Understanding the Process of Mobile App Development

An app development team discussing a custom mobile UI/UX

Table of Contents

With smartphones becoming integral to daily life, many companies have learned to harness mobile apps to optimise their businesses. A mobile app brings several benefits to businesses, including engaging customers, streamlining operations, and driving growth. This makes mobile app development a crucial aspect of modern business strategy.

This blog post will explore what the mobile app development process entails and what to look for when choosing a software developer.

What is Mobile App Development?

Mobile app development involves creating software applications that run on mobile devices. It encompasses an entire process, from ideation and design to coding and testing, to ensure the app performs seamlessly on mobile platforms.

What are the Types of Mobile Applications?

Mobile applications can be broadly categorised into three types:

Native Apps: Developed specifically for one platform (iOS or Android), native apps offer the best performance and user experience.

Web Apps: These are mobile-optimised web pages that look and feel like apps. They run on a mobile browser and are not installed on the device.

Hybrid Apps: Combining elements of native and web apps, hybrid apps are built using web technologies but run inside a native container, which is available on multiple platforms.

Choosing the Right Mobile Platforms

Selecting the appropriate mobile platforms for your app is a decision that impacts your app’s reach, performance, and development costs. Let’s discuss the most common types of platforms, iOS, Android, and cross-platform, and their key differences.

Development Environment and Tools

  • iOS: Xcode is Apple’s integrated development environment (IDE), known for its powerful features and seamless integration with Apple services. Swift and Objective-C are the primary programming languages used by iOS.
  • Android: Android Studio is the official IDE, offering extensive tools and flexibility for Android development. Java and Kotlin are the primary programming languages for Android.
  • Cross-Platform: Uses development frameworks like React Native, Flutter, and Xamarin. The languages used are JavaScript (React Native), Dart (Flutter), and C# (Xamarin).

Design Guidelines and UI/UX

  • iOS: Apple follows the Human Interface Guidelines, emphasising simplicity, clarity, and depth. Its consistent use of standard UI elements gives it a uniform look and feel across apps.
  • Android: Uses Material Design guidelines focused on creating a responsive and natural user experience with more flexibility in UI design. It allows for more customisation and diverse UI elements.
  • Cross-Platform: Adapts to both Human Interface Guidelines and Material Design principles. This ensures consistent UI/UX elements across both iOS and Android.

App Distribution and Monetisation

  • iOS: Apple App Store has strict review guidelines, which can lead to longer approval times but generally ensures higher app quality. This results in a higher revenue potential through app sales and in-app purchases.
  • Android: Google Play Store has a more lenient review process, allowing for quicker app launches. It has a wider audience reach with a larger market share, but a user demographic less likely to spend on app purchases.
  • Cross-Platform: Simultaneous release of apps on both App Store and Google Play, which benefits from combined revenue streams of both platforms.

Security and Privacy

  • iOS: Is generally considered more secure due to Apple’s controlled ecosystem and stringent app review process. Apple has a strong focus on user privacy and data protection, with features like App Tracking Transparency.
  • Android: Offers robust security features, but the platform’s open nature can lead to higher vulnerability risks. It provides extensive privacy controls, though they usually depend on proper user implementation.
  • Cross-Platform: Leverages the security features of both platforms and implements privacy controls across iOS and Android.


  • iOS: Has lower fragmentation due to fewer device models and consistent software updates across all supported devices.
  • Android: Higher fragmentation with numerous device models and varying hardware specifications, leading to app compatibility and performance challenges.
  • Cross-Platform: Balances the challenges by providing solutions across different devices and OS versions.

Development Costs and Time

  • iOS: Development costs are generally higher due to the need for Mac hardware and the premium cost of iOS development tools. However, development time can be quicker due to lower fragmentation and streamlined design guidelines.
  • Android: Can be more cost-effective, especially with open-source tools and more hardware options. However, the development process may take longer due to the need to ensure compatibility across multiple devices and screen sizes.
  • Cross-Platform: Generally has lower costs since it uses a single codebase to cover both platforms. Development time is likely to be faster as well. You can consult our team to know how much cross-platform mobile app development will cost.

What is the Process of Mobile App Development?

1. Ideate and Strategise

The first step in custom mobile app development is to ideate and strategise. This involves understanding the purpose, identifying the target audience, and defining the core features of the app. Having a clear vision and objectives is essential to guide the development process. Our team will work with clients to gather requirements and understand business goals so the app aligns with the company’s strategic objectives.

2. Market Research and Team Selection

Conducting market research is needed to understand the competitive landscape, user preferences, and market demands. Based on this research, you can select a development team with the necessary skills and expertise. Outsourcing mobile app development to a specialised company like Manao Software will give you access to a diverse talent pool for high-quality results. Our experts will analyse market trends and user behaviour to inform the development strategy. 

<h3>3. UX/UI Design and Prototype</h3>

A well-designed app enhances user satisfaction and engagement, so user experience (UX) and user interface (UI) design are critical for the success of a mobile app. The design phase involves creating wireframes, mockups, and prototypes to visualise the app’s layout, functionality, and user flow. Our UX/UI designers are experienced in building intuitive and aesthetic designs and interactive prototypes.

4. App Development

The development phase is where the app takes shape. Developers write the code, integrate the necessary features and functionalities, and ensure the app works seamlessly on the target platforms. Custom mobile app development focuses on creating a unique and tailored solution that meets the specific needs of the business. Our front-end developers specialise in building the user interface and ensuring the app is responsive, while back-end developers handle the server-side logic, database management, and API integrations.

5. Test and Iterate

This phase includes functional, performance, security, and usability testing to identify and fix bugs or issues. Through iterative testing, we will ensure the app meets quality and performance standards. Our ISTQB-certified quality assurance (QA) testers perform various tests to make sure the app functions correctly, while our security specialists identify and mitigate security vulnerabilities. Our beta testers provide real-world feedback for further app improvements before the official launch.

6. Launch and Monitor

Once the app passes all tests, it is ready for launch. The app is submitted to the respective app stores (App Store for iOS and Google Play for Android) for approval. Post-launch, monitoring the app’s performance, gathering user feedback, and releasing updates to improve functionality and user experience is essential. Our DevOps engineers manage the deployment process and ensure the app runs smoothly on production servers. 

5 Factors to Consider When Choosing a Mobile App Development Company

Selecting the right mobile app development company is crucial for the success of your project. If you are wondering how to choose one, here are some key points to consider:

1. Established Experience and Expertise

Look for a company with a proven track record and extensive experience in outsourced mobile app development. Review their portfolio and case studies to assess their capabilities and expertise.

2. Development Approach and Tools

Understand the company’s development approach and the tools they use. A company that follows agile methodology and uses modern development tools is more likely to deliver high-quality and efficient results.

3. Transparency and Ease of Communication

Clear and open communication is essential for a successful partnership. Choose a company that values transparency and keeps you informed throughout the custom mobile app development process.

4. Flexibility and Scalability

Your app development needs may evolve. Select a company that offers flexibility and scalability to adapt to changing requirements and scale the project as needed.

5. Value for Investment

Consider the cost-effectiveness of the services provided. The company should offer a good balance between quality and cost, delivering value for your investment.

Why Choose Manao Software?

Understanding the mobile app development process and the key differences between iOS, Android, and cross-platform can help you decide where to focus your app development efforts. Manao Software can guide you in decision-making, leveraging our extensive experience in mobile app development to deliver a solution that aligns with your business goals and user expectations. 

With over a decade of experience, we have successfully delivered custom mobile app development services to numerous clients across various industries. Our team comprises skilled developers, designers, and testers proficient in the latest mobile app development trends and technologies. From ideation and design to development and testing, we provide end-to-end mobile app development services.

We follow agile development practices to ensure flexibility, efficiency, and high-quality results. We also offer flexible engagement models such as dedicated teams and fixed-price projects to suit your needs and budget. Contact us today to learn more about our outsourced mobile app development solutions and how a well-designed mobile app can benefit your business.

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Understanding the Process of Mobile App Development

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