App Development: A Complete Guide for the Non Tech-Savvy (PART II)


In the last blog, we explored the nature of idea generation for app development and ways to circumvent the traditional route. In this blog, we will explore the conventional course of developing apps.

The next big question at this stage should be how individuals/entrepreneurs/businesses can learn to develop an app that suits their project needs without breaking the bank, blowing their budget, or overhauling their entire revenue model?

Budgeting for App Development

Let’s cut to the chase. Many large app development companies charge more than $500,000 for a medium app. The cost can reach $1,000,000 if you want to keep everything you have ever dreamed of in your app. If you are a large, multimillion-dollar company, it might just be a la-di-da for you, but if you are a smaller one, you might be in for a bit of financial trouble.

This does not mean that going for quotations with experienced programmers is your next best course of action. Making apps can be an economical endeavor. It does not have to cost a fortune. However, it would help if you were smart about it.

Some of the handy tips to follow to keep the cost in check include:

  1. Keeping the design simple
  2. Making the design responsive
  3. Avoid push notifications
  4. Slashing the configurability as much as possible
  5. Creating hybrid app versions

App Development: What is Wireframe?

Validation of your app idea means that you’ve got something that people want to use. Now is the time to detail your product onto a document, or if you want to go the extra mile, use a wireframing tool.

A wireframe can be thought of as the basic structure of your app, a stripped-down, skeletal, or basal foundation on which the app infrastructure needs to be built. Most developers go for the classic black and white approach, but you can choose any color too.

A wireframe does not include images or text but has the accurate, to-the-scale elements of the actual design, like a blueprint of a house or building.

What Are Prototypes in App Development?

Prototypes fall between wireframes and a fully functional app. The most important part of a prototype is animation, which allows you to examine how your app will respond to user interaction, and page or screen transitions.

Prototypes can also include actual images, icon sets, and text, but the purpose of the prototype determines this. If you’re only testing out interactions and screen flow, you can create a prototype that only includes animations and maybe a bit of color. If you’re trying to validate your idea or pitching to potential investors, you want your prototype to be more polished, using proper images, text, etc.

SDKs and APIs in App Development

Everyone in the programming world is familiar with the term SDK. For the non-tech savvy people, here is what it stands for: software development kit or devkit for short.

It’s a set of software tools and programs developers use to create applications for specific platforms. SDK tools include a range of libraries, documentation, code samples, processes, and guides that developers can use and integrate into their apps. They are designed to get used for specific platforms or programming languages.

For building an Android app, you need the toolkit for Android, i.e., Android SDK. Similarly, for iOS, you need iOS SDK. Another example of SDK usage is for Bluetooth and wireless products, the Nordic SDK, and much more.

API means Application Programming Interface. In the context of APIs, the word Application refers to any software with a distinct function. The word Interface can be thought of as a contract of service between two applications. This contract defines how the two communicate using requests and responses.

Factors Affecting Traditional App Development

The following are the main factors that affect mobile app development time:

1. Mobile platform

Some specific platforms are easier and quicker to create an app from scratch than others.

For example, the Hybrid platform is often used by companies who want their app available to users as quickly (and cost-effectively) as possible. Check out this post to see which mobile platform is right for your app.

2. Level of functionality

You might leave some functionalities on the “nice to have” list if you must get the app out on time.

3. Resources

How many developers can you afford to have to work on your app? Usually, the more developers you have, the quicker the app is built – but this can increase the cost quickly and significantly.

4. Third-party integrations

Connecting your app to other services takes time. Developers have to learn the third-party APIs and implement them correctly. If third parties update their APIs, you may need to take time reconfiguring your connection with them to ensure that functionality stays the same.
5. Publishing to the App Stores

It is somewhat out of your control. Different App Stores can take longer than others to approve your app for release.
Of course, it can also be rejected, meaning you must go back, improve your app, and resubmit.

If your app is rejected by either the Google Play App Store or (more likely) the iOS App Store, it can be a devastating blow to your deadline. The best way to avoid delays is to read the specifications of each App Store very carefully to create your app in a way that abides by the rules.

In Retrospective

In this blog, we talked about some essential terms that can help non-tech savvy folks understand the app development environment a little better. However, this happens when you develop an app using programming and designing.

What’s it like to develop an app without using code or professional help? We can read more about it in the next blog.


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