Native App or Web App

Apps are the Need of the Hour. Do you Agree?

July 10, 2019

During the International Design Conference in Aspen in 1983, Steve Jobs has envisioned a future where everyone will have “an incredibly great computer in a book that you can carry around with you that you can learn how to use in 20 minutes."  

In the same decade, Psion Organiser, a PDA or personal digital assistant was released by a London-based computer company - essentially considered as the forefather to mobile apps. The Organiser was a handful of built-in softwares like text editor, diary, calculator and other basic functions.

The world of apps has come a long way since then. End of 1st quarter of 2018, the number of apps available for download in Google Play Store was about 3.8 million, and in Apple’s App Store about 2 million.

Today, mobiles phones have become integral to life. From adventure games to utilities, third-party apps have come into play for almost everything. The idea has revolutionized the mobile tech industry. Businesses saw mobile apps as a platform to enhance customer engagement. Top business leaders invested in multiple applications for internal operations - project management to attendance tracking - to manage their operations.

But how has the app development process evolved over the years?

Not so long ago, app development was a huge investment in terms of time and money. But with changes in technologies, the process is more streamlined now. Primarily, the app development scenario has progressed in the following three areas.

Technology Advancements in App Development. We no longer need to solely depend on SDKs (Software Development Kits) to build apps. We can now employ Cognitive Computing, AI Automation, Machine Learning and Deep Learning to do market research and create features seamlessly. Instead of traditional methods of coding, Frameworks have evolved now. There are low-code platforms which allow to develop applications with GUI (Graphical User Interfaces) and simple configuration. Of course, in many cases, coding from scratch is still preferred but by and large, Frameworks are the best option.

Decreased Development Time with Automation. With technology innovations across platforms, apps experienced exponential transformation in the development process. Automation has entered different spheres and apps can now be ready in less than 15 minutes. This has reduced costs and apps can have revenue models such as SAAS.

Earlier, it took weeks and months, and involved millions to build one app. Today, the drag and drop features allows app development to reduce the process time up to 95 percent and pay only when it is necessary.

Reduced Costs with Rapid Application Development Frameworks. More emphasis is laid on designing an awesome UI with Deep Learning techniques and creating databases. Purebred programming is reduced to the minimum. The app development framework uses minimal code or no code and cuts down steps in the development process. These liberated the businesses from huge investments.

What apps are successful?

While mobiles are becoming an integral part of one’s life, businesses saw mobiles as a route to take businesses to customers’ pockets. It is not mere an option, but a prerequisite element for business growth. Customers are using mobiles for entertainment, to stay connected, to shop, get information and for almost everything else. Mobile apps have made all these activities simpler and faster.

In this rapid appification age, there are only a few successful apps which survived with time. Apps for mammoth social networks like Facebook, Instagram or Twitter, on-demand services like Uber, and subscription businesses like Spotify and Netflix are in the top of the heap. Then there are gaming apps like Clash of Clans.

Below are a few apps which grew popular with the time in India:

 

 

INDIA

 

 

Apps

Daily Active Users

Open Rate

Time per User

Avg. Monthly Downloads

Ola cabs

3.35M

7.46%

0:10:31

5M

Food Panda

3.39K

1.08%

0:01:35

7.4K

WhatsApp

167.46M

76.76%

0:40:56

60.7M

TSSPDCL

10.16K

8.24%

0:04:04

11.3K

ICICI Imobile

1.26M

13.24%

0:05:58

1M

Phonepe

3.59M

11.17%

0:07:05

8.9M

Source: SimilarWeb

How did these most used apps differentiate themselves from others?

For one, they have evolved with users’ expectations. Example - Facebook isn’t the same as what it was 10 years ago. When it all began, Facebook was a simple networking software inviting students at Harvard University to share photos and build a network. It moved to the world to friend, poke and share every moment. Today, the app is the home to celebrities, members of Congress, businesses and even for pets. The app provides a unique platform for businesses to grow and users to find what they want. Of course, Facebook recently was mired in controversy, but it has come out stronger and is using AI-backend tools to enhance privacy and data accuracy for better user engagement and experience.

Two, apps should be in sync with latest cutting-edge technologies like Cognitive Computing, Artificial Intelligence, Machine Learning and Deep Learning. They should use these technologies to create fluid UI and UX and offer maximum utilities to users. Third, there should be a revenue model to sustain the business of the app.

Conclusion

Today our lives revolve around mobile apps. Whether we need to wake up in the morning, do a quick exercise schedule, navigate to client’s office or book a dinner table, apps have made everything just a click away.