Sunday, 20 May 2012

How to Make Mobile Apps More Accessible

Because of the Mobile commerce phenomenon, more and more developers are trying to develop their very own mobile applications. And if you’re one of them - then you might want to consider reading these tips first before trying it out. After all, it is important that you understand the must do’s in mobile app before starting on your app development.

However, before starting, you will first need to plan and know how to make your mobile apps accessible.  Otherwise, you might be encountering a lot of problems in the end – and you certainly do not want that.

Here are the things that you might want to take careful note of:

Do research on the subject

There are a lot of mobile apps available in the market today.  Hence, you need to do some research and read as much as you can about this subject, like how to create accessible mobile apps.  Look for general and specific technical overviews on mobile apps. This is because different mobile apps have different promotional strategies and different methods to make it accessible.

For example, if you’re planning to create mobile apps specifically for Apple, you will first need to check on what are the most sought after mobile apps for Apple users.  Afterwards, do some research of the guidelines on Apple mobile applications, so that you are made aware as to how you can efficiently make them accessible and how you can make them work.  You can also check out blogs and forums to give you additional tips on how to increase accessibility for these applications.

Do interviews with people about their accessibility needs

Ask mobile apps developers or those who are constantly purchasing mobile apps.  You can find theme in Twitter and Facebook groups or you can ask your friends. The importance in doing this is to commit minimal mistakes in order to save you time and effort.  Also, do not hesitate to ask them for negative feedbacks about using their androids and accessibility of mobile apps – to give you an idea as to what you should not to do.

Do tests on accessibility tools by yourself

Try to experience first-hand as to how your apps work by using accessibility tools accordingly, as these will affect your marketing sales and promotions. By trying things out yourself before releasing the app, you will be able to determine if it actually works and the probable problems that entail it.

accessibilityAn example is if you’re trying to develop apps for IOS, then give some time to access and use accessibility features, like whether it is actually working, comfortable or convenient, and if other users will feel the same way about it. If you want to make things surer, then try your app with multiple smart phones.

Do make your app available for all

Think outside the box in making your app accessible.  After all, not all smart phone users have great vision or can hear very well.  Hence, create features which will readily make your app available for all types of users.

Do think of your Users’ expectations

Always consider what your users expect of your mobile app. Create a common and familiar interface that is easy to understand, in order to avoid having problems accessibility issues for your app.  Also, make sure that you are using the basic platform that most smartphone users are utilizing - for this not only helps in accessing the app itself but also includes other options and features as well.

Do make your app understandable

Make sure that the average person can understand the features of your app, and not necessarily just those who are technology-inclined or programmers.  In other words, try to make use of language that is not too technical, and one that average “Joes” can understand.  Remember that the objective here is to have a menu and language that users can easily understand.

Do simplify the app’s features

Make sure that your mobile app doesn’t have a too complex system for it to work. Give more attention to simplicity and avoid using too many options and too much buttons, for this may only confuse the users.

Do Test-Runs

When your app is finish, then put it in a test run.  Try to think of possible problems that your users might encounter and resolve them immediately.  Through this, your apps become more enticing and easier to access.  You can also have some of your friends test your app, so that you can assess how users with no idea about it can manage your app accordingly.

Image by Flickr

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