Review our complete mobile app glossary below:
Apple introduced 3D or haptic touch sensitivity. Users can activate the feature by varying the degrees of pressure on the device or the speed of the haptic touch on the phone. Apple announced the new feature when they launched iPhone 6.
Developers can experiment with various application iterations to determine which variables result in positive user behavior. For instance, they can test multiple buttons, CTAs, icons, fonts, or copy to determine which elements perform best.
Accelerometers for mobile devices detect orientation to adjust the screen based on whether it is vertical or horizontal.
An adaptive layout will adjust to fit across devices, including phones, tablets, or desktops. A responsive design is crucial to deliver a consistent experience regardless of the device.
Agile Software Development
Agile software development adheres to the Agile Manifesto and the 12 Principles. Developers aim to build software iteratively, utilize weekly sprints, divide projects into modules, and emphasize collaboration.
Amazon Web Services (AWS)
AWS provides a variety of services and products for developers. The cloud computing platform offers infrastructure as a service (IaaS), platform as a service (PaaS), and packaged software as a service (SaaS) for businesses to store data, manage content, and much more.
Google created Android as an alternative mobile operating system to Apple’s iOS. It is free and open-source software. The source code is known as Android Open Source Project (AOSP). Android and iOS are the two largest mobile operating systems across the globe.
Application Programming Interface (API)
APIs using set rules and specifications to foster interaction between software components. APIs provide building blocks for faster mobile development. iOS and other operating systems offer APIs to help facilitate mobile development without creating complex components from scratch.
Android Package (APK)
An APK is a file format on Android that is used to deliver mobile apps. It can be written in Java or Kotlin. Developers can store APK files using Android or Visual studio. The files contain program codes, resources, certificates, and more.
App provisioning encompasses the mobile app development lifecycle, including preparing, delivering, and managing mobile apps within a specific endpoint system.
Developers can use an application cache (appcache) to specify which files should be cached or available offline.
On iOS devices, users can hold an app icon for a couple of seconds to activate arrangement mode. The icons will begin to jiggle, and users can rearrange icons on their iOS home screen or dashboard.
Backend development is the server-side of an app. Users can not view the backend of an application, but the backend code is what communicates information between the server, application, and database.
Badges are the notifications or warnings that alert users to unread messages, notifications, emails, and other information.
The Beta version of an app is the pre-release, testing version of an application. Developers will examine features during the beta phase, fix bugs, and make final changes before deploying the application.
IT can protect end-users from running distracting or dangerous apps by listing them on a mobile app blacklist, preventing end-users from using specific apps on their network.
Bluetooth is wireless technology that uses frequency hopping spread spectrum technology to exchange information. Users can connect headphones, speakers, and other devices to their mobile phone for wireless communication.
Bugs are defects, issues, or unintended behaviors in a mobile application. Developers will perform code reviews and change requests to identify bugs and fix them before launching the application.
A B2C app targets an average consumer.
A B2B targets businesses rather than a typical consumer.
Enterprises typically use a B2E app for internal company use, such as displaying company announcements, managing benefits, etc.
Cascading Style Sheet (CSS)
Content Management System (CMS)
A CMS is a platform used to add, remove, edit, and manage content on a website or app. For instance, if you have a blog section on your website, the CMS is where you would create a new article, make any edits to existing content, or remove pages entirely.
The control center allows mobile users to access standard app settings, such as Airplane Mode, Bluetooth connection, volume, and phone brightness.
A corner case is a unique and unexpected action performed by a user inside your app. For instance, if someone registered on your app using an email address that doesn’t end in a typical address, such as .com, .net, or .org.
Customer Data Platform (CDP)
A CDP is a software platform that serves as a comprehensive hub to collect and organize user information. Using CDP, marketers can segment and create customer profiles based on specific audiences.
Domain Name Service (DNS)
A DNS translates domain names to IP addresses. For instance, “codesmithdev.com” may have an IP address that looks like 192.168.1.1. Ip addresses are easier to interpret for computers.
Don’t Repeat Yourself (DRY)
DRY is a development principle that aims to reduce the amount of code written in an app. Less code is typically seen as better, as you’ll have fewer corner cases to test for. When a project is DRY, developers write functions to be simple so an app can reuse those pieces in multiple areas.
An edge case is a user who pushes the capabilities of a mobile application and availability features. Edge cases may expose or create bugs or crashes for your application.
An emulator is used to duplicate your application, including hardware, operating systems, and functionality, to run tests.
An epic refers to a large project created using agile development.
Developers can take an open-source software program and take the source code to develop a new program. Forking allows developers to take the application into different branches while storing data in a central place (repository).
Fragmentation occurs when users run multiple versions of an application. Running both old and new versions can lead to security concerns. It is especially problematic with Android applications because of the open-source nature of the operating system.
The front end is the face of an application and is considered the portion of the application that users see and touch.
Gestures are the finger actions users perform to utilize their touch screen devices, including pinching, flicking, or scrolling.
Graphical User Interface (GUI)
The GUI consists of the pictures, buttons, images, windows, and other widgets users interact with on mobile apps.
Graphics Interchange Format (GIF)
A GIF is an animated image or just an image file that can feature animated or moveable elements.
An instrument that measures the orientation of a mobile device.
Haptic technology or kinaesthetic communication is any technology that gives a tactile response. A typical example is a phone vibration to alert a user of a phone notification.
The home screen is the main screen that shows users the primary apps on their mobile phones.
HTML5 is the fifth version of Hypertext Markup Language, giving developers everything they need to design without additional plugins or software.
Human Interface Guidelines (HIG)
HIG is the standard rules developers and designers follow to create apps that properly function and meet user expectations.
Hybrid App Development
Hybrid app development allows developers to create apps that run across multiple operating systems, including iOS and Android.
Hypertext Markup Language (HTML)
Hypertext Transfer Protocol (HTTP)
HTTP is the protocol used to find HTML documents and facilitate data exchange. Users load pages using hypertext links, and HTTP is the application layer protocol that transfers information.
Hypertext Transfer Protocol Secure (HTTPS)
HTTPS is a secure version of a Hypertext Transfer Protocol.
Apple offers iCloud as cloud storage and cloud computing service for users, automatically storing data across devices, such as photos, files, notes, and passwords.
iMessage is Apple’s text message service. Mac OS X and iOS users can send SMS-style text messages for free.
In-App Purchase (IAP)
Users can purchase consumable and non-consumable IAPs to access features, game items, and other in-app upgrades.
Integrated Development Environment (IDE)
Developers use IDE to build apps. IDEs contain tools to write, debug, and automate applications.
Internet of Things (IoT)
IoT is the network of physical devices connecting and exchanging data over the internet, including electronics, software, and sensors.
iOS is the Apple operating system that supports iPhone, iPad, and other Apple devices. Developers typically use Swift or Objective-C languages to create iOS apps.
An IP Address is the number assigned to any device connected to the Internet to provide network interface identification and location addressing.
Jailbreaking a mobile device removes restrictions and locks so users can install apps not approved or available in the App Store.
Kotlin is a modern programming language used to create Android applications.
LAMP = Linux, Apache, MySQL, PHP
LAMP is an acronym that describes four technologies commonly used to create backend networks. Linux is the operating system, Apache is the web server, MySQL is the database, and PHP is the language used to create web pages.
Material Design is the set of standards apps use to provide a consistent interface on Android.
Minimum Viable Product (MVP)
An MVP is a version of your application that is ready to use. Developers will continue to add new features and fix any issues, but an MVP is used to take your app to market.
A mobile application is intended for smartphones for small, wireless devices. A mobile application can also have compatible versions for desktops, tablets, and other devices.
Mobile application development platform (MADP)
A MADP is a development tool developers use to create hybrid and native apps using a single codebase but compatible with multiple mobile platforms.
Mobile Backend as a Service (MBAAS)
A MBAAS connects mobile applications to cloud databases so users can manage notifications and social integrations.
Mobile data allows users to get online when away from Wi-Fi through mobile cellular carriers.
Mobile Interaction Design
Mobile interactive design aims to satisfy user needs while using a mobile application. It focuses on the user experience.
Mobile middleware allows secure communication between cloud-based and on-premise applications.
An operating system designed specifically to run on mobile devices.
Mockups are used during the development process to show end users what an app will look like and incorporate practical functionality. Developers often create software UI mockups with realistic bitmaps and semi-functional user interfaces.
A multimodal interface uses multiple interfaces for data input and output so users can utilize a variety of data entry points, such as Siri or chatbots.
Native App Development
Native app development is intended to run on only one specific platform versus hybrid apps designed to run on multiple platforms (Android and iOS). Developers can build features exclusive for one platform for an elevated user experience.
An abstraction layer that gives a non-application access to mobile device APIs.
Native wrappers are components that allow for native distribution for non-native apps.
Near-Field Communications (NFC)
NFC supports Card Emulation, Reader/Writer, and Peer-to-Peer to allow two devices in close proximity to communicate with each other.
Objective-C is a coding language used to write iOS applications.
Facebook created Open Graph to show metadata for web pages on social media platforms.
Open source is software that anyone can inspect or modify the source code.
Operating System (OS)
An Operating System is where developers can create an application. It acts as a buffer between hardware and software components of any given device. Examples of mobile operating systems are iOS and Android.
PHP: Hypertext Preprocessor
PHP is a backend coding language. It is an open-source scripting language ideal for web development and easy to embed into HTML.
Portable Network Graphics (PNG)
PNGs are graphics that support lossless data compression. They are an ideal image format for the internet.
A push notification is an alert or message sent to mobile users even if the application is not open. Messages are displayed on the device even when locked.
Progressive Web App (PWA)
PWAs are a subset of Hybrid Apps which can be saved to a phone for offline use. It can use native capabilities such as geolocation or push notifications. They can be used on any device with a modern browser.
Quality Assurance (QA)
Quality Assurance (QA) is the process of intensely auditing, monitoring, and evaluating an application to ensure it meets project requirements, standards, and functionality. QA Specialists will focus on the user experience, identify and fix bugs, and other general maintenance tasks.
Information that is delivered immediately after collecting it without any delay.
Responsive layout is a development approach to ensure applications are rendered and usable across various devices and layouts.
Ruby on Rails (RoR)
RoR is a full-stack, model-view-controller (MVC) development framework used to create front and backend applications. It encourages using web standards such as JSON or XML. It’s ideal for speeding up development and making code easier to understand.
A scrum is a team meeting where developers and other members discuss goals and organize milestones to reach for an app development project.
Security Assertion Markup Language (SAML)
A common XML-based open data format for authentication.
Service-Oriented Architecture (SOA)
An SOA is used to create reusable software components and service interfaces to work as a complete system with shared functionality.
Search Engine Optimization (SEO)
SEO is the process to increase website searched presence in organic search via technical and content-driven efforts. SEO is essential to drive relevant traffic based on keyword searches that align with your website services.
Secure Sockets Layer (SSL)
SSL is a technical procedure that allows browsers and apps to communicate securely with backends using a cryptographic protocol.
Sideloading is the process of transferring apps from web sources that are not vendor-approved. Sideloading is utilized to run beta tests of applications not available in the app store.
Simple Message Service (SMS)
A text messaging service component of a phone using standardized communication protocols to send short text messages.
Siri is the voice-assistant technology available on iOS devices, such as iPhones, iPads, and Desktop computers.
Software as a Service (SAAS)
SAAS delivers software applications through the internet as a service so users do not have to maintain and store complex software and hardware. SaaS is also synonymous with web-based software, on-demand software, or hosted software.
Software Development Kit (SDK)
SDK is a programming package that allows developers to create an app using a collection of programming tools, such as APIs.
Spotlight Search is a quick way for iOS users to find documents, contacts, music files and access other shortcuts.
Sprints are a way for development teams to block out projects into manageable workloads, ranging from one, two, or three weeks at a time.
Staging is where developers can test and change elements of their app without worrying about messing up the live version.
Stand-ups are brief, daily meetings for development teams to discuss what they are working on and resolve potential issues impeding progress.
Stickiness are strategies and elements that prompt users to stay active on an application for longer periods of time.
Structured Query Language (SQL)
SQL is used on the backend of an application so developers can interact with the database, such as MySQL or Postgres.
Test-Driven Development (TDD)
TDD is a short development cycle to create test cases and pass them. Developers use a TDD approach to perform repetitive unit testing on source code.
Unique Device Identifier (UDID)
Each mobile device has a unique, one-of-a-kind UDID assigned by the mobile device manufacturer.
User Experience (UX)
UX encompasses how users interact with an application, including feeling, reacting, or perceiving. UX testing is essential to evaluate how users will experience your application from practicality and ease of use perspective.
User Interface (UI)
UI are the design elements of a mobile app that the end user directly interacts with. It is an essential part of mobile app development since it determines UX and user satisfaction.
Versions are the final products of an application released to users. They encompass user stories feedback, and each different version of an app is adapted for iOS updates or to deploy new features.
Viewport is the section of a web page in view and tells the browser how to render a web page through a specific HTML meta tag.
Virtual Private Network (VPN)
VPN allows users to connect to a private local area network using a public network. For instance, employees of a company can access a corporate internet network outside of the office.
A view that displays web pages within an application.
A web application is application software that runs on a web server and is accessed through a web browser.
A wireless local area network allows smartphones, computers, and other devices to connect to the internet.
Wireframes are outlines that show graphical and functional elements of an app so developers can show the functions, structure, and content of an application.
Worldwide Web Consortium
The main international standards organization for the World Wide Web, developing common web language specifications such as HTML5 and XML.
Write Once, Run Anywhere (WORA)
A description of a program’s ability to run on all operating systems.
Mac OS X software development environment. A program distributed for free by Apple that enables users to create Mac OS X and iOS software.
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