Any new developer interested in mobile app development faces the following questions.
If I want to do mobile app development where should I start from? Do I have to build from scratch? What options do I have to build a mobile app? What are the pros and cons of each option?
Well, there are a few options to help you decide the approach required for building your first mobile app
Bring Idea to Reality
This is the most popular form of mobile app development. If you have an idea and if it is something which has not been done before, you can develop that into a mobile app. You can do it yourself or ask a developer or mobile app development companies to do it for you.
- Free Hand – You can develop and make changes as you want it to be. Everything is under your control.
- Ownership – The IPR of the app resides with you. You are the owner of the app. If the app gets popular, the source code and publishing rights can be sold to other companies/individuals.
- More efforts – Since the idea is new, challenges to implement it are unknown. More efforts will have to be put to implement the idea. You have to take care of every aspect of design and data flow.
- Risk – Risk is more in building an app from scratch. All the efforts may go in vain if the idea could not be implemented or users do not like the app.
This is another form of mobile app development where developers emulate popular apps. The idea is to take a pie of market share from the popular app by building a similar app.
- Less Surprises – Since the idea is already implemented, the challenges are less. Hence the time to develop is also reduced.
- Less effort – Since the app is already present, you have to emulate the functionality with same or extended features. You don’t have to put effort in conceptualizing it.
- Less Cost – The cost of developing the app will be low as less effort is needed. Also, this app can be offered to users at a low cost. If everything is identical, the market share can be easily captured.
- Clones vs. originals – The experience tells that clones have not been able to emulate the features and success of the original app. If you want to sustain in the market, the cloned app should be bug free and feature rich.
- Competition– There will be other developers cloning the popular mobile app to get the pie of market share. In this case, your race is not against the original but the cloned apps. The shelf life of cloned apps is usually less. To be popular, you need to be unique from the other cloned apps.
- Less Returns – The returns on investment will be less in comparison to original ones.
App flipping is a popular concept in mobile app development. It consists of 3 steps
- The developers can buy source code for popular app
- Give a makeover to the app by redesigning skins and adding new features
- Publish your app in the app store
- Only design change is needed – Since the source code is purchased for already existing app you need not have to write the functionality again. You just have to redesign it. Change the skins, graphics and icon and you are good to go.
- Less effort – Less effort is needed as you just have to do design work.
- Coding Skills Needed – Since you have bought the source code, you have the control now. Any change needed to be done has to be done by you. So, you need to have some knowledge of coding.
Buy the App
You also have the option to buy the complete app and not just the source code. If complete app is purchased, you get the rights to use icons, names, keywords and everything else. The IPR now resides with you. The advantage is that you don’t have to redesign it since you own it now. Any benefit starts accruing from the date of purchase. However, they turn out to be costly and you have to maintain it after purchase. If you are not a developer, maintaining it can be difficult.
These are some of the ways through which you can start your first ever mobile app development.