Mobile App Development In Singapore: iPhone & Android

App Development Company in Singapore

Potado is an app development company that helps startups and big companies based in Singapore develop mobile and web applications, as well as applications powered by emerging technologies such as AI and IoT. Our international team of product managers, interface designers and app developers collaborate globally to deliver polished and reliable products to the Singapore market.

We deliver the best web and mobile apps by using the latest technologies and development methodologies. Combine that with a team of exceptional talent and and understanding of our clients needs. Collaboration is very important to us and we believe in working closely with out clients throughout the entire process.

Why Develop an App in Singapore

Looking at a map of the world, Singapore might seem too small to be of importance, but don't be fooled, the small island is one the the most important tech hubs in the world. With an attractive business climate and innovative governance, Singapore already houses large tech companies like Google, Facebook, Amazon, LinkedIn, Microsoft, Stripe, Grab, Bigo, Shopee, and Tiktok. Chinese companies such as Tencent, ByteDance and Alibaba are also planning to setup regional hubs in Singapore in the near future. Singapore has proven time and time again to be a leader in digital innovation and will continue to attract companies, engineers and entrepreneurs from all around the world.

Should You Develop an Android, iOS, or Web App in Singapore?

One of the most important questions to ask before developing an app, is to decide which platform you will develop for. Before you develop an app you need to consider several factors from user location and behaviour to cost and timeframe.

Once the app store was revealed we saw many companies release products that provided people with an experience a web or desktop platform couldn't. One such example is Instagram, and now there is Snapchat, Tiktok and many others. Facebook already allowed users so share images with their friends on the website, but Instagram took the experience mobile. They made it easier and trendy, everyone wanted it. Alongside their app on Android and iOS, Instagram also has a web app, so users can access the service from their desktop. So ideally, you want your app to reach users on any platform they use.

Singapore, and Asia in general, is a mobile first market so it's important to provide an excellent mobile experience but also provide your service on the web for those who prefer to use your service from a desktop computer or tablet. A Website is also a good alternative when attracting users who don't want to necessarily download an app, but want a quick, and convenient way to access your product.

When building for mobile, we need to consider that in Singapore, 75% of mobile phone owners have an Android phone while 25% have an iPhone. So Android is definitely the dominant platform, but 25% is still a large number, so both platforms are important.

Mobile App Development in Singapore

Usually you needed to develop an app for iOS, and app for Android, and another one for the web, all with different code bases. Today, technology has advanced enough to provide us with solutions to do more with less. There are cases when native will work better, but the important thing is that we now have the option to provide an equally good experience by utilising technologies such as React Native, Flutter and PWA (Progressive Web Apps) that allow us to target Android and iOS with one build or provide a great mobile experience as a web app. When developing software in Singapore we need to decide on the best tech stack for your company. The options we need to consider are:

  1. Native Application Development
  2. Cross-Platform App Development
  3. Hybrid App Development
  4. Progressive Web Apps (PWAs)

Native App Development

This is developing a mobile app for Android or iOS (iPhone and iPad) with the tools provided by the operating system. Native Android apps can only run on Android devices and similarly native iOS apps can only run on iPhones or iPads. If your application is cantered around accessing hardware features or aimed at just one operating system you should consider going native.

iPhone App Development

Apple's mobile operating system, iOS, is the architecture that powers the iPhones that we love so much. The minimalist, but elegant design is second to none. There is something about an Apple device that just makes it work so well. Not only does it work well, but it is easy for anyone to use.

In Singapore, about 30% of people use iPhones compared to Android devices. The latter is often seen as the cheaper more customable option, while iPhones are known to have a heaver price tag. Because of this Android dominates South East Asia, while iOS earns larger user bases in places like Japan, Australia, the United Kingdom, and United States.

30% of users might not be the majority, but it is still a large percentage of people. In Singapore that's about 1.7 Million people. You can quickly see how that number grows if you have a user base in multiple countries. So developing a solid app for iOS is essential for all businesses in Singapore that want to reach their full audience. These days users expect digital services to be flexible and easy to access, and with tight competition, if you aren't doing it, someone else will.

iPhone Programming Languages

At Potado we develop iPhone apps using Swift for native apps and React Native for Cross-Platform apps. Swift is an open source programming language developed by Apple. It can be used to develop apps for iPhones, iPads, Macs, Apple TV's as well as wearables like the Apple Watch. Javascript is the language of the web, but with it's strong community and versatility it continues to thrive in the app development world.

For the backend we either use Firebase or build our own API's using Javascript (NodeJS) or Python. Firebase is a backend as a service owned by Google. They host the backend and allow us to use it to store data and authenticate users. This is great as it is well maintained and scales alongside the apps growth. You will then pay for it once your app grows.

AI and Machine learning continue to help developers build advanced functionality into iOS apps and here at Potado, we use Apple's Core ML to run models on iPhones and iPads. These models run fully on the users' devices keeping speeds optimal and their privacy ensured. We can use Core ML to build features that require image recognition, object detection, action, activity or sound classification, as well as text recognition.

Android App Development

Android is one the most popular mobile operating systems alongside Apple's iOS and a few others. In Singapore about 70% of mobile phone owners use an Android device. So if you plan on building an app for just one device and want to target Singapore, Android is the way to go. Android not only dominates the Singapore market, but also most of the neighboring ASEAN countries. Japan, Australia and New Zealand are the countries in the Asia Pacific region where iOS tends to be more popular than Android. Running a successful app is a numbers game so you always want to try and target as many devices as possible to make your service accessible to everyone, but 70% is a pretty good start if you feel Android is a good fit for your business. You can always develop for other platforms at a later stage.

Our team using advanced methodologies to build Android apps that dominate the market. We follow the latest UI interface design guidelines to ensure our apps look great and are easy to use. If you need a team that understands how to use the latest functionalities you are in the right place. We always keep up with the latest technologies such as MLKit, which is Google's machine learning tech brought to mobile. Some applications are text recognition, face recognition, voice recognition, barcode scanning, landmark detection and more.

Android Programming Languages

At Potado we develop our native Android apps with Kotlin and our cross-platform apps with React. We might still use Java for a few legacy projects but where possible we have moved over to the new and improved Kotlin.

On the front-end we use Kotlin, Flutter (with Dart) or Javascript (With React). Kotlin is a open source general purpure programming language for Android app development. It was designed to work with Java so when making the transition you could use both Java and Kotlin in the same project and the compiler would understand it. Kotlin was simply a better, more modern language, with an improvement of the faults in Java and it helps to ensure that the apps we build stay modern for longer periods and can keep up with the latest features. Flutter was developed by Google and is a great way to build beautiful user interfaces using the modern Dart language. Javascript is probably the most popular programming language that has the largest community and is forever growing and improving, and that is what makes React Native apps so powerful.

For the back-end we will either use Firebase, or develop our own API's using Javascript and NodeJs or Python. Firebase is what we call a database as a service. It is a database developed by Google that has prebuilt functionality ready to be connected to our apps. This is great because it is built to scale alongside your app and requires much less time to get up and running. If we need to use more custom features we will use either NodeJs, which is a Javascript framework which let's us use Javascript for backend development, or Python. These languages will allow us to develop custom API calls that we will host and manage our self and plug into the Android front-end.

Having a great design is something that also cannot be overlooked. Our user experience design team always keeps to to date with the Android design guidelines. We believe in building apps that look and feel native to the Android operating system. This way users will be comfortable using the app from the first click. In order to achieve this we follow a detailed process to ensure that the app is fully scoped out before starting development.

Pros

  • High performance
  • Best support for device native features such as the camera, accelerometer, etc
  • UI components are device specific and update with the OS

Cons

  • You need to develop several apps for different platforms
  • Higher cost
  • Longer time to market
  • Need to manage multiple code bases

Examples of Native iOS and Android Apps in Singapore

  • Your system apps pre installed on your phone are native apps: Calculator, Camera, Phone, Notes, etc

Cross-Platform App Development

Cross-platform applications use native elements to give users a great experience on any device. They have one codebase but can work on many devices so essentially you develop 1 app that works on many devices. Even though there is just 1 codebase, these apps can provide all devices with their own UI elements to provide the best user experience for that operating system. Cross-platform apps are probably the most popular way to develop a mobile app in Singapore right now thanks to the popularity of Flutter and React Native. If you need to develop an app for both Android and iOS this is definitely the way to go.

Pros

  • Develop both Android and iOS at once
  • More time and cost effective
  • Code is easier to manage since you don't need to create a separate one for each platform
  • High performance

Cons

  • Need a developer with a specific skill (React Native or Flutter)
  • Depend on frameworks when accessing device hardware features
  • Some device specific code may be required

Examples of Hybrid Apps in Singapore

  • Grab (Flutter)
  • Instagram (React Native)
  • Alibaba (Flutter)
  • JD (React Native)
  • Groupon (Flutter)

Hybrid App Development

Another solution is to combine a web app with a native app, and it is called a Hybrid or Web Native app. This is another popular option in Singapore, as well as South East Asia. To build a hybrid app we basically build a web app and put it in a container for Android and iOS so that it can be put on the Google Play Store, App Store, Huawei App Gallery as well as the Windows Store and Mac App Store. Tools such as React, Vue, Ionic, Electron, and Capacitor are used to develop these. Thanks to the ever increasing performance of web browsers and a strong web development community, for most cases the performance of these apps are just as good as Native and Cross-platform apps. Going hybrid is ideal if you have an audience on many platforms or want to build an MVP to test your idea. Most Singapore startups opt for this.

Pros

  • You old need to make one app for multiple platforms
  • Lower cost
  • Quicker to develop
  • You can access all native features if necessary via native API's
  • Easier to maintain and add new features

Cons

  • Apps that rely on native features won't perform as well as native apps
  • Adding native features can be complicated

Examples

  • 86400 Bank
  • Southwest Airlines
  • Electronic Arts
  • National Health Service

Web App Development (PWA)

A progressive web app is simply a website that functions as an app would. It can be saved to the home screen of your mobile device just like an app, and it can even be published to the Google Play store. This is great because you provide users access to a service without making them download an app. Sometimes you want to interact with an app and share it but not necessarily save it to the home screen, so a PWA would be the ideal solution. If you just need a website with a mobile experience this is also a great choice as an alternative to mobile application development in Singapore.

Pros

  • Develop one app that works on all platforms
  • Faster and cheaper development
  • Great support on Android and Windows

Cons

  • iOS support is not the best yet

Web Apps

Web apps are also a popular option if that's where your users are. We build responsive web apps that work across all platforms. We use technologies such as Vue, React, Node and Python for web projects. We develop tools that help with automation, scraping, data analysis, and have are experts at machine learning apps, iOT (internet of things), API's, as well as blockchain dapps (decentralised apps).

What is The Process to Develop an App in Singapore

Having a simple, transparent and result driven process is what sets us apart from other companies in Singapore. It's also one of the major reasons people hire companies instead of freelancers to develop their apps. We work closely with out clients and have them as involves as they want to be. Being able to use and test the app during production builds trust and ensures us to ensure that we have tested every feature and the final product is bug free on launch date. We define our process as follows:

  1. Consult
  2. Wireframe
  3. Design
  4. Develop
  5. Test
  6. Launch
  7. Maintain

Consult

The first step when starting a project is to discuss the project, share thoughts, and brainstorm ideas with our clients. Because of our understanding of the Singapore and ASEAN market we can provide some useful insights not just about app development, but also about strategy and marketing. We will decide on the features required and also discuss platforms, technologies and monetization to draw up a specification sheet which will allow us both parties to have a document that clearly states the requirements for the project.

Wireframe

Now that we know what is required, our team will start to draw wireframes. Wireframes are basically rough sketches that allow us to decide on the pages and features we will rely on. Our development team will also start planning the database structure for the app. We work very closely with our clients here until we have a wireframe they are happy with.

UI/UX Design

We all know the importance of good design. If someone opens an app with an outdated look or bad user experience, the chances of them coming back are slim. Our UX designers make sure to keep up to date with the latest design principles for all platforms. Once we have sketched out designs we will present them to the client and iterate until we have a design to sign off.

Development

Now the fun starts. Our development team will work with the specifications and designs to bring your project to life. This is the longest stretch of the project so we like to allow our clients to test with us to see the app develop day by day. Our team utilizes Git and stores and backups our code to secure it will always be safe.

Testing

Once the app is done, we will let you and your team all sign up and use it with us. We will test all features and edge cases and fix any bugs that pop up to make sure the app is well polished and ready for launch day.

Launch

When we have the go ahead, we will publish the app on the domain, or respective app stores. e will also assist with setting up the store listings and graphics. Once the review is complete the app will be live.

Maintain

Once the app is running, we are here to offer continual support for as long as you need. We will work with you to maintain your app and ensure that any issues are resolved and we will also be able to update and add new features as you grow. This can allow you to focus on growing your business and establishing strategic partnerships while we manage all the engineering for you.

Work With A Top Mobile App Developer In Singapore

Our Singapore team of app developers are ready to take on any challenge thrown our way. We will work with you and your team to build out an app that you and your users will love. Singapore is one of the best places to develop an app because the development cost is not as high as places like the Unites States, but the quality is just as good, if not better! So what are you waiting for, if you are ready to make something great feel free to reach out to us anytime. Here is what some of our past clients had to say about us:

"We wanted to hire an app development company in Singapore to build our startup a minimal viable product to pitch to investors. We were lucky to raise some initial funds through friends and family so we could hire Potado. They built our app for iPhone, Android and web and we were very happy with the result, especially because of how smooth and clean the app worked and looked!"

"Our app was already build for Android and we needed to get a web version for mobile and desktop as well as another version for iPhones. We worked with a dev team to build our Android app and it took over 8 months. We assumed it was because the app had many complex features like maps, chat and animations. When we worked with Potado they managed to build it even better in just over 8 weeks! We ended up getting them to completely rebuild our Android version as well. Great experience."

Are you ready to build something great?

Contact Us