Discoverability and availability are crucial when a customer decides what mobile product or product line he is going to adopt.
Today, the number of ways that users are convinced to adopt a mobile application is maddening. App stores, social networking recommendations, mobile web sites, add-on’s to desktop and web software, and the list goes on. These are even affecting traditional industries – Finance is one of the top industries for iPad downloads, and Google’s Android store has just opened a Healthcare downloads category. Before a user can even decide whether to adopt a new mobile solution, he has to be acutely aware of its existence.
Then there’s the issue of which platforms to support. Should I develop a web application that can be used by multiple device browsers, or a traditional application that runs natively on a specific platform like iPhone? If the former, have you considered which browsers you will support, what your HTML5 strategy will be? If the latter, do you know which versions of iPhone, iPad, or any of the 80 tablets unveiled at CES 2011 you will be reaching?
There is a basic human psychology that affects how users discover and feel compelled to adopt your application. The industry is rightfully focused on making the product usable once it is downloaded, but those who recognize that usability starts even before the app is downloaded are one step ahead.
About the Author
Didier Thizy has been a software professional for 13 years, holding a variety of positions in Software R&D and Product Management.
At Macadamian, Didier is Macadamian's VP Consulting, responsible for a cross-functional unit of design and development consultants specializing in healthcare software. His focus areas include healthcare software, usability of complex systems, and modern mobile and web technologies.
Didier is an active member of HIMSS, the Toronto Product Management Association, Silicon Valley Product Management Association, and the Ottawa OCRI association for technology.
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