Mobile applications have become the backbone of our mobile communication system these days. But formatting issues can spell big trouble for the developer, especially if he/she intends to create a multi-platform mobile app.
Today, mobile browsers can get easy access to mobile device hardware, which results in improved speed and performance. This and also the employment of advanced user graphics far reduce the need for a platform-specific native mobile application.
The Mobile Web, which implies the use of browser-based mobile applications, offers end users many functionalities and features, but sadly suffers from many issues today. These issues mostly deal with incompatibility and usability problems.
Incompatibility or interoperability issues are a consequence multiple mobile platforms, operating systems, a vast degree of platform fragmentation and browsers. Usability problems arise due to the small form factor of a mobile device, resolution, sound quality, difficulty in operation and so on.
The emergence of smartphones with a multitude of operating systems has further added to the list of worries for the developer.
Cross-formatting issues faced by developers
- The mobile apps industry is highly fragile and fragmented, with developers working on tight schedules and highly limited budgets. To make matters more complicated, there are numerous devices, brands and smartphone apps coming into the market every day. Developers are constantly trying to create more innovative apps for giants like the iPhone, Android and BlackBerry and brands such as Nokia, HTC, Samsung and so on.
- Developers hence start to wonder what they should start on first - the hardware or the software. Budgeting concerns take foreground too, with so many apps working on an unimaginably low budget.
- While you need to stick to a very low budget, it is imperative that your venture succeeds too. Even the slightest slipup is not tolerated and you may end up losing all your investment and hard work on it.
- Yet another point of import is that not all devices go down well with all sections of society. For example, it is generally seen that the business community largely prefers smartphones such as BlackBerry and HTC, whereas the younger generation prefers more flashy devices such as the iPhone. So a developer has to keep his apps open to all these platforms, without having to spend too much on purchasing dedicated software and too much time on debugging issues.
- Then there is the pertinent problem of popular app stores not accepting a developer's apps, no matter how good they may be. Many app stores stipulate stringent restrictions and submission processes, which can further frustrate the developer.
Though most developers continue creating apps because it is their passion, profits are still important to them. Offering a pittance by way of profits and slapping severe restrictions on them can interfere with their creative app writing skills.
Of course, the clear winner in this conundrum is the consumer, who receives a wide choice of devices, platforms and apps. It is this consumer who finally decides the fate of the developer and the performance of his apps in the market.