Filling the App Gap: The Challenges of Moving Forward with Cost-Effective App Development

April 21, 2013 Pivotal Labs

James Quigley’s recent Wired article describes the difficulty companies are having in finding their way toward cost-effective app development. The majority plan to create employee-facing apps, but are not sure what approach to take. Quigley cites recent surveys that show that much of the activity is still on the drawing board. Though 66% of companies plan to build mobile apps, 73% to date have built five or fewer apps, with 39% of those having built none or just one app to date.

Many don’t have mobile app development expertise in-house, particularly given the challenge of developing, managing, and updating mobile apps across a variety of platforms and operating system variants. This latter point is key because even if initially developing the app is cost-effective, you also have to consider what it will take to keep it updated, particularly given the frequency with which iOS and Android are updated.

Quigley also cites a survey by IDG that found that 86% of IT decision makers see enterprise app projects as “a critical or strategic priority,” while two-thirds of those respondents state that it is “extremely or very challenging to deliver these applications on time or on budget.”

Corporate app development may not be easy, but it is a strategic priority. Here are some ideas for cost-effective app development:

  • Jumpstart your efforts by outsourcing. You may want to bring mobile app development in-house after a while, but if there are certain apps that just can’t wait, consider getting some help from experts in app development.
  • Invest in a platform. Some of the platforms for mobile app development on the market today make it easier to create apps than ever before. Some are on-premise while others are cloud-based. There’s a range of options to look at to help you develop apps quickly and cost-effectively.
  • Go with responsive web design. Many believe, along with Mashable, that 2013 is the year of responsive web design. Instead of designing for desktop or browser screens, responsive web design considers the resolution and size of your device when delivering content. While responsive web design is really a browser-based strategy and not an app per se, it does make your content look good on numerous devices, which is both cost-effective and helps buy you time while you sort out your app development priorities.

We here at Xtreme Labs will be glad to advise you on your mobile app development plans and to discuss how we might help you.

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