A Guide to Android App Development

When you make a decision about developing an app for your business, the first few steps are usually the most crucial. such as choosing mobile platform to work on, features to add , functionality, target customer segments and possibly the most important, which mobile app development company you should hire. These decisions are crucial and will ultimately determine the success of your app launch. We at Gomeeki have created this eGuide to help you make your Android app development experience smoother. The guide is based on the Android platform, so we will review the Android app development and distribution process. We will also consider Android-for development environments and identify the app developers and designers that you will need in each step of your app development journey.

The Life Cycle of an Android App Development

Discovery and Research

This stage basically covers the pre-approval and business case development. Before you begin to develop the app, you must gather information about the needs that you want to satisfy or the problems that you want to solve by creating that app.

Concept Phase

After finalizing your research, it is time to lay important groundwork. You will need a developer produce a technical specification document that shows the proposed features and functionalities of the app, and the systems or tools you’ll need to integrate these features. You will also need a product manager with the technical know-how required to estimate the scope of the workload.

Wireframe Phase

When your spec. document has been made available, the next thing to do is create wireframes. The purpose of wireframes is to act as User Experience (UX) map that shows what options the user will have, and also as an information architecture blueprint – showing the kind of content that each part of the site will contain. Your product manager must be a UX/UI expert to make this happen.

Design and Software Planning

There are a few things to consider here. You have to take into account how you want your app to look, how you want it to work and how you want it to feel to the user. Your designer will then use Android Studio (and maybe Adobe Photoshop/Illustrator too) to create the Android UI (User Interface) which will include the action bar (houses the app’s navigation) and the contextual menus (containing dialog boxes, floating menus and other actions directed at specific frames within the app’s UI). Apps that run on Android OS 5.0 and above are built with Material Design, and you should take a look at the Android Material Design Guidelines to put you through. Here’s a link 

When designing, it is important to try to achieve Scalability. This simply means that you set up the architecture of your app in such a way that it is easy to dive into it and change or develop a few things when you have to, without needing to rewrite the project from scratch should your needs change in the future. Your developer/s should be knowledgeable about software architecture to make this work.

Coding and Integration Phases

This usually proves to be the most complex of the stages. There is a constant back and forth between your developer and your designer as they try to build coordination between the front end and back end architecture of your app. On the front end, you will be trying to get your app’s functions to come alive with code, and on the back end, you will be coding and integrating server-side components such as APIs and the database, and you will be linking them to the front end.

Your developer must be versed in server side and client side coding, and he must have knowledge of Android’s SDK, JAVA or Kotlin programming languages, Gradle build system, database administration and integration, server administration, server-side scripting and responsive design.

Note: Gradle system refers to the Gradle files that exist for each module of your app, making up the structure of the app. It is the official build system for Android and it is based on Java, although there are frameworks that make it cross-platform and able to support other programming languages.

Testing Phase

Next up, you want to test the app and see how it actually works. Your developer could decide to run the app on an Android Emulator, or a device plugged into their machine. Each screen should be tested for bugs and errors, and you will need to cover basics such as functionality, load time and handling, and UX. Any crash reports should be logged and reviewed for fixes.

Preparation, Publishing and Distribution

This is the point where your developer prepares the app for publishing by compiling it into a release-ready Application Package (APK) file. If the app will not be free, or if it has in-app products, you will have to setup Google payments.

The app gets a release key, final rounds are done on the code, and then it is uploaded to the developer console. If it meets all the UI requirements, you’re ready to go live on the Google Play Store!

App development does not ever really end, as you will be adding features and updates at regular intervals. Take for example, when the OS your app is based on gets an update, you will need to work on your app to match any changes made to the system, so as to retain compatibility. However, working with developers and designers that know the business is the first major step, so make that decision wisely!

Why not see what our customers are saying about us and how we approach your app development project.

“Smartphones and tablets are transforming how and where we consume news and information. The ABC must meet the challenge of delivering content to the audience at a time they want and on the device and format they prefer.”

Mark ScottManaging Director, ABC

The Broncos evaluated numerous Fan Engagement solutions over recent years and Gomeeki's passionate & experienced team, combined with their innovative FanTribe platform was the only solution that we believe will deliver a winning mobile experience for our fans.

Terry ReaderChief Commercial Officer, Brisbane Broncos NRL

“Health Partners selected Gomeeki on the basis that the services provided are far more than just an app development house. The relationship to date has delivered Health Partners the benefit of a much deeper insight into digital strategy, the power of Gomeeki’s Ubiquity platform and a disciplined, structured development process. As a customer, we have been delighted with the quality and outcomes to date.

Colin LangmeadCIO- Health Partners

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