It is known that many users (and, to be honest, some IT specialists) when speaking about mobile application development, mean primarily the creation and debugging of applications’ code. There was a time when such ideas turned out to be fairly close to the truth. But modern mobile application development consists of not only and not so much of writing code, but also processes that both precede and follow programming. Let’s discuss these further.
Seven Key Phases In Mobile Application Lifecycle
Just like a living being, mobile applications follow a typical lifecycle moving from the idea inception to imminent death. Each stage of app growth and maturity requires a different type of management to bring the most out of it. Here are the 7 lifecycle stages that mobile apps have:
- Planning. At this stage, the idea of an app is born and discussed. You have to define well the objectives of the app and the functionalities that will have to be implemented to achieve them. It doesn’t matter how much time you spend at this stage: think about all the time you invest here as the time that you will save in the following stages.
- Development. At this stage, designers and programmers work side by side to materialize the idea in a coherent way keeping user requirements in the mind.
- Testing. The stage consists of testing the app to ensure it has great usability and is error-free. When all the bugs are eliminated, the app can be presented to users.
- Security: Data security is another important aspect of mobile application lifecycle management. Management of access rights and adoption of personal data security measures are important aspects of mobile app lifecycle management that need to be done before the app distribution.
- Distribution: Once the app is built, decisions need to be made about the mode of distribution for an app as well as what analytics to track for app usage.
- Management: At this stage, the owners of an app need to track the app usage statistics and optimizing the app for better performance.
- End-of-life: It is critical to not have applications that are no longer maintained skimming around in open areas. This can lead to security issues as well as give a terrible client experience if clients think they are getting to a current reinforced application. Thus, at this stage, it is necessary to maintain a log of whitelist and blacklist apps and delete abandoned mobile applications. Making and executing ‘end of life’ choices for the applications in an auspicious way you take care of your reputation and show due respect to past and future users.
Here are the best practices for the management of various stages of a mobile app’s life.
Without formulated requirements, as a rule, it is practically impossible to properly organize work on a project or to understand whether the customer wanted to get exactly what was implemented.
According to analysts, almost 30% of the project budget goes to what is called a rework of the application. Moreover, more than 80% of this work is associated with incorrectly or inaccurately formulated requirements, and the correction of such defects is usually quite expensive. For this reason, close attention should be paid to requirements management.
The availability of a convenient requirements management tool greatly simplifies the creation of project documentation, not only in the early stages of the project but also in all subsequent ones.
Management of App Implementation
Application implementation is one of the most important components of a project’s success. here, it is important to choose a technology that will provide the best experience for developers and will stay current during the whole mobile app lifecycle. What’s more, the choice of a cross-platform technology like React Native or Xamarin will cut the development time and cost defining the time to market of an app. For this purpose, top mobile app development companies use cross-platform technologies and code for various operational systems at the same time.
Another thing to remember is that most projects enter the market as minimum viable products. Then, when users express interest in an app and its monetization works well, additional features are developed. Thus, the best practice in mobile app implementation management is envisioning its scalability or integration of legacy systems with a new application.
Change management is carried out at all stages of a mobile application lifecycle. Changes can be needed in the requirements, in the code, and in the up-and-running systems. It is difficult to manage a project without tracking changes. The project managers must be aware of what is happening at each stage and what has already been implemented in the project; otherwise, they risk not completing the project on time.
To solve this problem, you can use a scalable software configuration management tool that saves all the necessary data in a centralized repository and optimizes the interaction of employees responsible for various tasks. This product provides the project team with a variety of tools for publishing requirements, task management, planning, working, discussing changes, version control, and organizing workflow.