Several studies show an increase in number of users who abandon mobile apps after one time use. The developers have to focus on the user experience delivered by their mobile apps to generate more revenue. They also need to focus on the quality of the mobile app to make it marketable. But it is also important for developers to keep in mind the emerging trends in mobile app development to keep their apps relevant over a longer period of time.

12 Trends that will have a Huge Impact on Mobile App Development

1) Virtual Reality and Augmented Reality Apps

Both Apple and Google are releasing new frameworks and tools to bring virtual reality (VR) and augmented reality (AR) Apps to their devices. While announcing iOS 11, Apple unveiled a new AR framework – ARKit – to accelerate AR app development. Many developers already use VR technologies to enhance the user experience delivered by their mobile apps by creating an artificial world. Google has already released Earth VR to accelerate VR app development for Android. More and more developers will launch new AR and VR apps to complement the latest mobile devices and platforms.

2) Chatbots

Many analysts believe that chatbots have the capability to make web applications and mobile apps obsolete in the long run. Many enterprises already use custom chatbots to facilitate prompt customer interaction without deploying additional customer service professionals. Chatbots will soon enable users to perform multiple tasks – booking a hotel, purchasing grocery and buying movie tickets – without using various mobile apps. The developers must take advantage of latest artificial intelligence (AI) technologies to create chatbots, and explore ways to integrate them into mobile apps seamlessly.

3) Android First

Many analysts forecast the worldwide market share of Google will rise to 90% by 2018. But iOS App Store brings much more revenue that Google Play Store. But many analysts believe that Google Play Store will soon surpass Apple App Store in terms of revenue. Hence, most developers will build apps for Android platform to reach out to more users and generate more revenue. Google has been enhancing security and reducing device fragmentation to persuade developers to make their apps available at its Play Store before App Store. The mobile app development strategy of many enterprises will soon target Android instead of iOS.

4) Wearable Device Integration

The worldwide wearables market has been growing rapidly and consistently. The increase in worldwide wearable devices sales will persuade many developers to build apps for various wearable devices. Also, the developers have to enable users to access the same app on both mobile and wearable devices. While creating new mobile apps, they need to focus on wearable device integration. Many developers will upgrade their existing mobile apps to make them accessible on wearable devices.

5) Mobile App Integration

A single chatbot enables users to perform a number of tasks. The growing popularity of chatbots persuades many enterprises to integrate their mobile apps. Recently, Uber integrated its navigation and messaging apps to help users to avoid installing additional apps and adding extra icons to their mobile screens. More and more enterprises will unify their apps seamlessly to enhance customer experience. Also, the machine to machine communication facilitated by Internet of Things (IoT) will compel enterprises to integrate their apps with various connected devices.

6) Mobile Internet of Things

The smart machine to machine communication facilitated by IoT has the potential to transform each industry. At present, IoT technologies are used by a variety of solutions – smart homes, connected cars, smart healthcare systems and smart transportation systems. More and more users will soon need mobile apps to operate and control these smart devices and solutions efficiently. Also, the growing usage of connected devices and IoT solutions will lead to new security attacks and security breaches. The developers have to perform elaborate security and penetration testing to make their apps popular in the IoT age.

7) Keeping Storage Space Free for New Downloads

The latest versions of iOS and Android enable users to identify the memory and space used by individual apps. IOS 11 will even allow users to identify the rarely-used apps and offload them automatically. The users can easily identify and uninstall the rarely-used apps to create more space for new downloads. Hence, the developers have to explore ways to keep their apps lightweight to prevent installation. Many developers will develop both conventional and instant Android apps to prevent user abandonment.

8) Interactive Push Notification

Major mobile platforms nowadays allow users to check and respond to notifications without opening the specific apps or unlocking their devices. Hence, man modern users hate mobile apps that do not show notifications on the lock screen. While developing a new mobile app, developers have to use interactive push notifications to convey information without instaneously. The interactive push notifications will help users to save both time and battery life. At the same time, the interactive push notifications will also improve the app’s user engagement and experience.

9) Location Based Services

Most modern users love mobile apps that provide contextual recommendations and suggestions according to their current location. The location-based services help developers to create mobile apps that deliver localized and contextual information to users. Many enterprises even use the location based services to seduce customers by providing real-time deals based on their current location. The developers have to integrate location based services into their mobile apps to keep the users engaged monetize the apps efficiently.

10) Direct Cloud Interaction

Several studies show a steady increase in the mobile cloud traffic. The mobile data traffic is expected to be driven mostly by cloud-based apps in near future. Many users nowadays opt for cloud-based mobile apps to overcome storage space constraints. The cloud services will help developers to create a variety of apps that work seamlessly on both mobile and connected devices. Many enterprises will build, test, and deploy mobile apps in the cloud to avoid creating and maintaining physical infrastructure.

11) Mobile Payment Integration

A number of studies show mobile commerce growth outpacing desktop ecommerce growth. Also, most users nowadays access ecommerce websites on their mobile devices. Hence, the users love mobile app that process payments in a simple, fast, and secure way. The developers can use integrated payment technology to secure and accelerate payment processing. However, they also need to ensure that the users have option to make payment using Apple Pay, Google Wallet, Samsung Pay and Microsoft Wallet, along with debit and credit cards.

12) Modern Programming Languages

The mobile app developers are no longer required to write Android apps in Java and iOS apps in Objective-C. Apple recommends developers to write iOS apps in a modern, intuitive, and open source programming language like Swift. Likewise, the Android team recently extended first class support to a new programming language – Kotlin. Android Studio 3.0 will enable developers to write Android apps in Kotlin, while availing all development tools. Many developers even use Xamarin to write iOS and Android apps in C# that deliver native performance and user experience. Hence, the developers will soon write both native and cross-platform mobile apps in modern programming languages.

Each new version of Android and iOS come with an array of new features and enhancements. The new features provided by major mobile operating system create new trends and transform mobile app development. The developers must keep track of the emerging trends in mobile app development to meet the changing needs, preferences, and expectations of users.

Google has been taking new initiatives to make the web mobile friendly. In 2016, the company started rolling out the second version of its mobile-friendly algorithm. It even released a set of guidelines to make website mobile-friendly. Google even provided a web-based tool that enables developers to assess the mobile-friendliness of their websites simply by entering a page URL. In April, Google announced a new certification program for mobile website developers. With most users accessing websites and web application on their mobile devices, it becomes essential for web developers to understand various aspects of Google’s Mobile Sites Certification.

Understanding Important Aspects of Google’s Mobile Sites Certification

Objective

A large percentage of users nowadays access websites on their mobile devices. Google has been taking new initiatives to make mobile search results more relevant for users. Google requires developers to obtain the professional accreditation by clearing a certificate exam. A developer must be proficient in both basic and advanced aspects of mobile website design and development to clear the exam. He can even use the professional accreditation to depict that he is recognized by Google as an expert in mobile website design and development.

Prerequisite      

Google requires web developers to sign up for Google Partners to access the Mobile Sites Certification exam. The Google Partners program further allows the programmers to access training materials, industry research, and special events, in addition to the certification exam. A programmer can easily create his Google Partners account using his email address which is linked to him Google account. He even has option to set up his personal Google Partners profile and link the profile to his company’s profile.

Certification Exam

Each web developer has to pass the Mobile Sites Certification exam to obtain the professional accreditation. Google has designed the certification exam to assess a web developer’s knowledge about basic and advanced concepts in mobile website designing and development. The certification exam also covers important topics like advanced web technologies, advantages of building mobile websites, improving mobile website speed, and creating mobile user experience. The web developers can prepare for the exam by accessing the study guide available in the Partners Help Center. Likewise, he can take the certification exam using his Google Partners account.

Benefits

The Mobile Sites Certification will depict the web developer’s expertise in designing and developing mobile websites. The holder even has option to print the online certificate and link the certification to his social media profiles. Hence, a developer can easily impress his employer, coworkers, and clients by showing a certificate issued by Google. The Mobile Sites Certification will help employees to enhance their career prospects. At the same time, the certification will help freelancers to impress prospective clients and earn more revenue.

Accessing and Sharing

The Mobile Sites Certification will help the web developer to depict an accreditation which he has received after passing the certification exam administered by Google. The certificate holder even has option to communicate the accreditation to his employers and clients by mentioning the certification in his resume, business cards, and social media profiles. Also, he can access the personalized and printable certification in his Google Partners account.

Renewal

A mobile app developer can obtain Mobile Sites Certification by clearing the certification exam. He has to attend 65 questions in 90 minutes, and obtain an 80% score to obtain the professional accreditation. But the certification will remain valid for 12 months from the date of passing the certification exam. The developer has to retake the exam and obtain passing score to maintain the certification. Google will notify the developers about retaking the certification exam when the certification is about to expire.

The number of users accessing websites and web applications on their mobile devices has been increasing rapidly. Hence, it becomes developers to optimize websites for mobile devices and focus extensively on the website’s mobile user experience. The Mobile Sites Certification program launched by Google will make it easier for developers to build websites that deliver optimal mobile user experience. At the same time, web application developers can also use the Mobile Sites Certification as a tool to impress employers, recruiters, and clients.

 

Facebook is expected to have 2 billion monthly users by 2018. The billions of active users live in different regions and speak different languages. Facebook allows each user to translate the posts and content appearing in his new feed simply by clicking on a button. Recently, Facebook started using advanced artificial intelligence (AI) engine called DeepText. DeepText uses deep learning techniques to understand and translate text more precisely. Also, it enables various Facebook applications to speedup content translation. It even makes the translated content meaningful and relevant for users by understanding the meaning and context of the source text.

Brier Overview of Facebook’s New Text Understanding AI Engine

Uses Deep Learning Techniques

DeepText uses deep learning to understand the meaning and context of text more precisely. Deep Learning enables the engine to solve tricky language challenges. The engine is even developed based on extended deep learning ideas to understand text written in varying language and use the labelled data more efficiently. DeepText even has the capability to understand the meaning as well as sentiment behind the text. Facebook will keep using advanced deep learning techniques to make DeepText understands both textual and visual content in near future.

Understands and Translates Text Faster

Unlike conventional NLP techniques, DeepText does not rely on language-dependent knowledge. It uses deep learning to understand the meaning and context of content without any additional text reprocessing. The deep learning techniques help the engine to scan text written in multiple languages more quickly. DeepText can even translate the text in a faster but more meaningful way. According to the information provided by Facebook, DeepText has the capability to translate thousands of text written in 20 distinct languages per second.

Captures Semantic Meaning of Text

DeepText understands the text by integrating deep learning with a robust mathematical concept called word embedding. Word embedding helps the AI engine to capture the semantic meaning of word while preserving their semantic relationship. The mathematical concept even enables DeepText to understand the semantic relationship between words across multiple languages. The features help the AI engine to deliver meaningful translated content by building language-agnostic models.

Extracts Structure from Unlabelled Text

DeepText can further understand and translate both labelled and unlabelled text efficiently. DeepText combines unsupervised learning and word embedding to understand the unlabelled text precisely and extract varying structures from the unlabelled text. At the same time, it uses deep learning techniques to process the word embedding and refine them with small labelled data sets. It even combines supervised and unsupervised learning to overcome the scarcity of labelled data sets.

Facebook has already started assessing user experience by integrating DeepText with major applications like Messenger. The company further aims to keep improving the text understanding AI Engine in collaboration with the Facebook AI Research group. The upcoming version of DeepText will have the capability to understand users’ interests as well as visual content. Many analysts believe that Facebook will use its in-house engine as an effective tool to compete with other social networks and search engine. Hence, DeepText will soon enable Facebook users to translate their news feed content more precisely.

Contented by: Pmsltech.

At present, Android has a much larger worldwide market share than iOS. But Apple App Store earns 75% more revenue than Google Play Store. That is why; most developers make their mobile apps on iOS platform before Android platform to generate more revenue. The mobile app developers still need to explore ways to make the iOS apps searchable and discoverable to accomplish higher downloads and earn more revenue.

Apple recently redesigned its App Store to make it easier for users to find apps and games. The users can use the today tab, apps and games tab, and search tab to find the right iOS apps quickly according to their precise needs. Also, each developer can make his iOS app discoverable in a number of ways – choosing the most appropriate keywords, asking users to review the app, responding to the user feedback, and prioritizing screenshots.

At the same time, the mobile app developer can also make his app discoverable using several app discovery platforms. He also has option to choose from several app discovery platforms. Each app discovery platform comes with features to help developers to drive more traffic to the iOS app page. Also, the developer can use certain app discovery platforms to promote the app by targeting specific audience. Hence, a developer must use the right app discovery platform to make his iOS app discoverable and profitable over a longer period of time.

5 Reasons Why iOS App Developers Must Use App Discovery Platforms

1) Make the App Discounted for a Short Timeframe

Unlike Android devices, iPhones and iPads are often regarded as the rich man’s phone. But people using iOS devices also explore ways to download apps without incurring additional expenses. There are a number of app discovery platforms that help developers to accomplish higher downloads by selling apps at discounted prices. Some platforms even allow developers to make their iOS app free for a day.

2) Target Specific Audience

A developer can even use certain app discovery platform to promote the iOS app by targeting specific users. For instance, an iOS app developer can use TheiPhoneMom.com to promote the apps by targeting parents of toddlers, children, and adolescents. The platform helps developers to promote educational and entertainment apps for kids. But the developer can easily increase downloads by making the iOS app feature on the app list, great free apps, or weekly special.

3) Organize and Group Reviews

Most app discovery platforms enable users to browse through iOS app based on specific categories like games, books, business, finance, family, music and puzzle. Some platforms even make it easier for users to pick the right iOS app by organizing the user reviews. Most users nowadays read the reviews and ratings posted by existing users to decide about downloading a particular app. These platforms help developers to accomplish more downloads by organizing the user reviews and grouping similar reviews into categories.

4) Persuade Users to Review the iOS App

Often developers find it daunting to persuade users to review a newly launched iOS app and share their feedback. But the developers must explore ways to accumulate user reviews to accomplish more downloads within a short amount of time. There are certain app discovery platforms that help developers to get their iOS apps reviewed by more users. These platforms normally request visitors to review a mobile app without disclosing its price. They even persuade users to download the app by offering attractive discounts and daily deals.

5) Evaluate an iOS App before Its Launch

Many developers explore ways to get their iOS apps reviewed and assessed by real users before commercial launch. The user review and feedback further helps developers to launch an app that delivers richer user experience. There are a number of app discovery platforms that help developers to avail pre-launch exposure. The developers can even avail the commercial services provided by such platforms to accomplish higher downloads by promoting the app aggressively after its commercial launch.

Each iOS app developers have option to choose from several app discovery platforms. Some of these app discovery platforms support multiple mobile operating systems, whereas others support only iOS. Also, the app discovery platforms differ from each other in terms of features, usability, and performance. That is why; it becomes essential for the mobile app developers to pick the right app discovery platform to make their app discoverable over a longer period of time.

 

At present,Drupal is one of the in-demand open source content management systems.The themes,plug-ins and configuration options provided by Drupal make it easier for users to create and manage a variety of website content efficiently. Also, Drupal simplifies web application development by supporting a variety of content, content categorization, and advanced user management.

Despite being open source, Drupal has been updated by the community consistently. Each new version of the content management system comes with several new features to simplify web application development and web content management. The users can switch to Drupal 8.3 to avail a myriad of new features and enhancements.

Overview of New Features Included in Drupal 8.3

Redesigned Workflows

Drupal 8.2 came with a new experimental module called Workflows. The users can take advantage of Workflows to accelerate content management and approval process. Drupal 8.3 comes with improved Workflows with a redesigned user interface (UI). The redesigned user interface enables users to see the whole workflow on a single screen. The users also have option to create custom publishing states and control the transition between different publishing states. The feature will help enterprise to manage website content more efficiently by deploying multiple content writers and editors.

New Experimental Modules

The latest version of Drupal further comes with several new experimental modules – Field Layout and Layout Discovery.  The developers can use the Field Layout module to rearrange the fields of a form based on content or block types. Likewise, they can use the Layout Discovery module to enhance compatibility between core and contributed layout solutions. The API provided by the experimental modules further makes it easier for developers to register new layouts, in addition to availing five common default layouts.

A Stable BigPipe Module

As a dynamic web page serving system, BigPipe helps programmers to improve the performance of web applications significantly by dividing a web page into small chunks. Also, it pipelines the small chunks or pagelets through various execution stages in the browse and web server. Drupal 8.3 implements the dynamic web page serving system introduced by Facebook concretely. The developers can use the stable BigPipe module to render dynamic, personalized, or uncatchable content more efficiently.

Improved Content Authoring Feature

Drupal 8.3 comes with CKEditor 4.6. The updated version of CKEditor accelerate content authoring process by providing several new features – option to paste content from Word more efficiently and a new default skin that perfectly complements the administrative themes provided by the CMS. At the same time, the content authors can use the AutoGrow plug-in to customize content easily for larger screen sizes.

Improved Site Building and Administrative Features

The redesigned admin status report feature included in Drupal 8.3 sends status messages for the website consistently. The status messages will make it easier for site administrators to identify and resolve the issues affecting the website’s user experience. Drupal 8.3 also comes with a standardized views listing page and rearranged Views filters. Also, the images field accepts only images and does not show the confusing video upload option to mobile users.

Extended Web Services Support

Drupal 8.3 comes with new features, bug fixes, and improved responses to support web services more extensively. The site administrators now have option to register users through the REST API. Also, Drupal has enhanced the performance of the anonymous REST API significantly by implementing internal page cache.  The Drupal developers can now use the REST API to enhance test coverage. Likewise, they can check the 403 responses to identify why access was denied to the web services.

On the whole, Drupal 8.3 comes with a myriad of new features despite being a minor release. Also, it will continue to receive bug and security fixes at regular intervals. But the users have to keep in mind the minor changes made to the modules, themes, and translations while updating their sites to Drupal 8.3. Also, they need to test the update in production environment after updating to the most recent version of Drupal.

 

Many IT companies nowadays adopt agile or DevOps practice to deliver high quality software applications according to varying business requirements. But these practices require practitioners to unify their software development and testing activities. Hence, the programmers and testers have to work as a single team. Also, they must collaborate with each other throughout the software development lifecycle. The IT company also needs to explore ways to improve collaboration between programmers and testers.

7 Ways to Improve Collaboration between Programmers and Testers

1) Adopt Test-First Approach

Several studies have shown the developers can fix the bugs or defects found in software quickly if testing starts early in the software development lifecycle (SDLC). An organization can adopt test-first approach to start testing early in the SDLC. The test-first approach will require the programmers and testers to discuss the types of tests to be conducted. Also, the developers and testers will collaborate with each other to decide the tests that developers can perform as part of the development process and the elaborate testing to be performed by the testing professionals.

2) Make Programmers and Testers Work on the Same Machine

Often a programmer writes the application on a machine and the testers tests it on his own machine. The process prevents programmers and testers to collaborate efficiently. An organization can easily improve collaboration by making the developers and testers work on a single machine. The tester has to test the application on the developer’s machine as soon as the code is written. He can further share his feedback with the developer and get the defects repaired without waiting for the formal build.

3) Define the Tests to be Performed by Programmers and Testers

An enterprise can easily accelerate the software testing process by making programmers perform certain kinds of tests – unit testing, integration testing, smoke testing, regression testing and sanity testing.  The programmers have to perform these tests as part of the development process and before handing over the build to testers. But the enterprise needs to convey the details of the tests performed by programmers to testers clearly. The testers can test the software effectively by understanding the tests already covered and to be covered.

4) Make the Tester Identify Complicated Code

The testers can evaluate individual functionality or modules of the software by performing unit defective. Many enterprises require programmers to perform unit testing. But the testers can also perform unit testing and involve programmers in the testing process. The programmers can guide the testers to focus on specific sections of the code. Also, they can consider making changes to the code based on the unit testing results shared by the testers to enhance software quality.

5) Promote Cross-Training

Most programmers are not familiar with software testing techniques and best practices. Likewise, most testers also do not understand how to write and compile code efficiently. An enterprise can easily improve collaboration between the programmers and testers by making them learn from each other. The cross-training will make it easier for programmers to learn how to design and execute test cases efficiently. Likewise, the testers can evaluate the software more effectively when they understand its source code. Hence, cross-training will enhance collaboration between developers and testing professionals, in addition to enhancing the testing process.

6) Focus on Repairing Critical Defects

No testers can identify all defects in the software. They must accept the fact that certain defects will be detected by end users. Also, they can easily get the escaped defects repaired in the next release of the software. At the same time, the programmers also need to accept that no software can be released by zero defects. Hence, they must not confront or blame testers about the escaped defects. The testers and programmers must work together to get the escaped defects repaired as early as possible. Also, they can analyze the escaped defects to make the testing process more effective in future.

7) Develop a Collaborative Work Culture

While unifying software development and testing activities, an organization must focus on creating a collaborative work culture. The collaborative work culture will enable the programmers and testers to communicate with each other through informal channels. The professionals can further share their ideas and thoughts relating to software quality improvement. Also, it will make the developers and QA testing professionals work together on important activities like customer research, unit test designing, and user story development. However, the enterprise also needs to make both developers and testing professionals responsible for the quality of the software.

On the whole, each organization must explore ways to improve communication and collaboration between developers and testers while adopting agile or DevOps practice. It also needs to make the developers and testers work together by creating a collaborative work culture. At the same time, the business also needs to create an open environment where programmers and testers communicate with each other through both formal and informal channels.

 

As highlighted by several studies, modern people spend more than 50% of their digital media time on mobile apps. You must develop a mobile app for your business to interact with customers and prospects more effectively. But many users nowadays abandon or uninstall mobile apps after one time use. Your mobile app must deliver optimal user experience to keep the customers engaged and increase conversion rate.

You have to focus on the accessibility, functionality, performance, usability, and security of the mobile app to enhance its user experience. Also, the quality of the mobile app will be impacted by your choice of mobile app development company. You must evaluate the knowledge, skill, and expertise of the mobile app development company by asking many questions. However, you must ask some important questions to pick the best mobile app development company for your project.

8 Questions You Must Ask to Select the Right Mobile App Development Company

1) Where can I find information about the mobile apps developed by you?

You can always accelerate mobile app development and testing by hiring a company that has already developed mobile apps for various clients. The apps developed by the company will help you to evaluate its skill level, experience, and expertise. The reputable mobile app development companies will share links to the mobile apps developed by them with confidence. On the other hand, a new mobile app development company will hesitate to share links to the apps developed by it for other clients.

2) Can you share details of your past and current clients?

You can further evaluate the skill level and expertise of the mobile app development company more precisely based on the information collected from its clients. You must ask the company to share details of its past and current clients. You must contact the clients and gather the information required to evaluate the mobile app development company. The information will help you to assess the professionalism and reliability of the developer.

3) Do you have adequate industry exposure to understand my business requirements?

The mobile app development company must be familiar with your business and customers to build custom apps according to your precise business requirements. You must check if the company has developed custom mobile apps for clients from your sector. Also, you must ask specific questions to ensure that the company has the capability to develop mobile apps with specific functionality and based on precise business requirements.

4) What is your primary focus area?

You cannot make the mobile app popular simply by focusing on its features and functionality. It is always important to focus on the user interface (UI) and user experience (UX) of the app to keep the users engaged and convert them into customers. You need to check if the developer focuses on both UI and UX while developing the mobile app. You can always consider hiring a developer whose primary focus area is UI and UX.

5) How will you embed app monetization feature into the app?

The mobile app will help you to interact with customers and prospects more efficiently. But you can still consider including app monetization features in the app to make it profitable. Based on your strategy, you have option to choose from an array of app monetization features – in-app purchases, in-app advertisement, subscription, sponsorship, and freemium. Each app monetization feature will help you to generate revenue while making the mobile app free. But the developer has to integrate individual app monetization methods through varying processes. Hence, you need to check if the mobile app development company has expertise in including varying app monetization features in mobile apps.

6) Will you test the mobile app under varying user conditions?

The popularity and credibility of your mobile app will be affected if users detect bugs and performance issues. Hence, you need to select a mobile app development company that tests the app elaborately. The company must test the app across varying devices, platforms, and networks. Likewise, it also needs to test the mobile app under real user conditions to produce more reliable test results. Hence, you need to check how the company plans to test your mobile app under varying user conditions.

7) Will you help me to distribute and maintain the mobile app?

You must remember that app store submission process can be both complex and time-taking. Hence, you will need the assistance of the mobile app development company to submit the app to specific app store without any hassle. Likewise, you will also need to services of the mobile app development company to maintain and update the mobile app over a period of time. You must check if the company will help you to submit the app to app store and maintain it over a period of time. However, some mobile app development companies charge extra fees to distribute and maintain the mobile app for clients.

8) How shall we communicate during the development process?

You can communicate with the mobile app development company through emails, voice chats, or phone calls. But it is always important to check how you will communicate with the company during development process. You can even consider hiring a mobile app development company that delivers the software in iterations, and requires you to stay involved throughout the software development lifecycle. You can even check if the company is allowing you to track the development process through specialized project management tools. However, you must clearly understand how to communicate with the company during the development process.

You have option to choose from several mobile app development companies. Hence, you must all relevant information about each company to build a high quality mobile app. It is also important to ask specific questions to ensure that the ownership of the mobile app remains exclusively with your business. You further need to copyright the app adequately to ensure that no other app uses its features and functionalities. Likewise, you must determine the mobile app development cost precisely based on the fees and payment terms shared by the mobile app development company.

A number of studies have highlighted website downtime may cost a business thousands of dollars per minute. A website can go down due to a number of reasons including sudden and insane increase in traffic. Hence, it becomes essential for the enterprise to assess the performance of its website under both normal as well as peak conditions. Also, it needs to determine the maximum operating capacity of the web application as part of the software development lifecycle (SDLC) to avoid website downtime and crashes in future.

As a type of non-functional testing, load testing helps enterprises to understand the behavior of their websites under varying loads and conditions. The test results further help the business to determine the amount of load or pressure the application can withstand. While performing load testing, the testers simulate real-life user load to assess the performance of the website more accurately. They also use robust testing tools to evaluate the behavior of the application under varying loads and conditions within a short span of time.

Brief Overview of 10 Widely Used Load Testing Tools

1) WebLOAD

WebLOAD helps QA professionals to perform load testing of web application on both Windows and Linux.  The testers can further use WebLOAD to perform load and stress testing of web applications using web technologies like AJAX, .NET, Oracle Forms, HTML5 and Adobe Flex. They can even use WebLOAD with both on-premise machines and the cloud. WebLOAD further enables users to perform load testing with complex test scenarios and heavy user load. They can even use WebLOAD under a flexible licensing agreement and varying price plans.

2) LoadUI NG Pro

The commercial load testing tool enables testers to crate robust test cases with simple clicks. It further supports major protocols like SOAP, HTTP, REST, JMS and MQTT, along with varying API formats. The graphical user interface provided by LoadUI NG Pro makes it easier for testers to set up load scenarios. At the same time, the testers can avail advanced scripting feature and test result analysis. They can even set up both local and globally distributed load agents for varying load testing scenarios. The QA professionals can even reuse their existing functional test cases form both SoapUI and SoapUI NG Pro.

3) Apica LoadTest

The automated load testing solution is designed with features to facilitate load testing of web applications, mobile apps, cloud applications and APIs. The developers can further perform load testing the emulating the behavior of over 2 million users simultaneously. The simple and flexible load testing service provided by Apica further makes it easier for testers to observe behavior of web properties under both normal and peak loads. They also have option to choose from a variety of on-demand load testing services according to precise needs of each project.

4) LoadView

The commercial, fully-managed, and on-demand load testing service helps QA professionals to perform load and stress testing without putting extra time and effort. Unlike load testing tools, LoadView performs stress and load testing with real web browsers. Hence, it provides more accurate test data and emulates user behavior more precisely. The testers can further avail the cloud-based load testing service by paying according to their usage.

5) Load Xen

The modern load testing tools enables QA professionals to perform load testing more effectively by simulating millions of virtual users at once. Load Xen allows users to scale up the application according to custom load parameters and more virtual users. Also, the testers have option to create real-user-like scenarios according to the workflow. At the same time, Load Xen also provides an array of useful features including option to simulate millions of virtual users, create real user like interaction, create complicated scenarios, concurrent tests, and real-time test results.

6) The Grinder

The open source load testing tool is popularly regarded as the Java load testing tool. The QA professionals can use the Grinder to load test any application with a Java API. However, the Grinder still supports major protocols like HTTP, SOAP and REST Web Services. It further allows testing professionals to write test scripts in two programming languages – Jython and Clojure. The users can further simplify test script development by availing centralized script editing and distribution feature. They can even create test data on the fly by using the data stored in both database and files. The Grinder further allows users to perform load testing based on a number of parameters.

7) Apache JMeter

JMeter is designed as a desktop application and comes with a graphical user interface (GUI). The Java-based load testing tool further runs seamlessly on any platform that supports Java programming language. It is also compatible with several widely used web servers and protocols including HTTP, SOAP, REST Web Services, TCP, mail, LDAP, and MangoDB. The QA professionals can easily enhance test coverage by integrating Apache JMeter with a number of build and continuous integration (CI) tools.

8) Gatling

The cross-platform and open source load testing tool is written in Scala programming language. Gatling further simplifies test case creation by providing a recorder. The QA professionals can take advantage of the recorder to simulate user actions and create test cases. They can further customize test scenarios according to precise needs of each project. Gatling further helps test professionals to facilitate decision making by generating clear, colorful, and informative test reports.

9) Locust

The open source load testing tool is widely by testers to perform load testing of websites and web applications. Locust requires testing professionals to write test scenarios in Python programming language. The testers can further run Locust on both single and multiple machines. Hence, the users can easily simulate a large number of users at once by running the load testing tool on multiple machines. They can further take advantage of the extensible web-based user interface provided by Locus to generate real-time and relevant test reports.

10) Diesel Test

Diesel Test is originally designed as a regression testing tool. But it is completely different from conventional regression testing tools. It supports only keyword and mouse driven test script. Also, it lacks robust scripting support. But the testing professionals can take advantage test script playback feature of Diesel Test to perform load testing by emulating the behavior of a large number of real website visitors at once. The tool further allows testers to generate and analyze real-time test results on a regular basis.

On the whole, each QA testing professionalhas option to choose from a wide range of load testing tools. Some of these load testing tools are open source and free, whereas others are licensed and commercial. Hence, it becomes essential for software testing professionals to evaluate various load testing tools according to precise requirements of each project.

 

As highlighted by several studies, modern users spend more time on mobile devices than desktop and laptop computers. A large percentage of modern users even access websites and web applications on their smartphones and tablets. They even expect the websites to look, feel and function just like mobile apps. Hence, it becomes essential for enterprises to keep users engaged by optimizing their websites and web applications for varying mobile devices. You must focus on the accessibility, functionality, performance, usability, and user experience of its website to make it deliver optimal mobile experience. Also, you need to explore ways to make the website deliver optimal user experience across many mobile devices and platforms.

10 Tricks to Optimize Your Web Applications for Mobile Devices

1) Switch to Responsive Web Design

Responsive web design makes the website look good and deliver richer user experience on a variety of devices. The web developers can further use the same code base to optimize the website for various mobile devices and platforms. The single code base makes it easier for developers to add new functionality to the website or deliver updated content without putting extra effort. They can further use a number of responsive technology frameworks to optimize the website for computers, smartphones, tablets and phablets at once.

2) Focus on the Website’s Navigability

To keep the user engaged, you need to ensure that the website is navigable on a variety of mobile devices. The users must be able to navigate the website completely with a single hand. Also, they must be able to read the website content on smaller screens without any hassle. You also need to make sure that buttons, tap elements, menu navigation and other elements of the website are optimized for touch screens.

3)  Keep the Design Clean and Simple

Most users nowadays avoid websites that look complex or cluttered. So you need to ensure that the website keeps the mobile device users engaged, and convey the desired message within a few seconds. While optimizing the website for mobile devices, you must opt for a design that is both simple and clean. At the same time, you need to optimize graphics, videos and copy for mobile devices to make the website work seamlessly on devices with smaller screens.

4)  Keep the Website Content Concise and Catchy

The website content also needs to be optimized by keeping in mind the choices of mobile device users. The smaller screen sizes of mobile devices often make it difficult for users to read lengthy and unstructured website content. Also, most users keep scrolling the page while reading the content. That is why; you need to make the website content clean. But it is also important to keep the content catchy enough to keep the users interested and engaged.

5) Include Mobile Icons

A number of studies have highlighted that many modern people prefer mobile apps to mobile websites. Many users even expect the website to function like a mobile app, while taking advantage of the native features of the underlying devices. So you have to explore ways to make the website look and feel like a mobile app on various devices. You can always make the website look like an app by conveying instructions or information to users through commonly used mobile icons and symbols. For instance, you can always use commonly used mobile icons to replace phrases like share on social networks, tap to call, and find the menu.

6) Optimize Website’s Loading Speed

The loading speed and performance of a website will directly impact its popularity among smartphone users. Many users still access mobile websites on slower internet connections like 2G and 3G. So you need to ensure that the user can access the website on their mobile devices with a variety on networks and internet connections. You can easily boost the loading speed of the mobile website by cropping, resizing and optimizing images for mobile devices. Likewise, media queries will help you to strip down the high resolution images used by the desktop version of the website.

7) Optimize Forms for Mobile Devices

You can easily receive user information and input by including a number of forms in the mobile website. But you must not forget to optimize the forms for mobile devices. The mobile version of the forms must ask the users to submit minimal but key information. You need to explore ways to reduce the number and size of fields in each form. For instance, you can take advantage of the GPS to remove zip, city, state and similar fields from a registration form.

8) Use HTML5 Videos

You can always embed short videos in the mobile websites to keep the users engaged, and convey the desired message more effectively. But the video clips often impact the speed and performance of a mobile website. So you must consider using HTML5 videos to enable users to access the videos without installing any additional extension or plug-ins. HTML5 further make the videos look good on a variety of mobile devices, without affecting the overall speed of the website.

9) Avoid Using Pop-up Windows

Often common features included in the desktop version of the website affect the user experience of its mobile-version adversely. For instance, desktop websites commonly used popup windows to convey attractive offers to users or make them submit specific information. But the popup windows will affect the user experience of a mobile website directly and adversely. So you must avoid using popup windows while optimizing the website for mobile devices.

10) Consider Delivering Personalized User Experience

You can always make the website behave like a mobile app by delivering personalized user experience. The website can easily deliver personalized user experience by taking advantage of native features of the mobile devices like GPS. You can always avail the geolocation feature of the mobile device to help the users find nearby stores, avail relevant offers, and make payment in the most appropriate currency. You can even use the features to enable users to stay connected with the most relevant social community.

While optimizing your website for mobile devices, you must not forget to test is thoroughly and repeatedly. You must deploy seasoned testers and invest in robust mobile app testing tools to assess the application’s accessibility, functionality, performance, usability, and user experience across multiple mobile platforms and devices. The test results will help you to assess the mobile user experience delivered by the website. Also, you can optimize the application for mobile devices more effectively based on the testing results.

Most web developers nowadays combine HTML5, CSS3 and JavaScript to create websites and web applications that deliver richer user experience across many devices, platforms, and browsers. The developers also use a variety of JavaScript libraries to simplify and speed up web application development. For instance, the web developers use robust front-end libraries like React.js to create composable and interactive user interfaces (UIs).

React.js further help programmers to create reusable UI components that present dynamic and changing data efficiently. Next.js is an open source and lightweight framework built on top of React.js. The web developers use Next.js to create universal JavaScript applications. They can further run on web application developed with Next.js on multiple browsers, servers, platforms, and devices with a single code base. Despite being a minimalist and modern JavaScript library, Next.js comes with features to facilitate development of universal web applications.

Understanding Important Features of Node.js

Built on Top of 3 JavaScript Frameworks

Next.js is developed on top of three distinct JavaScript libraries – React.js, Babel.js and Webpack.js. React is a front-end JavaScript library, whereas Babel is a compiler for writing next-generation JavaScript applications. At the same time, Webpack is designed as a module bundler. It helps programmers to bundle JavaScript files for usage for web browsers.

Facilitates Isomorphic JavaScript Application Development

Despite being a minimalist JavaScript framework, Next.js comes with features to simplify development of universal JavaScript applications. The applications developed with Next.js are compatible with varying browsers, servers, platforms, and devices. Also, the single code base makes it easier for developers to build, maintain, and manage a variety of isomorphic JavaScript applications efficiently.

A Minimalist JavaScript Framework

As mentioned earlier, Next.js is developed on top of three JavaScript frameworks. It enables programmers to create robust isomorphic applications by using React components, Babel plug-ins, and Webpack loaders. But it is designed as a lightweight and minimalist framework. Next.js lacks some of the robust features provided by popular JavaScript frameworks including built-in testing framework, data system, and auth system. It comes with features to facilitate development of isomorphic JavaScript applications.

Server Side Rendering

Next.js is designed as a JavaScript client-side framework. But it comes with features to render React components on the server-side. The Next.js components stored in the page directory automatically get rendered on the server-side. Also, the server-side scripts are automatically inlined each time the components are server rendered.

Code Splitting

Despite rendering components on the server-side, Next.js still keeps the application’s front-end and back-end decoupled. Hence, the developers can work with varying back-ends while using Next.js as the front-end framework. The feature further helps programmers to keep the client-side and server-side code separated. They can even modify or replace the back-end used by the application in future while scaling or expansion.

File System Based Router

Like other JavaScript frameworks, Next.js also comes with its own router. But it uses the file system as the router of the application. The developers have to create files for each web page inside the page directory, and export React components containing the file content. The feature makes the server render only the modules required by the pages to be loaded.

Option to Use CSS Stylesheets

Next.js is designed with built-in support for CSS. Hence, it allows developers to customize and style web pages by CSS stylesheets. The CSS support further helps developers to make the web application look good on both computers and mobile devices. The programmers also have option to use existing CSS-in-JS solutions while developing universal JavaScript applications. However, they currently lack the option to render CSS elements on the server.

Easy Deployment and Zero Configurations

The web developers can install and configure Next.js just like other JavaScript packages. They can even install and set up the framework by using widely used package managers like npm or Yarn. Also, the developers can easily customize configuration of Next.js to add React components, Babel plug-ins, and Webpack loaders to the universal JavaScript application.

On the whole, Next.js enables JavaScript programmers to create universal web applications that run seamlessly across multiple browsers, servers, platforms, and devices. They can further use the latest version of Next.js to simplify and speed up universal web application development. Next.js 2.0 further enables programmers to take advantage of programmatic APIs.

 

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