In the past, mobile apps developers would hone the general idea and framework for their app, creating the code, write some unit tests, and let QA test for functionality and performance once it was “ready”. This approach called “waterfall” was the primary technique for many for quite some time, and some app creators are still using this style of development today.
The “waterfall” model is a sequential design process, used in software development processes, in which progress is seen as flowing steadily downwards (like a waterfall) through the phases of:
– Production/Implementation and Maintenance.
Thus the “waterfall” model maintains that one should move to a phase only when its preceding phase is reviewed and verified. But when it comes to mobile app development, this old “waterfall” approach to development and testing will not suffice. Over the past year it has become clearer that agile methods are more applicable.
In contrast to “waterfall” the agile method proposes an incremental and iterative approach to software design. This is a method in which requirements and solutions evolve through collaboration between self-organizing, cross-functional teams. It promotes adaptive planning, evolutionary development, early delivery, continuous improvement and encourages rapid and flexible response to change.
Agile vs. “Waterfall”
The emphasis of “waterfall” is the project plan and therefore before beginning any kind of development there needs to be a clear plan and a clear vision in order. Because the “waterfall” method requires upfront, extensive planning, you can launch software fairly quickly. You can also estimate timetables and budgets more accurately, which definitely tends to please clients.
One of the differences between agile and “waterfall” is that testing of the software is conducted at different stages during the software development life-cycle. In the “waterfall” model, there is always a separate testing phase near the completion of an implementation phase. However, in agile method testing is usually done concurrently with coding.
Testing throughout the process as opposed to at the end of the project can bring a number of benefits for app developers, especially in the discovery of coding flaws or other bugs.
Mobile application development process involves some compromise between all the stakeholders. Regardless the level of technical expertise all stakeholders should work in concert before deployment. The agile performance testing approach enhances transparency throughout the project, enabling developers to more easily communicate with all stakeholders. The stakeholders should be as close as possible to what the end users will ultimately experience at all stages of the development process.
With the appearance and wide spread usage of codeless mobile app platforms, business people can visually create and configure their apps with no compromise in functionality. This combination of simple user experience and IT excellence makes it possible to turn business app requestors into active participants in the design and development of mobile apps, which in turn makes IT and business aligned as a team.