|Well designed screens in App Cooker put the user in confidence|
|The application's App Board|
I like this widget because it provides the developer the opportunity to think about his idea and refine it before going too far in the design process.
Icon widget of App Cooker
Having an idea is nice but execution is the next step. This is where the mockup part of App Cooker comes into play. Having played with Blueprint for a while (a competitor to App Cooker), I must say App Cooker design in this area really shine. The mockup area contains a tool palette called the transformation bar located at the top where you can group, arrange, mirror, rotate resize or move selected objets. This palette can be hidden to make more room for the design area which is nice.
|The transformation bar|
|Property bar while a Navigation bar is selected|
|Property bar while a text box is selected|
|Some of the supported widgets|
|Screens supporting portrait and landscape mode|
|A rather complex prototype navigation overview|
How much should you sell your app? Well, it depends on many factors: how much did you pay for its development? Do you rent offices for your staff? How many copies do you plan to sell in the next couple of months? What if you consider the fact that this is an iPad app which make the potential market smaller? These are all the things that you'll be able to factor in with the Revenues and Expenses widget of App Cooker.
So you basically define the application's potential devices market size, sales period duration and optionally application in-app purchases, which pricing tier the application will be in, expenses of people, renting, equipment or anything else. You can set recurring or one time spending. These will be used to create a scenario with expected net income or net loss.
|This pop over is simply gorgeous|
|The information tab with general information about the application|
|On the right of the application's name, a green checkmark confirms the name will fit on the device home screen|
|If the application's name is too long, we see a red exclamation mark|
Another issue is the use of an overly designed thing like the colour palette. This kind of thing is something pretty standard in design software and there is much more standard and effective way of presenting a colour palette.
Other interesting things
One thing to note is that App Cooker could be used in iOS programming class to teach the many aspects of building iOS apps. App Cooker has a very broad target market. Also very important, one of the gotcha with App Cooker is obvious when you use it to present your prototypes to your client. The reaction will be to make him think the application is almost ready! Imagine one day App Cooker generating all the code! Meanwhile, a project can be exported on a PDF document or sent by email as a whole.
According to Johann Fradj, the application developer, the next release will bring many new features including:
- more widgets
- augmented icon library
- improved bitmap drawing module
- wire framing (oh this one would be cool!)
- and a few surprises
Previous posts about iOS prototyping tools that were posted on my blog:
- Prototyping tools for iOS app design: Part 1 - classification
- Prototyping tools for iOS app design: Part 2 - Pen, Stencils
- Prototyping tools for iOS app design: Part 3 - Bitmap based kits
- Prototyping tools for iOS app design: Part 4 - Vector based kits
- Prototyping tools for iOS app design: Part 5 - Applications