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Mobile Computing and Social Networks
There are many mobile apps in the market that have been designed to cater for various tasks and processes. Mobile apps were initially designed for gaming but improvements have been made to ensure that they can be used for business purposes. Applications have been designed to improve efficiency of mobile devices. Users have been able to make use of mobile phones to replace devices such as desktop computers and cameras.
Effectiveness and efficiency mobile-based applications
Technological advancements in the field of communication have undergone numerous changes over the decade. Mobile phones conventionally used for basic communication can now be used to conduct more features. The software being used in the mobile devises have enabled the devises to be used for more application than communication. The mobile devices being sold in the market are considered smart phones due to the array of applications that they can undertake. Apple Inc. And android manufactures are some of the major companies in the software market. The app market is one of the emerging markets facilitated by the use of this new software. The apps increase the functions of the mobile device. Initially the app market was dominated by gaming application but is changing with introduction of useful software.
One of the main selling points of these apps is the ability to improve the effectiveness of the mobile devise. The user could use the mobile devise for more functions other than communication. Some applications have enabled users to store information easily on their devise. The use of notebooks has been eliminated and diaries have become absolute with the introduction of such apps. The user is able to store user's information and produce it when needed. The user can also be reminded when to access the data. The apps have ensured that the data stored is safe from hackers and damage.
Some apps have enabled the users to monitor the geographical location of the mobile device improving connectivity and security. Parents have been able to use these apps on their children's devices to determine their location at all time. Business organizations have used the apps to monitor the location of their vehicles thus improving security and accountability. Some of the organizations have saved on insurance and fuel using the mobile apps. Companies producing mobile devices can use the customer's data to determine how to approach an emerging market. A geographical location where customers download mobile apps is a good market for mobile devices (Zheng & Ni, 2006).
Banks and insurance firms have also benefited from the use of mobile apps to increase their client base. Apps have been designed to handle conventional operations which may be considered as time consuming by the customers. Mobile chequeing apps have allowed the client to deposit cheques from any location and at any time. This has enabled the clients to avoid the hustle of visiting the bank. The time taken to clear the cheque is also reduced through the use of these apps. Banks that have adopted these apps for android and iPhone have increased the number of customers compared to banks using conventional services. Insurance firms have also attracted more clients using the mobile phone apps. The clients may download apps on their devises that will enable the client to take photos at the accident scene and upload them to the company's database. This will save the client time to file the claim or wait for company officials to access the site of the accident. The apps have enabled the customers to enjoy efficient services that save time and money.
Benefits realized by consumers
The use of mobile applications has enabled clients to store data on their mobile devices. This has improved data storage, access and security. This has improved efficiency of mobile devises and improved reliability on the communication device. The major benefit of mobile apps is ability to access information regardless of the location. Mobile apps have enabled the client to access important information stored in the mobile device. This is a convenient way to access the information as the customer carries the mobile device at all times. The user does not need to have access a desktop or lap top to use information stored in the mobile device.
Mobile apps have increased the use of mobile devices to incorporate the use of computers. Some mobile devices have similar capabilities with computers. The mobile apps make the device compatible with many applications enabling the user to save on buying many devices. The user does not need to buy a mobile phone, a computer, a camera and other devices when such mobile devices can combine the uses of all the devices. The mobile apps make use of these features to improve the quality of life of the user. The user does not have to carry these devices when a mobile phone will do all the work (Zheng & Ni, 2006).
The user is able to carry information with him at all times. This makes the information stored to be safe at all times. The user can protect his information as this information is not entrusted to a second party. The information stored in the mobile application can only be disbursed with the command from the user thus information is protected. The application enables the user to backup information. In the event hat the mobile device is stolen or destroyed, the user can use the apps to retrieve information stored by the mobile device.
Consumers also benefit from the use of mobile applications by the flexibility the mobile applications provide the client. Since the mobile device is owned by the user, the customer may use an application at his own convenience without being interrupted. The user can open more than one application on the same device without using the application to the final step. The user can later finish using the application without any data loss as the device is not being shared. The use of applications enables the user to have flexible operation time as the user can fill out important information at night and upload them to a database for future use (Zheng & Ni, 2006).
Some apps have enabled the user to track important information which saves on time and money. Stock traders have apps that track the cost of stocks in the market and enable the user to trade or monitor stocks being traded. Some apps give information that the user may use to manage his day. Weather news is effectively monitored using apps to ensure that the user dresses well to match the weather or avoids treacherous weather that may result in bad traffic.
Challenges of developing applications
Most of the mobile devices have small screens that range from 4 to 7 inches. This poses a great problem to mobile app designers to ensure that the user can gain access to all the information provided by the application. The applications that require the users to interact with a website need to have the right resolution to allow the customer to easily access the information on the website. Most designers ensure that the application have the right font to fit the screen of the mobile device. Other designers have a zoom option to enable the user to zoom on the application to view or input the relevant data.
When designing mobile apps, the designer must have in mind the devices that are compatible with the design. Compatibility can be determined by screen size or processing speed. If an app is being designed for the iPhone, the screen size for this device is standard for all iPhone model. An app for a phone running on android software needs to be designed to work on various screen sizes. The designer should ensure that the design will work on the device the app is being installed (B'Far, 2004).
The content of the app also needs to be considered when designing a mobile app. The content of an app consist of all the information that the user will find useful. Most apps supplement the use of websites which generally have a lot of information and may take time to load on a small device. An app like yahoo mobile allows the user to access important like the inbox and composes links. There are various versions of the app that depend on the software installed on the mobile device and the screen size. The designer should ensure that all the information that the client needs to access constitute the content of the app.
The screen is considered the user interface when using mobile devices. The screen should be an effective communication tool in that the user should have access to the information displayed. The screen size also determines the power usage and cost of connecting to the internet. If the screen size of the mobile device is small, the user will open many links to access information that can be got from the website. This increases the cost of connection for the user. The larger…[continue]
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