Cross Platform Mobile Development Tools: Ending the iOS vs. Android Debate

A guide to the 10 best cross platform mobile development tools

It’s the mind-wrenching question that never really gets answered … should I develop for iOS or Android?

With all of the articles that have been published on the topic, you’d think the app world would have come to some sort of conclusion by now on iOS and Android development.

But they haven’t. And it’s because there is no easy answer to the question — both platforms are great, for equal and different reasons.

(For more on the pros and cons of iOS and Android development, check out our previous article on the differences between the two platforms.)

For consumer apps, it’s best to choose one platform first and build an amazing native experience for it. There are hundreds of millions of users on each platform, and they have come to expect a fluid experience with their apps.

Cross platform apps have limitations in terms of what they can deliver. However, in a few scenarios, the advantages of cross platform apps might make them a compelling proposition.

If that’s the case for you, we’ve put together a list of the 10 best cross platform mobile development tools currently available.

As you’ll see, different cross platform mobile development tools have different specialties: some focus on gaming, some are focused on data security for business purposes, and others specialize in letting you use whatever programming language you like, so you (or your developer team) don’t have to learn new ones.

Ultimately, which of these cross platform mobile development tools you choose depends on your needs and goals for your app-based business.

PLEASE READ THE FULL ARTICLE TO FIND OUT ABOUT THE BEST 10 CROSS PLATFORM DEVELOPMENT TOOL

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mobile app

How much does it cost to build the world’s hottest startups?

Could $100,000 and the right developer skills make you an overnight billionaire? How much does it really take to build a product like Twitter or Instagram? With mobile development agencies and product incubators on the rise and more corporate “labs” spinning out each day, there’s no shortage of talent to help you build the next great Web or mobile app.

We interviewed the heads of the top Web and mobile development companies, incubators, agencies and labs to understand what it takes to design and develop the most successful apps of our generation. Here are their breakdowns of the costs and time investments to create 10 of the world’s hottest startups.

1) Twitter

Twitter
Henrik Werdelin, the Managing Partner of Prehype, a venture development firm based in New York City that has helped build companies like Tradable, Barkbox, FancyHands, Basno and Path, says recreating Twitter isn’t necessarily difficult, but the layered features will take time to get right.

“The short answer is that it will take 10 hours,” answers Werdelin, who built a Twitter clone in a one-day Ruby on Rails course. “But a good developer could make it quicker.”

This means — assuming you already have a laptop — the cost is almost nothing to build the next Twitter. Assume $160 for a Ruby on Rails course plus free Heroku, a cloud platform as a service that allows you to instantly deploy an app.

However, Werdelin is quick to qualify his statement. “It’s not that simple,” he says. “These days, it’s less an issue of creating a technology stack and more about creating the ‘experience layer’ on top, the interface that makes a product relevant and intuitive for people to use while quickly demonstrating its value.”

Still, a product is nothing without scalability. “You can’t just build a product today, you need to build a venture. And that involves processes, structures, feedback loops, analytics and a community.”

Therefore, if you want to bring an MVP (Minimum Viable Product) to market, Werdelin approximates that you’ll need $50,000 to $250,000, depending on the skill sets of the developers and designers you hire.

Werdelin equates building a successful product to building a nightclub. “You need more than a DJ, a dance floor and a few bottles of alcohol,” he says. “You have to ensure that the right people come in at the right time, and you have the right decor, ambiance and music. And of course, the cocktails.”

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Apple Patent

Apple Patents A Clever UI Trick For Using Your Phone With One Hand

The patent shows an iPhone that can dynamically adjust its UI to the way it’s being held

Criticizing larger, so-called “phablets,” Steve Jobs once said that the iPhone was the perfect size, because you could easily use it with one hand. Today, though, the majority of smartphones Apple makes are too big for ergonomic one-handed use, and while iOS has a built-in one-handed mode called Reachability, it’s pretty limited, essentially cutting the screen in half. A new patent from Cupertino suggests an intriguing alternative: an iPhone that can dynamically adjust its UI to the way it’s being held.

In the newly published patent, which was first filed in late 2014 around the time of the iPhone 6’s debut, Apple describes a way for an iPhone to detect how it’s being held. The phone dynamically adjusts where buttons and on-screen controls are positioned, accordingly. So if you’re holding your iPhone with the right hand, iOS might display a special keyboard for one-handed use on the bottom right of the device, or adjust the buttons in an app so you can hit them with your thumbs.

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Blippar

Blippar’s app can tell you things about every object around you

Augmented reality startup Blippar has so far been known for using augmented reality and computer vision technology to bring information from the real world through your smartphone camera to your screen.

For example, if you aimed your camera to a movie poster adorned with Blippar’s “B” logo, it would serve up information about that movie on your phone.

But, as announced a few months ago, the company has a greater goal in mind: it wants its app to btell apart any object you point your camera to, and offer you information on it. The company presents it as a “Wikipedia for the physical world,” but it’s closer to a visual Google.

Today the UK-based startup announced the technology behind this concept, called Blipparsphere, is live. It’s based on artificial intelligence and machine learning, which help it identify everyday objects. The app then brings up relevant subjects in the form of circles with each one containing information in text form and linking to further sources.

Blippar’s app is available for iOS and Android. While it’s still early days, it’s capable of recognizing common objects without much trouble. Point the camera at something, and the app starts cycling through keywords that it thinks are relevant to it before settling on what it is.

It managed to identify my computer monitor, my coffee mug, and my coffeemaker and served up various bits of info on them. For my monitor, for example, it showed information on aspect ratios, the HDMI format, etc. It had a bit more difficulty recognizing my toaster, thinking it was a washing machine, but like I said, early days.

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Facebook Shutters Its Parse Developer Platform

Here’s a surprise: Facebook is closing its Parse developer platform. After acquiring the service, which at the time mostly focused on mobile developers, for a reported $85 million in 2013, Facebook turned Parse into one of its key developer services.

851561_358064504304297_846266674_nParse will still operate until January 28, 2017, so developers have time to move their products over to other platforms. That will still be quite a hassle for the devs behind the 600,000 apps built on the platform…

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Mobile

5 basic steps for building a mobile app

What are the 5 basic steps for building a mobile app ?

Build Mobile App

With today’s economy and lifestyle revolving around mobile technology, there appears to be a never-ending race to devise and create the “next big thing.” And more often than not, that tends to be a mobile app.

It’s certainly not easy to come up with a unique and innovative idea with all the new mobile apps flooding the App Store or the Play Store on a daily basis and having an idea is just the beginning. The process of creating a mobile app can be arduous and frustrating, but this step-by-step guide will facilitate the process for entrepreneurs looking to get started.

Read the full article here: e27.co/5-basic-steps-building-mobile-app-20150908/

Mobile Dev

Mobile Development: Native vs Cross-Platform

At Digitium Media we like to think there is no right or wrong solution for a given problem. It is all about balancing the the pros and cons to fit a particularly project definition. So why and when using a cross-platform vs a native solution?

In the last couple of years many cross-platform technologies were released on the market. Among many I can think of: PhoneGap, Cordova, Appcelerator , etc…

The belief ‘write one, run everywhere’ is still alive and attractive to most of clients. Even if now-days, most of the mobile features are supported such as the camera, gallery, geo-location, bluetooth and many more, a cross-platform solution is not always the right one. Some native gesture/behavior such as the long click or the back button are still specific to some devices

So when and why going for a cross-platform?

Pros:

  • It is less expensive. You can develop 1 code that can be deployed in almost if not all the platform that are currently on the market.
  • 1 code to maintain. If you want to add more features, you just have to do it once.
  • Good for fast prototyping, or fast solution deployement.
  • More adapted if you wanna display html based content such as form.

Cons:

  • Cannot translate the gesture / behavior that is specific to some devices. On an Android it is more common to delete a cell using a long press. On an iphone, users slide left or right. This is one example of many more UX design issues.
  • Less responsive. You cannot beat a native code in terms of speed of execution.

When and why going for native?

Pros:

  • More responsive
  • Faster at execution even though if now-days the difference is small.

Cons:

  • More expensive to develop the app across multi platform
  • Harder to maintain the code. You have to implement each new functionalities for for each platform you have deployed you application onto.

We always prefer to go for the native solution if the client has the budget. It is more responsive and the UX design is more adapted to the device characteristics. We like to think that if the application is a main business there should be no brainer. Go native. You want to get the best conversion rates as well as the best comments. However, if the application is more of a support to your main business or you want to do a quick proof of concept across different OS. Then cross-platform is an option you should consider.