The overwhelming range of digital data across all facets of life and device manoeuvres made it obvious to sharpen our visualizing potential. This gigantic volume of data corresponding to different device interfaces and niche uses is constantly making our life easier and simultaneously offering bigger challenge to maintain, reserve and utilize them in a useful way. From data collected on user behaviour through mobile sensors to location data gathered through GPS to fitness data on smartwatch, digital data is multifarious and multifaceted. But obviously, this pull of data got any value for us as long as we can use them in a contextual way. For instance, tools like charts, graphs or in more modern time infographics became useful tools for understanding and utilizing this data. As far as visualizing data on handheld devices are concerned you have an array f sophisticated options but it is important to know what kind of tools works best for what kind of data. Let us have a look at the key evaluating factors for visualizing mobile data.
How the graph performs in showing large variety and pool of data?
Use of graphs is a sure shot choice for displaying complex pool of data involving comparison of parameters. But how the graph tool performs actually can handle the large pool of data without compromising on the visual and useful aspects that remained to be the key consideration. Here are some tips to consider and insights concerning the use of graphs for mobile data visualization.
- The data volume and data type are the two crucial determinants in respect of choosing your graph tool.
- While aggregating capacity for large volume of data is important, there are different algorithms that one needs to consider according to the type of data and visualization needs.
- Data visualization experts recommend for not using Date and Time axis if you have a hundred or more data points. They rather advice for using a String Label axis.
- Secondly, as per the nature of your data you can choose among tools. While some are perfect for real time data and there are others that make visualization for historical data better.
- Lastly, it is advisable to develop a test app with all your desired data volume and complexity and thus it can be easier to evaluate the tool you need.
Data tools that fit into your design well
As a developer obviously you would avoid using visualization tools that just does not fit well into your design scheme. Yes, after considering performance attributes second most important thing is to make the data graphics just fit coherently into the look and feel of your mobile app. While some tools are flexible enough to change the look and visual elements there are others that just cannot change their look-wise aspects.
- Consider using tools that are flexible enough to incorporate change in their graph layout and design as per the requirement.
- Most graphic tools offer a limited option as far as the look and feel is considered and so you must verify the flexibility in test app.
Tutorial, API and support for various platforms
Let us begin with the so called support provided by the developers and promoters of the respective tools. Does it offer phone support or email support or just support through community forums? Learning curve for implementing a tool is equally a big consideration. Inquire about the range of tutorial and online support available for implementing the tool on that platform. Availability of examples and API documentation is crucial for easy and less time consuming implementation.
- Consider graphic platforms that have a proven track record of great support and offer robust online and phone support.
- Inquire the companies and apps used their product and corresponding feedbacks.
- Useful examples and API documentation in the tool set is something you must be assured of. Better documentation is crucial for faster development.
Finally, there is hardly any graph tool or platform that just can handle all types and volumes of data. Even when you find out the helpful tools it can be limiting in respect of design flexibility or in documentation or complexity of implementation. So, like the variety of mobile apps and their intrinsic difference in data visualization needs you will find a wide array of data platforms and tools befitting to different needs. It is needless to say that cross platform capability of the tool is also one important consideration for cross platform mobile apps.
Juned Ahmed has worked as marketing strategist and IT consultant within the web development and mobile application development fields more than 6 years; He is founder of IndianAppDevelopers Company, a high-quality Android and iOS mobile application development services provider company.