How to Design a Smartphone App for Dumm…Laymen
Got a great idea for a new application? Follow these steps to help develop a smartphone app of your very own.
If you own a smartphone you know that some of the most exciting things you can do on them is shop through the vast amounts of applications. There are games, programs, features and so much more that enhance your mobile phone experience. No longer is the cell phone used to just make calls. It has turned into a full-fledged portable entertainment device. If you have ever thought of a good idea for a new application, there is a way to make that idea, come to life. It takes imagination, some computer know-how and a little determination to develop a smartphone app. Below are steps that will guide you on how to design a smartphone app of your very own.
Step 1. Sketch out an IDEA
One of the first steps is to have a great idea (obviously). From there you want to workout your idea as thoroughly as possible. Ask yourself questions to narrow down the value of this new application. What features does the user want to see? How will people interact with the application? It’s important to point these out, because it will give you a better direction during the actual development process. If you are creating a new game for smartphones, precise answers aren’t exactly necessary, but you will need to design something functional. Realizethe limitations you have, as all smartphones are not the same size. Precise sizes and limits will be found during the development stage.
Step 2. Find, or Become a Developer
This is the difficult step. It’s easy (more or less) to come up with a fun, interesting idea, with great sub-ideas and smartphone implications. It’s another to finally put it all together. Luckily, the big smartphone operating system developers, Apple and Android, offer developing software you can use to get your idea off the ground.
For Apple iOS users, there is the iPhone developing application, or for Android OS users, the Android developing application. There you will find the tools you need to get going. They will even have a forum that offer suggestions and solutions from other members to help you along the way. If you are looking to go the easier route, but will cost more money, look into paying a developer. There are many talented people out there looking to use their computer skills and having them develop it will eliminate a lot of potential frustration. However, if you want to be involved every step of the ay, it’s best to learn developing and do it yourself for the ultimate creative control.
Another thing while developing, create some kind of buzz for your up and coming application. Put occasional updates on social networks, maybe create a simple website foreshadowing what to expect. Peak people’s interest before it’s even completed and that will make the final marketing stage a bit easier come launch time.
Step 3. Demo or “Beta Test” You App
Test the application’s functionality. Basically, run through your application from the beginning to the end. Touch every corner, and click every possible clickable link. Developers often refer to this step as a demo, or commonly, “beta testing.” The reason this is so very important, is that you will discover any design faults, or coding errors in your application. If you find them, fix them, and do it again until you find no errors.
Step 4. Success! Market & Maintain
You’ve done it! You created that app you’ve always wanted. Once finished, decide what you want to charge. Do some research by seeing what’s out there and gauge how much you should charge, or if you want to maybe find out how to get in-game adds to pay for itself. The website, fuelyourapps.com has a great article called, 9 Must Read Sources on Pricing Your App, which is a rundown on some documents giving you direction when determining a price.
Once that’s done, market the heck out of it! Get the word out on social networks, tell all your friends to spread the word, have a fun launch party. Maybe give out the first hundred downloads for free, just be creative!
On top of that, make sure you consistently maintain the application. Be aware of other player’s wants, likes and dislikes as well as any bugs you may have missed. Keep it fresh, and entertaining and your new app should have a long, healthy shelf life.
Most importantly, have fun and Happy Apping!