iPhone Life magazine

How To Design an Effective App for iPad

ipad app design

The iPad is a perfect example of technology that's usable, useful, and meaningful and has become a mainstay in millions of households. It can help people solve problems and execute a wide array of jobs in an efficient manner. When you are designing an app for iPads, you must make sure it meshes well with the platform. The following tips can help you consider the most important factors when developing a mobile app for iPad.

Goal-Oriented Approach
Good iPad apps are usually simple. As a developer, this means you have to be selective when considering what features, tools, and other extras to include in the design. A good way to determine this is to make a list of all the possible reasons users may want to utilize the app. What are they trying to accomplish, what is the ultimate desired outcome, and how can your app help achieve this? Once you have created your list, you can begin picking out the most important goals for the app. These will keep the design simple and useful.
 
Create a Personalized Experience
You need to find a way to incorporate the users' location, Twitter feed, contacts list, or calendar to personalize the app. If someone purchases your app for $0.99, they are not going to want to spend long periods of time setting it up. By using the information that is readily available in the iPad, you can ensure the app is efficiently customized to each user. 
 
User Location
You should tailor the app for users on the go. For example, some common places of use may be in the car, at a restaurant, or in the kitchen. Will this impact the list of the different goals you have created? You need to ensure each feature can accommodate where the information is being accessed.
 
Think Multi-User and Multi-Device Cases
Chances are many members of a family will use the same iPad. This means it needs to accommodate the needs of each member. Your app should have the ability to hold various accounts, which will provide individual settings for each user. You should also implement the feature of syncing capabilities between devices.
 
No Awkward Pop-Overs
Pop-overs can be useful, however not if they are crammed with too much stuff. Keep it simple and focused only on the necessary feature of the page in use. These can be helpful in retrieving content as well as the contest of navigation. 
 
Use Gestures
There are many ways that a gesture can be useful in conjunction with the iPad. However, there is also a fine line between cool gestures and an overload of gestures. For example, there should not be two different types of gestures on the same page, as they will only be conflicting with each other when in use. 
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Brian Taylor's picture
Brian Taylor is the Owner and VP of Business Development at Forix Mobile (www.forixmobile.com), a mobile application development company based in Portland, Oregon. Brian completed his studies at Oregon State university in BS, Business Administration w/ Marketing Option.