After taking a significant period to develop an appropriate app, many users expect that it should always deliver the expected outcome and be accessible all the time. The probability of a system meeting a certain performance level of satisfaction in providing the right output within a duration of time is referred to as reliability.
In this case, reliability will make you understand how well service will be productive in different contexts of real-life situations. How is an app reliable? Many information technology (IT) experts will tell you that a reliable app will be characterized by the needs of end users that vary from case to case. To be certain, a reliable app should be accessible when needed, give response within the time frame, always up-to-date, private and secure, and meet all the demands and expectations of developers and end users.
A reliable app should also be able to be ahead in time in case of a problem to avoid impacting users with the help of Application Performance Management (APM). Below are core considerations that would help maximize the reliability of an app for end users.
- Increase Uptime
Most IT professionals when asked about app reliability, all that comes to their mind is uptime. Uptime is the measure of system reliability, expressed as a percentage, on the time the app has been available and working with failure.
Increasing uptime will always ensure high chances of stability, improved security, and better developer, and user experience. Consistency in having a strong uptime is a moving force to an effective Application Programming Interface (API). Typically, these benefits won’t come along if you don’t implement and maintain some solutions to having a high uptime.
First, maximize uptime by distributing workloads across different servers so that when part of the system fails, the other part remains running. Secondly, setting the right server capacity during cases of increased traffic is vital to avoid low uptime. Lastly, always have an automated failover back up plan that will aid in sharing a workload to new infrastructure whenever failure is encountered.
Every nine added to the percentage of availability, should add value to your app. Always be sure to add when you want to scale up your uptime.
- Ensure Performance and Efficiency
Meeting user needs and expectations not only involves how much time the app is available, but also how well the app can respond within a perfect time frame expected. An appropriate website, with a score of 100% on time, should take at most 10 seconds to load each page under strong internet.
While developing your app, performance testing and monitoring should be inbuilt to enhance tasks in the delivery chain. An important aspect in ensuring your application can handle resources available and perform without downtime is by making sure you’re selecting the best and right-size infrastructure, for example, cloud instances.
- Enhance Accessibility and Usability
An app with a poor design will fail to work and meet the stakeholders demands despite being available when needed and quick to respond to tasks. Running an accessibility test would measure the ease at which different users (including people with disabilities) can complete simple tasks on the app.
The exercise of getting a better user experience might be tedious but it helps reduce the risk of losing end users due to poor accessibility and usability. How well your team can work with the app is also vital. Make sure they undergo training and get to understand the app’s coding, architecture, and overall system documentation to allow easy access.
- Enforce Data Security and Privacy
A dependable application should be secure. It should protect the user’s data. While these apps offer great services needed by any user, they are vehicles for malicious hackers to obtain personal data and information. Most applications will always require you to accept to the terms and conditions before launching the app.
During this process it’s assumed that many users would skip the whole process of going through the terms and conditions, and go immediately for the ‘accept’ button. It’s not ignorance but they know the developer has best interest for the user.
For example, let’s use Facebook which will have access to all of user’s internal storage, messages, call history, camera, and user location whenever the terms and conditions are accepted. There is a higher risk of having your personal information dispersed over several apps.
Vulnerability of a user’s information can be reduced by designing an app that should be able to handle situations where user permission granted is either revoked or any personal data collected is erased after being stored. The application should be able to be consistent and maintain its state with the saved information.
- Have A Backup And Recovery Plan
Backing up data for use in the event of primary data failure is a key aspect in achieving reliability. Occasionally, something could go wrong even with the best mechanisms are in place due to a major catastrophe. To make it easier to overlook this, it’s crucial to have a recovery plan in line with a backup routine. Backing up data frequently won’t ensure safety; you must also develop a way of restoring instantly to a new application when disaster strikes.
Ideally, the recovery process should be scripted so that it can be automated to quickly perform the task to avoid disruptions. Lastly, the frequency of how often you need to back up your data should be high.
Needs and expectations of end users change from time to time. Few apps have been before staged and never modified again. Having an app that is easily modified to meet the present demands is a plus for accomplishing reliability over a long period.
This process entails having right tools in place and following the correct procedure to identify the most appropriate modification to be implemented. It might also mean adapting to new infrastructure technologies that would help in updating to avoid having a downtime.
Reliability of an app not only means an app performing the correct function at a desirable level of performance (even in the face of software or hardware errors, and even human error) but also its ability to grow in dealing with increased data traffic.
Remember adding more nines might be costly and not productive if you won’t address special requirements such as performance, usability, and modifiability.