If you have a popular WordPress site, you might have wondered how hard it may be to build a mobile app for your subscribers and/or visitors. There are a number of ways to launch apps powered directly from your WordPress site without having to build an app from scratch.
With a mobile app, you can leverage device notifications to alert your users of new content and they can easily share your stories right from their phone or tablet.
WPMU offers a rundown of plugins you can use to launch an app from your WordPress blog, most notably Mobiloud which relies on , and Wiziapp which builds an HTML5 app. There’s also Appifier, which provides a low cost app-building service; if you’re not very technical, Appifier may be a good approach.
However, I’ve written a tutorial for Tuts+ which will focus on the most commonly used tool, AppPresser. AppPresser provides a great mix of ease of implementation with deeper technical control for developers. It uses plugins to integrate with Adobe’s Phonegap platform. With custom extensions and additional development, you can integrate with any device feature supported by Phonegap such as contacts, geolocation, the camera or the accelerometer. (Maybe you want to know whether people read your stuff while driving? In any case, theoretically, you could build an app for that).
You can build a basic AppPresser WordPress app for $199, but if you want camera integration or e-commerce, it’ll cost you $499. If you’re interested in comparing and estimating the cost of building an app from scratch without AppPresser, it provides links to a couple of great web resources: the App Development Cost Calculator and How much does it cost to develop an app?