Nothing lasts forever. Time stands still for no man … or app. Eventually, your app is going to need an update of one kind or another. The key is to know when – timing is everything.
Why update an app at all, though? You’ve spent a lot of time – and probably money – on developing it in the first place, and you’re very happy with it. Why fix what isn’t broken?
The answer, of course, is that technology moves on. And especially in the mobile sphere, it goes without saying that it moves fast: new handsets, new operating systems, and new functionalities are being developed all the time.
If you don’t move with the times, your app will start to feel dated – and users will abandon it. So knowing when it’s time for an update is about knowing how to retain users – and keep adding more.
There are five points at which you may want to consider updating your app. Watch out for these junctures – in fact, try and find your way to them! Think of updating your app not as a problem to be avoided but an opportunity to be sought.
Weak App Metrics. If your user engagement is consistently low, then you may need to make some changes in order to hit your targets. What is your app missing that means it works less well than it might for customers? Find out, and fill the gap!
Aging Mobile App Codebase. A codebase is essentially the vocabulary developers use to “write” an app. Codebases age quite quickly, especially with all that rapid technological change – and that means the language your app uses, can start to be a bit old-fashioned. Changing a codebase is often necessary, then – but will require a major update.
Newer Design Trends. Nothing looks worse in a shop window than dated décor – and your app is nothing if not a shop window! If your mobile app is on the older side and looks dated, then you may want to refresh your app with newer design trends.
Cross-Platform Support. Mobile devices operate on different operating systems, of course – and these often change, or switch around in the popularity stakes. Consider taking your app cross-platform, or moving it to another platform when the marketplace changes – a major update, but an essential one.
Major New Features. If your users are clamouring for some new functionality – and if devices have added a particular new piece of technology to facilitate it – you should stay at the cutting edge. A new major feature could improve the way users use your app – and the frequency with which they do so.
In other news, stay fresh. The mobile marketplace is fast-moving and prizes novelty – users will be turned off by the out-of-date. If your app is starting to see tired, that’s how you know when your mobile app is due an update.
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We provide mobile app design and development for all project requirements, both consumer and business apps. If you’re in need of a mobile app or just have an idea for a project you wish to discuss, please contact us to arrange a consultancy.