Introduction to the App Creation Process
Welcome to the course!
My name is Kara, and I’m going to be your course instructor for the next 10 days, teaching you how to transform a smartphone app idea into a reality.
This course is designed for anyone, whether you’re a skilled developer (but you haven’t built your own app) or you’re someone who hasn’t worked in product development at all and doesn’t have a technical background. My goal for this course is to help you learn (in the least technical way possible) the process of designing, building, and testing an app idea—with the outcome of you launching your first smartphone app!
Today, I will be taking you through the fundamentals of smartphone apps and outlining all the amazing things you’ll have knowledge of by the end of the course.
What Is an App?
An app, or an application, is simply a mini computer program that runs on a mobile operating system. If you’ve ever used an Apple iPhone or an Android phone (like a Samsung)—or a tablet—you have used an app before. Just like a computer program, an app is written in a programming (or coding) language (such as Objective C or Java), and then zipped up (or “compiled”) into a file that is sent to your phone’s operating system. After selecting an app by tapping on its icon, your smartphone’s operating system loads the program, giving you a graphical representation of the app on your screen (the user interface) and access to the app’s features.
Apps have a wide variety of uses, from basic to complex, but what they have in common is that they usually aim to solve a problem experienced by a user. For example, the Instagram app provides users with a way to capture and share photos with friends and family. The Clear app for iPhone helps users organize themselves better by giving them a clear, prioritized view of their to-do lists that users can swipe items off of when completed. Even gaming apps solve the problem of boredom! This is a good way to start thinking about apps: What problems do your most used apps solve for you?
Where Do I Start?
Different publications may list different steps, but the typical process for developing a smartphone app is: Define, refine, validate, design, develop, test, and finally, launch.
Over the next ten days, you’ll learn how to approach each of the aforementioned steps and know all there is about successfully submitting an app to an app store in preparation for your launch. I’ll provide you with tips and tricks along the way, but do note that there are no shortcuts to building a great app; depending on the app’s complexity, the entire process can take several weeks or many months to complete! With that in mind, I assure you that it’s an incredibly fun and rewarding journey, so buckle your seatbelts, grab your (idea) helmet, and get ready to define your app idea in tomorrow’s lesson.
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