There is no denying the demand for mobile applications in just about every capacity. The phenomenon began with consumer facing apps, allowing businesses to entertain, sell to, or build value for their customers. Then the call for business apps started to climb, as companies understood that having the mobility of mobile (see what we did there?) enabled employees and management to work more efficiently.
But once you get to the point where you fully understand the need for mobile – what’s next? Chances are you’re not in the business of building apps yourself and even less likely to have an on-site developer already. Not that you won’t get there, but the big question is, “Where to start?”
As such, we’ve laid out the choices for you to see your mobile app development options:
1) Hire On-site Developer
It’s a wonderful thing to have a developer on site. Should a bug arise, they are right there for you to interface with and determine what is wrong. Not to mention they are in your same time zone, a huge plus for those of you who understand the joys of working with others around the world. Oh those 11:00pm meetings…
However before you can dream of the convenience of a developer on-site, consider your particular business model. Besides the mobile app, what else can they help you build? Do you run a technology based business where your clients use your software? Or would this be a one time project and the developer would no longer be needed? In weighing your options, understand that an on-site developer, while convenient, is a pricey option.
2) Hire Offshore Developer
Offshore developers have their fair share of pros and cons. One of the best things about these developers is they tend to be one of the cheapest options. It is not uncommon for companies to hire dev teams in India or Russia, and the cost per hour is considerably less than developers in the US. If you are a start-up, chances are you’re watching a close budget and looking to save cash anywhere you can.
Though you may save money on the front end of the project, there are also challenges to consider that could cost you. We get requests every week from companies that have tried and failed to work with offshore development teams. Given language barriers it may not be entirely clear what you are looking for, leaving opportunity for misunderstanding. The team could build something you didn’t want, requiring you rework the app on your dime. Additionally as time zone was a convenience with the on-site developer, that is a weakness in this option. The aforementioned countries are on the other side of the world, which means when you submit requests they will likely not get back to you until the next day. While your eye may be on the budget, it’s probably on the clock too. Hurdling language challenges and time spent going back and forth could be more expensive than anticipated.
3) Do It Yourself
At this point you might be unsure of hiring someone else and considering, “Maybe should I learn to code?” Understanding a programming language is a powerful tool, so if you’re at all interested, learn code! The first thing to consider here is that the two languages most commonly used to build iOS or Android native apps are Objective-C and Java. However bear in mind that Apple just released its own programming language, SWIFT. It is absolutely brand spanking new and will be replacing Objective-C over the next few years for iOS development.
If you do choose to go this route, be prepared to spend at least 6 months to a year in full-time study. There are many great resources out there that can help you on your way, so fortunately there is no shortage of that. However if you do have a shortage of time, it would be advisable to try one of the other options. Do also remember that while creating your first app is great, perhaps you don’t want to put your company on the line with your first project.
4) Hire Mobile App Development Specialist
Whatever it is that you do, you’d like to think you specialize in that thing. Maybe you are the best in medicine or the best in construction management. When considering developing a mobile app then, a natural option is to hire a mobile app development company. These companies already know the ins and outs of creating a mobile app – because that’s all they do.
The benefit here is they have already built so many apps they can help you conceptualize precisely what it is you are looking for. While a traditional developer may have great ideas on how to do so, chances are that’s not all they do in their life of coding. The investment in a mobile app specialist may be an investment, but we choose the word investment wisely. The ROI on having a sleek looking app with rich design and drop-dead simple UX could be the game changer to helping your business explode.
So which option is best for you? You get to decide. Yet if you need help figuring out how you want to approach building a mobile app or have any questions, we would be happy to point you in the right direction.