The issue for Blackberry, as reported last September by CNN was terrible apps, "many of them are either generic clones of other apps or possess minimal usefulness."
The future for app development needs to include a method that allows the customer to contribute. The value of this is harnessed by using customer input during the process of development. This type of service already exists in the Android and Apple development portals but it is not being very widely used.
The outcome would be a more refined and focused product that would increase the margin of customer satisfaction and experience no matter the platform.
There is a real need to harness customer input while leveraging the selection process in app development, leading to the thought that greater customer input will lead to creating a good product.
Some apps and their developers will survive if they meet a need, but many others will find the consumer market is getting smarter - future potential customers will want to see some proof in the pudding before they purchase.
Creating apps for your business
Mobile technology is making inroads as the corporate workbench for the knowledge worker but many apps are just not up to the task. Developers need to understand that the corporate world is an entirely different beast; you can't wait around when you have business critical requirements coupled with an expectation that your solution should be mobile.
This is a real issue for technology leaders; we need well-developed solutions that are fit for business.
So what can you do to meet the business needs and still deliver value? Short term, your IT strategy needs to include a framework on how you deal with apps internally, and the business drivers for creating your own apps or purchasing them from a third-party developer.
If you are building apps internally, you must complete the following tasks.
- Ensure they actually meet a business need
- Gain input from end users during the development phase (co-creation)
- Complete functional and intuitive tests (you would not believe the amount of apps that just don't work)
- Introduce several levels of acceptance testing
- Add user access restrictions, profiling and multi-factor authentication
The last thing you want to do to your business is put out apps that frustrate instead of enable. You want to deliver business value because this is what your customers really want.
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