Release! (the app)

September 1, 2015 | by Aldo Bonilla

In App development, iOS

Oh dear dad
Can you see me now?
I am myself
Like you somehowI'll ride the wave
Where it takes meI'll hold the pain
Release me

- Pearl Jam, Release

I sing this every time Im about to release an app, it's like a child that is about to meet the real world with cold heart clients, first time users, and users whom expectations may not be met.

So why after all this do we release our child to this cruel world?

Well, its all about a state of love and trust. When do we have to release our app? If my project is too large, shall I wait to be 100% finished?

Make sure you are ready to release your app

Nowadays, the app stores have changed the release process of a software. Now, we have instant feedback; our user could tell us what they hate and what they love about the app, but mostly they'd tell us what they hate, believe me. This is not necessarily a bad thing, because of this, in the future days we can erase those mistakes. For me, the best case scenario is to do a release every month. The ideal thing to do with a newborn project is to deploy our core module within the first three months. That way, we will have some feedback from our user before we end coding.

Lets say we coded a fabulous drag and drop but Jeremy, one of our end users, finds it too hard to achieve this. Maybe he has fat fingers or hes not used to this kind of interaction, then we will know this before we end coding the whole application. You may be thinking, so if a user complains, are we going to change everything? Well of course not or we would never finish our app. However, now we have some idea of whom is using our app and how to deal with them. Maybe the next time we think in an innovative user experience we also add a how to

The best example of tearing apart a big project is Shazam. In their early days all they were about was recognizing a song and that was it. Then, they added the record offline functionality and kept moving forward. This process has taken about 3 years and in those 3 years they've made UI changes, colors, interactions, animations, etc.

So once we have our specifications we want to determine the main core of our app, code it and release it. Because remember now we have major OS releases every year and they come with new functionalities and new ways of developing. For example, let's say we received our specification in July for a big project, we think "well, developing the whole project will take like a year and a half, within this time window we will miss 2 major iOS, iPhone and iPad releases, plus maybe a new product in the ecosystem" STOP! Just breathe and do your release planning for each module of your app.

My gift to you: