Want Your Android Device To Stand Out? Here Are Some Tips For You

In today’s world of rapid digital transformation, it doesn’t matter which brand of mobile phone do you own, what matters is how interactive is the user interface of your mobile. When it comes to an android device, designing a standard user interface takes the user experience a long way. A great user interface is key for making a greater android device experience whether it’s in a Smartphone or a Tablet.

Designing a user interface does not solve the purpose of a great UI experience. An android application development company has to keep in mind about the different kinds of screen resolutions of the android devices and design accordingly. For instance: the UI design for a Smartphone with less than 600 dpi will be different from that of a Tablet with more than 720 dpi.

UIPL has come out with awesome UI designing tips for android devices that will totally stand out from others.

  1. Keep The Screen Density In Mind

Screen density is an important area of consideration, which is to be taken into account while designing for an android device. Most of the time designers only consider the screen size, but they forget that it is the density of the screen, which means the dot per inch (in technical terms DPI) that matter the most. For instance: Nexus One and Nexus 5 have the same screen size but they vary from each other when it comes to screen density. While Nexus One has a pixel density of 252 DPI –HDPI, on the other hand, Nexus 5 has a pixel density of 445 dpi-XXHDPI.

  1. Always Evaluate The Impact Of Density Independent Pixels

Sometimes a button with a certain pixel might appear small on a high-end android device. One can overcome this problem by opting for density-independent pixels. Thus, the images will appear as a standard size on a variety of android devices starting from a Smartphone to a Tablet. Always keep in mind that images play a very vital role in creating a rich UI experience. Hence, it is the responsibility of a designer to optimize the images depending upon the screen density of a device.

  1. Make Alternative Resource Folders for Easy Work

Thousands of images and layouts are created for devices with different screen resolutions and densities. This always creates confusion among designers; hence, it is recommended that you always maintain an alternative resource folder for individual screen density. Keep DPI as the base density and you can easily store the images and layouts in drawable folders that are most appropriate for you. When it comes to basic android mobile application development, alternative resource folders ease your work.

android mobile application

  1. Separate Layouts For Different Screen Densities

Always design multiple layouts for different devices with various screen densities. An Android Phone scales all the bitmap drawable as well as Nine-patch drawable in order to optimize the layout with the size of the device. However, the functionality differs in case of an Android Smartphone and Tablet. In the settings section of Android, the list of settings and the details will open in a different screen on a mobile phone; whereas, in a Tablet, the setting list and details will open side by side. One mistake that is committed by UI designers is that they use activities individually, as a result of which three types of problem rise – the risk of tight coupling, intent filters, complicated intents and security issues.

  1. Fragment Activity

Every fragment has its own life cycle. It is hosted by a number of activities and can be replaced anytime with another fragment. The interesting thing is that the fragments are hosted within one activity without any interrelation between them. In order to create a dynamic UI, convert the components and activity behaviors into modules. These modules act as a nested activity that defines their layout and manage the lifecycle.

Using Activities And Fragments In Mobile Phones With Multiple Screen Densities

List and details are displayed in two activities in a mobile phone. The folder structure should be designed in such a way that it contains both the list and detail activity. To have a clear directory structure, always maintain the list fragments in ListActivity.XML folder and the detail fragment under DetailActivity.XML folder. It is important to keep in mind that the directory structure of a Tablet is entirely different from that of a Smartphone. The resolution should be kept at 600 dp and the ListActivity should contain both list and detail fragment.

To sum it up, in a mobile, DetailActivity that hosts detail fragment should be launched, whereas, in a Tablet, Detail and List fragment should be launched.

In order to identify the layout that has to be inflated, Android OS takes out the layout from folders on the basis of the width of the screen and inflates it on the basis of that particular layout. The OS first determines the drawable folder and if it doesn’t find any relevant images, then it transfers the images to a lower level folder.

Last Thoughts

Android has a flexible framework for a better user interface that helps users to view the apps or any other information in different devices. With the constant evolution of mobile technology, new challenges are emerging for UI designers. With the frequent changes in screen resolutions and their dimensions, it is time to take a big leap in UI designing. The designing tips mentioned above are simple and if followed will definitely start a new era in the field of UI designing for android devices.

A Layman’s Guide to Cross Platform Mobile App Development

In the corporate world, there is a growing trend of BYOD (Bring Your Own Device). Employees are advised to bring their own devices to access company’s applications and data. In order to overcome this impediment, many companies are now taking the help of a multi-platform mobile app or what we call in technicals terms, a cross-platform mobile app development to upgrade their current devices and enable it to be used across a wide range of mobile platforms and in different kinds of operating systems.

Cross-Platform Mobile App – A Deeper Understanding

When we talk about cross-platform mobile app development there can be two situations. One can either develop the app on a native platform or develop the app in a singular environment first and then allow it to be used in various native platforms. Cross Development tools use the simplest programming languages like JavaScript, CSS and HTML that makes it easier for the developers to write the core application easily and proves to be a helpful tool for companies offering mobile application development services.

Tools Used For Cross-Platform Mobile App Development

Most of the tools that are used to make a cross mobile app is code free. Developers do not have to undergo through the tiring process of writing complicated codes. There are a number of tools which makes developing a cross-platform mobile app an easier task. So, let’s take a brief look at all of them.

1. PhoneGap

This is a free tool which first-time app developers can make use of. PhoneGap can easily translate code from CSS, JavaScript and HTML. They maintain software development kits (SDKs) for every platform on which an app is developed. Apart from developing an app for an iOS or an Android, it lets you to develop apps for Windows and Blackberry as well.

What’s special in PhoneGap?

I. The API interface allows the developer to write codes in any language and then converts the code to a native one.

II. It boosts the JavaScript API with an access to important components of a device like GPS and camera.

III. The UI and the application logic is based on HTML and JavaScript, whereas the other part of the application is based on a native language.

2. Appcelerator Titanium

Titanium takes the help of SDK tools in order to create native iOS and android apps by helping you to make use of almost 90% of the code from other apps. Being an open source tool, updates itself constantly as hundreds of other developers regularly contribute to make it more functional.

What’s special in Appcelerator Titanium?

I. Being a web oriented tool, it helps not only to develop the app but is also cost effective.

II. The prototype-based scripting is similar to that of JavaScript.

III. No need to learn separate languages for iOS and Android, because the tool helps you to implement the code easily.

3. Cocos2d

It is mainly used in 2D game development. It gives developers five different platforms to develop their programming language.

What’s special in Cocos2d?

I. It is written in Objective – C which is a superset C language.

II. It makes use of open GL swap buffer in order to deal with the memory handling problem easily.

III. Better screen management with animated screen transitions.

cross platform

4. Corona

A specially developed cross-platform tool for 2D gaming graphics, Corona speeds up your games up to 10 times. Based on a programming language Lua (an Objective C language), this tool is robust and helps a developer to finish coding in less than five minutes. So, the next time you see your games running fast, you know what is responsible for its superior performance.

What’s special in Corona?

I. Automatic integration of OpenGL-ES.

II. The tool is optimized in a way that it boosts the power of hardware thus accelerating the performance of apps and games.

III. Works easily with X-code.

5. Xamarin

When it comes to choosing the best cross-platform mobile app development tool, then Xamarin is the most preferred one by most of the big organizations around the world like IBM, Microsoft and Dow Jones. The tool makes use of various languages like C# or Ruby in order to create a stronger platform for developing mobile apps.

What’s special in Xamarin?

I. Shortens the development cycle of an app, by offering the benefits of a native UI.

II. Integrates the UI and APIs of Mac, Android and iOS apps in their respective languages, as a result of which they can support a system even when new features are added.

III. The simplified syntax of C# helps to prevent errors that result in a bad programming.

6. Alpha Anywhere

Though it’s a bit expensive tool to afford, but the cost is worth its usage. Alpha Anywhere can work with a variety of languages such as Xbasic, Cobra, C++,.NET, JavaScript and C#.

What’s special in Alpha Anywhere?

I. Built in responsive web design tools for enhanced user experience.

II. The option of creating downloadable Hybrid PhoneGap applications.

III. Added benefits of HTML and SQL.

Future of Cross Platform Mobile App Development – Bleak or Shining

According to the Gartner Mobile Apps Report, it is expected that by 2017, people will download mobile apps 268 billion times more than the current pace, resulting in a revenue generation of $77 billion. In the coming times, technology will take a giant leap and the demand for running a mobile app in various operating systems will increase. With a cross-platform mobile application, that day is not too far when the technological world will witness the evolution of mobile apps that are made for running on a variety of operating systems.

Signing off!

With an increase in demand of multi-platform mobile apps, the world is slowly moving towards an era of more technologically advanced digital age. The arrival of a cross-platform mobile app will slowly emerge to be the most convenient feature in the mobile app industry for the future generation.

Make These Latest E-Commerce Trends As Your Resolution For 2016

At the onset of every year, resolutions fill our bucket list in one of the ‘Must-to-do’ things. With so many resolutions, we promise to make every year, very few of them rarely gets fulfilled; so why not make a resolution this year which we can fulfill and feel proud of? A resolution to follow the latest e-commerce trends, to compete with the who’s who of the ever-booming industry. Well, when it comes to technology, the trends keep changing with the blink of an eye and if you miss one of them, you will lag behind.

After doing an extensive research, the UIPL team has come up with a set of trends that will dominate the e-commerce industry in 2016. So, let’s see what’s in store in the e-commerce industry this year.

1. M-Commerce – A Necessity

M-Commerce will no longer be the additional feature in your phone, but a need without which you cannot fulfill your shopping desires. A research done by Kissmetrics reveals that about 78% of searches done through a mobile phone resulted in a purchase. Moreover, it also revealed that 2 out of 3 customers like to shop online through a mobile website rather than a mobile application. These figures show that there is a rise in the use of mobile phones when it comes to online shopping. Any company which offers e-commerce website development services in India needs to make sure that they optimize the website and offer smooth touch screen options as well as high-resolution web page viewing experience. So, that customers enjoy a memorable shopping experience.

2. Shopping Is Fun With A Tablet

A report published by ICSC (International Council of Shopping Centers) suggests that omni channel customers, that is the one’s who purchase through mobile phones, desktop or any other device, spend 3.5 times greater in online shopping than single-channel shoppers. Now, the ever-increasing screen sizes of mobile phones are diverting customers from their desktop. In fact, it can be said that use of Tablets is on the rise due to their large screen sizes. People these days, either take the help of a Tablet or a mobile phone in order to do a preliminary research of the product and then make the purchasing decision. The convenience that a Tablet provides in terms of better resolution makes Tablets the next best thing for e-commerce.

3. Automated Marketing – The New Language For Email Marketing

Phrases like ‘50% discount only for you’ or ‘Grab your last chance of Christmas sale’ will bring a new revolution in e-mail marketing. With the emergence of more and more online shopping websites, customers are looking for personalized services that will pay more attention to their shopping needs. It is expected that in 2016 features like automatic display of products preferred by customers or automated recommendations, more personalized web pages and special discount offers will shape up the e-commerce space. Hence, Automated Marketing is thus an easy way to keep your customers remain loyal to you.

4. More Details About Product

One of the perils of an online shopping website is the inability to physically verify the product. Well, this peril can be transformed easily into a blessing by giving more and more details about the details. Writing product specifications, posting demo videos of the products and high-resolution images are the keys to bringing the customer closer to the product. By adopting such measures, you let the customers know about your products and establish a relationship with them. Personalization will also play a vital role. For instance: if you share the solution of a technical problem related to the product, then their faith on you and on the brand is bound to increase, thus enhancing their trust over you.

shopping cart

5. The Great Rise of ‘Deal-of-the-day ’

Also known as Flash sales, Deal-of-the-day is finally going to see the light as it is slowly becoming popular with the customers on festivals and any other special occasions like New Year, Independence Day or a Thanksgiving Day. These kinds of sales lasts might last up to few hours or even continue for days. If your e-commerce website is mobile optimized, then it will be easier for websites to boost up their sales faster. Though it cannot be said how effective will be the concept of ‘Deal-of-the-day,’ but once it is received well by the customer, it will certainly stay for a long time.

6. Tracking Customer’s Data Through Algorithms

Use of Algorithms to track all vital information about customers helps an online retailer to get the exact information about the details of the customer. It gives the retailer an idea about the buying preference of the visitor and turn him into a real customer. This trend of analyzing the behavior of the customer will be one of the major trends in e-commerce for 2016. It will prove to be a blessing for small businesses as they will get an accurate data about their customers with the help of statistical data.

7. Improved Shipping For Better Shopping Experience

Receiving a product within few days of ordering it is a much better experience than a 5-day delay in the product delivery. In 2016, improved shipping with on time delivery will be one of the emerging trends. People are going to shift more towards an e-commerce brand that not only promises of fast delivery but actually makes it available at the doorstep of the customer within few days of ordering it.

Read More: USER EXPERIENCE TAKES ECOMMERCE BUSINESS A LONG WAY

As the eCommerce revolution is gaining pace all over the world with the emergence of more and more online ventures, it is important to ensure that a customer gets the maximum return on his or her investment and the time spent in purchasing a product online. The trends mentioned above will help online retailers to return the customers their value and trust while shopping online from their website. Moreover, they will also get a view about the future of e-commerce and the factors responsible for making online shopping a seamless experience.