Whether you’re an amateur or a seasoned veteran, you must acknowledge that the landscape of application development is changing at such a fast pace. From high-end development platforms to open-sourced and low-code alternatives, there are so many options for developing software tools nowadays!
But how can you tell which platform is best suited for you? That’s where this post comes in. Inside, we break down crucial questions to ask when deciding on your next app development platform of choice. Let’s dive in!
What type of app development platform do you want?
There are two main types of app development platforms – hosted and self-hosted. Hosted platforms are those which require you to rent space on the provider’s server. This means that the provider has full control over your code, settings, and data; this can be a good or bad thing depending on your needs and preferences.
On the other hand, self-hosted platforms give you complete control over your code, settings, and data. However, this comes with the risk of managing everything yourself, so make sure you have the time and expertise to do so before choosing this route.
What specific tools and features do I need?
Another thing to consider when choosing a platform is to understand what tools and features are required for your project. Do you want to use pre-written code or create your own from scratch? Do you want unlimited storage space for your projects? Do you need advanced UI/UX design capabilities?
All of these are just some of the things you’ll want to know about upfront before selecting a platform.
How easy is it to get started?
Some platforms require no other software installation, while others may require additional tools or programming languages to work optimally. Be sure to review the ramp-up time required for getting started with each platform before making a decision.
How customizable is the platform?
Some app development platforms like Powerapps services come with built-in features and toolsets, allowing users to quickly create essential apps. However, some also offer robust customization options that would allow developers greater control over their apps’ look and feel.
For example, some platforms let developers add their own code libraries, designs, and colors. While this level of customization isn’t necessary for typical apps, it can be important for specialized applications or those requiring unique functionality not currently available on the platform’s standard feature set.
Look for a platform that offers ample flexibility so that you can tailor its functionality to suit your specific needs.
Is the platform affordable?
Before starting any project, it’s important to determine your budget and timeline. App development platforms can be expensive, with some costing thousands of dollars per month. It’s important to make sure the platform you choose is affordable and fits within your overall project scope.
Some platforms also have subscription fees; if you don’t use the platform frequently, make sure the cost of usage isn’t prohibitive.
Do the tools provide integrated testing and debugging?
If you’re planning on releasing your app to the public, it’ll need to be tested and debugged prior to going live. Check whether the platform provides integrated tools that make this process easier, or whether you’ll have to purchase additional software separately.
Can I use existing code bases?
Not all app development platforms are built from scratch; some allow users to import existing code bases into their environment in order to get started quickly. Make sure the platform has capabilities that match your project’s requirements—you may not need all of the features offered by more feature-rich platforms.
What platforms do I want to support: iOS or Android?
iOS and Android are the two main platforms, but there are also Windows Phone, BlackBerry OS, and some developing countries’ own variants such as Ubuntu Mobile. Supporting multiple systems is not only feasible but sometimes advantageous.
If your app is targeting the general public, then making it available on as many devices as possible will help increase its reach.
How developed is the development community for this platform?
Certain platforms have a larger development community than others. This is important because it means there are more resources available should you encounter any unforeseen problems while developing your app.
When choosing a suitable app development platform, it’s vital to take the time to ask some of these questions. They will help you determine what features are most important to you, while also helping you rule out any platforms that won’t benefit your business’s goals.
By doing this, you’ll be able to make an informed decision and ensure that you choose the right platform for your needs. Good luck!