How to Create an Educational App
IT technologies of the latest years allow for more and more remote opportunities. Nowadays, we can efficiently communicate, manage large-scale hardware systems, and even diagnose diseases. Of course, the remote tech trend could not but touch upon the field of education. Diving deeper into the topic, let’s take a look at some prominent e-learning mobile app development solutions, their main features, as well as the basic technologies to help make your own product.
Types of Educational Apps
Before you get to develop educational apps, you need to decide on the type of product that you plan to create. Formally, the following types of educational apps can be distinguished:
- encyclopedic applications, virtual manuals, and directories;
- educational games (intuitive software that kids can play);
- virtual workbooks;
- apps with various courses;
- test and exam apps.
These are the basic types of training applications, in fact, there can be many more (for instance, you can make a combination of several of the above types).
Educational App Development Steps
Now, let’s talk about educational mobile app development. All in all, the process consists of three global stages.
#1 Market research
First off, a large-scale market research should be conducted, for example, through a logic model approach. Thus, according to Statista, at the moment, more than 2.5 million applications are presented on Google Play alone. Therefore, to become competitive in such a sought-after niche as e-learning and training is rather difficult.
For that, you will probably need to involve gamification elements in the e-learning app development (so that learning is as stress-free as possible for adults and does not cause any stress), integrate trending technologies (we discuss some in the below paragraphs), and provide proven teaching methods (for instance, the well-known Paul Pimsleur method for learning English, based on 30 lessons of 30 minutes).
In general, you should see what major features are used in the top-end existing solutions, and then try to come up with something similar for your target audience, only better.
#2 Features development
After you have decided on the main idea and list of features, you will need to find a team of developers who can code and, basically, create an educational app software. If you want to save as much as possible while achieving a really high-quality product, we recommend turning to an outsourced software development company.
#3 App monetization
Lastly, monetization. On the one hand, you can create your own app for learning and provide it based on a certain tariff, getting rid of unnecessary headaches of integrating extra monetization tools. On the other hand, there are numerous ways of making money on the application that are no less effective and even help expand the target audience, such as:
- provision of space for placing advertising banners;
- creation of an in-app purchase tool (for instance, a paid bonus tutorial);
- providing paid access to new levels of education;
- providing a paid version of the application (for example, without ads, with the ability to work offline, etc.).
Which Features You Can Include in Your E-Learning App
Finally, we come to the most important thing: what features should be worked out by default in the process of developing an educational app? Let’s answer this question.
Surveys and tests
This is perhaps the most obvious feature for the educational application, which will help students understand how effectively they are progressing on the course. By the way, some applications are fully built on tests, like Duolingo.
Typically, interactive applications receive the greatest feedback from users, so it is possible that a month after the release you will receive a lot of wishes on how to improve your product in reviews on the App Store (for iPhone version) or Google Play (for Android version). Therefore, be prepared to release regular updates.
Clear planning and scheduling structure
Users of your software should understand what general plan their learning process is based on. The more detailed the schedule and designation of topics is, the better.
Integration with social networks
All modern applications are integrated with social networks. Firstly, it facilitates the authorization process, and secondly, users get a great opportunity to share their learning success and achievement in their social accounts.
Progress tracking and achievements
Giving special virtual awards for learning successes or the presence of a tab where the user could track the dynamics of their achievements are also great engaging UX elements.
Offline mode learning
In general, the possibility of offline access to functionality determines the competitive advantage of educational applications in comparison with training websites. That’s why such a feature should be present in your product by default.
Cloud hosting will increase the availability of your application, due to which users will be able to access it even at a low-speed connection (or, for instance, when several thousand users make server requests at once).
If you are looking to cover the most extensive TA, you will need to provide a multilingual version for your software.
Last but not least, the ability to compare achievements among users will give additional motivation to use the app more. As a rule, success indicators are placed on public tabs, so that users from different parts of the world can objectively evaluate their progress.
Modern Technologies in Educational App Development
There are up-to-date technological concepts that will help make your educational software even more motivating and engaging.
Nowadays, applications based on virtual reality are enormously popular. Firstly, for the vast majority of people, VR is a true never before experienced novelty that provides a new level of immersion.
Secondly, virtual reality allows you to use non-trivial visualization objects, which would not look so impressive in a two-dimensional interpretation (for instance, your child can be trained not just by a virtual voice, but by some fantasy hero, like a dragon).
At one time, the Pokemon Go game was a huge success among mobile users around the world, making IT companies rush into the niche of AR-development. Now, this technological concept brings more benefits for business because it allows you to visualize objects that don’t yet exist in reality.
What could be more exciting than a lively interaction between people? You can connect this feature as paid content, and from time to time arrange lectures from reputable teachers, professors and other influencers in your niche.
Cost to Develop a Learning App
Now that we got the basic functionality aspects out of the way, you can calculate how much creating educational apps’ foundation will cost. The final number ultimately depends on a bunch of aspects:
- Composing documentation for future software. Once the client settles the list of features with a project manager, developers should create documentation for it, which describes the development guide exactly in the form of a list of specifications for the ready-made solution. Usually, software tools to use are also selected here. This stage takes approximately 50 man-hours.
- Creating UI/UX. At this stage, the design team creates a mockup of the final application based on the functionality specified in the specifications. It also optimizes the usability of a future solution. Usually, this stage takes about 100-150 man-hours (depending on the complexity of the solution and the number of client edits).
- Application development. Following the creation of the design application, the coding process begins. Thus, unlike connecting an API (for example, for integration with social networks or sending push notifications), it takes a lot of time to implement such specific features as access to smartphone resources (for example, to a video camera or contacts). The implementation of each new function usually takes from 15 to 80 man-hours.
- Testing procedures. No software product is released before it is thoroughly tested. The process can take several months because if serious bugs are found, the application will have to be returned to the programmers for revision, and then it should be retested.
- Deployment and technical support. This is the final stage of work on the application, which includes uploading the end solution to the marketplace (Google Play or the App Store), promoting it in search engines, and further technical support. Most any project needs it on an ongoing basis. This last “polishing up” stage may take about 40 man-hours per month.
MPS is Your Trusty Partner for Educational App Development
If you are interested in creating a learning app of your own, feel free to contact us! We will build you a competitive solution from scratch that will not only engage your target audience but will become the top app in the niche.