The world of technology can change very quickly, sometimes so fast that it’s not just individuals that can’t keep up, but companies too.
Take BlackBerry for example. Four years ago, they and their parent company Research in Motion sold the most smartphones in the UK and had a market share of 28.2%. There were several reasons for this, including the popularity of BBM with young people, the enterprise server, which depressingly enabled staff to access work messages at any time and the sleek and small designs, especially with regards to the Bold and Curve models.
Times change though, and doesn’t Blackberry know it. They recently reported an absolutely huge annual loss of £3.5 billion, caused by a failure to move forward quickly enough. High app development costs, the subsequent lack of choice in their app store equivalent, a bungled attempt to enter the tablet market, the absence of a touch screen phone until this time last year and the launch of new services such as WhatsApp was always going to be a coma inducing arrangement. Combine all of these with the appalling response to the EMEA service outage in October 2011 and you have yourself a recipe for disaster which I’m not convinced they will recover from.
The importance of investment in app development
Blackberry’s problem was their lack of adjustment and lack of being able to deliver a flexible product. Part of Apple’s huge success is down to their ability to converge technological platforms via Apple’s huge choice of applications; pages, numbers, iCloud, iCalendar and so on.
App development for businesses
So how do you make a successful app then? Personally, unless you’re a computer whizz kid or coding genius, you can make use of one of the app builder websites. However a project like this could potentially cost you a lot of your spare time. There are three things to do before you even touch a programming tool.
First, ask yourself what the aim of the app is. Then consider how much it’ll be to develop and download. Finally, thoroughly research the market you’re trying to enter; has what you’re considering already been achieved by another product?
Once these have been answered, visit a website such as www.ibuildapp.com, which looks rather easy to navigate. There are also a number of templates, especially good for those looking for something quick and simple. Other similar offerings that look just as useful include www.appmakr.com and www.appypie.com. You could always download Xcode for Apple or SDK for Android, but even from the beginning, they both look tricky from a general consumer’s perspective.
If you have an idea but need more technical expertise to develop your dream, why not find an agency that knows what they’re doing and ensure you get a good fraction of the profits?
What could an app do for you?
Creating an app can do wonders for your business. It can create a direct nervous system or ‘hub’ for consumers or even employees. Something as simple as newsfeed for company information and basic updates in one convenient, easy to download application can help you connect with consumers. Furthermore, by creating sign ups via Facebook, you can get content from the app posted on the social networking site which allows you another outlet of exposure.
For the right business, apps can be just as important as social media management, and research and correct construction of one is just as vital as your social media presence in creating brand identity.
By content assistant – Alexander Blakey