6 Lessons From Companies That Are At The Top Of Their SAAS Game – OpenXcell

It is the age of cloud computing and SaaS products. SaaS or Software-As-A-Service products are delivered to you over the internet. You do not have to maintain or install the hardware or software. You get the product on your computers, tablets and phones, simply via internet. It is truly easy to access.

Today SaaS products are an indispensable part of our lives. How did this change happen? How did these companies succeed in embedding their products into our lives? What are the things they got right? Can we learn anything from their journeys? Let’s find out.

Source: 6 Lessons From Companies That Are At The Top Of Their SAAS Game – OpenXcell

Why iPhone App Developers choose Swift over Objective-C?

Why iPhone App Developers choose Swift over Objective-C

iPhone app development is enhanced using the easy-breezy programming language, Swift. You may be surprised reading that 2048 game, WordPress iOS or FireFox iOS browser, all these applications are developed using Swift and not Objective C.

Gradually, Objective-C is losing its shine. The lengthy lines of code, manual memory management, the use of pointers and headers. And, one more thing, the use of semicolon at the end of each statement which made the life of app developers hell, are the things of the past. Seriously, it did not let the developers sleep for days or months if missed.

Swift is glowing. It has simplified manual memory management with automated reference counting. Meaning,  the memory of defined variable will be automatically managed. Further, it has come up with a new syntax, Dot notation syntax which structures the code and makes it easy to read.

Swift is not that old as Objective-C. It was introduced  in the year 2014 but the features it offers to the developers has made it rank in the top 10 list of programming languages.

Swift-vs-Objective-c

 Source: TIOBE Index

Today, 9 out of 10 applications are developed using Swift. Only a few clients who already have objective C as the codebase stick to it because it becomes expensive to rewrite the entire application code.

The reason for this shift is simple. Swift is,

  • Newer
  • Open Source
  • Easy to read, iterate and inspect
  • Not iOS oriented
  • Faster
  • Structured
  • Cost-Effective
  • Less bug prone
  • Easy compiling
  • Less coding required
  • Type-safe language

Ending Note

iPhone app developers are falling in love with Swift and why they should not. It has indeed reduced a hell lot of pains and helped them to structure the code base. Using this effortless programming language, developers can create apps for macOS, iOS, watchOS, tvOS and Linux. On the other hand, Google is also thinking to use Swift for developing Android applications.

It would be illogical if we write on any technology without first using it. We, at OpenXcell- the leading mobile app development company use Swift to develop iPhone apps and our clients are impressed with the work we delivered.

Below is the list of a few apps we developed;

Leader You: It is a game app that empowers individuals to develop their leadership skills on their own time—wherever they need help or wants to develop their skills.

Tenderfoot: The app falls under travel domain. It enhances your travel experience with a couple of things. 1. Check in to your hostel to access their digital suite of services. 2.  Socialise and meet new people via a communication platform.

Organiseme: It is a task list/todo list app that helps you get things done – in both your private and professional lives. Its Google-style design and integration with the Google G suite – makes it perfect for Google users.

EngageMobilize: The app falls under productivity domain. It delivers quantifiable efficiency, transparency, real-time analytics and improved safety compliance for service contractors. Further,  it also streamlines the process of ordering, managing and accounting for services and assets on your work site.

BigandStrong: The app falls under health and fitness domain. This app is specially designed for those who believe in stay fit and stay healthy concept. It contains the complete health program description followed by training sessions.

Custom Software Development: Is it Done or it’s Not?

Custom Software Development

Software Development is becoming more complex with the advent of this term “custom”. No enterprise is same. Though they fall under the same domain, their perception of doing business is different. This gave IT Firms a reason to provide a tailored solutions to the enterprises.

Custom software development is a real pain. It involves a large group of people to get through this process;

→ Business Developers who deal with the clients
→ Business Analysts who understand, analyse and define the project needs along with  cost and time estimation
→ Software Developers who think programming have a different vision to understand the project
→ UX/UI Designers who think visually have a different vision to understand the project
→ Project Managers are appointed to stick to the timeframe and cost
→ And, finally end-users are involved in application testing

Mostly the team starts off with the specification document without involving the client. The specification document includes the list of features the application will have. After the document is prepared it is sent to the client for feature selection. Its preparation takes a lot of time and involvement of expert panel.

This is what planning is all about.

Designers start sketching the rough idea in a paper or on a computer using a drawing tool and send it to the client.
This is proof of app concept (POC) which helps clients in framing a clear idea of the application’s look & feel.
After client’s approval, the actual work begins. Project Managers, Designers, Software Developers, Business Developers sit around the table discussing the time allotment for designing and development.

This is what we quote as “The first Scrum meeting”

The development starts. Each Developer is assigned a task with allotted time. Gradually the assigned tasks are converted into Done. And, the team thinks that the project is on the verge of completion (The Almost Done Part).

The Almost Done Part

When you come at this stage. It seems like 80% of the project is done in 20% of time. But, here you commit a mistake. Almost Done does not interpret the completion of the project. It is still incomplete.  80% of the work is still left to be done.

If we sit and evaluate the timeline, a large amount of time went into planning the project. And, another large amount of time went into developing an incomplete project. Still, the question pops up “What Next?” This question increases the pain and its reply adds fuel to it.

Push More Developers: “We are almost done. Let us add few more developers and enhance the code”. They don’t understand that adding more people doubles the work and make the task more complex. You need time to explain the entire code to involve more number of people.

What is the outcome? The project ends up messing the code which increases complexities and count of issues.

Stop, Think and Discuss: Code enhancement is a daunting task. It requires more efforts to modify the entire code at the last stage. It takes more time than programming at the first time. Therefore, it is better to discuss before starting editing the code.

Most of the software development companies try to make things more complex by starting off big. It’s better to start small and gradually move further to eliminate the intricacies and unsolvable issues.

A large custom software development project can be broken into small chunks and later these chunks can be integrated to make it a complete finished project. Pick a task, complete it with testing and move forward to another task. This helps developers in developing a high productive solution without exceeding the time and cost.

Building high productive solutions involves lots of benefits;

1. Reduces the loading time of the app
2. Gives fast app experience
3. Engage more users to use the app
4. Builds trust between you and your client
5. Increases your company’s online reputation

This is it.  We are custom software development company that focuses on designing and developing tailored solutions using advanced technology and techniques at pocket-friendly budget. If you have an idea for your software application, drop us an email at sales@openxcell.com.

A Webinar On Amazon Redshift: Data Warehousing Service

We believe in using the best tools to serve our customers. Our team of experts are always in search of innovative ideas and innovative products that can help them be more efficient. Amazon Redshift commanded attention of everyone in the house. It is a pretty impressive and useful data warehousing service.

“Our data analysis platform collects tens of terabytes of log data each day from a variety of internal and external sources. Migrating to Amazon Redshift two years ago allowed us to scale to over ten petabytes of uncompressed data with a ten times performance improvement over our prior on-premises system,” said Mick Etoh, Senior Vice President and General Manager of Innovation Management Department, NTT DOCOMO – Japan’s largest mobile service provider.

“Customers such as Amgen, Boingo Wireless, Electronic Arts, Hearst, Lyft, Nasdaq, Scholastic, TripAdvisor, and Yahoo! are migrating to Amazon Redshift in droves because it leverages the scale of AWS to analyze petabytes of data with ten times the performance at one-tenth the cost of old guard data warehouses,” said Raju Gulabani, Vice President, Databases, Analytics, and AI, AWS.

Source: A Webinar On Amazon Redshift: Data Warehousing Service – OpenXcell

Sneak Peek At What The Year 2017 Has Brought For Mobile App Developers

Sneak Peek At What The Year 2017 Has Brought For Mobile App DevelopersSince the dawn of digitalization, noticeable changes have taken place in the mobile app industry. The rise of Augmented and Virtual Reality, Artificial Intelligence, Neural Networks gifted users a few outstanding applications.

The year 2016 was the year of experiments and introduction of some advanced features that set an example. How we can forget the stupefying AR game, Pokemon Go which promoted physical activity enabling mobile’s location services. And Prisma App, which amazed app users with the 33 artistic image filters that completely changed the look of the original image.

The year 2017 continued to follow those trends and increased the level of competition amongst the mobile app development companies.

Here is the list of those competitive trends

1. Designing of Accelerated Mobile Pages: Google started off this project a year and a half back. The company also announced a separate indexing for mobile web pages helping in better ranking. This has pushed SEO professionals to adopt new seo strategies for mobile and increase the ranking of mobile apps.

2. Location Based Services witnessed a new look: With the introduction of mobile technology, location based apps were designed and developed especially for the transportation industry. But from past three years, location based services is used in 3 of 5 apps. The use of this service is now necessary to track the location of the user to verify its genuineness and avoid crime cases. Besides, the way this service was used in Pokemon Go- the gaming app set an example for the mobile app developers.

3. Augmented Reality & Virtual Reality Stepped Forward: The invention of both these technologies has increased the demand for apps that help users tour the real world virtually. The best example of VR app is VaR’s VR Video Player. It’s an app designed to play VR player and 3D videos giving full access and support all modes. This app enables users to configure any parameter of VR player with its intuitive UI and get the immersive VR experience.

IKEA is the best example for Augmented Reality. IKEA is the furniture app implemented helping users in designing the furniture for their home or office.This app enables users to measure the approximate height and width of the sofa set, table, chair, etc… Plus, it provides a colour palette to mix and match the colour of the furniture set with the wall and the curtains.

4. Google’s New Gift Android Instant Apps:  Is it? Have Android Instant Apps reduced the work of mobile app developers? It seems so. Android Instant Apps fills the gap between native and web apps by allowing users to run the required portion of an application. And, no installation required. For instance, Tasty. You may have seen the video posted on your facebook feed wherein it enables you to watch delicious recipes.

5. M-commerce taking a new shape: The days are gone when we used credit or debit cards to shop online. Nowadays potential users are inclined to Google wallet or Apple pay for getting the pleasure of shopping. This has given rise to m-commerce which is ultimately resulting in the use of technology to the fullest.

6. Official Adoption Of Artificial Intelligence into Mobile: Prisma App has set a perfect example for mobile app developers to use AI in developing apps. Artificial Intelligence can be best use in the education industry. This can be useful in teaching children various concepts easily that are difficult to understand in theory sessions.

7. Mobile Security, Top Priority For Developers: The increased cyber crime cases has compelled developers to use powerful algorithm to secure apps from these crimes. Hence, mobile app development companies are using various sort of algorithms to lock the personal information of the users and do not let third party vendors use it.

Wrapping up

When it comes to mobile technologies, old tools and techniques are the things of the past. Clients don’t rely more on those. They want something advanced that turn their idea into a profitable business. Hence, following the above trends, mobile app development companies can create an impact on their clients and provide them the mobility solution implemented using advanced technologies and techniques.

Is the App Industry Down and Out? Not by a Long Shot – OpenXcell

Mind you, this is no sweeping generalization.

The fact has been testified by a Tech Crunch article that clearly states that app gold rush is over. And that many app categories are now growing at the expense of others.

Regardless of the growing concern that apps industry is dying, the fact is, there’s still lot of development juice left in apps. And its the new developer platforms such as wearable tech, IOT, chatbots, VR and AR and more that could be fueling the growth of this sector.

But before we walk you through in detail on how these new sectors are contributing to growth of the app sector, let’s first give you a fleeting glance to some incredible app stats and facts that highlight the peak times and the hard times the app industry had gone through in a decade’s time.

Source: Is the App Industry Down and Out? Not by a Long Shot – OpenXcell

8 Things Facebook Talked About At F8 2017 – OpenXcell

Facebook recently held its annual developer summit F8 at the McEnery Convention Center in San Jose, California. F8 is Facebook’s annual conference for developers and entrepreneurs who come together to learn and discuss Facebook’s  new products, capabilities and strategies as they impact the businesses globally and set trends for future. Facebook has been playing quite an impressive role in promoting apps.  Let’s find out about the important stuff that held everyone’s attention at F8 2017.

Source: 8 Things Facebook Talked About At F8 2017 – OpenXcell

Trends To Know For Custom Software Development

Trends To know For Custom Software Development

With the advances in technology, we have come across this term “customization” often. Business needs keep on changing. No company follows a uniform approach to outperform the competition. There is some or the other strategy they create and implement to keep their business walking. For that, enterprises require a sort of customization in their existing system which not only increases their business productivity but also delivers accurate data to get useful insights.

The era in which we are living is the era of mobile technology. Enterprises drop in the requirements for mobile applications along with the website development. Isn’t that so?
According to a report from smart insights, 90% of mobile time is spent on apps like browsing the internet, chit-chatting on social media apps, transactions through banks, doing business etc..

If this is the scenario, what about the user experience? User experience is the cornerstone for the success of any mobile application. The smooth navigation, reduced loading time, and soothing user interface is what a user looks for in the mobile application.

In recent times, software development firms have developed remarkable applications leaving app users amazed. The epitome of such masterpieces is Prisma. Pick the technology, the image editing filters, the simple user interface. Each functionality, each feature was awesome. The app download crossed 1.6 million in the second week of the launch itself.

Here we go through the trends for custom software development…

  • Adapting Mobile

The population of smartphone users is increasing in a huge number. According to Statista, by the year 2020, the number will increase to 2.87 million users. The way users are getting cling to mobile phones, no wonder this is the age of mobile application development.

Most of the custom software development companies get clients whose requirements are to develop customized websites and mobile applications.

When it comes to developing mobile applications, clients prefer native application over hybrid application. Because app interaction with the device is easy and development time is also less.

But there is no need to relax! The demands of businesses are taking another shape. To be in the competition and enjoy the benefits, clients come up with unique ideas that are hard to implement and consumes time. Hence, it’s necessary for app developers to stay updated with the current trend going in the mobile app industry.

  • Be Agile

Adopting agile methodology is the best way to keep clients in loop related to the task assignment and hours allotted. Have you ever heard of being transparent to clients?
Honestly, it’s a tough task, but this is the only way to develop the trust in the business relationship.

Following agile methodology, actually reduces your post deployment pains.

What pains?

  • Version release
  • Changes in requirements
  • System failure

There is a test build released to clients during the development phase. This enables the client to test the app, report bugs to the developers and add new requirements if he wants to.

  • Moving to Cloud

Cloud Computing is often described as a technology. It facilitates users with the large storage capacity, scalability and security without worrying of infrastructure and memory leak. There is no need to maintain dedicated servers that include the high upfront cost. There is no requirement of hardware and RAM replacement. Developers only need an internet connection and a cloud provider login. Simply login, create a database and optimize the application server as and when needed.

Cloud has made things easy for developers.

  • Reduce code lines
  • Inbuilt APIs which can be easily integrated with the application
  • Low server maintenance (Pay as you use trend)
  • Resize server anytime and anywhere

There is a new trend going on – the concept of serverless architecture and microservices. Custom software development companies have started using this concept to make the application smooth running.

  • User Experience

For most of the applications, no matter the concept is same, user experience changes the game. There are millions of applications rolling in the app store. Apple Store has around 2 million applications whereas Google Play Store has over 2.2 million applications. Users overlook the app whose user experience is not smooth, uninstall it and rate as poor quality. It doesn’t matter whether the app is developed and deployed using cutting edge technology.

  • Software Security

The increasing demand for cloud technology and synchronization of personalised data raises the question of security. User information is prone to cyber crime as a violation of payment gateways, cracking of cloud storage, etc… Hackers have shrewd mind to encrypt the password and fetch user information from the third party vendors. This is stopped to an extent. Based on requirements, software developers built software that has strong encryption and decryption algorithm and also saves your information from getting leaked by third party vendor.

Conclusion

The trend is changing so do the techniques of development. Simple software application won’t work in this era of technology. Nowadays, clients are looking for the software customized as per their needs and business nature.

Are you looking for the custom software development company for your project? Do contact us at sales@openxcell.com. Our experts will guide you through your needs.

Agile Methodology: Why Is It Important For Your Start-up? – OpenXcell

Any framework that is used to structure, plan and control the process of developing a system is its development methodology. Several such frameworks have evolved over the years. Each one has its own strengths and weaknesses. There are several of them available for developers.  Scrum, Waterfall, Lean, Agile methodologies are some of them. For their projects, businesses have a number of options to choose from. Though Agile methodology has proved to be very effective in larger organizations the communication and co-operation dynamics in a start-up is very different from that of a larger organization. So does Agile methodology works for start-ups too?  Let’s find out.

Source: Agile Methodology: Why Is It Important For Your Start-up? – OpenXcell

What’s New With Your Messaging Apps? – OpenXcell

Messaging Apps around us are evolving. Each day there are new features and updates generally based on user feedback. Your favorite messaging apps have been competing for your attention. Let’s see what new features are available with each one of these apps listed below.

 

1) Whatsapp

Whatsapp is planning on bringing several new features. Pretty soon Whatsapp users will be able to change their contact numbers without losing chats and other data. You would also be able to notify your contacts about the change. When you change your number, Whatsapp will provide you with three options. You can choose to keep the new number a secret. You can share the new number with everyone or you can share the number with the contacts you have chats with. Whatsapp could soon be giving out your live location to your friends and family who want to constantly stay in touch with you. The ‘Unsend’ feature Whatsapp team is currently testing will allow users a five minute window to unsend a sent message. There could be new shortcuts for formatting texts in the offing.

Source: What’s New With Your Messaging Apps? – OpenXcell