In Part One of our two part series on tablets, we explored the top tablets on the market in 2014 and what they offer to both consumers and developers. This article, explores the perks & advantages of custom device application design and optimization.
Companies design applications to connect with their consumers–to attract eyes to their company or product. As developers, we don’t focus on what device the consumer uses, the goal is to hold the user’s attention and potentially engrain our client’s brand in the consumer’s day. When developing an application, one must remember that each device has its advantages and disadvantages, and one cross-device layout doesn’t always get the job done. By optimizing a mobile application separately for phones and tablets, it portrays your company in the best light and engages the end user with the best possible user experience.
As discussed in the previous article, tablets vary in numerous factors, most notably operating system, processing power and screen size. When optimizing a mobile application, there are a few options. Developing an application optimized for smartphones creates an app which can be used to its fullest potential on any smartphone, but the app’s functionality could suffer on a tablet. Developing a tablet-only application optimizes the app for tablets, but again, it will not work nearly as well on a smartphone.
The third and best option is to optimize the app separately for both phones and tablets. Although creating a phone or tablet-only optimized application is cheaper, when the design is optimized for each screen size and device type, your app always looks great, sacrificing neither functionality nor usability on any given platform and ultimately providing the best possible user experience. At Mystic Media, we recommend investing in both phone and tablet versions of your application to maximize the quality of the app, and vicariously the perception of your company.
Phone only applications can be fixed to have multiple viewing options. We all have seen and experienced the 1x & 2x buttons on iPads, which allow you to adjust the size of the application based on what device you are using. While this seems a reasonable solution in theory, in practice, it appears shoddy and cheap. When one application attempts to optimize only for a phone and utilizes the same general framework for tablets, it often ends up mediocre on the tablet. For big companies, it’s not up for debate–they recognize the importance of appearing on the cutting edge so they invest in multiple device applications
Take a look at the Youtube mobile app. Their iPhone & Android apps limit the app to display vertical orientation on phones, but on tablets they optimize the design to display both vertical and horizontal orientations based on the angle at which one holds the device. By optimizing the design of the app to change based upon the screen size and device orientation, Youtube allows for a customized feel and content placement on all devices, ensuring the end user will spend more time on their app increasing the quality of the user experience.
Device optimization is worth the time and money because it allows the mobile application to live up to its fullest potential functionally and is aesthetically pleasing on every screen. In addition, marketing your app in both the phone and tablet categories within the app store gives your app a major boost in visibility.
When developing an application, the number one goal is to avoid looking amateur. If the application looks amateur, it turns off the user, consequently causing less downloads, uses, and of course,money. In the spirit of app store optimization and attracting downloads, it is critical to maximize the exposure to your mobile application. Having a bad application is worse than having no application—it can degrade the business in the eyes of your customers and potential users. Rather than squander your time and money on a cheap app, satisfy and impress your customers by developing a multiple device optimized application.
At Mystic Media, our team is equipped with all the tools to develop your app, optimize it to devices, and even develop market strategies. We have the knowledge, the work force, and the work ethic to design your mobile app to its fullest potential. Contact us today by clicking here or give us a call at 801.994.6815