The market for mobile applications is already extensive and it exhibits no evidence of slowing down. Currently, there are over 10 billion mobile devices with Internet access that are expected to be in use by the end of 2015. As such, the app-building industry needs to grow to match the demand being achieved. Since the inception of this industry, a record number of 83 billion apps have been downloaded; with industry professionals predicting downloads to exceed 200 billion per year by 2017. Users are favouring the expediency and a better overall user experience of native apps on both smart phones and tablets.
The average user spends more time using mobile apps as opposed to visiting the mobile web; an average of 139 minutes per day. Let’s flashback to 15 years ago when the Internet was the newest ground-breaking discovery and companies were scrambling to put out a website with all their information; it seemed like it was mandatory if a company wanted to be seen as a worthy competitor on the market. Now fast forward to present day – the mobile age, companies are quickly realizing that in order to engage with mobile users, they need to provide them with a medium in which they are constantly interacting with – mobile apps.
The shift to mobile app development is about to get even more appealing to developers. Commencing April 21, 2015, Google will start implementing mobile friendly factors in its search results. It will rank mobile apps participating in App Indexing better in the mobile search results. This algorithmic change will have a significant effect in search. Users will find it much simpler to get relevant results optimized for their devices.
With all this over saturation of mobile applications, how can developers create apps that would stand out? Predictions on what the mobile application market should be like in 2015 indicate that apps will get more targeted. Developers should create apps that are more targeted for a specific need rather than building apps that serve a multi-purpose function. The more specific you make an app, the easier it is to stand out. Also, investing in graphics would be a plus in this visual age. Users tend to download an app that immediately catches their eye.
The success and rise of mobile apps is, without a doubt, the biggest player in the market. Pretty soon, most would be conforming to it. So what are you waiting on? Platforms such as Appery.io, Mobile Roadie and AppMakr make it easy for anyone to get started on building and joining the mobile revolution.
Centre for Enterprise Development- mCentre
Once your application is built, you can bring it in to the Centre for Enterprise Developments (CEDs) mCentre. mCentre is the only mobile applications laboratory and accelerator in the region which incubates high potential mobile app developers. This lab provides world class business and technical training to individuals on mobile app development and entrepreneurship on all platforms; Android, iOS, Blackberry and Windows.
The mCentre operates a mobile application testing facility referred to as the Living Lab, which provides testing services on all mobile application platforms, viz, Android, iOS, Windows and Blackberry. Using appropriate checklists, the tests use measurements which provide an indication as to where improvements, if any, can be made to the mobile application.
The mCentre’s also hosts an App Club which is an outreach programme to help build a developer community as well as awareness of different platforms, SDKs, APIs and other technology. Members of the App Club are afforded the opportunity to attend various training workshops and seminars all geared towards mobile application development and commercialization.
App Indexing lets Google index apps just like websites. Currently it is only available for Android.