Jan 23, 2019

The App Development Process: From Conception to Launch

Statistics from the first quarter of 2018 reveal there are more than 3.8 million apps on the Android store in the Google Play store and another 2 million in the Apple Store. Creating your own app in the face of that level of competition may seem daunting. You have to figure out how you can stand out from the crowd. While some understanding of Android Basics helps, it's also important to have a great app concept and a clear plan to get through the app development process.

The Big Idea

Obviously, a killer app starts with a great idea. For your first app, pick something that's not too ambitious. Ensure you've got a market by identifying a problem and creating an app to resolve that problem. If there are already similar products, see what they're like and what the users say about them. Also, consider how your app generates income. Are you going to charge an upfront fee, or offer in-app purchases for enhanced features?

Choosing a Platform

Choosing a platform is an important decision. You may want your app in the app stores, but it's a good idea to focus on one platform at a time to reduce your development and running costs.

Designing Your Concept

Regardless of whether you're going to code the app yourself or outsource development, you need to have some documentation defining your design. Simple sketches showing screen layouts, flow diagrams explaining how users transition between functions, and a road map for future content makes it easier for you to keep a clear idea in your head of what you're trying to do while also reducing the risk of a miscommunication with your development team.

Developing the App

If you're an Android developer, you may undertake the app development process yourself, but outsourcing development is often quicker and more cost-effective. To begin with, get the core functions running, so you're ready for launch as soon as possible. There's time to work on additional content once your app is live.


Register a developer account with your platform of choice, and upload your software, ensuring it adheres to all of the platform content guidelines. Once your app is live, make sure you advertise, monitor download and usage statistics closely, and listen to the feedback from users.

The Foundation for Your Success

Outsourcing is a cost-effective way to have talented individuals involved in the app development process. However, if you like to be more hands-on, it's possible to brush up on your skills and assume the development role yourself. Even if you don't fancy getting deep into the code, a basic grasp of core concepts gives you a better understanding of the technical jargon your programmers are using, so it's easier to communicate effectively. A Udacity Nanodegree program provides fundamental programming knowledge and system development life cycle (SDLC) principles that form the foundation for a successful career in app development.