Although there is hardly much things standardized in “Custom App Development process”, but Agicent has come across many questions from the customers who were outsourcing app development that we felt the need to consolidating all those as one knowledge article and share with you all.
Starting from simple hygiene questions to critical ones and sometimes even the regular ones, we have many such questions being asked and answered every day.
So we thought to consolidate and compile some of the most important questions (asked by real people) and their answers in this post, hoping it helps anyone looking for app development services or Mobile App Development Companies. Here we go:
Q. I’ve a mobile app idea, how do I get it developed?
Great, so you now have to share your idea with mobile app development companies and for that you may describe the mobile app as a third-person as much as you can, so that we gauge the scope of the work and give the client an estimation (commercial quote + timelines). If you have wireframes or mockups then it shall be more helpful, else we can develop those for you if you give inputs.
Q. What if you steal my mobile app idea, how do I ensure confidentiality?
We won’t, we can’t do this since we’re a pure play service provider company and wouldn’t want to compete with our potential customers, ever! Also, if we just sign an NDA (non disclosure agreement) you shall be safe in writing as well.
Q. How to obtain an accurate quote? Can I give you hand sketched screen flows I created, kind of click the sketches and share with you? What is the easiest way?
Yes, absolutely. Would be more kind of you if you also care to describe some things via text. The more you try to make me understand your project idea, more shall I be able to offer you best advice and quote.
So the best input is “wireframes or screen drawings + description and a Q&A session”, second best is “Description and Q&A session” and least is “either description or Q&A”, and below least is sharing a “reference app” (I call it below least because you can only see the front end of a reference app and not the backend and therefore any cost idea is based on assumptions that can swing your estimation by more than 50 % at times).
And, If you are technical, then you know what we need.
Q. Native or hybrid (cross platform using xamarin, or phonegap, or ionic etc)
Long story short: Go for hybrid only if
- there is a lot of business logic on the front-end
- if your app is already existing and has good user market (and no risk of first launch)
- if you have more easy access to cross platform developers than native ones
Else go for Native, always, since those apps are best performing, take most advantage of the OS and if you don’t have much logic on front end (which is usually the case) you’d not be paying more for native w.r.t cross platform. Contact me directly if you need more information on this.
Q. You showed me some portfolio Apps, how do I know you only create these? One can bluff also…
Your concern is valid, so we shall let you speak with the mobile app owners who can verify we’ve created these; also if we create these we are able to show you that project in our company’s development console (in a screen-sharing session); on an android studio for Android app or on Xcode an iPhone app.
Q. Well, how much does it cost to develop an App? An idea is fine…
It will be asked always, so the summary is an app development costs between $ 3 K to 15 K mostly (from a simple App to a good functional App and then more price to cover more platforms). For a more detailed idea on cost, read this earlier post of mine app development costs. And for an exact idea, refer point 3 and contact me.
Q. How shall I be able to see the progress of my app development?
Our mobile app development company shall give you complete work visibility by using a handy tool Trello where you can see what job cards are being worked upon, which ones are delivered and signed off, and which ones are in testing (and yes, we shall break the project into several job cards and move them from “parking” to “doing” to “done” to “sign off” and you’ll get to know what’s going on).
And then, we shall provide you a weekly interim release (Ie. an app in progress) every Friday with release notes, you’d be able to run it on your device, figure any bugs and report or just share your feedback and on Monday I fix anything you report and proceed with developing remainder of the cards.
Q. How shall you ensure your company’s app development quality?
That we do objectively like this
- we define “quality” by jointly creating an “acceptance and performance criteria” before jumping into development (basically parameters on which the app should pass before it is called accepted)
- The developers do the unit testing on every functionality they make and then adhere to the acceptance criteria and an internal QA validates the same before we release any interim build
- you do the user acceptance testing (UAT) along with our QA and jointly add any issues figured in “Jira” or may be in simple Excel, that is assigned to development team and they fix until all is fixed and then release
Q. Is there any warranty your company can provide?
Yes, if we leave any bugs we shall fix them for no fee even after 3 months of delivering.
Q. Do I need support and maintenance services? And what does this mean?
You don’t need specific support services at least for initial few months of launch (since you already have a warranty to fix bugs) unless you need more than just bug fixing, and that can be (but not limited to):
- Regular time sensitive troubleshooting
- New Feature upgrade
- Upgrading to make it compatible with new OS version, and to also leverage new features of OS for the app
- Language support or localization
And you better get a separate quote for support and maintenance (minus warranty time) by first agreeing on the scope of work. However, if your app gains traction the chances will be you’d be needing more feature development again and in that case, there won’t be much need for a separate support & maintenance unless it is really a big need.
Q. How do I pay your mobile app development company?
You pay us in milestones, which are usually 4 or 5 or as we mutually define. Starting from the kick off earnest money to first UI release to a dynamic app (functioning) to an “App + Admin” to store upload. 20 % each in case of 5 milestones.
Q. Do I own the source code?
Yes, you do. We’d sign with you this Mobile app development agreement which ensures you shall get all the source code.
Q. Is paying hourly good or fixed price?
Fixed-price is the right method if you can define your requirements beforehand (even in the most easiest way we’ve described above) and then you can always put forth “change orders” to be priced separately during the development.
Go for an hourly payment (or weekly fee) only if you need a mobile programmer or a dedicated app development team for regular evolving product development.
Go for hybrid if one part of the project is defined (for example the App) and needs not so regular development, while other part needs to be continuously upgraded (like the server part) to take best of both worlds.