Despite the rise in the use of mobile devices and mobile apps, there is a considerable demand for desktop applications. We cannot ignore the fact that most businesses prefer desktop applications as they are better suited for the workplace.
However, developing a desktop business application is not straightforward. As app developers
, you need to consider various key performance indicators of that application and deliver the solution your client wants.
In this article, we will discuss some important considerations for building a desktop business application.
The first thing you must do for developing your desktop application is choosing the UI technology you will use for your desktop application. Regardless of which platform you choose, there are plenty of UI frameworks available for each operating system. Understandably, each framework comes with its own advantages and limitations.
However, you will need to see what you want from your application. Most technologies limit developers to a certain programming language. Therefore, you should select a framework while considering your team’s capabilities and strengths.
Before you start working on the application, you must develop a strategy to deliver the application to your customers. Rather than being a technological decision, this is a business decision.
Your development strategy will help determine how well you can manage the trade-off between the cost of the project and the length of the development lifecycle. Therefore, you must identify your limitations and set realistic and achievable targets for your team while making sure that you provide optimal customer experience.
Moreover, you will need to consider how to accommodate updates in the application. To put it simply, desktop applications like the Chrome browser
perform automatic updates, which users don’t know about. While following a similar strategy is great for a consumer app, clients who want an enterprise app will not appreciate unannounced updates.
Many business application consumers like to be informed about an upcoming update along with its release notes. Besides that, it’s possible that your clients don’t allow internet access on their premises. Therefore, you would need to prepare those updates with a flash drive installation.
The installer is an integral part of the deployment process. You need it to package your desktop application into an installation program. This installation program might be .dmg, .pkg, .exe or .deb files, depending on the operating system you are developing the application for.
On deployment, you will have to run the installation program that copies the packaged application to the device. Furthermore, it would need additional work, such as adding start-menu shortcuts, writing to registry, and associating relevant files with your application.
Continuous Integration and Deployment (CI/CD)
Laying the foundation for a CI/CD pipeline is critical to a healthy development process. Following through the pipeline will help you create an automated workflow for the development process.
As a result, the application will trigger an automated workflow on demand or after every code-check-in. For instance, the application will be able to conduct various functions, such as pulling the latest code from repositories, compiling code and checking for errors, and running unit tests.
Furthermore, it can also create installation packages and deploy the application if required. However, the pipeline and project workflow can differ from project to project.
Logging and Troubleshooting
Logging in desktop applications for your client is a lot different from logging on servers. The problem is that you don’t have access to your client’s computers. Therefore, you have the option to implement various logging and troubleshooting solutions for your desktop application.
For instance, Windows applications have many logging options, such as Log4net and NLog. You can also directly log onto windows events logs or utilize the ‘Reporting a Problem’ mechanism monitor problems in the application.
Application Theming and Design Patterns
As leading app development companies
who have experience in developing desktop applications will tell you, you should always consider your application theming in advance. For instance, if you are developing a B2B application
, your clients might demand a different kind of branding for the application. You will need to consider the design and theme of your client’s company and comply with your desktop application’s theme according to it.
Alternatively, when your clients want a consumer app, then you may give users a choice for a custom look and feel. Therefore, you can experiment with different control styles, colors, and other design elements.
Depending on the UI technology you’re using, you would need to consider recommended design patterns. If you are making a desktop application for Windows, you can use any design pattern from MVVM, MVP to Prism and Caliburn.Micro.
The purpose of any desktop application is to fulfill the business needs of the customer. While it’s important for developers to focus on the requirements of the application, following a standard procedure for the development can optimize the development lifecycle. Back