No doubt iPhone porpoised the smartphone craze with its glitzy, smooth functioning mobiles. More importantly, it launched the App Store that has many mobile aficionados discover exponential ways to use their mobiles. And what is this App Store? It houses applications (apps) that can run many functions in the mobile. A simple example is that of a game app. Rivals of course followed suit but App Store has etched a strong brand recall that is difficult to displace.
App development has become a craze with individual and enterprises investing time, money and energy to develop apps, quirky, gamey or serious for different consumers. So what does it take to develop an app for the iPhone platform? The remaining part of this essay tells you just that!
Revving up iPhone App Development
In this blink and its gone app market more apps end up in the dustbin than those eking out a decent shelf life. Unless you're just testing the waters, you may want to ensure that your app makes a mark in App Store and stays viable for as long as possible.
Any help? Yes, some pundits of app development have shared their knowledge. The best of them has been culled and presented to you on a platter.
Visualize your app : sure, you know the type of app you want to develop. Now go a step further and conjure up the screens, the layout in each screen, navigation mechanisms and access methods. To make it stand out, the color schemes and usability must be top class. All these aspects must have congruence to the app's target. That is what gets the user to return to your app repeatedly.
Use frameworks to simulate the design of your app. You can see how it looks on screen what was till now in your mind. A few frameworks you can use are Dashcode, iUI and iWebkit.
Technical workout : to put your grand idea to fruition you need to get down and dirty in the world of computer languages. Some tips to keep your head high are:
- Render type of app: your idea of app must include the output-native or web or both. Each has its advantages. The Xcode kit that you obtain from App Store uses the Objective-C language.
- Access the app-Home screen icon: create your own icon of the size 5757 pixel file of the png format. When you place it in the root of webserver the iPhone picks up this image and adds its trademark gloss and bevels around it. You can also add a link command to specify the icon location, useful when your file is hosted in different webservers.
- Viewing adjustments-CSS and Viewport: customize the viewing size, text and functions by using a css for small devices and setting, via a command, the view size to equal the iPhone screen size. You can set the orientation coordinates to make the page and its styles appear right whether in portrait or landscape orientation.
- Free up real Estate-Hide toolbars: toolbars are OK for the web apps but not needed for native apps. Specific commands are available to remove the toolbar which frees up space and cuts down the scrolling in a screen where space is premium.
- Sensitivity to more touches-Touch Event tune up: enable the app to listen to more than one finger and fine tune the touch events, that is, touchstart, touchend, touchmove and touchcancel. This will enable the hardware to know the apt step to perform.
- Zoom: for the extra user friendly experience use the gesture, gesturestart, gestureend, and gesturechange events to provide the zoom and pan functionalities.
- Anything unique-special links: try putting some links (relevant of course) to YouTube, Google maps, Facebook and contacts like phone, email or sms (text message) to let the user just touch them to access respective functions.
Quality matters-test your app : testing the app and debugging to purge errors is an inevitable step. iPhone WebDev provides bookmarklets and debugging console in the Safari web which when enabled lists out the errors. A good many iterations of testing can make your app as error-proof as possible. Larger applications targeted towards data sensitive industries like Banking (mbanking) and retail (mretail) naturally require more bouts of testing.
Although you have ingrained the development process by rote, yet useful tidbits like these can keep you on track as well as accelerate your efforts in developing apps for iPhones. Whether you are an individual developer or a team member engaged in enterprise mobile app development, a trick or two can enliven your app development.What say?