Some things to know before you engage an app developer
- A Mobile Website is not an App (read this for details)
- Quotes for apps can range from as low as $500 (Run away from that in the opposite direction as fast as you can) to as high as $1,000,000+ (you are forced to run in the opposite direction)
Throw peanuts, attract monkeys
Note: However paying a lot also does not mean quality, it could simply mean that the agency could outsource your project or hire a developer on daily rates (short term) just for your project.
- Ensure that the developer/Agency you engage actually makes apps, not subcontracts it further.
- Ensure that no outsourced team somewhere that has access to your data and your IP.
- Ensure that the developer would not reuse your code and sell it to another client/agency for other projects.
- You will mostly get what you pay for – You could end up paying for more to fix issues
- Paying a lot of money (6 digits) does not always ensure that your app will be exceptional. It could mean that there are lots of people involved that you are paying for.
- Check that the developer or the organisation have actually created apps before and the ones listed in their portfolio are actually theirs (There are some unethical ones that put up links and names of apps that cannot be verified, or might have never worked on or worse still not even their work).
Find out if the developer you are engaging actually developed the app, not worked with the company that made that app prior or after their joining.
- Check that their apps are not just repackaged apps from open source code/Templates.
- An App that you can update from a web page is generally not an app, but a webpage dressed up as an app.
- If you choose a cheap developer, you will end up paying more. So choose wisely…
Our Development process
This explains briefly the approach that we take for developing apps. This is posted as a guideline for you, the client to understand the process better.
Step 1. Evaluate the project
We start with a discussion with you to understand exactly what you are after. We achieve this by listening to you and followed by a series of specific question that help us understand what it is that you are after.
Tech Talk: we scope your project and present it to you as a document to sign off with an estimate of time and costs.
This helps us be on the same page as you and helps you to understand the milestones and other formalities that are required.
Note: If your idea is confidential, we respect that and can sign a NDA to discuss your idea in detail.
Step 2. Requirement Analysis and Design
While many other companies could spend additional 10-60 hours discussing and picking your brain on your idea while charging you for that time, We work with your idea helping you blossom it (allowing you to develop your idea, if you were not 100% sure certain about the idea at the start) While we agree to the bigger picture of your app, we help you create/sort out the nitty gritty as we proceed. We do not hold you ransom to a tight document you signed. We help you build it in iterations, where you can see it shape and can guide us on what it was that you had in your mind.
Step 3. Making it look beautiful
An app is used when it is accepted by the user, a lovely app is a pleasure to use and that makes an app popular or less popular. While we develop the app for you, we also work on the design for the app and develop it with you. We do not force a glossy pre-made design on you. We respect your ideas and also advice you of various aspects like HIG-compliance etc (HIG = Human Interface Guidelines). While we can suggest the guidelines to follow, however you are the final decision maker on the colours and UI.
Step 4. Development
This is the most critical part, we do not outsource our development to anyone. We strive to provide you the value for money. There might be good developers in other parts of the world, but when you pay for a local company to develop for you and we charge you Australian rates, we provide your Australian work. We keep you, the client in the loop and provide a periodic update on the app. We also provide you with a developmental build that you can test on your device (when there is something that can be tested) This ranges from playable UI to builds app builds with features.
Tech Talk: We use agile methodologies including SCRUM and Continuous Integration along with version control
Step 5. Testing for Bugs and glitches
Many a times bugs or glitches become part of the app not because of the developers fault, but it could be entirely due to the platforms or the development software (external sources). There was a calculation bug in the Pentium processors (around the mid-90’s), recently many might have heard of the Apple Maps bug. Whatever the reason, a bug or a glitch can spoil the user’s app experience. We test the code thoroughly and also provide you with beta copies to interact with, in fact if you want some of your family members, friends and/or staff to try your software, we can provide you with additional beta builds for their devices. We do not just assure you verbally on the quality, we allow you to test the app and be assured of the direction taken. In fact we invite you to try and break the app.
Step 6. Uploading to the store / Deployment
We work with you to help you upload the app to the app store. We provide you all the details about setting up your accounts, and filling in the details, etc to set you up as a seller on the various stores as required. We work with you till the app is on the app store. We have not as yet created an App that was not approved by Apple or other stores.
If your app is for internal use and not to be made available on the App store, we help you deploy the app on the target devices for internal use.
On special request, we can provide assistance on marketing, website and promotion of the application.
Step 7. Support
When you work with us, we build a long term relationship with you and assist you as the industry evolves. We are an Australian, Queensland, Townsville based local company and we are there for you. If you need to have training for your staff on using the applications or even further maintenance or simply setting up a development team, we can also provide you with an on-site or off-site (via video conferencing) training.
Some things to note:
- Our expertise is Software Development with 20+ years of quality software development. We have also been involved with other developers in various capacities. Development is our forte.
- Our journey with Mobile Development started in early 2000’s with Microsoft’s Pocket PC platform (using eVB and eVC), so we are not new to the Mobile Development. We also understand hardware constrains that a mobile device brings over a desktop device. Something a lot of new developers fail to understand. You can see that in apps that take up massive amounts of space for what they do.
- Our software development experience has been with large projects, mainly focusing on DMS‘s (Dealer Management Systems, specialising in Service, Parts and Sales type functions) and ERP like systems. This gives us a better understanding of the business processes in comparison to a new developer that might have skills in a single area, namely development. We can also manage smaller projects and applications with equal ease.
- If you are wanting to implement an Enterprise app using mobile devices, then we can help you implement that. If an intranet website can solve your purpose, we want you to save your money because you do not need an App as a website would do. If your business strategy involves more than a website, then you need an app and we encourage you to discuss this with us.
- We create Native Cross-platform apps, we are not web site developers that provide you with a mobile website that looks like an app.
- We are Qualified and know what we are doing and even run workshops for many developers to learn developing apps for mobile devices
- We have run development workshops on behalf of the AUC, ACS and our Principal Consultant has been a lecturer at James Cook University, Townsville.
- We understand that you might not be certain of the exact requirements. We help you develop your project rather fluidly and save dollars than be rigid with a scope and add more dollars to the project costs every time you make changes.
- We choose our clients and projects carefully and we aim to provide client satisfaction.
- Most importantly, all the apps that we list in our work are actually made by us. We do not create a profile of other peoples apps and call it our own.
- We handcraft apps, not conveyor belt them. We do not simply change colours and logo and give you the same app that we gave another client or from a template. Nor do we simply bundle changed data and use the same shell to name apps differently. We pride ourselves in what we do, so we do not cut corners.
- Author for Learn Lua for iOS Game Development (Our Lua Book)
- Author for Xcode 6 Essentials (Our Xcode Book)
- Author for More iPhone Development with Swift – Exploring the iOS SDK (Our Swift Book)
- Author for More iPhone Development with Objective-C (Our Objective-C Book)
- Author for Pro Bash Programming (Our Bash Book)