Mobile apps have become an essential part of both personal and professional life. But did you know these simple-looking apps are developed using a complex technology that keeps them running?
Architecture Is One of The Critical Parts of This Technology
So, what do you understand about the word 'architecture'?
Architecture means the basic internal structure of the building that keeps it intact. Similarly, mobile apps have architectures that keep them functioning well.
Architecture is a crucial leg of mobile app development, which will define how stable your app is, for if it's not stable, it will collapse.
This blog will explore different kinds of architecture, its components, the factors that must be considered, and much more.
What is Mobile App Architecture?
Mobile app architecture is a set of rules defining the app's basic foundation. Architecture outlines all the structural elements, interfaces, and the behavior of each element within the system. A robust architecture ensures stability and lays the groundwork for sustained growth, making it a strategic investment for businesses.
Here are some benefits of investing in good mobile architecture:
Fulfills both business responsibilities while satisfying user requirements
Separates UI from business logic
Establishes clean language to understand the responsibility of each feature
Reduces clashes between elements.
What Are the Layers in Mobile App Architecture?
Now that we understand architecture and its benefits let us dive deep to understand its layers. An architecture is divided into three different layers.
1. Presentation layer: The presentation layer is a user interface we see while using the app. This includes fonts, colors, text, etc. Presentation layers must be carefully designed because they will distinguish your brand from other brands.
2. Business logic: This is the backend layer which is not visible to users. It includes all the components, entities, and workflows and establishes business rules. Its primary task is to deal with domain operations and processes. Examples include data logging, authentication, etc.
3. Data Layer: The data layer concerns the app's data. This includes data utilities, data access components, etc. Assessing the security, data accuracy, and efficiency when designing the data layer is essential.
Types of Mobile App Architecture Basis Framework
Android, iOS, and cross-platform mobile apps are leading frameworks in mobile app development.
1. Android Mobile Application Architecture
The majority of Android apps leverage Clean Architecture due to its simplicity. Clean Architecture is usually represented as a circle of four layers:
Entities–a business logic;
Use Cases/Unteractors–app logic;
Interface Adapters–This layer converts data from one format to another.
Frameworks and Drivers–This is the outermost layer, comprising frameworks and tools. e.g., The Databases, UI, http-client, and others.
Why choose Android architecture for your business? Android boasts one of the largest user bases today. Android apps are a good investment if your goal is to reach a broad user base. On the plus side, Android architecture is open source, which means you don't have to pay license fees or be restricted to specific guidelines.
2. iOS Mobile Application Architecture
One of the reasons for selecting Apple's architecture is profitability. iOS users are willing to pay more thanks to Apple's quality and security features. iOS architecture comes in several forms, like MVVM and VIPER, each with pros and cons. However, the basic iOS architecture is divided into four categories, namely:
The kernel layer - directly interacts with the system. It manages the expiry dates of certificates and also the security of apps.
The subsequent layer is a file control system with direct database access. It can only function with core services.
Media layer - In the media layer, data access components like utilities and service agents help you stay in sync with the subsequent layer.
Interface layer - Have tools needed to build interfaces
3. Hybrid Mobile Application Architecture
Since Hybrid apps share a codebase for all the platforms, it's easy to maintain them and lower development costs. Hence, it's an attractive option for budget-conscious businesses with low startup costs.
4. Cross-Platform Architecture
Similar to Hybrid architecture, cross-platform apps share the code base. However, cross-platform architecture does not use web languages. Instead, it's built on frameworks like React Native, Xamarin, etc.
Cross-platform architecture is a popular choice today because of its close alignment with native apps. This ensures a seamless and native-like user experience, making it a promising approach for mobile app development.
By leveraging purpose-built frameworks, such as React Native, Flutter, and Xamarin, cross-platform architectures prioritize efficiency and performance optimization. This leads to faster development cycles, cost reduction, and an accelerated time-to-market. The consistent user experience across various platforms is an added benefit.
Now, let's consider the key factors that cannot be overlooked when developing a mobile app architecture.
#1. Design on the Basis of Your Customer's Preferences & Pain Points
As a business, you should view mobile apps as products and solutions to specific challenges your users face. It's about how well your app caters to your users' unique needs and preferences.
By addressing users' pain points, your business can enhance the overall user experience and build a foundation for customer loyalty and retention.
For instance, recognizing that older users prefer simplicity while children engage more with motion-oriented interfaces allows for targeted and effective app design.
#2. Choose Frameworks Wisely
When selecting frameworks, you should align your choices with long-term goals. One of the essential factors to consider is the scalability of the framework. The chosen framework should meet the current needs and scale seamlessly as the business expands.
Another critical factor to weigh is community support. A robust community support system is valuable, providing insights and troubleshooting assistance. Keeping the above factors in mind ensures that your chosen framework continues to support the app's growth and adaptability in the rapidly changing digital landscape.
#3. Factor in Mobile App Development Cost
Innovations and features always take the spotlight in mobile app development. However, the cost factor must not be overlooked, as mobile app development can lead to bloating budgets. The cost of the app varies because of several factors. These factors include:
Apps type and size - the bigger the size, the higher the cost.
Operating system used - iOS vs. Android vs. Hybrid
Development team location, in case you outsource your mobile app development. For example, developers in the USA will always be expensive compared to those in Asian countries.
Tech stack used - React Native for cross-platform, Java/Kotlin for Android, etc.
Maintenance and security costs - These are ongoing costs regularly.
#4. Stay on top of Mobile App Development Trends
Adopting trends isn't just about staying current. It's about leveraging innovation to enhance user engagement. Mobile App Trends like AI bring functionalities that can revolutionize user experiences, making apps more intuitive, personalized, and efficient. To ensure that your business is at the forefront of tech-fueled development, embracing these trends and harnessing their benefits to solidify your imagery in the market is essential.
Other popular mobile app development trends include:
Machine learning capabilities
IoT (Internet of Things)
Cloud-based Storage, etc
Mobile app architecture is the cornerstone for building future-ready apps. It's like a foundation that holds every other element in place. A robust mobile app architecture ensures scalability, efficiency, and adaptability and is a bedrock for seamless functionality and future enhancements. Hence, every iOS and Android developer must have a good understanding of app architectures so that it will continue to expand in the future.
If you lack in-house expertise and are considering outsourcing mobile app development, lean on our experts. Clarion Technologies assures you seasoned and handpicked mobile app developers who work with you to ensure you are well-positioned to harness the power of robust mobile app architectures to thrive in the ever-evolving digital landscape. Contact us today to give your business that competitive edge of robust mobile apps.
Dilip Kachot, a seasoned Technical Architect with over 7 years of experience in the Mobility domain, excels in driving successful delivery of cutting-edge solutions. His expertise lies in architecting and implementing innovative mobility solutions that align with the evolving technological landscape.