Application Development

App Prototyping and Design

App Prototyping and Design

Sourcetoad offers a full range of app prototyping and design services for your web, mobile, or desktop applications. Our detailed discovery process gives our engineers the insight into your business needed to create a demoable product or set of wireframes. It’s a little bit like hiring an engineering department in a box. You can rely on Sourcetoad’s technical expertise to proof your concept and use us as an interim CTO while you work out exactly what you want to build.

Wireframing and UX Design

Wireframing is the art of putting together sketches of how your app is going to work. It’s more about the UX (user experience) than it is about the actual look-and-feel. These become the blueprints for your application. Our clients use our wireframe applications to sell ideas internally, raise capital, and validate ideas with their intended customers. Our discovery phase includes in-depth interviews with our clients and their stakeholders. We cover all aspects of your target markets, launch strategies, and third-party integrations. Sourcetoad builds fully clickable PDF documents, which allows you to get a feel for how an application will function before we ever write a line of code.

Prototyping

Prototyping means different things to different people, but we generally define it as an application that looks very close to the intended final product. This includes a fully functional, designed application with navigation systems and minor functionality. Generally prototypes have no backend data (they don’t save anything, and aren’t integrated with third-party systems). However, you can play with it, touch it, and show it off to management for approval, potential customers for feedback, or investors to help them part with their capital.

App Prototyping and Design
Desktop Application Development

Desktop Application Development

The last few years have been an exciting time for cross-platform developers. New tools have emerged allowing programmers whose main experience has been in web and mobile development to build enterprise-scale desktop applications. If you’ve ever used applications like Slack, Hive, Atom, or even the Visual Studios, you would probably never have guessed they were made with the building blocks of the web.

What Cross-Platform Means For You

Cross-platform desktop applications allow organizations to develop software that runs on Windows, Mac OSX, and even Linux. Not only do the applications run on multiple systems, they can all be built by the same developer, and coded once. This means a huge increase in speed to market, and a 3X cost savings in development spending.

Technologies We Use

Tech we use
Web Application Development

Web Application Development

What’s the Difference Between a Website and a Web App?

A website is a type of web application. It’s just a very simple application. Most websites are simple, information presentation tools – like an online brochure. A web application is a website that does something more. Web apps come in all shapes and sizes. Small web apps allow users to submit comments, or ask questions in a forum. Large web apps can give users access to their billing information, handle complicated workflows, or allow the user to interact with media rich systems.

Every web application we build follows our design philosophy.

  • User Experience First – Every application we design starts off as a set of wireframes, built by our UX experts. We design our applications to be as simple and as intuitive to use as possible.
  • We take security seriously – Hackers are everywhere these days, including here at Sourcetoad. Our engineers will security test everything we do to make sure that your application is safe and secure when released into the wild.
  • Reusability and extensibility – We write code in a modular fashion. This allows your project to be expanded easily, maintained efficiently, and reused when you need it.
  • Backends you can use – We know that no one has the time to mess around with buggy interfaces, unintuitive menus, or obscure commands and controls. We build our administrative tools with you in mind. If your application is going to control a mobile app, you should be able to change as much of the content as you can, through an easy to use interface.

Technologies We Use

Tech we use
Cross-Platform Mobile Development

Cross-Platform Mobile Development

There are three types of mobile development:

1. Native App Development

This is where you use a different programming language for each type of device you are publishing on. For example, Android apps are written with Java, iOS apps are written in Objective-C or Swift, etc.

Pros: Native app development allows apps the full power of the operating system. It is best suited for games or apps with lots of animations.

Cons: It’s often more complicated and expensive to go native. You have to rewrite most of the app for each device you’re going to publish to. This often means multiple vendors and long publication times.

2. Cross-Platform App Development

This is where a developer uses technologies that are not native programing languages to develop an app. Usually this means web technologies like HTML, CSS, and JavaScript. There are a ton of cool technologies out there that allow developers to use these languages to make an app with the same code that runs on the web, iOS, Android, and pretty much anything else.

Pros: Cross-platform apps are generally quicker and easier to build than native apps, so you can get to market faster. There are tools that allow you to update your applications without going through the App Store review processes. You can run almost 100% of the same code on iOS that you can on Android, cutting development and maintenance costs in half.

Cons: Cross-platform apps are not good at handling 3D graphics or complex animations. They can also be slightly slower than native or truly hybrid apps.

3. Hybrid App Development

This is where developers use a single set of technologies to create an application, but these apps “compile” to work more like native apps on the actual devices. Hybrid apps are, surprise surprise, a hybrid between native apps and cross-platform apps. Unlike most cross-platform technologies, hybrid apps have to have some customization per device.

Pros: Hybrid apps run almost as fast as native apps and use the native “views” of the operating system. This means that hybrid apps look and feel more natural than some cross-platform apps.

Cons: Unlike a pure cross-platform app, separate coding has to be done for each platform. This means that hybrid app development takes more work cross-platform app development, but better performance is available if required.

Technologies We Use

Technologies we use

Code Audits and Security Testing

Sourcetoad also specializes in code audits and security testing.

Sourcetoad Specializes in Cross-Platform and Hybrid Apps

Sourcetoad offers a full range of app prototyping and design services for your web, mobile, or desktop applications. Our detailed discovery process gives our engineers the insight into your business needed to create a demoable product or set of wireframes. It’s a little bit like hiring an engineering department in a box. You can rely on Sourcetoad’s technical expertise to proof your concept and use us as an interim CTO while you work out exactly what you want to build.

Is a cross-platform or hybrid application right for you?

  • Our application is primarily business focused.
  • Our technology strategy requires launching on the web, the Apple App Store, and the Android Play store.
  • We want to get our technology to market as soon as possible.
  • We will be making changes often across our various platforms. As a result, we don’t want to have long wait times in app store approvals.
  • Our company prefers to deal with one vendor as our technology partner. We don’t want to work with multiple companies for the same application.
  • Our application doesn’t need to render 3D graphics or do very complex image manipulation.

If you’ve agreed with these statements, a cross-platform strategy is most likely right for you! Contact us today to learn more about how a hybrid approach can help your business.

When is a cross-platform or hybrid application NOT right for you?

  • We are looking to build a game with 3D graphics and lots of animation.
  • Our app needs to do lots of heavy processor work, like drawing images with shading or manipulating photos in real time.
  • Our app is going to have lots of animations.
  • We don’t need to update the app very often.
  • We are ok with working with multiple vendors to release across the various app stores.
  • We probably don’t need a web strategy; we’re only going to be an app.

If you agree with these statements, you are most likely looking for a native-only approach. You can contact us for an introduction to some of our brilliant native development partners.