“I have an idea for a brilliant app, but how to get started?” This is a common question people who plan to launch a mobile app ask us.
Thousands of people think that they have a great app idea. If you’re one of them, then pull up your socks, because you got a great competition ahead.
“It’s not about ideas. It’s about making ideas happen.”
- Scott Belsky, Founder, Behance.
But, don’t worry. Read on, if you need help fleshing out your idea to actually build a business around it.
Here we will walk you through the step-by-step instructions to make your dream project a reality.
So, by not wasting any time, and words, here we go.
Validate Your Idea
This is the first and most important step for every idea and not specific to any technology.
It’s good that you have a killer idea, but it’s not about what you think. Instead, you have to figure out what your ideal users or customers think about your app.
You need to find out:
- What pain points your app is going to solve?
- Is the problem which your app will solve indeed a problem?
- Do you have a competitor? If yes, why would your users prefer your app?
You also need to ensure that your app idea is unique or fills a gap which no other app is doing.
The best way to start validating your idea is to ask your friends and family. Ask people you can trust to give you valuable and eye-opener inputs.
This will not only help you conclude if your idea is worth something, but it will also show you how to make the idea worthwhile.
Decide the Type of App You Need to Build
Once you have validated your idea, you’ll have a clear idea of what you need to work on. The most important and immediate next step is deciding on what type of app it should be.
- Do you want your app to be specific to any mobile platform like Android, iOS, Windows or Blackberry?
- How can your users access it? Can they access it from an app store, such as iTunes or the Google Play Store?
- Do you want a native mobile app or a web app that is optimised for smartphone usage?
Don’t get confused with too many choices. Just pick one and go for it. You can always tweak your strategy if need be.
Research and Read about App Development
This step may overlap with the second step.
If you’re non-technical, then you can find it challenging to decide on the type of app you need.
In that case, you may need to first acquire some knowledge about the basics of mobile app development. This will help you simplify your decision. Without this knowledge, you will not know what you need to know.
But, if you are aware of the basics, then this step will come after choosing the type of app.
In either case, you need to have a good understanding of mobile app development to ensure you’re on the right path.
Here are a couple of tutorials which can help you get started:
- Google’s First Android App Development Tutorial
- Free App Building Programs on iTunes U
- Paid App Development Training on Lynda
But, don’t just stick to these tutorials. Read interesting and informative articles or blogs as well.
This will help you to keep abreast of the latest updates. Some popular blogs you can explore are ZdNet, The Next Web, CIO and Forbes.
Identify and Meet the Technical Requirements
You don’t need to buy an advanced PC with the latest configurations for mobile app development. However, it’s better to go for this.
For Android or web apps, you can create the app with Linux, Windows or a Mac.
But, for iOS app development, Mac is the only option.
Also, you need to have access to a smart device (iOS, Android or Windows) depending on the type of app platform you plan to design for.
If you plan to write the code yourself, then you also need an Integrated Development Environment (IDE).
Here are a couple of free developer tools for different mobile platforms which you can explore:
- Eclipse for Android
- Xcode for iOS
- Microsoft Visual Studio Express 2012 for Windows
- PhoneGap for Android, iOS and the web
- Titanium for Android, iOS and the web
The biggest benefit of IDEs is that it offers a virtual smartphone to test your app for both Android and iOS.
Keep a Budget Ready
You don’t need to invest in the developer tools, but it will cost you money to register and publish apps in different app stores.
If you plan to publish on the Google Play store, then you have to pay a one-time fee of $25 at the time of registration. For Apple and Microsoft, it is an annual fee of around $100.
Also take note that you need to share around 30% revenue of every sale your app makes with the app platform companies.
We hope by now that you have a clear idea of how to move from the ideation stage to the execution stage.
Although you can develop an app on your own, we advise that you get help from a specialist. If you make any deadly mistakes during the development process, all your efforts would be in the vain.
Thus, consult with a mobile development company that has extensive experience in delivering projects like yours. This will also give you a clear picture of whether you’re on the right path or whether you need to make a change.
So, when do you plan to develop your app? Which platform do you plan to go for?
If you have any questions or need advice, drop us a note below and we will get back to you soon.