The Best Designed Android Apps of Summer 2014

Posted on September 5th, 2014 by

Every now and then, Google makes a list of the apps on Google Play that reflect the type of design that Google recommends to developers. After the announcement of Android L and Material Design, Google’s list for Summer 2014 includes beautifully designed apps that include elements of Material Design.


Here is what Google said regarding their ‘Beautiful Design Summer 2014’ list:


“Attention to detail makes an app truly beautiful: transitions are fast and clear, and layout and typography are crisp and meaningful. In this collection, we highlight a few beautiful apps with masterfully crafted design details.”


Below is a look at all 12 apps that made Google’s list:


Gogobot Travel (Travel & Local, Free)



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5 Things to Remember When Developing a Mobile App

Posted on July 1st, 2014 by

If you are new to mobile app development, it can be hard to keep track of mobile-specific requirements when you are in the process of developing your app. Until your app is ready for testing, it can be difficult to know how your app will look on the screen of an actual mobile device. There is nothing worse than spending all of that time programming your app only to realize that the menus don’t fit on the screen or that your app uses too much of the device’s memory to function.


If you keep a few things in mind when developing, you may be able to cut down on the amount of revisions you need to do after your first round of testing. Below are 5 key things to remember as you are developing:


1. What Device You Are Developing For


While there are similarities, developing an app for a tablet and developing an app for a smartphone is quite different. Consider how users use each mobile device. Users on smartphones use apps when they have breaks during the day like when they are waiting in line or when they are eating lunch at work. They are much more distracted and their time is more limited than tablet users. Tablet users are usually interacting with apps as a form of entertainment before they go to bed or when they have a day off. Their app sessions are long and their attention is focused on the app they are using.


So, if you are developing a mobile gaming app with long, involved levels, it is probably better suited for tablets. Once this is established, you can begin to focus on how to optimize the extra space that tablet screens allow.

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How to Optimize Your App’s Layout on iOS 7

Posted on May 20th, 2014 by

While there is not necessarily a right way and a wrong way to design your app’s layout, there are some tricks you can use to make sure that the user experience is as optimal as possible.


Ample Space for Controls


We all know that smartphone screens are small, and iPhones are consistently on the lower end of the screen-size spectrum.


To optimize your app’s layout for iOS 7, try to make sure that your main, controllable elements are at least 44×44 points. This way, users will have no trouble performing basic tasks with one finger or one hand while they are on the go.

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User Retention: 5 Mistakes to Avoid

Posted on April 1st, 2014 by

Getting users to download your app is much different than getting users to use your app. A recent report found that 80-90% of users removed an app from their device after only one use! This means that it is more important than ever for app developers to make a powerful first impression on a user. Below are 5 things a developer should avoid in order to master the art of the first impression:




It can be tempting to ask a user to register with your app before they use it. This way, you’ll be able to gather information about them which will be used to personalize their experience or to bolster your marketing efforts. However, reports show that over 50% users will abandon an app if they have to register before exploring its features. If you want to keep some of those users, consider delaying the registration process until a) they want to access a specific part of your app reserved for registered customers only or b) they open your app for the second time.


Also, if you integrate social media into your login process, allow users the option of registering without integrating their social media profiles. Not everyone wants to share their activities constantly with their social networks.

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The Importance of a Sleek App Design

Posted on March 28th, 2014 by

About the Author: Kayla Matthews is a business productivity blogger with a passion for startups and independent creations. Follow her on Google+ and Twitter, or check out her blog Productivity Theory, to get updates on her latest posts!

With about one million apps in the Apple store and more than 1.1 million Android apps on the market, differentiating your particular app among a seemingly endless sea of competitors is certainly not an easy task. Not only does your app have to add functionality to the user experience, it has got to carry a strong, user-friendly design that is easy to navigate and easy on the eye.


When it comes to digitization, we live in an increasingly cluttered world. With over two million apps on the market—a number that inches upwards every single day—it is imperative that designers sculpt their apps in such a way that grabs the attention of the potential user. Human beings are very visual creatures, and even if you design the strongest, most helpful app, if the interface looks horrible, there is a great chance that the popularity of the app will never take off.

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App Trends: What’s in and What’s Out

Posted on February 4th, 2014 by

As the app industry matures, new features, designs, and user demands will emerge and transform the mobile application landscape. Staying ahead of the trends is a great way for developers to break through the competition to the top of the app stores. As 2014 truly gets underway, let’s take a look at which app trends are on their way out, and which trends are now in demand by the app industry.




Social Media Login


Social media is a great tool for app developers looking for some organic, viral marketing. If users shares their app experience on social media, their friends and family may be inclined to check out that app. However, sharing on social media should be a decision made by the user, not by the app developer. Some users don’t want their activities broadcast to their friends. Don’t require users to login to your app using their social media accounts. Give them the option of logging in separate of social media.




Simplicity is the name of the game. Adding to many features makes your app seem cluttered and can distract users from your app’s true functionalities. Focus instead on perfecting what you already offer in your app; After all, that’s what attracted users to your app in the first place. If you want to add a new feature to your app, make sure to test it extensively to gauge user response. Make sure it compliments and enhances your app’s original UX.

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The Case for “Tablet First” Apps

Posted on September 17th, 2013 by

Tablets are on rise. More and more people are choosing tablets over traditional laptop computers. Tablets are now offered in a wide variety of shapes and sizes from multiple manufacturers. The iPad is no longer the only player in the tablet field. As tablets expand their reach, they are no longer just “content consumption” devices. People are now interacting with their tablets more than ever instead of just using them for e-reading or watching Netflix.


For the most part, developers like to think in terms of a mobile-first strategy. In other words, they publish their apps for the mobile app sphere first, and then either offer a larger version for tablets or optimize for tablets much later on.

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4 Tips for Beta Testing Success

Posted on August 13th, 2013 by

Beta testing is a great way to see how actual users interact with your app before officially releasing it into the app marketplace. Beta testers can help you discover bugs and compatibility issues that you may not have caught when you tested your app on your own. Beta testing also allows you to see how receptive the public will be to your app’s concept. The process will vary from app developer to app developer, but we outlined a few tips to help you get started on the road to a successful beta test:

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5 Common Mistakes to Avoid When Developing for Android

Posted on June 20th, 2013 by

Android is the most widely used OS in the world, with over 900 million Android devices activated.  When done correctly, the Android platform can be very profitable for app developers. Making an exceptional app is not easy, so we are highlighting 5 common mistakes that amateur Android app developers should try to avoid:


1) Don’t develop an app without the end user in mind


You know that you have a great idea for an app. But, will anyone else agree with you?


Always think about the user as you develop your idea. Constantly put yourself in the user’s position. Why would a user need this app? What benefit would they get from it? How will they interact with this app?


It is also very important to beta-test your app before you release it. This will help you get a sense for how the UI and UX appeal to actual users.


If you don’t think about the user, you may end up with an app that you enjoy, but one that doesn’t appeal to anybody else.


2) Don’t carry over UI elements from other platforms


The Android platform has its own specific look and feel.  If you copy the UI of another platform, Android-brand loyalists may complain. Examine stock Android apps to get a sense for their most important UI elements. Also check out Google’s Android design guidelines for a better idea of what the Android platform looks like.


However, don’t be afraid to add your own branding and feel to your app. Just make sure that the general design of your app looks like it belongs on the Android platform.


3) Don’t have just one screen size in mind


This is especially important! One important aspect of the Android platform is that it is available on a range of devices …

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Google Maps is Getting a Facelift. Maybe.

Posted on May 9th, 2013 by

Is Google tired of the design of its Maps interface? According to blogger Alex Chitu from the Google Operating System blog, a blog covering Google’s unofficial news claims that Google is expected to launch a new design for the Google Maps service soon.

According to the blog, Google Maps development team is expected to release an updated version of the maps which will remove the side toolbars and navigation buttons, and will have larger and more interactive maps instead.



New design for the maps interface


The anticipated update of Google Maps is not a rare occasion at all. Just recently, in October, the company updated its maps service and added a few visual enhancements. In addition, the search giant makes sure to update information on different countries from time to time. The updates can be found in visual details, information on public transport, and high resolution images.



Apparently, what is currently displayed in the Google Maps sidebar will soon be displayed at the top of the map in a full screen mode in addition to new colors and icons that may be incorporated for use with the presentation of the new interface.  Another update, according to the source, is that users will be given the option to filter search results according to the recommendations of other users in their Google+ circle.


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