Consistency in a Fragmented World: Building for Web, iOS, Android Panel
Presented by: Nishita Agarwal, Madelin Woods, Sophie Westwood, Brina Lee
So to set the background this is probably the biggest session I was in the entire conference. I made the assumption that everyone here was a developer or interested in becoming a developer. I'm a android mobile developer but I'm interested in expanding to iOS, Windows, and maybe web. The companies represented in this talk just happen to be Facebook, Pintrest, Square, Instagram (slight offset from Facebook), and Quip. I had no clue what quip was so I Googled it right before the talk started so I felt cool and informed.
The initial theme of this seems to be the advice that you should pick one platform that all your users primarily use and then as you grow you can expand to other platforms. Most of these companies started on the web or iPhone. This fact shouldn't really surprise anyone because up until about 2009-2010 the internet was where everyone was at. I remember trying to get a Myspace because "my friends had it". As far as the iPhone goes I believe that was a smart move as well because when apple said that every phone company would get an iPhone they opened up the flood gates to heaven. Ok, maybe not heaven but I had an smartphone that I didn't like and as soon as I heard "iPhone on Verizon Wireless" I definitely went to buy one (plus my contract was up). One platform that most companies don't work on is Windows. To be honest if you look at the growth of the Windows phone market it is growing exponentially but that and they could be losing possible customers.
I think it is pretty interesting to hear that most thought iOS was more advanced than android. As a semi-biased programmer I think Android is more advanced given to the fact that it is open source so bugs are constantly being fixed and as a developer you can see what is coming and test it before all your consumers update and things go crazy. As previously stated I don't have any/very little web experience but form these ladies I am fairly confident that web development isn't all that ruff.
As far as the challenges oh coding for multiple platforms, I loved some of the things that were said and I think people tend to forget some of the following: one person can't do everything. Even if you are specialized there should be someone for different devices or levels because they are all growing and changing. Also when doing this you have more planning to do especially when your trying to roll out simultaneous updates. It was stresses that everyone know and realize that different platforms have different verification periods. A word that constantly came up in all of these little tidbits was "communication". Seasoned people are always saying communication is key and when you talk to developer the theme doesn't seem to die especially since we all have different speeds of work and skill-sets.
I regret that I didn't really take notes this time around but this was really a session where you listen and keep the tips in the back of your mind so when you come to that moment of creating something of your own then you have an idea of the mindset you need to be successful.
Small tip: you can use verify to test things on a small form or start making changes on the web and then migrate to mobile