Sooner or later, any enterprise needs tools to work remotely, control key business processes, or organize external activities to interact with customers. In the IT world, such solutions are called mobile apps, which, depending on the technical stack, can act as stand-alone products or be part of a multi-platform resource that adapts to any device.
Modern trends match the first option: according to Statista, about 55% of users access the Internet via smartphones and tablets. According to analysts’ forecasts, this figure will increase in the coming years, setting the vector of technology development.
When a company decides on the need to release a mobile business app, the management must choose: to hire a staff of developers or delegate the task to outsourcing.
The GloriumTech team has analyzed the risks and benefits of outsourcing mobile app development, compared them with the advantages of the staff option, and is ready to share the results with you.
From this article, you will learn how to prepare for cooperation, choose the best performers, and properly organize the workflow.
Top 5 Mobile Development Trends in 2024
Current technology and development specifics change from year to year. It can be difficult to keep up with the trends, especially if your project falls between these changes.
Don’t get upset; most modern software companies adjust to the changing market in time. And Agile methodology disposes to fast change of vectors, technologies, and development positions.
Glorium Tech experts have analyzed the mobile software industry, studied analysts’ forecasts, and prepared for you a brief excursion into the trends of 2023.
Trend #1. Customer UI/UX
The target audience for a digital product is its regular users. This means that to retain them, you need to consider the needs of your customers and their preferences. In 2023, the focus shifted from innovative technology to usability and the interface’s intuitiveness.
Gesture control with a minimal number of functional elements on the screen is in fashion now. The ideal layout for the consumer looks like this: 70% of the screen is the content display area, 20% are the functional buttons at the bottom, and another 10% is the navigation or semantic transcripts.
Also important is the performance and smoothness of the program. To ensure it, you need to move from heavy animations and visual effects to simple ones. And the graphics processing should be moved to the server side.
Trend #2. Cloud technologies and platforms
Local solutions are slowly going out of fashion. They take up a lot of space on devices (100mb+) and perform all operations in device memory, loading the processor. They are being replaced by hybrid or fully cloud-based digital products.
Now development priorities are shifting toward deploying only the “client” part of the app on gadgets. Back-end, DB, and various modules are moved to the cloud and processed at the expense of server capacity. It’s the same story with graphics. Why download dozens of gigabytes of graphic content to your smartphone when it can be viewed directly from the server at the expense of the high speed of the Internet?
In addition, the cloud is not just hosting but a comprehensive tool for resource development and administration. A good example of such software is Netflix, where content and management are tied to the cloud and accessed by mobile and web clients.
Trend #3. NLP
The traditional way of developing through writing code and editing frameworks is gradually falling into oblivion. It is being replaced by code-free development methods based on simple syntax, templates, or constructors.
They greatly speed up the process of creating software and lower the threshold of skills required for the job. Even if not in 2023, we will see completely new development principles within five years. The process will become available to almost everyone. However, traditional methods will remain in demand for implementing complex systems.
The bias toward simplicity of development through code-free programming is a good trend that will soon shake up and transform the industry.
Trend #4. Automation, RPA
Global automation of all operational processes has become commonplace. Various algorithms are used in programming, QA, content creation, and production operations. They allow to speed up the work on the product, level out the human factor and reduce routine work by up to 90% while increasing the stability of processes.
In mobile app development, automation helps experts test code, fix bugs, and speeds up work on the project as a whole. Even if RPA capabilities are not up to the level of AI, they still have a positive impact on productivity as a whole.
As the technology develops, more productive and efficient algorithms will become available to developers. And though they will not rid experts of routine, they will facilitate the development process as a whole and significantly speed it up.
Trend #5. AI, AR, VR, IoT
Artificial intelligence is still in its infancy and cannot perform serious tasks. That’s for now, though. With the development of technology, the capabilities of AI will increase many times over, and it will be possible to delegate complex processes to it.
The situation with AR/VR is similar. The technologies are actively developing and upgrading, acquiring new functionality and areas of application. Now they are limited and allow us to apply them in simple tasks, for example, for partial immersion in video games/Real Estate virtualization, projecting objects in space. This may change in 2023, which will be the next breakthrough in the industry.
IoT is in its infancy because the development of technology is engaged by tech giants, linking hundreds of their gadgets into a single ecosystem. Some of the brightest names in the industry include Huawei, Apple, and Xiaomi, with its subsidiary brand Mija. In 2023, IoT will be one of the priorities in developing mobile software for the smart home and managing hundreds of smart devices of various types.
All of these trends have been popular for several years and will remain relevant for another decade. If you want to offer your audience the best software experience and the highest quality services – follow the industry updates and update your digital products in time. At Glorium Tech, for example, we monitor the technological situation in the world and timely adopt the top solutions for implementation in your software.
How to Run Development: Planning, Analysis, and Strategy
When it comes to releasing a mobile app, we most often imagine a finished IT product as a kind of benchmark to be compared to. For example, a successful service like TikTok. It is a seemingly simple solution with ordinary functionality focused on shooting short videos and publishing them. (In reality, it is very complex).
What is the secret of its popularity? It is demanded by the audience. Trends create game rules for us, and you get one of two possible results when following them: failure or success.
The same situation with any business IT product: if it is in demand by the audience, it will be successful, and if not, it is a complete collapse, even if the solution’s functionality is incredible.
There is no need to rush if it is not about viral solutions. So, if you want to launch a product on the market successfully, analyze your competitors first. Identify their strengths, weaknesses, USPs, and key features.
Copying other people’s ideas is considered a bad form, but creativity is encouraged. Your job is to work with marketers and analysts to find the key to success for popular apps, modify it, and apply it to your product.
Even if you have a cool and unique business idea, do not refuse to analyze similar apps. It will save you time and money in the future.
After analyzing the market and determining suitable approaches to launch your IT product, draw up a roadmap. Don’t try to omit MVP and implement all the planned functionality at once. If you are a fan of computer games, you probably remember the story of CD Projekt Red with ambitious promises and total failure at release.
The same result awaits mobile apps that contain everything at once. Prepare a list of implementation priorities. For example, if you develop software for shopping, then MVP consists of catalog, filter, shopping cart, integration with the payment system, and feedback. This functionality is enough for a release, which is also MVP at the same time.
Having released an MVP in PoC status, you choose one of two paths: throw your energies into upgrading the product or wait and then analyze the solution’s effectiveness. We always recommend the second option unless the income comes immediately and the app takes over the market.
But even in this case, you should not abandon the upgrade. Follow the trends and update your product as much as possible. The development strategy implies constant monitoring and analysis of the market, following viral trends, searching for the best solutions and new proposals.
In-house vs. Outsourcing Mobile App Development
When it comes to startups or business apps, the first challenge many company owners face is who will implement their project. The choice is not easy, but we will try to visually compare the advantages of holding a staff and delegating a product to outsourcing.
To get started, look at the differences between these two models:
|Know the business specifics
|Have general knowledge
|Have a specific set of skills
|Can work with most methodologies
|Work in a narrow niche
|Easily adapt to changes
|Maintain the product after release
|Maintain the product throughout the life cycle
|Costs for premises, equipment, salary, and training are required
|Only the service is paid
Outsource mobile developer in theory services look more profitable. Let’s figure out in which cases it is better to get by with your own staff and when it is worth delegating work to contractors. Check out the top outsource app development companies of 2022-2023.
Read more about – In-house vs. Outsourcing.
Individual developers will suit those who need a simple but functional app. It is not easy to assemble a sensible team of singles, and its effectiveness remains questionable.
UpWork and TopTal contain profiles of good experts, but there is a lack of project managers. It is also very difficult to pull them together, so coordination and synchronization of work is not a simple task.
Despite the high cost of maintaining a staff of programmers, testers, and project managers, this model has the right to exist. In particular, it applies to organizations that release their IT products regularly, supporting and modernizing them for a long time.
Examples are such giants as Google, Apple, Microsoft, IBM, Amazon, and others. In-house development staff will be good for:
- Companies that develop software.
- Organizations that maintain systems.
- IT startups.
- Businesses that conduct specific activities.
Some tasks can be delegated, but such organizations prefer to create, maintain, and update the main product on their own. Indeed, in this case, your staff will cost less than the constant orders of outsourcing services.
Mobile development outsourcing
Contrary to popular belief about the high cost of outsourcing mobile app development, remote performers are much cheaper for employers than in-house staff. We believe that quality services are an excellent investment in a project for both a startup and a large business.
Unlike ordinary developers, outsourcing companies provide a wide range of services, including:
- Business consulting.
- Proof of concept.
- Prototype and MVP development.
- Improvement and modernization of IT products.
- Post-market support.
On the other hand, the significant advantages of outsourcing are agile development methodology, high performer skills, and available technology. That’s why we always recommend delegating software development tasks to third-party companies. So who needs outsourcing services?
- Commercial business.
- Companies that provide any services.
- Logistic organizations.
Mobile development outsourcing allows you to save budget and time and focus on core business operations.
The benefits are significant, don’t you agree? Let’s discuss the types of outsourcing, challenges, and strengths.
Outsourcing Mobile Application Development: Onshoring, Nearshoring, offshoring
There are 3 models of outsourcing, classified according to the distance between the contractor’s company and the customer. Each has both pros and cons. Their common features are that they all involve remote work and flexible hours. Let’s take a closer look at each type.
This model assumes that the customer and the contractor are at a large distance from each other. It may cause some difficulties like language and cultural barriers, time zones, and mentality.
But there is also a downside to the coin: for example, if an American startup needs third-party developers and the budget is minimal, it’s possible to hire a team from Eastern Europe, where prices for services are much lower than in the United States.
Offshoring is the optimal outsourcing model for those who have a small budget or do not fit local specialists’ skills.
This model implies working with experts from neighboring countries. The main advantages are no language barrier, approximately the same time zones, and smaller distance, allowing the customer to control the development process personally.
Nearshoring only makes sense when the prices for the performers’ services in the neighboring country are much lower than in yours.
Read more about – nearshore software development.
The onshoring model allows for working with local experts. It is the most loyal type of outsourcing because there is no language barrier, the work schedule is synchronized, and personal meetings between the customer and the contractor are possible. Complete control over production, timely reporting, and work transparency are ensured.
It is suitable for companies with big budgets or operating in countries with low prices for services. If we consider the local US pricing policy, cooperation on this model is not always beneficial. Eastern Europe is much more loyal in terms of investments in IT projects because the number of developers is enormous here.
To summarize: to maintain a balance of price/quality, you should choose the outsourcing model that suits your project and budget. Too much spending on MVP development is rarely appropriate, and an overly advantageous offer may be fraught with low skills and poor implementation of your IT product.
Mobile App Outsourcing Company: How to Choose the Best Performers. Top 5 Tips from GloriumTech
What do you need to find a great contractor who can deliver the MVP and continue to work with the project even after release? First, formulate your idea digitally. Draw up a development plan and strategy. Focus on this checklist:
- Prepare the concept of the app, draw the design if possible.
- Describe in detail the desired functionality and interaction between system elements.
- Create a USP that will become the basis of an IT product.
- Consider how customers will benefit from interacting with the app.
- Prepare a detailed ToR and outline the boundaries of possible changes during work.
- Make a roadmap that includes post-market development.
This list will help you set the required technology stack and choose a contractor company. Most performers provide consulting services on a regular basis and, if necessary, will adjust the plan and propose their own ideas.
Now let’s figure out how to choose a team for outsourcing:
- Study the offers on specialized websites where the services of companies are presented. Clutch is one of them.
- Evaluate the rating of companies, reviews of their work, and case studies published by the authors.
- Choose 5 promising teams and provide competition for a vacant project.
- Check out the skills of the candidates. They must fit the necessary tech stack.
- Once you have selected a performer, conclude an NDA and define how to control workflow.
Focus on the price/quality ratio. Too expensive teams annihilate the budget before the end of the contract, and cheap ones often cannot solve serious tasks.
When choosing a contractor, compare the rating and prices of several companies. Study the reviews about them and the cases of past projects. Assess your budget and MVP requirements. Mobile app outsourcing company Glorium Technologies will guide you through all stages of work on a mobile app: from PoC and MVP to release and technical support.
With our help, you will receive an IT product that will strengthen your position in the market and bring profit. Do you want to implement your project shortly? Your choice is Glorium Technologies. You can write to our manager and get a free consultation.