a hand holding mobile phone with applications on display

How to Become a Mobile App Developer

The fascinating world of mobile development is enticing to almost everyone. There are countless mobile applications that we use for chatting, cooking, shopping, banking, and more.


These apps also need to be regularly updated, both to draw in new users with special features, and to maintain a positive relationship with existing customers.

If you want to learn more about mobile app development and how to pursue a career in the field, then keep reading this guide.

What Is Mobile App Development?

Mobile app development shares many of the same fundamental concepts used in other software development.

Mobile application developers make apps that are both utilitarian and visually appealing, for use on smartphones and other electronic devices. The goal is to address the needs of a client.

An app designer may create an application for Android or iOS, then regularly update the app over time. Therefore, a developer needs to grasp all of the techniques that are used to create different types of mobile platforms.

What Is Mobile App Development Used For?

By studying mobile app development, you will learn to innovate ideas for new applications and how to make improvements to existing ones. Below, we have listed some of the benefits that developing a mobile app can bring to a company.

  • Improved efficiency. Custom-building an application means the finished product will meet all of the requirements of the company, which can lead to increased efficiency.

  • Improved customer relations. Customized applications allow you to access customers’ details and get feedback that can build long-term relationships with your clients.

  • High scalability. Mobile apps can easily be scaled up to meet the requirements of a business.

  • Accurate data storage. Apps allow records and files to be stored digitally, and they can only be accessed by authorized staff.

Mobile App Development Skills

Having a good base of knowledge about mobile development will help you develop quality apps. Depending on what app you want to develop, you might need to learn different coding languages. To make an Android app, you primarily need to be familiar with the Java or Kotlin programming languages. However, it is not mandatory to have a four-year degree or a background in technology to start learning mobile app development. Soft skills will also play a role in your success.

To become a professional mobile app developer, you must have the ability to adjust to new work environments and enthusiasm for learning new techniques. You should also be creative and innovative, and pay close attention to minute details. In addition to these basics, you will also need to have technical skills, some of which we have mentioned below.


Javascript is a platform-independent programming language that comes with both angular and react native tools that are commonly used to quickly develop native mobile apps. These tools provide mobile developers with a customizable framework to make app development easier.

Learning JavaScript will allow you to have greater control as it is widely used in HTML content. 

User Interface Design

User interface includes all the ways that a user interacts with an app. Hence, the development of a high-quality user interface should be considered a priority. The users’ experience can determine whether the app will be successful.

Cross-platform App Development

Mobile app developers need to have a practical understanding of a variety of operating systems. There are three chief mobile operating platforms: iOS, Android, and Windows. Every app developer should be well-versed in building apps for multiple platforms.

Cyber security

Security of the data shared on mobile apps is of utmost importance. A mobile app developer needs to be trained in application security, disaster recovery, operational security, and end-user education. 

Extortion hacking is one of the highest risks for apps. Any company that’s developing a mobile app will want the developer they hire to have a solid understanding of encryption and how to thwart data loss to minimize risks.

Internet of Things (IoT)

With the rise in IoT-enabled devices, mobile applications require interactive user interfaces connected to the Internet. The principal aspects of the IoT are network interconnection, system security, and data analytics.

Back-end Computing

The fundamentals of backend computing include coding and frameworks, database management systems, local development environments, and collaboration services.

The main role of back-end developers is to manage databases, allocate the system’s memory, ensure security, and test and debug software. 

What Is a Mobile Developer?

Mobile application developers should possess an excellent working knowledge of different operating systems, such as Mac and Windows, and devices like smartphones and tablets. Cross-platform developers who can develop Android and iOS apps will be in high demand by software companies.

A mobile app developer will be skilled in programming, with in-depth knowledge of coding languages such as C++, Java, HTML, MySQL, PHP, and Objective-C. They work closely with computer analysts and engineers to apply these software development languages to create unique features in an app.

Duties of a Mobile App Developer

A mobile app developer has many duties. We have listed the central responsibilities of the role below.

  • Coding. The prime duty of a mobile app developer is to write, maintain, and implement code using languages such as Objective C, HTML, JavaScript, and XML. They must ensure that the program is working properly and meeting customers’ needs.

  • Testing and evaluating programs. Proper testing and troubleshooting are required to ensure that an app is running smoothly.

  • Debugging. Identifying and modifying issues in an existing app is an important part of mobile development, you need to make sure that your code is bug-free before deployment. 

  • Quality assurance. Developing quality assurance procedures and how to deploy software tools, and analyze metrics are also important in app development. 

Mobile App Developer Job Opportunities

The Mobile app development market is huge and the job opportunities are numerous. You might find work as a mobile application developer, an Android or iOS developer, or a Java or Objective-C developer.

According to insights.dice.com, mobile app development jobs will increase by about 30.7 percent over the next 10 years. It is estimated that by 2024, there will be 48,500 more tech occupations available than there are today.

Mobile App Developer Salary

Although salaries in the US vary depending on experience level, an entry-level salary for a mobile app developer will range from $28,000 to $140,000.

According to Payscale.com, the average salary of a mobile developer is $73,883 per year. As a developer’s experience increases, their salary can reach $112,000 per year.

Learning Mobile Development

A person looking at a phone and at macbook pro.
Once you learn how to build mobile apps, you can upload them for sale on any app store.

There are several paths you can take to become a professional mobile application designer. You can attend a coding bootcamp to get a thorough understanding of mobile application design in a short timeframe or can also acquire a degree in software engineering at a reputable four-year college or university. 

If you’re self-motivated, you can also use online training courses and resources to learn about app development on your own. Each option has its advantages and disadvantages, so choose the one that is best suited to your educational preferences. 

Previously, most positions in computer programming were reserved for applicants with college degrees. But now, the sheer quantity of self-study resources available online has made it possible to become highly skilled without attending a formal program. 

How Long Does It Take to Learn Mobile App Development?

Learning mobile app development can take between six and 20 months, depending on numerous factors. If you are starting with an excellent base of programming knowledge, it will take considerably less time.

Some mobile application designers go to college, while others are self-trained and have no conventional background in the field. As such, it’s difficult to pinpoint how long the skill takes to learn.

How to Learn Mobile App Development: Step-by-Step

Learning mobile app development can be complicated if you don’t plan wisely. To help, we have formulated a step-by-step guide for an infallible path to success.

  1. Get familiar with the platforms. Your first task should be to gain insight into mobile development platforms and the skills needed to be a developer.

  2. Knowledge of programming languages. Learn programming languages before enrolling in a course. Some common programming languages used in mobile apps are C, C++, HTML5, and JavaScript.

  3. Choose a course. It is important to enroll in a course to get in-depth information about the latest trends in mobile development.

  4. Practice. You will get the best outcomes in your apps if you practice writing clean code. To achieve stability in the vast field of mobile application development, practice is a must.

  5. Get certified. To stand out from the pack and increase your chances of getting hired, you should get certified by an authorized body.

Mobile App Development Certifications

To help you make the final step to get certified, we have compiled the list below of the best app development certificates available. 

Undergraduate Certificate in Mobile Applications Development

This is an advanced-level certificate open to both engineering majors and non-engineering undergraduate students. This course will leave you fully prepared to enter the industry. This certificate also offers scholarships for outstanding students.

Google Developers Certification – Associate Android Developer

This certification will be the next step forward on your path of becoming an Android developer. It is specifically designed to evaluate your skills, including in creating functions and fixing bugs on the app you are assigned to work on. 

This certification also comes with a study guide. You are also required to complete an exit interview in order to gain the certificate.

Online Mobile App Development Resources

To stay up to speed with mobile app development processes and tools, mobile platforms, Web apps, and mobile devices, you should never stop reading books and online resources. We have provided some informative open-source learning sites below.

Android Developers Blog 

Written by Google employees, this blog covers topics ranging from the technical, like cryptography, to softer subjects like developers’ biographies. This blog will provide you with the latest operating system news and gadgets, and app success stories. 

Stack Overflow 

Stack Overflow is a question-answer site where you get the answers to all of your programming queries. It is focused on detailed and to-the point-answers rather than opinion-based answers. The questions are also tagged so you can easily browse specific topics.

How to Build a Billion Dollar App

Written by George Berkowski and available on Amazon Kindle, this book is a must-read if you wish to launch an app that will also turn a profit. The text covers social media, games, and service apps, and provides examples of successes in each area.

It gives the reader a clear pathway to success with their new app. It also features a step-by-step guide to understanding the mobile app business model, inside and out. 

Should You Study Mobile Development?

This rapidly growing industry offers more than just good pay and job satisfaction. The constant need to grow, develop, and research industry trends will keep you on your toes.

App developers create all the applications we use on our tablets and smartphones. If you love exploring the possibilities of new technology, a career in mobile app development will likely be an exciting choice.

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