10 Tools Making Mobile App Development Simpler and Facilitating Innovation

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Oct 2014
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Author : Pete Peranzo

Developing compelling apps for the various mobile OS available on the market isn’t easy. An app faces tremendous competition on the app store and it’s only the really extraordinary apps that survive and deliver high ROI for their clients.

New research by Gartner makes some shocking revelations. It says less than 0.01 percent of apps will be considered a financial success by the end of 2018. That’s an infinitesimal amount of apps that will be successful and earn money for their creators! These figures illustrate how important it is for developers to come up with superlative apps that deliver a fantastic user experience to target users.

While this is a challenging task, it is made a little simpler with the use of cutting edge mobile app development tools. These tools help developers do their job better and have the ability to revolutionize the way developers give shape to a brilliant app idea. One of the primary objectives behind the use of these tools is simplifying and
speeding up of complex development tasks.

So, let’s take a look at ten tools that are having a positive impact on how developers are building apps:

1. InVision

Prototyping is a huge part of developing a mobile app and most developers will tell you that it’s a tedious, time consuming process. But there is a tool that is of great help in this regard. InVision helps transform your app designs into fully interactive prototypes. Whether you want to showcase gestures, animation or transitions, this tool helps do it for you. InVision can be used to prototype designs for iOS and Android, and offers the benefit of real time design and collaboration.

2. Parse

Parse is a Mobile Backend as a service (MBaaS) provider that offers cloud based back-end services to developers. A large percentage of development time is spent building the middleware and backend of the app. With Parse, developers don’t have to worry about the infrastructure; instead they can focus their attention on developing apps. This platform offers server management services for Android, iOS and Window Mobile applications, which means it covers all popular mobile OS. The idea behind Parse is to help developers tap into the back end cloud storage for powering their apps.

3. Codiqa

Codiqa is a hosted service that helps you build jQuery apps conveniently and quickly. All you need to do is use the drag-and-drop builder to craft cross platform compatible HTML5 mobile apps. This app is great for developers who are new to mobile app development and have been tasked with getting out high performance, multi device compatible apps quickly. Developers can use this tool to improve their efficiency by a long way.

4. Salesforce1 Lightning

Anything that comes from the Salesforce stable has to be good and its brand new mobile app development platform is no exception. Lightning is the newer version of Salesforce1 and is a major improvement on its predecessor. Apart from facilitating ‘lightning’ fast development of apps, Lightning goes a step ahead and enables rapid app iteration.

The Lightning App Builder helps developers leverage prebuilt components from Salesforce.com and its partners to assemble high quality apps. What you get is the power of Salesforce.com to build enterprise apps and also the functionality offered by its partners to build some amazing consumer apps. You can do all this using the super simple drag-and-drop interface offered by Lightning.

5. Telerik Platform

Telerik offers a huge collection of UI frameworks and app development tools to developers who want to streamline app development for iOS, Android and Windows Phone. One of the tools it offers is the Telerik platform that helps developers create engaging apps using JavaScript. It offers a comprehensive web-based IDE that developers can leverage to build hybrid or native apps. You could even combine the use of this platform with some of the other tools it offers to make your development work infinitely simpler.

6. Tabris

As you look for the right development tools that meet your needs and requirements perfectly, you will be presented with lots of options. Your job will be to pick the best from the lot and whose use you can master comfortably. If you are not in favor of using HTML based toolkits like PhoneGap (this tool is a part of our list), you have the option of going for toolkits that use operating system widgets; one such toolkit is Tabris. It uses a Java-API to abstract native controls and functionality. This guarantees your apps don’t suffer from the UI limitations that apps built with HTML tool kits might suffer from.

7. Appcelerator Titanium

Titanium is a popularly used cross-platform mobile development tool by Appcelerator. This tool facilitates rapid app prototyping and since it’s built using web technologies, it simplifies the development process by a long way. It is one of the most comprehensive tools available out there and is backed by the truckload of experience and expertise that Appcelerator has in this domain.

8. Sencha Architect

Sencha Architect is an HTML5 app builder which, like many other similar tools available on the market, helps build HTML 5 apps for web and mobile devices. While ease of use is one of the many benefits it brings to the table, the range of user extensions it offers developers is its biggest strength. Developers can either build their own extensions or pick from the ones available from Sencha Market.

9. PhoneGap

If you think you don’t really have the experience and skillsets needed on core mobile technologies that will help you develop a cutting edge app, use PhoneGap. This free open source framework allows you to create apps with your existing knowledge of HTML5, JavaScript and CSS. All you need to do is develop a single code base and it will work on iOS, Android, Windows 7 and Mobile Web.

10. LiveCode

LiveCode is a scripting language that makes coding simpler. The language is as similar to English as a programming language can get, which makes it infinitely easy for you to code a mobile app. Irrespective of whether you are an experienced programmer or new to programming, the LiveCode development environment is an absolute must-use.

Conclusion

These are not the only tools available on the market that are making mobile app development simpler. There are plenty of others out there that are doing a wonderful job of helping developers build amazing apps that offer fantastic UX and progressive functionality to the user. You must pick the one that best suits your needs and requirements.

 

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