Apple launches accelerator in China to boost app design and development

Apple has cut the ribbon on its first app design and development accelerator in China.

The accelerator, located in Shanghai, aims to help Apple scale its operation in one of the world’s biggest markets.

Apple will hold regular lectures and networking sessions for developers at its new accelerator. All of Apple’s platforms will be covered, including iOS, iPadOS, watchOS, macOS, and tvOS.

Enwei Xie, Apple’s Head of Developer Relations in Greater China, said:

"Local...

By Ryan Daws, 11 July 2019, 0 comments. Categories: Apple, App Stores, Design, iOS, Mac, Mobile, Platforms.

Project Catalyst: Apple explains how porting iPad apps to macOS works

Apple’s freshly minted Project Catalyst team has provided further details on how it’s managed to achieve iPad app porting to macOS.

The macOS store launched in 2011 but has failed to gain the traction of its iOS counterpart. To help fix this, Apple announced Project Catalyst at this year’s WWDC.

Project Catalyst aims to make it easy for developers to port their iPadOS apps to macOS Catalina. Apple claimed basic porting was as simple as opening their iPad project Xcode (currently only in the...

By Ryan Daws, 02 July 2019, 0 comments. Categories: Apple, Design, Development Tools, iOS, iPad, Mac, Platforms.

WWDC 19 recap: Developers will provide the excitement

Apple has completed its annual WWDC keynote for another year, so let's dive into the announcements to see if we should be getting excited.

Let’s start with how our  ‘what to expect’ predictions fared last month:

✔ iOS dark mode

✔ iPad home screen update (widget support added)

✔ Updated first-party apps (Messages, Reminders, Mail, Notes, Music, and...

By Ryan Daws, 04 June 2019, 0 comments. Categories: API, Apple, Design, Development Tools, Industry, iOS, Mobile, Platforms, Testing.

Uniting developers and designers with Unite UX

Developer sat down with Unite UX product manager Daniel Levy to hear Progress’ plan to bridge the gap between developers and designers.

Most of us have witnessed or experienced the disconnect. The different tools used often results in a back-and-forth with constant reiterations needed. Ultimately, this wastes effort and money with a slow time-to-market.

Unite UX aims to offer a roundtrip workflow allowing developers and designers to continue using their existing tools.

“Unite UX allows designers...

By Ryan Daws, 09 May 2019, 0 comments. Categories: Design, Development Tools, Industry.

Android Q ‘dark mode’ will help logical third-party adoption

Dark mode is an ‘approved Android Q feature’ that will be adopted system-wide, hopefully driving third-party developers to support in their own apps.

A Chromium Gerrit tracker created by Googler Lukasz Zbylut says the “[Android] Q team wants to ensure that all preloaded apps support dark mode natively.”

The tracker also states, “In order to ship dark mode successfully, we need all UI elements to be ideally themed...

By Ryan Daws, 07 January 2019, 0 comments. Categories: Android, Design, Industry, Mobile, Platforms.

The benefits of darker in-app colour schemes are clear

Google has finally confirmed what many have suspected, there are clear benefits to offering darker in-app colour schemes.

During its Android Dev Summit this week, Google displayed several comparisons of the power drain while displays show different colours.

As suspected, black is the most power-efficient. White, on the other hand, is by far and large the most power-hungry – consuming over six times as much juice.

By Ryan Daws, 09 November 2018, 2 comments. Categories: Android, Apple, Design, iOS, Mobile.

Opinion: Poor user experience is the enemy of customer loyalty

It used to be the case that people bought a product, used it until it wore out, and then replaced it. If it had worked well, they went back to the same manufacturer. Today, the separation of product and service means that purchase decisions are much more frequent and that ongoing loyalty is based much more on the user experience.

App performance, therefore, has a huge impact on whether consumers continue to subscribe to connected services such as Facebook or Netflix. It is also common for an end-user to...

By Matthew Read, 04 October 2018, 0 comments. Categories: Design, Industry.

Google sets Android P guidelines for ‘notch’-featuring devices

Android P is nearing release and so Google has set out its guidelines for how the ‘notch’ found on many new devices should be accommodated.

Love it or hate it, the notch has become mainstream. First marketed by the first ‘Essential’ smartphone and quickly followed by other Android manufacturers to maximise the screen-to-device ratio, even Apple has adopted it with the iPhone X.

On the Android Developers

By Ryan Daws, 31 July 2018, 0 comments. Categories: Android, Design, Mobile, Platforms, Testing.

The 10 best fonts for programming: A guide

Here, we'll look at ten fonts favoured by programmers, including some of the latest typefaces and some retro classics. Let's get right into it.

Fira Code

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Fira Code is one of the most popular fonts for developers, having been developed with special programming ligatures from Mozilla's Fira Mono typeface. You can see these used in...

By William Judd, 16 May 2018, 1 comment. Categories: Design, Development Tools.

Agile initiatives expanding in the enterprise – but lots more work to be done

Agile is expanding within the enterprise – but there is plenty more that can be done to improve organisational initiatives.

That’s the key finding from enterprise software development firm CollabNet. In the company’s latest State of Agile report – the 12th iteration – which collected almost 1,500 responses from various industries in software development, 97% of respondents’ organisations practiced agile development methods. Of that number, 52% said that more than half of...

By James Bourne, 16 April 2018, 0 comments. Categories: Design, Development Tools, Enterprise.

WordPress powers three in 10 sites on the web, W3Techs finds

WordPress now powers 30% of all sites on the web, according to the latest figures from web survey provider W3Techs.

According to the most recent numbers, for the end of February 2018, WordPress is at 30.0% for absolute percentage of websites, giving it a 60.2% market share for all content management systems. It’s worth noting that just over half (50.2%) of sites analysed by W3Techs do not use a CMS monitored by the company, or are built from scratch. The figures arrive from analysis of the top 10...

By James Bourne, 06 March 2018, 2 comments. Categories: Design, Ecosystem.

Turn doodles into apps with Microsoft’s Ink to Code

Microsoft’s latest Garage project, Ink to Code, can turn your new app doodles into a working project.

Some of the world’s greatest ideas started as a doodle on a napkin or piece of paper. The Gettysburg Address, the poem that gave way to the U.S. National Anthem, and the premise of the Harry Potter series — all were reportedly started on a simple piece of scrap paper.

Ink to Code wants to ensure an idea for what could become...

By Ryan Daws, 26 January 2018, 0 comments. Categories: Android, Design, Development Tools, Microsoft.

Google explains how to design optimal VR/AR experiences

As Google's UX engineer working on Daydream and Tango, Mary Cassin knows a thing or two about what makes the optimal VR/AR experience.

With VR adoption growing, we're learning new things every day about what makes a great and comfortable user experience. Google has vast resources to learn from its users and afford the odd pitfall along the way – but few of us have such a luxury.

Over the coming years, best practices are sure to adapt, but Cassin has shared her current findings on what could make...

By Ryan Daws, 13 April 2017, 0 comments. Categories: Design, Gaming, Industry, VR.

Google takes its Optimize tools for website A/B testing out of beta

Google has removed the beta tag from its Optimize tools for A/B website testing as part of today’s global launch.

Optimize and Optimize 360 first came on the scene back in 2015 when a limited beta was launched to offer a lucky few additional help with their websites. Running on top of Google Analytics, the Google Optimize tool allows developers to see which versions of their website receive the best reception based on a set objective.

“We love the fact that Optimize 360 seamlessly integrates with...

By Ryan Daws, 31 March 2017, 0 comments. Categories: Design, Development Tools, HTML5, Testing.

Google wants developers to update their apps to support 18:9 aspect ratio

Android phones appear to be moving towards a new aspect ratio, and Google is politely reminding developers to update their apps or users will suffer.

When LG launched the G6 they made a big deal about its 18:9 aspect ratio display, and for good reason. The ratio allows two squares to be displayed next to each other and opens up a range of new possibilities – in particular for VR. Samsung has since followed suit with a similar ratio screen in the Galaxy S8; albeit marginally different to accommodate its...

By Ryan Daws, 30 March 2017, 0 comments. Categories: Android, Design, Industry.

A brief guide to the basic features of HTML Canvas

In this article, we are going to show you how to use the <canvas> element as outlined in Skilled.co's Canvas cheat sheet. You will have a basic understanding of how to write script using this element by the end of this article.

Keep in mind that the skills outlined in this brief tutorial are only the barest skills needed to use the <canvas> element. Even so, they are among the most critical skills and commands that you will need throughout your entire experience with...

By Colin Cieloha, 30 March 2017, 1 comment. Categories: Design, Development Tools.

Opinion: Bridging the gap between design and development

(Image Credit: iStockPhoto/AlexAndrews)

Stereotypically, design and development teams within any agency are like warring factions. Design, led by creativity and optimism; development, grounded in reality and pragmatism. Surely it’s no surprise that, on paper, these two polar opposites clash so badly.

Except that they’re not polar opposites at all. The two are completely interlinked disciplines that...

By Stewart Birch, 10 March 2016, 0 comments. Categories: Design, Industry.

A call to app developers: 3D Touch and Proactive sweep away the need for splash screens

(c)iStock.com/Pekic

For years, Apple has been trying to push developers to abandon splash screens, wanting them instead to use a still image of their apps to give the impression that it is loading up. Splash screens are a hangover from the past, where software could be slow to load. Apps are meant to load quickly and allow users to do what they need to do.

With iOS 9 and 3D Touch, Apple is taking the war on splash screens to the next level. Not only will 3D Touch make splash screens seem very out of place,...

By Juan Pablo Luchetti, 08 October 2015, 0 comments. Categories: Apple, Design, Development Tools, iOS.

Google advances its Material Design takeover

During I/O last year, Google announced its new 'Material' design language based on the "Cards" motif seen in Google Now. Since then, many Android developers have adopted some form of the language (whether a complete makeover or just borrowing some elements to fit-in with the rest of the OS.)

Google announced MDL (Material Design Lite) earlier this week to help web developers bring the design to their websites using CSS, JavaScript, and...

By Ryan Daws, 08 July 2015, 0 comments. Categories: Android, Design, iOS.