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A user centric approach to mobile application development

Rick_Barron ‎08-05-2014 02:11 PM - edited ‎09-09-2015 10:10 AM

The chief difference between the products and software that is available now to its predecessors of the past, is that the user experience is now the top priority for designers and developers. Apps must now intuitively recognize variables without having the user explicitly define and input the information. Systems must now revolve around the user, (rather than the other way around) to create a product that accommodates the user’s intuitive wants and needs. To do this, developers must utilize user-centric design strategy that incorporates multiple platforms, languages, technologies, data security and legacy systems. 


A mobile application strategy is essential

  1. Empathize: When designing an app, the problems you are solving are not your own, but instead they are those of the user. Define your users and ask yourself how they would use the app. It is important that you get an idea of their problems, expectations, goals and learning curves. Ask users to write down the problems they are experiencing with their current software. From there, you can start to see trends in complaints from users and anyone else in your group.

  2. Define: Define the purpose of your app and identify the issues it will solve. Then define your data needs and decide what devices your users will be using and where. After that, create a user profile and figure out what his or her typical day looks like.

  3. Ideate: Begin structuring your app content and workflow. Once you know what data you’re including in the app, consider how it can be split into different documents or panels. Define what kind of structure you will use for navigation among all these different aspects.

  4. Prototype: Next, it is time to prototype. A prototype is an early sample or model built to test a process and concept. During the prototype stage, you want to keep it as low-fidelity as possible. Start with whiteboard drawings and move on to wireframes and mockups.

  5. Test: Now it is time to test the app before development begins. This is the best time to gather feedback from your users and see what improvements can be made. 


Six key requirements for mobilizing your enterprise:

  1.        Support multiple operating platforms, operation systems and device form factors
  2.        Simplify connectivity to legacy systems of record
  3.        Enable management and control of mobile apps
  4.        Manage security from a central point of control
  5.        Avoid developer content switching
  6.        Enable context-based collaboration


Learn more about user-centric mobile apps and the HP Anywhere solution of enterprise mobile application  development at the following areas:

Here are a few additional blogs which discuss it as well:

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About the Author


Rick Barron is a Program Manager for various aspects of the PM team and HPSW UX/UI team; and working on UX projects associated with He has worked in high tech for 20+ years working in roles involving web design, usability studies, and mobile marketing. Rick has held roles at Motorola Mobility, Symantec and Sun Microsystems.

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