App design and development involves a lot more than just basic design practice. To develop an app, we must have an in depth understanding of devices, looking beyond the face value and delving deeper into the way we interact with our devices. With so many new smart devices entering the market, designers must be open to constantly learning new design patterns. Users don’t just want to observe, they want to interact.
Though it may be easier to translate a website onto a mobile device and brand it an ‘app’, it doesn’t necessarily mean that the apps usability will satisfy the users or meet the requirements of their chosen device. In fact, when designing for mobile, there is greater value in cutting the cord between the website and the mobile. App design requires the designer to step out of the box, to view the variables and see what it is appropriate and what what will satisfy.
App designers need to rewire their thought process, looking at their design practice from a different angle. This includes the notion of starting with the “mobile first”, where the designer evaluates and prioritises what is required and implements that onto a smaller device. On top of that, familiarising yourself with a variety of operating systems will expand the designers mind in order to understand the development and prototyping strategies and problems they may encounter. App designers, must also not forget that the final product may not look as one thought. In fact, when it comes to apps, the final product is not final. Apps are evolutionary, with function and usability continuously improving leaving the designer with thousands of avenues to explore.
Photo Credit: 20 Fantastic Examples of Flat UI Design In Apps. [Image] (16 September 2013). Retrieved 23 February 2017, from http://theultralinx.com/2013/09/flat-ui-design-apps-inspiration/