Although mobile event apps can save planners big money on printing costs, there are drawbacks: they tend to be costly; there is ordinarily a four-to-six week development timeline; and since mobile apps are largely a disposable technology, many planners limit their use to just mega events.

This is unfortunate, because smaller meetings with smaller budgets can also benefit from mobile apps. Experts believe, however, that some things need to change before the industry will fully embrace and adopt the technology for all size events.

-The mobile app development process needs to be expedited
-The apps themselves need to be more flexible
-The cost needs to drop significantly.

Re-Use, Recycle

One solution is that companies should insist that their mobile apps be built on a framework that permits the core technology to be reusable. Ask the mobile app provider to come up with a basic design that you can easily recycle, adding in custom features relating to each new event.

This will significantly cut the lead time it takes to create a mobile app, which is important for time-pressed planners who generally have just about four weeks to bring an event to fruition. Today, the average customized mobile app takes a provider 4 to 6 weeks to deliver. Using a design template that has already been pre-approved will significantly shorten the timeline to bring the finished product to fruition.

An added bonus of re-using the framework is that it offsets the original price paid to develop the app, thus making the technology affordable for smaller events. Just make sure the app provider keeps the pricing structure transparent.