What Makes A Good Mobile App?

We can all agree that everyone has an opinion on that matter; everyone has a mobile, and everyone has apps on their mobile. Apps exist for both business and leisure purposes, and just turning on a phone to scroll through an online retailer, or to play a portable game that anyone can easily get to grips with makes life a little more interesting and a lot easier! So we know that mobile applications are some of the best PR tools and business models out there, and we also know that’s not the only purpose they can serve with all their facets.

Yet, some apps are just better than others with their user interface and mechanics, and if something has in-app purchases, we don’t tend to think of it favorably. But why is that? What really does make an app good? Here’s a little food for thought.

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It Has a Focus

If something has messy mechanics all over the place, it’s not going to be easy to use, and it certainly won’t be fun to use. The more complex a system gets, the more fragile it is, so keeping it simple whilst effective is the main way forward in app development.

The first thing that needs to be targeted is the user interface. So many apps and development companies have gone up the spout because the UI they showed were cheap, offered nothing new, and were just downright impossible to get on with.

That doesn’t mean it can’t be improved upon however! Take iTunes as good example here, as even in its modern incarnation, so many different apps run through it and you often need an internet signal to even listen to the music you own! However, it used to be much worse.

A lot of Effort Has Gone into Researching the Market

If you know who you’re trying to target, and you design with them in the mind instead of trying to turn them to your way of thinking with one app you could suddenly drop on a store and receive no traction, you’re on the right lines here. An app needs to have mechanics based around that theme, so people of all walks of life within the target market can use it for a variety of reasons. When something has versatility in its most basic function, such as spotify with its playlist creator, people will be using it for a long time to come.

On the other hand, if a developer already has a following, they need to stay within that demographic whilst making something accessible from the outside. With legacy games like that of the Final Fantasy mobile app, the creators know their market and who they want to target with their features and advertising. Of course, any new players can quickly pick things up as well, but it’s the loyalty of a following that really gets rewarded with an app like this: yet, anyone who doesn’t know the characters etc. still has an enjoyable app to use!

It Runs Fast

This is the mark of well made software, as any computer program or game that doesn’t load fast and crashes as much as it can is something that’s being refunded immediately. The same applies to mobile apps, despite being built on a smaller platform. If an app is slow and crashes a lot, people aren’t going to use it. If an app is slow, barely loads, and crashes upon opening, it can also signify a security issue. Considering the amount of hacks and viruses on both Google Play and the App Store these days, it’s very likely you could accidentally download one of these!

So, if you’ve downloaded an app, and it works perfectly, runs smoothly and has fast loading times, you’re guaranteed to come back to it right? Well, so is everyone else. If something works, and works normally and how it should, an app is guaranteed to be downloaded again and again. Good reviews come from the user interface in this way, and if there’s less to load, there’s less storage an app can take up on someone’s phone.

There’s a lot that goes into app design, and paying attention to what the market wants and working until perfection are all good moves. Missing a deadline to release doesn’t have to be the worst thing you can do in the software development world, as people will wait for quality. So if you’re in the business to make a good mobile app, do it like this.

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SWE Staff

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