Nowadays, mobile apps are everywhere. Everywhere we go we see them. We use apps for everything from checking the weather to booking a cab. As with all software development, though, apps have both their good and bad points. And if you're considering developing an app of your own, it helps to know some things about the apps that are out there before you begin.
First of all, apps refers to a single software program that is installed in one's mobile phone or other device. A more common term, however, is "app," which refers to a series of software programs spread across the web and accessible via a web browser. An example of an app is Facebook's "FB Connect." This app acts as an interface between the social network and the user's phone. It allows people on Facebook to browse the site and share stories and photos from wherever they may be. Another example is Twitter's "Tweepi," which acts as a Twitter client on the mobile device.
Not all apps are created equal. Some apps are specifically for one brand or network, while others allow users to access a wide variety of services from multiple providers. Some are designed more to showcase a particular company or brand than to actually integrate with other systems. And some apps actually do run natively on the OS, meaning that the app can run directly on the hardware without needing to rely on an internet connection. Examples of this would be AT&T's My Tracks, Verizon's FiOS TV, Microsoft's Windows Mobile and Symbian's MMS.
Some apps aren't designed for use on devices like iPhones or iPads but instead must be downloaded through third party stores. There are a wide variety of apps available in the App Store, which allows individuals and businesses to purchase apps that will work with their phones. In many cases, you can purchase apps through the App Store, sign in with your Google account and then install them on your device. The iPhone app market has been dominated by popular, well-known companies like iBooks, Maps and Grooveshark for quite some time now. If you have an older device that doesn't have these apps, it's still possible to download them and use them on another iPhone.
In terms of content, there's a wide range of content available for iPhone apps. While some of this content is provided by third-party companies, like iBooks and Grooveshark, others are developed internally. For example, many of the games and video sharing applications available through iBooks are actually developed by Apple themselves through their own applications. Whether you're looking for games, apps for social networking, entertainment or professional tools, the options are nearly limitless on an iPhone, and the software applications are available through third-party companies, including those created by Apple itself.
However, not all apps are compatible with all mobile devices. To this end, it's important to think carefully about which type of app you want to develop. Some people use apps more as an entertainment tool than as a productivity or business tool, so they don't need to be cross-platform. Others use the web apps as their primary way of getting things done, so they need to be available on both iOS devices and the Mac. When you're ready to create your first mobile app, there are many companies waiting to help.