Decision Parameters Determining Mobile App Development Approach

Contributed by admin on 10 Jul 2013

Looking at the current scenario and agility in the enterprise business, it has become imperative for the front line workforce to make quick and informed decisions. Mobile devices provide timely access to rich information and enable faster decision making.

With a plethora of mobile phones, smart phones and tablets available in the market, it is now easy for the workforce to travel with business data.

However, every organization faces key challenges in terms of deciding the mobile application development approach. The approaches are native, hybrid (HTML5), cross-platform or middleware. Since, every approach has its pros and cons, enterprises need to consider the parameters below before deciding the approach to be used.

• Does the application require a lot of user interaction?
• Is there a requirement for rich user interface including (device specific) animations?
• Does the requirement necessitate leveraging device capabilities such as camera, location aware notifications, syncing with calendar etc.?
• Should the application allow the ability to work in offline mode?
• What are the target devices and operating systems on which the application should work on?
• How critical is code maintainability? Should there be a single code base targeting many platforms?
• Does the application enable data only for viewing or allow data to be modified as well?
• Does the application need to interact with existing enterprise systems such as ERP, CRM?
• How critical is security of data?
• What is the cost of developing solutions?

If the application demands leveraging device capabilities then, native is the best approach. This approach increases overall development cost however, enterprises can even consider staggered approaches for each of the native application development.

If the application requires data to be viewed and enterprises require a single codebase to be maintained, then hybrid (HTML5) based responsive design approach works better. However, this approach will not provide the native look and feel.
On the other hand, if the enterprise already has ERP, CRM systems in place, then either cross-platform or middleware providing ERP and CRM connectors would be a better solution. However, this approach would increase the cost of development due to licensing cost.

-Contributed by Santosh Madyalkar

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