Create a Fitness App: An Innovator’s Guide to Fitness App Development
Fitness app development is exploding. According to Allied Market Research, the global fitness app market size was valued at $13.78 billion in 2020 and is projected to reach $120.37 billion by 2030. Adaptable brands are rushing to provide the next best service.
If your team is looking into developing a fitness app, read on for an overview of the process and the tools you will need.
- 6 Steps to Create a Fitness App
- Tools for Health and Fitness App Development
- Accelerate Fitness App Development with Helix Core
6 Steps to Create a Fitness App
The fitness app development process is very similar to the process of creating any other kind of mobile app. Here’s an overview of the process.
The planning stages before beginning the technical development of your fitness app are incredibly important; the work you do here will be instrumental in the success of your app.
Planning includes market analysis to understand what apps are already out there and what your team can feasibly create that uniquely addresses consumers’ needs. Right now, fitness apps are a highly competitive market. To be successful, you will need a unique idea. If your idea isn’t unique, you need to create a solution that works better than similar existing apps.
This planning stage also involves:
- Assembling a software development team.
- Determining the structure of the team.
- Defining goals and success metrics of the app.
- Selecting a technology stack.
The UI/UX design stage is all about creating a seamless and intuitive user experience. The goal is to design an app that is so easy to use that there is no opportunity to become confused or frustrated. If the app is hard to use in any way, your users will simply move on another fitness app. This stage typically accompanies the creation of wireframes and mockups of the final design.
Building a prototype of your fitness app lets you identify issues and opportunities with your mobile app’s functionality early on. How this process looks will depend on what tools you are using for development. If you want to develop immersive AR/VR experiences for your app — more on that later — your team could prototype/previsualize within your game engine.
Developing applications in this space relies on embedded, mobile, and traditional IT stacks. Your team will develop the back end of the app, the API that communicates with the back end, and the front-end that the user will interact with. For faster development of mobile apps, an Agile methodology is recommended.
This is one of the most essential and potentially time-consuming stages of developing a fitness app. The quality assurance stage of fitness app development involves using software to test for bugs, performance, security, usability, and more.
Deployment & Support
This is the stage where the final product is released to the Apple App Store and/or Google Play Store for users to download it. Your team will need a developer account to launch the app. It will go through a review process before it is released to the store. Once it’s released, you will begin monitoring it for crash reports and other user-reported issues so you can provide ongoing maintenance. It’s also important to employ in-app functions to prompt users to rate your app.
Tools for Health and Fitness App Development
The development tools needed to create a fitness app will depend on the specifics of your app. Here are some tools your team may use.
Low-Code/No-Code App Development Tools
There are tons of programs available for non-developers that can be used to create a fitness app. A couple of these include Appy Pie and BuildFire. No-code tools usually have a drag-and-drop interface.
The obvious upside of these tools is their ease of use. The downside is they may or may not offer the flexibility you need to create exactly what you want. You will always be limited by the tool’s capabilities rather than your own development team’s capabilities. Even if a no-code program offers everything you need to create a fitness app as you envision it now, your idea may evolve as time goes on. If you have the resources, it may be smart to start with a development team and tools that can evolve with you.
Mobile App Testing
In the quality assurance stage of fitness app development, good mobile app testing software is essential. Software that automates certain processes will speed up development.
For companies looking to branch out, creating a virtual or augmented reality component for your app may be a smart investment. Think of the massively popular virtual reality workout game Supernatural, or some of the augmented reality mirror products on the market. These innovations are the new frontier for home workouts. If you want to create immersive experiences like today’s leaders in fitness tech, a game engine is a necessity.
Game engines are no longer just for video game developers. Industries from automotive to retail — and of course, fitness — are using them to create amazing things for their customers and for their own business needs. As more industries make use of game engines, more resources and tools for non-developers are becoming available.
If your team decides to go the route of the custom build, version control is an essential tool. It will allow you to track and store changes to all your code and improve collaboration among team members. There are a number of version control solutions on the market. Robust tools like Helix Core are highly recommended for teams utilizing a game engine.
Accelerate Health and Fitness App Development with Helix Core
Helix Core, enterprise version control by Perforce, is a foundational tool for fitness app development.
- It stores petabytes of data and tracks every change to your digital assets, so you always have access to older versions.
- It is highly secure, allowing you to restrict access to certain users down to the individual file.
- It gives your team a single source of truth – enabling multiple team members to work on the same project without disrupting each other’s work.
- It is lightning-fast, even when working with massive files, letting your team move faster.
- If you have globally dispersed teams, Perforce Federated Architecture lets you set up servers where you need them to reduce WAN wait times.
If you do decide to develop virtual reality fitness solutions, Helix Core is all the more essential for all the above reasons. Creating an immersive VR experience with a game engine will involve dealing with massive amounts of digital assets, like audio files, video files, binary files, and more. Without a powerful version control system, it is very easy to lose track of files, slowing the development process down considerably – not to mention the issues posed when team members resort to exchanging valuable files using unsecure delivery platforms.
Learn More About Helix Core
If you want to create a fitness app using fast, secure tools that will scale with you, try Helix Core free for up to five users.