Looking to build a mobile catalog app - help?

Discussion in 'iPhone/iPad Programming' started by p0intblank, Aug 10, 2011.

  1. macrumors 68030

    I'm looking to create an iPhone app for a client. What they want to see is a mobile catalog displaying their products. E-commerce or cart functionality is not required. All they want is a simple catalog to refer to.

    So, I've been researching several iPhone development platforms. Is there any you would suggest checking out? Price isn't a concert at this point. We just need something that will work fairly well and is easy to update. I'm not too knowledgable on coding in Xcode, so a platform with a nice UI is preferred. Something like http://mobileroadie.com would be great. I just like having options.

    Thanks! I appreciate the help.
  2. macrumors 603

    Make a web app. Using HTML, CSS, & JavaScript.

    A web app is easy to update because it doesn't need Apple's approval. It's easy to deploy for the same reason: you don't need Apple's approval to get it into the App Store.

    If it's a catalog, there's even more reason to make it a web app: you can add sales later on. If you make a native app for the App Store, you can't have in-app sales unless you go through Apple's in-app sales, and they get 30%.

    A web app can have nice visual transitions using just web-based technologies:
    Safari CSS Visual Effects Guide

    Mozilla CSS (Firefox, et al) also has transitions, transforms, and nice visual effects.

    The mobile Opera browser has similar capabilities (google opera transition).

    TN2262: Preparing web content for iPad (applies to all iOS devices)

    Safari Dev Center
  3. macrumors 68030

    Thanks! I appreciate the fast response. And I agree, a web app seems more ideal for this sort of situation. Have you heard of Knoxing? http://knoxing.com/details/

    They seem perfect for what we need to do. Pricing is very cheap, too.
  4. macrumors 603

    What research have you done? Is Knoxing the first thing you came up with, or is it the end result of analysing various tradeoffs among competing products? I'm not denigrating Knoxing, just trying to figure out how you got there.

    There are plenty of web app templates and frameworks targeted at iOS. All you have to do to find them is google:
    iphone web app template
    iphone web app frameworks

    Many of them are free, and/or have liberal or simple license terms. Some are GPL, though, so be careful.
  5. macrumors 68030

    I've looked at a few already and Knoxing seems like a safe bet. I just want to know this will work as advertised. I very rarely create iPhone apps, so I'm pretty new to this.
  6. macrumors 603

    Since you didn't say what other products you considered, it's hard to say.

    It's a $29 risk. Try it. See what happens. Let us know how it goes.

    If you're that worried about $29, you should probably play around with one of the free options first, just so you can see what the basic web pages look and act like.

    You won't be creating an iPhone app. You'll be creating web pages tailored for Mobile Safari. Big difference.

    For example, if it's initially static content you can simply put it in your Sites folder in your Mac's home folder, then turn on Web Sharing in the Sharing pane of System Preferences. Boom: a web app is being served.
  7. macrumors 68030

    Oh, I understand that. When I say app, I mean web app. I've actually developed a couple basics app before, but only with GameSalad. They were mostly experimental. This web app I am creating will be for a client, so I want it to be easy to access. I suppose they can just add the icon to their Home Screen using the shortcut within Safari.

    But yes, I'll look into other options. At least I know where to go now. Thanks again for your help!
  8. macrumors 6502

    Either a web app, UIWebView that calls out to a site, or parsing a website in general should do fine.

    You should find out what the client would prefer. And in the future, make sure you and your client have these kinds of details at least planned out a head of time.

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