4 May 2016 · Absolute IT IT News

There’s an app for that.” You may have heard this phrase more and more because whatever you are looking for, well, there is actually an app for that.

As modern consumers, we depend on our mobile devices for everything from social media and world news to reviewing music and feeding adorable cats, yes we’re looking at you, Neko Atsume!

According to recent research conducted in the US, more than 70% of adult smartphone users use their mobile devices for accessing information. This, of course, is great news for shrewd retailers who have found that the best way to engage with customers is via an app. The news gets even better: it’s not just American businesses that are excelling at creating mind-blowing apps. Kiwi companies are getting a rather large slice of the pie…

App It Up = Amp It Up

Kiwi companies such as Smudge, work with a wide variety of businesses that want to engage customers through their apps.  But there is more to a great app than cool visuals, to create a successful app that adds value you need to do a lot of research. Only after multiple rounds of testing, developers are able to discover exactly what works, what doesn’t and which boxes to tick to drive customer engagement.

Savvy New Zealand business owners understand that their consumers’ demand for instant gratification is only going to increase with time. They recognise that successful apps make the buying process easier and stress/hassle-free, resulting in more sales, and happier customers. A great app simply eliminates potential problems between the consumer and what they want. So, if you want a pizza, and you want it fast, you order it through your smartphone. A match made in heaven. Or hell, depends on your pizza supplier.

Ding dong, the web is dead

app icons

We don’t mean to alarm you, but like the witch in the Wizard of Oz, the web is indeed dead. When we say the web, we don’t mean the internet – that’s still going strong. But, as mobile technology gets better and better, more and more users are moving away from browser-centric web surfing and are instead embracing the mobile app-centric universe.

Gone are the days of the “Top 100 Websites” features. Now it’s all about the best app roundups. And there are many, too many, even, to roundup here. If you are a developer, then this is good news for you. Your skills in HTML and CSS are easily transferable to create apps that are both functional and engaging.

Want to be a developer? App-ly yourself

With the rise of mobile apps,  web developers may want to upskill to take advantage of this exciting time in the IT industry.

This doesn’t necessarily mean that you have to enrol in an app-programming course. There are plenty of tools on the interwebs that can help almost anyone create an app with little experience in programming languages. Of course, if you have coding skills it can give you an extra advantage in the quest to create unique, engaging apps whilst also helping you put cash in the bank.

Mobile app development in New Zealand is a booming field, with plenty of job opportunities and interesting projects at small and large businesses and government agencies.

Looking to break into the market? Most of the leading app developers in New Zealand will want to meet with you if you have the relevant experience, but as a new entrant to the app market the following will help:

If you want to update your mobile app development skills, you have several options and you don’t necessarily have to extend your mortgage to cover the costs, there are plenty of free courses on Lynda.com to get you started. Both Android and iOS offer developer programs and resources for the budding mobile app developer:

  • Android offers comprehensive training guides, reference documents, and API guides to help developers get started and build mobile apps;
  • Apple offers an iOS Developer Program at a very affordable price that includes technical resources and the ability to test and debug your code on all iOS devices.

New Zealand App Attack!

Like we said earlier, New Zealand has a lot of innovative app developers who are making great strides in the IT industry. Here’s a sampler of the crème de la crème.

LWA Solutions

Rising Kiwi start-up LWA Solutions has just developed an app for Aramex, a multi-billion dollar Dubai-based logistics and services Company. With support from Microsoft, LWA Solutions won the pitch to re-invent Aramex’s e-courier solution. The company has since been nominated for the New Zealand Windows app developer of the year for Microsoft New Zealand’s annual awards. They have also developed the Ports of Auckland Monitoring, Silver Fern Farms Bulk Scanning and Trade Me Property apps.

Push Pay Holdings

Pushpay Holdings is an Auckland-based mobile payments app developer that provides mobile commerce tools that help make payments easier between consumers and merchants, with a mobile charitable giving slant. This year they expect to reach their massive target of $100 million.

Paperkite

Paperkite builds world-class, best-selling mobile app solutions tailored to their client’s specifications across various platforms. Based in Wellington, their expert team of designers, developers and project managers are mobile app game changers. Paperkite is known for the New Zealand Rugby, Transperth, Metservice and United Nations apps.

PikPok

Since 2009, PikPok has been making quality mobile games that people all over the world love to play. Based in Wellington, you might know them for Flick Kick® Football Legends and Into the Dead®.

Moa Creative

Auckland-based, Moa Creative develop apps for some of the most well-known brands, such as AA Tourism, GrabOne, 3 News and Air New Zealand.

Smudge

Smudge helps businesses excel by creating smart, innovative software that people love to use. You’ll know them by apps such as Coca Cola, BMW, Vodafone, Sky and New Zealand Police.

Let’s Wr-app This Up

app on phone niceIn 2014, the Apple iStore had 1.2 million apps available. At the time, Apple boasted of 75 billion downloads, and this number goes up every single year. Now, where’s the research on how many of these apps were promptly deleted for being too awful to use?

That’s the thing about apps: they’re not all created the same. Success isn’t necessarily a matter of chance, there are ways to ensure that the app you build finds its place in the world.

Smart companies build apps that deepen brand relationships with their customers, allowing them to use the app both inside and outside of their brick and mortar shops.  Customers or users want to be able to get things done in real time. So, if you’re able to engage your users and solve some of their problems quickly, then you’re going to have a successful app.

That said, if an app doesn’t work well, 65% of consumers are less likely to buy anything from that business again. This information only goes to show how important it is to iron out any bugs before launching your app.

Another interesting trend in the mobile app space is the way that businesses are using mobile apps to boost employee productivity and streamline internal business processes. For example, with the right app, a manager can track and approve employee leave applications, track and manage finances or staff can have on-the-go live sales and service support.

Research has proven that a mobile app that successfully engages employees results in a 38 % average increase in productivity, 40 % increase in partner productivity, and a 30% average reduction in the cost of a process or project.

Intrigued? Who wouldn’t be – the world of mobile apps is an incredible place with amazing opportunities for talented developers. When you’re ready to make the jump, get in touch with us and we’ll help you follow your dreams. There’s no app for that yet, so until then, let us help you accelerate your career.

 

Further Reading:

Video: http://www.forbes.com/sites/allbusiness/2013/11/14/how-to-build-your-first-mobile-app-in-12-steps-part-2/#6428d9015bb9

http://au.pcmag.com/apps/28557/feature/how-to-create-an-app-for-ios-android-or-windows-ph