It’s official – more people are using the internet on mobile devices than computers. Mobile web traffic now makes up 55% of total internet usage. And almost all of that traffic originates from apps, not web browsers.
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Because we’re all app-addicted, it’s insanely frustrating when your apps crash while you’re in the middle of something important. Let’s be honest, even if you’re just taking a BuzzFeed quiz when the app crashes, it’s still insanely frustrating.
So, what’s the deal? We’re hardly in the early days of app development anymore, so why do some of the most popular, well-developed apps continue to crash on us? For those whose livelihood and customer satisfaction depends on the answer to this question, it’s critical to get to the root of this pervasive problem.
1. Poor Construction
It shouldn’t come as a surprise that one of the most common reasons for an app to crash is because it has code that could be described as “sloppy”. Whenever you have a problem with technology, the first reason you should always consider is human error. Even the best programmers and app developers make mistakes, and it doesn’t take a very big mistake to bug up a complex app.
Often, the problem stems from not having foreseen and planned for various contingencies. If your company is working on an app, it is therefore best to not rush into releasing it before it’s ready. The importance of extensive testing can’t be overstated. Remember that it’s much better to delay release and have a perfectly functioning app than to jump the gun and release a buggy, frustrating mess.
2. Wireless Only
Sure, it would be wonderful if everyone who used your app used it with a lightning-fast wireless connection. It would also be wonderful if there were free, perfect Wi-Fi networks everywhere in the world. But that’s not the reality we’re dealing with, is it?
No, many of your users will also be accessing the app via shoddy 4G and even 3G internet when they’re out and about. Your app designer has to plan for connection drop offs in these cases. Your users live in the real world of spotty data connections, and that’s where your app needs to function.
3. Memory Matters
This is App Development 101 folks – if you don’t plan for enough memory power, your app is destined to crash. The thing is, memory management is pretty different for Android vs. iPhone operating systems. So, if you’re vetting various application developers, take extra care to find someone who is equally familiar with both OS memory and booting systems.
4. Device Diversity
Just because you and everyone in your office is obsessed with their iPhone 5S and iPad Mini doesn’t mean that all of your users feel the same way. It’s crucial to make sure that your app is rigorously tested on a wide variety of devices of different generations and different manufacturers.
And, if you know that the app is 100% Apple device-ready and you’re positively itching get it out there, go ahead and release it to Mac users first and wait until the Android version is flawless before putting it out.
5. App Additions
The best apps are ones that are updated somewhat regularly to accommodate user needs and new features. It’s great if you continue to refine the app to make it better serve your users, but each time you make a change, you need to re-test to make sure that your new feature or improvement doesn’t negatively affect another function of the application.
There’s really not much point to investing the serious time and money in app development if you don’t go the extra mile to ensure that your app runs well. If you have an application that frequently crashes, you might as well not have one at all. (No one will use it, anyway.)
Developing a clean, well-functioning app that doesn’t crash is worth the stringent testing and nit-picky fixes. Then and only then should you set it free in the world.
By Kara Deveney, Market Specialist, Insuresoft
Bio: Kara Deveney is a frequent contributor to online publications on software, insurance and technological business solutions. As a market specialist at Insuresoft, a top insurance policy software company, she’s passionate about guiding readers in ways to modernize their business practices. To find out more, connect on Google+ or visit http://www.insuresoft.com.