The popularity of mobile applications, or apps, has caused enterprises of all types to try their hand at the mobile market. Creating a mobile app that ties in with your enterprise can be a smart move, but it's not without some risk. Not only that, but knowing which of the two most popular mobile app development platforms to develop for can be a tricky decision to make.
Developing a Mobile App – Pros & Cons
Before creating an app for your enterprise, it's important to make sure it's a good investment by weighing the benefits versus the drawbacks.
Pros:- Provides better customer service, allowing users to access your enterprise directly from their phone.- Shows your enterprise is modern- Provides your enterprise with more exposure by essentially advertising your company to anyone that browses the app store on their phone.
Cons:- Requires a significant investment that may offer your enterprise no additional revenue.- Highly competitive app market means your app may not be downloaded.- Very difficult to develop a mobile app that perfectly fits your enterprise.
Once you've determined that a mobile app is a right fit, you'll have to choose which platform you want to release it on. The iPhone, due to its massive popularity, may seem like an obvious choice. For one, it has a huge install base that loves to download apps. Secondly, your app can be developed to work on any iPhone since they all have the same specifications. It does have its share of problems, however. For one, the iPhone app store is very competitive. The iPhone app store is significantly larger than the Android market, meaning you have less of a chance at competing. Secondly, while growth is high now for the iPhone, the market for Android-based phones is just beginning and growing at an exponential rate.
The main reason to choose to develop an app for the Android market is due to its growing user base. It has a huge install base of potential customers that continues to grow. Secondly, there is less competition in the Android market, giving your app a better chance to shine. Conversely, while the Android market share is widening, it is spread across hundreds of different phones. Making an app that works with all of them can therefore be tricky. Secondly, despite a large market share, the overall number of apps downloaded to Android phones is dwarfed by that of those downloaded to the iPhone. Even with no competition, your app still might not get downloaded.
If you are sure you want to develop a mobile app for your enterprise, you're currently better off developing for the iPhone. It's overall simpler to develop for, it has a large install base, and its users are known to download a lot of apps. If your iPhone app is a success, however, consider creating an Android app to match. It's a growing market for mobile app development that shouldn’t be ignored.