What do App Developers do?

A apps developer takes care of executing an app index into a fully-fledged functional product that people access and use on their handheld devices. Now executing the idea into a solid app requires design, development, and implementation of the app idea to the fullest.

If you have a great idea for the app, the execution should match it with equal brilliance. And this is where the roles of the developers become important. While there are millions of apps in the world, only a gamut of apps across every niche has become successful. So, execution failure is a major factor behind the shortcomings of an app project.

How to avoid such failure for your app project? You are less likely to know about this if you are from a non-technical business background. On the other hand, when reaching out to developers in the market for your next app. You should have a thorough understanding of what top app makers do, their key responsibilities. And what skills they must have.

Here in this post, we are going to explain these things only.

App Developer Responsibilities & Skills for Different Platforms

As a developer, you are free to find and pursue any tech career in your preferred discipline if you talk of development technology. If you want to be a mobile app developer. You can either become a cross-platform app developer or a native app developer for the iOS or Android platforms. Here we are going to discuss these 3 key types of app developers. Let’s start.

Cross-Platform App Developers

Handheld devices are new computers; thus, mobile apps are the new software tools at the workplace, home, or transport to get things done. Naturally, startups and large brands must cement their digital presence with mobile apps. App developers and development skills are in high demand that can help enterprises shape their mobile presence across multiple platforms without compromising native performance and user experience.

Earlier app developers used to build one app that could run on all platforms, and this hybrid development model was popular for creating an app presence at a lower cost. But then, versatile technologies like React Native, Flutter, and Xamarin arrived to offer a middle path between the hybrid and native development approach.

These frameworks allow reusing more than 80% of the codebase across both iOS and Android. At the same time, connecting the native UI layer of the target operating system can also deliver a robust native user experience. Cross-platform app developers are responsible for coding the app with React Native, Flutter, Xamarin, and a few other cross-platform frameworks and then connecting the native UI layers of the respective platform to deliver an easy and smooth user experience.

Android App Developers

With its vast and continuously expanding ecosystem, the Android operating system is the first choice for many app projects because of its reach across all sections and stratus of society, irrespective of any condition. Backed by the world’s most reputed device manufacturers such as Samsung, LG, Sony, OnePlus, Nokia, Motorola, and many others, Android is the most popular operating system.

Native android developers are responsible for building apps on all major flagship Android devices and many other Android devices. Besides addressing the technical demands of the various operating system versions across different devices. Android app developers also need to cater to device-specific requirements. Since Android is an open-source operating system platform, other developers and projects can share and reuse the written code.

Java has always been the official programming language for the Android operating system that just a couple of years ago was replaced by Kotlin. Google launched Kotlin to address several shortcomings of Java and offer developers better ease of use and app experience.

iOS App Developers

iOS is another leading operating system used only in the Apple iPhone and iPad devices. The operating system as a whole and the device ecosystem are closed, and no code can be shared or accessed by other apps or projects without explicit permission from the developers and Apple.

iOS developers, apart from adhering to the strict coding standards and stringent design and development guidelines of Apple, also need to introduce evolving new features and capabilities rolled out through the iOS updates and the latest iPhone and iPad flagship devices.

As an ios developer for programming, you need to master objective or Swift language. Since Swift has now become the official language of Apple by replacing Objective C, accomplished iOS developers mostly rely on their coding skills with Swift. On the design part, developers should be versed with the Human Interface Guideline (HIG) and Cupertino design standards of Apple. As for environment and tools, developers need to have good knowledge of Xcode, integration skills with REST APIs and parse JSON.

Key Roles and Responsibilities

App developers, irrespective of the platform, must take on various responsibilities. Let’s look at these principal developer responsibilities at a glance.

Coding Skills

Though we discussed the platform-specific coding skills and technologies in the above section. We must refer to some basics or ground-zero capabilities that all mobile app developers should have.

Before developers branch out to iOS, Android, or cross-platform technologies. It is better to have a solid knowledge of tried and trusted web technologies. Such as JavaScript, CSS, HTML, Rest API, JSON, and some development environments (IDE).

A Deeper Knowledge of App Development Life-Cycle

An app is developed through stages involving idea building, idea validation, requirement planning, wireframing, mock-up design, prototyping, development, debugging and testing, deployment, and support. An app developer should have complete knowledge of each of these phases.

App Security & Updates

As we have already mentioned several times, the responsibilities of an app developer never conclude with the development and deployment. When the app is fully built and released, they need to ensure that it remains safe from security threats and bugs. On the other hand, the developers also need to ensure that the app doesn’t experience performance glitches and shortcomings after it is rolled out in the market.

Since cybersecurity threats are getting sophisticated with every passing day. Developers constantly need to release security patches and get the app rid of potential loopholes for security breaches. Apart from addressing security concerns, ensure that the app stays in tune with the latest OS update and UI/UX trends.

Developers’ Responsibilities for Server and Admin

In the typical enterprise setting, app developers are responsible for handling server-side tasks and server engineering functions. The enterprise app developers must have good server-side programming and configuration knowledge and some database technologies.

Since Enterprises widely use cloud-based SaaS and PaaS software platforms. App developers in such settings should also be versed with these technologies.


There is no doubt that here we just provided a briefing on what app developers do by mentioning the key roles, responsibilities, and skills. You can go deeper and find a detailed journey for every responsibility and skill. You can also find out what iOS or Android developers do with more details.

About Author:

Juned Ghanchi is the Co-Founder and CMO at IndianAppDevelopers, a mobile app development company that have a specialized team of app developers in India who provides Android and iOS application development for all business domains. Juned is always looking for new mobile technologies ideas and share with others through blogs. Let’s connect on Linkedin! about app development.

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