Wednesday, April 18, 2018

Why Is Color Printing Still a Big Thing?

No matter how far ahead we move in the game of digitalization, paper and print will always be an important part of the journey. This is not just a naysayer’s statement made to deny the shift from manual to digital. It’s something that technologists to traditionalists will confirm at this point. While on one hand, there is no use denying that the world we live in today is a digital one, printed communication is still critical to the whole process, or else there wouldn’t be this legion of printers Jacksonville FL who are working day and night to meet the supply needs of the domestic companies.

Let’s take a closer look at how printing still holds the central place in communication even in the era of digitization.

Business Cards: Business cards will continue to exist with pride and importance as long as people believe in face-to-face meetings and conferences. Although windows like Skype has largely bridged the physical distances between businesses and entities bringing a little closer to one another, people still meet each other in person for business reasons. So, business cards Jacksonville FL are going to be around for a long time in the future. There is no known digital supplement that is going to replace it anytime soon. 

Billboard Posters: What else still requires paper and printing? A billboard banner. To be more accurate, its vinyl and print. Some may make a case by referring to the flashing digital billboards of Times Square as a glaring example of how billboard posters are going to be a thing of the past, but that argument can be countered by millions of billboards set up along highways and inner city roads in countries across the world that host nothing but printed posters. Let’s face it, poster printing services Jacksonville FL are cheaper and they receive the same impressions as a digital billboard. So, its win-win for the advertising companies, and less distracting for the commuters.  

Flyers: What do you think of these little chits of paper passed on to the pedestrians while they are going to work coming back home? Yes, there is every chance that you will trash the flyer the moment you are out of visibility of the guy who handed it to you, but not before you have cast a cursory glance at the content. Research indicates that flyers in fact get more impressions than ad mails, when passed on in person. 

Brochures: You go to a store looking for a service, a supermarket for some daily goods, or a restaurant for a takeaway; you are greeted with these little leaflets. Although not of any perceivable value, most people flip through the pages before discarding them in the trash. Because a paper brochure is a real thing, the effect is more immediate than a digital newsletter. 

Magazines: Magazines are still one of the highest impulse buys in a supermarket, next to the read-made food section. You inadvertently look at a magazine cover; chances are that you will take a sweeping glance at the key phrases before taking your eyes off.

Thursday, April 5, 2018

Android App Development – Trends for 2018

One of your top priorities if you’re a mobile dev is staying up to date and remaining inspired by new things, even if it means challenging your beliefs. 
App developers are constantly working on new methods to simplify and shorten development process on one hand and build the best designs and user experience on the other. Each year we can see continuing emergence of new, cutting-edge techniques and tools in mobile apps development. Here we present the trends that will give you a better insight about what should be on top in year 2018. 

1. Kotlin

Kotlin is a relatively recent programming language that works on the Java virtual machine. It’s developed mainly by the JetBrains programmers and since Google IO 2017 Kotlin has been the official programming language of the Android application. It has a lot of advantages, such as:

● Kotlin is interoperable with Java● Null safety● Extension function● Lambdas● Data classes

Kotlin brings all of these features of a modern language to the Android platform. It’s an excellent fit for developing Android applications and fully supported in Android Studio 3.0. It also contains several tools to improve work with its like Kotlin Android Extensions, which can fully replace iconic findViewById(). 

2. Room Persistence Library

Room is part of Android Architecture components, but it is a database library so we split the description into different point. It’s an abstract layer over SQLite that significantly simplifies query building. Its possibilities are amazing and oriented towards the observer pattern. Now, it’s easier to write a query using annotations.

In Room, there are 3 types of components:
● Database – for creating the database holder

● Entity – represents class and one row in database

● DAO – component represents a interface as a Data Access Object (DAO). Main component for defining methods which access the database

Room also integrates with RxJava and the new Live Data. The library is still in the alpha phase, so applying it to a production code can be a bit risky. We’re looking forward to the stable version. 

3. Object Box

ObjectBox is a performance-optimized mobile NoSQL database created by GreenRobot, who also created the GreenDao library. This database management system was released in a stable version in September 2017. ObjectBox is a database built from scratch, has a concise API that operates on objects like GreenDao and Realm. It supports ACID operations and Multiversion Concurrency Control (MVCC) providing safe transactions and parallelism. 
ObjectBox ensures compatibility with newest trends like reactive programming, Kotlin language and Android Architecture components which I’ll present in further sections.


When developing mobile apps, you have to face several challenges. One of the most important ones is clean architecture. There are a few design patterns which help you to separate modules in your app. Creating UI code that’s simple and free of business logic makes it easier to manage. There’s another big advantage - your code becomes more testable. 

The MVVM pattern was created relatively recently and is an innovative approach to creating mobile applications for the Android system. At first glance, the MVVM pattern is very similar to MVP, which is the most popular pattern in Android development. Thanks to the use of the MVVM standard, the creation of unit tests is even simpler, because no layer is dependent on the view. During testing, it’s enough to check whether the observed variables are properly set when the data model layer changes. There is no need to substitute an artificial view for testing as is in the case of the MVP pattern.

In MVVM pattern, the model layer is identical to that in MVC and MVP. It is responsible for managing business logic and fetching data from server or database. It provides the required information to the View-Model layer.

The view layer represents user interface elements and is responsible for displaying data. The View observes data exposed by the View-Model. Similarly to the MVP pattern, Activities and Fragments belong to the view layer together with control systems in XML files.

ViewModel is the responsible connection between the data layer and the view layer. Its task is to provide methods, commands and other properties that help maintain the view state, as well as manage the model as a result of actions in the view and handle events in the view. View-Model does not contain information about the view and is completely independent of the views. 

5. Android Architecture Components

Android Architecture Components is a set of libraries that help design maintainable, robust and testable apps. This collection of libraries consist previously mentioned Room Persistence Library, but also contains LiveData and ViewModel components described below and Paging Library but it is still in alpha, unlike other components.

LiveData is a lifecycle-aware observable data holder, which means it respects the lifecycle of other app components, such as Activity, Fragment or Service. Therefore, you do not have to handle the lifecycle manually, because LiveData will also automatically remove the observer when the Fragment receives onDestroy(). 

The ViewModel class is a helper for MVVM pattern. It’s designed to store and manage data necessary for UI. The ViewModel class allows data to survive configuration changes such as screen rotations, but ViewModel does not replace onSaveInstanceState().

In conclusion, we had a few big changes in last year. The most important is that Kotlin is now official programming language for Android and in 2018 Kotlin can be more popular in Android apps than Java. Moreover, we have some new big players in Android database management systems. Both, Room and ObjectBox are worth taking a closer look at and, in my opinion, worth using. In consequence, Room can finally replace clear SQLite databases in Android and ObjectBox can be a real competitor for noSQL databases like Realm. In 2017, the Android Architecture Components were also released. Since November 2017 they’ve been available in a stable version, so we believe in 2018 these set of libraries can become really powerful.

Tuesday, April 3, 2018

Importance of Having Mobile Apps for Small Businesses

The world has gone Mobile. The number of smart phone users globally has grown exponentially over the past 5 years. The number of Android & iOS devices sold globally has crossed a billion mark each. Hence, it is no longer sufficient to have only a website for your business. Any business, small or large must have a mobile app. Let us look at some of the most important reasons why you should opt for a mobile app for your business:

1. Branding - A mobile application is the best way to create brand awareness for your business. You can use your logo, your business's tag line or a message that you would like your customers to connect with your business to create a brand recall. Every time a customer who has downloaded your mobile apps sees your logo in the form of the mobile app icon on their screen, they will recall you.

2. Increased Reach - Because of the sheer penetration of mobile phones and other mobile devices like tablets and the improved Internet connectivity in most parts of the world, the number of people you can reach through a app has increased tremendously. It is easier for your existing as well as potential customers to find out the right information about your products or services through your mobile app.

3. Create Customer Database & Profile - It is easier to collect customer data in terms of phone number and email id through a mobile apps. You can also allow your app users to login via their social media accounts like Facebook or Google. This will give you access to other valuable data like their areas of interest, their lifestyle choice, their shopping preferences, etc. This data can then be used by your marketing team to send out the right communication.

4. Increased Engagement - By building the right features in your app you can utilize it as a powerful way to increase engagement with your existing and potential customers. You can include features like social sharing and a help desk (for sales and service queries) in the app to improve direct communication with your customers. This will in turn help your business to connect closely with your customers.

5. Push Notifications - This is one of the biggest advantages of having a mobile apps. You can ask your Mobile App Development Solution provider to integrate a push notification feature in your app which will help you with your on-the-go marketing. Through this feature, you can send bulk messages to all the app users or specific messages to a sub-set of your app users based on the message. You can also communicate about the latest offers or discounts you are offering to your customers regularly through push notifications. Best of all, it doesn't cost you a penny to send out these messages, unlike SMS or Email marketing.

With the above advantages of having a for your business in mind, it is imperative to identify the right Mobile App Development Solutions provider for your business app. Solution Analysts has been helping small businesses globally with their Mobile App Development Services to create great which will add value to their businesses. To get a free quote for your Mobile Application or to know more about us, please visit our website today.

I am Cris, A great artist, Love to develop mobile application. I am working with Solution Analysts as Mobile Application Developer and have expertise in developing iBeacon, iOS Swift, Android, ionic, PhoneGap. Solution Analysts- A premier mobile Application Development Company in India, delivering Hybrid & Native and Mobile App Development Services across the globe since 2011.