capacities, what will the project budget be?

You should understand that the end of the mobile applications development process does not mean the end of investment in your project. Even after its launch, you will need to pay for the maintenance of the server-side of the application, technical support as required, and some other services. Check with your contractors how high these associated costs can be for a year or several years ahead.

Consider Weelorum Your Trusted Partner in Developing Your Mobile App

Weelorum’s team of experts offer mobile development services for a wide range of business niches. In addition to the project’s technical and non-technical requirements, we always consider its long-term business prospects and choose the best architecture and technology stack based on these forecasts. Only in this case, our clients receive high-quality software and a profitable business project. Indeed, more than 30 large clients can already confirm the effectiveness of our approach today. 

Let’s get acquainted with the most significant projects that we have implemented.

Yellow Brick Cinema 

Yellow Brick Cinema is something new in the world of personalized entertainment. It provides a premium experience of Yellow Brick Cinema, a YouTube music channel for Sleep, Relaxation, Meditation, and Study on mobile devices. With this application, users can mix pre-made tracks with nature sounds and beats to create their own unique musical masterpieces.

Product details:

  • Platforms: iOS
  • Languages: Swift for iOS, Ruby on Rails, JavaScript
  • Databases: Backend PostgreSQL, Realm for iOS
  • Framework: Scrum
  • Team members: 9
  • Development time: 2.5 years

The challenges we managed through the process:

  • organizing four independent types of sound settings;
  • providing complex audio and effects testing;
  • providing flexibility according to updated customer’s product vision;
  • implementing a reusable approach in the architecture (MVVM + Rx Swift), which speeds up work and improves quality.

MicroREC

This app allows users to capture high-quality photos and videos of microscopy and slit lamp procedures, keep them separate from personal photos, share them online or on TV screens, and publish them. It was designed specifically for doctors and microsurgery practitioners. 

Product details:

  • Platforms: iOS, Android, Cloud Backend
  • Languages: Swift, Kotlin
  • Databases: Firestore
  • Framework: RxSwift, Kotlin Coroutines
  • Team members: Team Leader, iOS, Android developers, QA testers, Project Manager
  • Development time: 6 months

The challenges we managed through the process: 

  • porting React Native app to Native iOS and Android app to improve the camera functionality and streamline the user experience.

PhotoCopy

PhotoCopy is an app to find beautiful photo spots on the map and contact professional photographers near you. Our app also helps you take photos like a pro.

Product details:

  • Platforms: iOS, Android, Cloud Backend
  • Languages: Swift, Kotlin
  • Databases: MongoDB
  • Framework: RxSwift, Kotlin Coroutines
  • Team members: Team Leader, iOS, Android developers, QA testers, Project Manager
  • Development time: 1 year

The challenges we managed through the process: 

  • developing an MVP according to the timeline and budget constraints, with a high ratio of quality and development speed.

Find out about our company’s other projects on our portfolio page.

Discover new business prospects
for yourself!

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Final Thoughts

As you can see, the mobile application development lifecycle is a complex and time-consuming process that requires preliminary preparation and market analysis. Also, the right choice of the development team plays a vital role in the success of your project. 

If you are not going to settle with implementing a mobile app development step-by-step process, contact us. Our experts will apply the best practices of the modern IT industry and create a product for you that can be upgraded in the future as the market situation and your requirements change.

FAQ 

Let’s summarize our article and answer the three most frequently asked questions regarding the apps development process.

  • How can the mobile app development process take place?

As in the case of the development of any other software, the process for mobile app development can proceed according to three models: Fixed Price (recommended for small or urgent projects), Time and Materials (ideal for scalable projects or projects with vague requirements), Dedicated Team (suitable for large companies that need to expand their team quickly, or startups looking to reduce costs). 

  • What are the stages in the mobile app development process?

There are eight mobile app development process steps in total: 1) ideation and marketing research; 2) building a business strategy; 3) compiling the list of specifications; 4) choosing the tech stack to be used; 5) creating UI/UX design; 6) coding and testing; 7) deployment; 8) maintenance and support.

  • How do I avoid mistakes in the app development process?

Since the vast majority of product owners don’t know how to develop an app, their main task is to pick the right team of developers who will take on all the responsibilities of implementing their business ideas. The most effective from this point of view are dedicated teams that will work only on your project and will be able to interact with you productively in a format and schedule that is convenient for you.

Table of content
Mobile App Development in GeneralWhat Should You Do Before Launching the App's Development Process?8 Steps of Mobile Applications Development ProcessWhat to Ask the Contractors Who Will Be Involved in the Process of Developing an App to Make It SuccessfulConsider Weelorum Your Trusted Partner in Developing Your Mobile AppFinal ThoughtsFAQ
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