- Aug 25, 2017
Have you ever wondered which aspects of your life haven’t been touched by the capabilities of a smartphone? Aren’t we dependent on this tool for almost everything right from working, traveling, shopping, banking to even learning?
Even businesses are embracing mobility to enhance the efficiency of their workforce. This has led to tough competition among the mobile app development companies. As a result, many players fail to reach their set target.
Often the reason for failure is attributed to the ignorance of app development companies towards one of the fundamentals of mobile app development – the mobile app architecture.
What is mobile app architecture?
Mobile app architecture is a set of techniques and patterns used to develop fully structured mobile applications based on industry and vendor specific standards. While formulating the app architecture, the procedures that work on the wireless mobile device like smartphones and tablets are also taken into consideration.
The mobile app architecture design usually comprises of multiple-layers within an application comprising of the following layers:
Presentation layer – This layer comprises of the UI components as well as the UI process components.
Business layer – This layer is formed of business entities, workflows and business components as well.
Data layer – Data access components, data utilities and service agents together form this layer.
Elements to consider before developing your mobile app architecture
Since building better app architecture is crucial to the success of your mobile app development, you would need to keep in mind the following factors before getting started with designing your app architecture:
Determining the device types
There are different categories of smartphones and it is very important for you to evaluate the device type and its characteristics prior to selecting particular app architecture. You must keep the following characteristics of the device in mind:
Size of screen
Availability of development framework
Wondering why we have to determine the device type while selecting app architecture? This is because the features of your mobile app might have some specific hardware and software requirements.
Considering bandwidth scenarios
It is of utmost importance to keep in mind the internet network scenarios of the areas your target audience thrives in. This is because fluctuation of internet speeds can negatively impact user experience. Your customers may not be connected to the internet all the time. They might even have the intermittent network at times. Therefore, you must consider the worst internet network scenarios while building your mobile app.
Consider power consumption and speed while selecting software protocols and hardware for your mobile app. Also design your cache mechanism, data access mechanism, and state management such that it can adjust to slow and intermittent internet connection.
Defining user interface
When it comes to creating mobile application user interface design, you can explore the horizons of creativity with your distinct style. However, you must remember to keep the interface as simple as possible so that users can intuitively interact with the same. Furthermore, keep in mind that a jumbled UI could lead to the downfall of your app.
Picking the right navigation method
The navigation of an app is a very crucial aspect which includes both frontend and backend. While selecting a navigation method you would need to bear in mind your customers’ preferences and also your app requirements. This is critical as it will have a tremendous effect on user experience. Among many different navigation methods you must analyze and select your best fit; some of the popular ones are as follows:
Stacked navigation bar
Search driven navigation
Now, the thing is how would you ensure that your mobile application meets with the requirements of your target audience? Well, for that you would need to follow certain guidelines while building your app so that it performs efficiently in different scenarios.
How to maintain the process flow of your mobile application?
Usually, your mobile application can be structured in three different layers as mentioned above; we would take a look at the guidelines to be followed for each layer.
The primary focus of this layer is how the application would be presented to the end user. While designing this layer, app developers are supposed to determine the correct client type which is compliant with the infrastructure. The deployment constraints of the client should also be kept in mind.
The other prerequisite for designing this layer is selecting the correct data format and put in place a strong data validation technique so that your app can be protected from invalid data input.
Furthermore, our mobile app developers also focus on decoupling of business logic from the presentation layer code.
Logging, caching, validation, security and exception management are various aspects that the business layer is concerned with. Our mobile app developers state that you must separate the tasks into various categories in order to reduce the complexity of this layer.
However, they say that using a separate business layer wherever permissible is the ideal approach of designing this layer. For different functionalities such as complex business rules, applying policies, data transformation, and validation, etc. you must identify business layer.
Data access layer
This layer meets with the application requirements and facilitates secure data transactions. Therefore, you must design this layer such that it could scale in the future as the business requirements change down the road.
Being an experienced mobile app development company, we focus on choosing the right data access technology so that a secure and highly functional layer could be formed.
You can also use table-based identities to render a simplified design structure for storing data and allowing movement of data across boundary layers.
All the data access functionalities are encapsulated inside this layer and it manages all the data connections needed by the mobile application. Moreover, it handles all CRUD (Create, Read, Update and Delete) operations and data sources.
We also implement the least privilege approach in order to protect any attempt to steal or corrupt data by safeguarding the data access mechanisms.
How to choose the right architecture for your mobile app?
We have been serving our clients for more than a decade with mobile app development services. Here are recommendations from our team of mobile app developers which would enable you to choose the right architecture for your mobile app:
If you do not have budget constraint then it is wise to develop native apps as they provide intuitive features and performance.
You can also opt for “develop once and run anywhere” concept but adopt different approaches. You can either develop a mobile web app or hybrid app with modest development effort or go for cross-platform apps using cross-platform frameworks and provide richer experience while reaching out to vast range of mobile devices.
In case your target audience comprises of iOS and Android users and your objective is to deliver the best user experience then Helios recommends native app development. However, if you need to build all the other operating systems including Windows and BlackBerry then cross-platform development could be a cost-effective option, yet usability has to be compromised.
You can also consider native as well as web development to complement each other and help you better engage your customers and employees. While native apps render optimal user experience, web apps ensure visibility of your business by reaching out to customers with all kinds of devices.
By now you might have understood how critical mobile app architecture is for a successful and profitable mobile app development. It not only makes your app secure but also enables it to scale with your growing business.
Do you follow the entire flow, discussed above, while designing your mobile app architecture? What is the most important point, according to you, should be kept in mind while designing mobile app architecture? Let’s initiate a discussion!