Dropsource and MobiLoud are two solid options for businesses looking to build an app - how do they compare and what are the key differences?In this post, we’ll explore these two solutions. We’ll look at how they work, who they are for and the key benefits of each. We’ll also take a look at the pricing and see what past customers have to say about each.Ultimately we’ll see that:Dropsource is right for you if:
- You want to visually create a mobile app, from scratch, without much coding..... but still want access to the source code
- You want to make an app that leverages your existing company data and business systems
- You’re an entrepreneur with an idea and you want to build an MVP and prove concept
- You’re not completely green when it comes to software development, understand the logic of programming - and you’re willing to get your hands a dirty in the creation process
MobiLoud is right for you if:
- You want a painless and fast way to convert any existing site or web app into iOS and Android apps
- You want mobile apps that leverage your existing web infrastructure and content
- You don't want to be bothered with any development, coding, or challenging projects to manage
- You want to build news apps from a publisher site, eCommerce apps for a WooCommerce site, social apps with Peepso or BuddyBoss, eLearning apps from LearnDash - or convert a web app to native
What is Dropsource?
Dropsource is a mobile app development platform that uses a combination of visual app design and automated native code generation - eliminating the requirement for manual programming while still providing editable native source code.The solution allows you to:Step 1 : DevelopUsing a drag-and-drop interface you start by defining your app’s design and UI by dragging elements on to canvas to define the style and layout.Dropsource is a “bring your own backend” solution - so you need to connect your app to external data through an API and directly bind it to the UI. This allows your app to carry out operations involving existing data sources, user accounts, or services - and is why Dropsource is popular with businesses that already have significant data sets and systems that they want to leverage through native apps.Next it’s time to add functionality to the user’s interaction and journey through the app, defining what will happen when specific actions are taken and how your app will process the data needed to deliver the best experience.You can also add many native functions such as:
- Photos, video and audio
- Offline storage
Click here to see a full list of UI elements and functionality supported by Dropsource You can integrate with many third parties too, such as:
- AdMob to monetize your app’s traffic with advertising
- Amazon Pinpoint, Amplitude and Firebase to analyse your users
- Facebook and GitHub for social sharing and Authentication
- Intercom to support sales, marketing and support
- OneSignal to engage your audience using rich push notifications
- PayPal to process fees and payments
Dropsource is quite versatile and you can use it to create a range of apps. Their users have created successful social networking, educational, news apps and more. Take a look here for some examples of apps created on Dropsource.Step 2 : TestDropsource allows you to iteratively test your app. You can create a fully functioning virtual simulation straight from the editor and share it with investors or your team at any point in the development process.You can also send a working version to your mobile device.This is a great way to get valuable feedback and helps to streamline the development and testing process.Once you’re happy with the first version of your app it’s time to:Step 3 : LaunchYou do this by:
- Publishing to Google play or the App Store - under the individual license you will do this yourself by taking the source code and publishing the app under your own developer account. Dropsource takes care of the process for customers on an enterprise plan.
- Deploying for beta testing - through a platform like TestFlight, Google Play Beta Testing, or Crashlytics Beta
- Downloading the source code - for ongoing customization and development. Note that this requires an additional license and any modified code cannot be reimported into dropsource.
Going forward you can continue to develop and improve the app - releasing future versions as often as you want.In summary the platform gives you great tools to build, test, launch, and iterate on your mobile app yourself - without having to do any highly technical workThat doesn’t mean it will be easy for anybody though, as dropsource themselves say that the platform is best suited to “web and software developers”. Although they’ve had some successful users “with no prior programming experience” - they recommend at the very least a “development mindset”. Afterall, they say their platform is “low code”and not“no code”............
The Individual Developer pricing tier lets you build and test as many app ideas as you want, as long as you want, for free. However, to deploy your app you must purchase a Source Code License for $999 per year. That's for iOS and Android. So $1998 per year for apps on both major platforms.To get developer assistance you buy an add-on for $1000 per month. With the Enterprise Developer package, you get access to features like app versioning, encrypted offline storage, pre-built business system connectors, and MDM deployment.Enterprise packages are priced according to individual spec and negotiated with Dropsource. If you don’t renew your Source Code License, you’ll no longer be able to download updated source code to deploy new versions of your app - but existing apps will be unaffected.
Now we’ve thoroughly gone over Dropsource let’s move on and take a look at MobiLoud.
What is MobiLoud?
Established in 2013, MobiLoud is a platform for building mobile apps from existing websites or web apps. We have several distinct products:
News is for WordPress based digital publishers, and allows them to convert their existing news site into native content apps.Canvas is not WordPress specific, but can be used to convert any website or web app, no matter the features or CMS. Canvas recreates the website exactly within mobile apps, and is popular with startups, online communities, fitness apps, and eLearning sites.Commerce is for WooCommerce site owners to build native eCommerce apps. It works in a similar way to News, converting the existing site into native apps and adding all the features needed for an optimal UX.All three work in a slightly different way. The key point though is that the apps are built from your existing site. Unlike Dropsource you do not need to "bring your own back end", your site is your back end.MobiLoud apps mirror your website or web app, and update automatically with any changes you make on the web or new content you publish.This is a great advantage over Dropsource when it comes to the ease of building the apps and fitting their management into your ongoing workflow!Dropsource vs MobiLoud AppsIf you are happy with your site or web app, and essentially want to convert it to apps, going with MobiLoud is a no-brainer. It's cheaper, much easier and you'll get a better result.If you don't have a website or web app, and you want to build apps from scratch fromThe end resultYou’ll have an app you can be proud of - with features on a par with top publishers like the New York Times or the Huffington Post - having spent a fraction of the time and money you would building it yourself or through an agency. Your life will be easier thanks to our deep integration with WordPress, and you don’t need to worry about any hassle maintaining your new channel. All your existing plugins will work seamlessly in your new app and you can manage everything through your existing WordPress admin panel.As far as publishing - all legacy content can be rapidly dropped into the app which will automatically update with anything new you publish to your site. Of course we’ll never leave your side and our personalised support will quickly deal with any tweaks, updates or maintenance needed going forward. When you work with MobiLoud you get a team of developers and app experts at your service to make your app a success; you can build an app with the website you already have, and there’s nothing new to learn.Past clients love our apps and how we’ve helped them to:
- Boost traffic and engagement, growing their brand
- Make more money through ad revenue
- Get a top quality native app with minimal time, expense and stress
- Save time - get to market in weeks rather than months
- Save money - build at a fraction of the cost of agency or in-house development, without compromising on quality or features
- Own your brand, keep what works - completely white labeled and styled to your exact specifications
- Increase engagement with recently published content - Use rich push notifications to notify your audience automatically when you publish new content or manually whenever you see fit
- Make money by growing your Ad revenue - We’re fully integrated with Admob, Mopub, Facebook Audience Network and more
- Manage your app easily - through our simple but powerful WP plug-in
- Drive subscriptions - by offering premium content to your most loyal readers
- Peace of mind, no stress - our tried and tested solution takes all the hassle out of your end. It has worked wonderfully for hundreds of clients and it will work for you too
As you can see, MobiLoud is designed for high-traffic WordPress sites and supports a number of mobile app specific advertising, engagement and analytics solutions - as well as other features to help you toward success. MobiLoud pricingPlans start from $199/moDifferent price plans include different features for higher traffic news apps such as:
- Monetization through subscriptions and in-app ads
- Integration with third party SDKs for advertising and analytics
- CDN and caching
- Support for higher or even limitless traffic
- Priority support for launch, promotion and monetization
There’s no risk with our 60 day money back guarantee. Price includes all development, configuration, publishing and maintenance. For more detailed information about MobiLoud pricing click here.Let’s move on and take a look at what customers have to say about each solution
Dropsource user reviews
We looked through the 17 reviews on Capterra to get a sense of what users think of Dropsource.Chris W, the CEO of a consumer Service company said that the dev tools are so easy to use that it's "amazing”. He goes on to note though that you need to understand the “basic logic flow of programming”. According to Chris, if you do you can “build an app without any familiarity with native mobile technology”.However, "for more experienced developers, there is still a ton of functionality needed which at this time is still not available, such as dynamic cell resizing in collection views, video uploading, UI position locking, and undo functionality to name a few”. Dropsource - and MobiLoud - are both always adding new features and improvements for users so we hope these will be available soon.Eric S, the founder of a computer software firm called Dropsource a “useful platform” because of the "ability to directly build a native app without explaining to a dev team what I needed. This means our startup (without developers) can launch and validate an MVP very quickly". He goes on to note though that "it was missing some functionality to integrate with my backend database/app” but after explaining this to the Dropsource team they quickly “committed to enhancing their product. This was then available in the next release cycle which was less than 3 weeks from request."Other users comment on the utility of the platform for testing new ideas and building MVPs. Dmitry K, who works in Information Technology Services, liked "the speed with which you can test your ideas, experiment and push them to Apple Store. Easy to build UI, easy to integrate with backend and additional services." On the downside, however, "some build errors are not explained therefore we have to spend a lot of time figuring what caused them”.
MobiLoud user reviews
For comparison, we looked through 31 reviews on Capterra to see what users think of MobiLoud.Building high performance apps that perfectly sync with existing WordPress operations is a key goal for our customers.Writing on Capterra, Stephan W recalls:“MobiLoud was all about getting content out of WordPress and into a native app specifically branded for us - this was by far the most important thing for us”We keep our clients happy by providing this exact solution. John M, co-founder of a digital media company and longtime MobiLoud user, agrees:“It just works. We can use our existing WordPress install and have our material presented in a beautiful way on both iOS and Android....... We worked for a year trying to create our own app - and then decided to go with MobiLoud and haven't looked back. We've been happy customers for over three years and our readers love our iOS and Android apps”Others love how easy it is to manage their new app. Josh G, a digital publisher, loves the:“Simple to navigate the backend, great at sending alerts and notifications”He goes on to explain how he “needed a bit of help on some advanced customizations - however the team was extremely easy to work with……. EXCELLENT customer service. They made sure I was totally satisfied which I appreciate”A high performance app can also help you to make more money:Walter M, a web designer in the publishing industry explained that "it has also grown our advertising revenue as we can use the app with Adsense and that has become our top performing advertising platform via the app".As far as our support - it’s personalised, fast and never leaves your side. If you check out our reviews on capterra you’ll notice that’s a common thread. Stephan W, a Vice President of Client Services was happy with our service standards - calling them “amazing” and adding that our team “work tirelessly to ensure you are happy with your apps. We can't recommend MobiLoud enough”.
MobiLoud vs Dropsource
There are fundamental differences in using Dropsource and MobiLoud to build a mobile app. They are clearly both great solutions but aimed at different use cases.
- Dropsource is for enterprise level businesses, startups and entrepreneurs who want to develop a wide range of native apps from scratch
- MobiLoud is specifically for digital publishers and news sites who want to convert their existing WordPress site into a native app
- Dropsource is a platform and it’s up to you to put the tools to good use
- MobiLoud is a full service, with everything done for you and your end goal guaranteed by our team of app experts
- Dropsource is low code - in theory anybody can build an app using their tools but without an understanding of programming logic and something of a learning curve you might struggle
- MobiLoud is no code - you don’t need to worry about any part of the process apart from telling us exactly what you want
- Dropsource leverages your existing data and systems from your business
- MobiLoud leverages your existing WordPress site - you already created everything you need to make your app, there’s no need to change anything!
Wrapping upWe hope this article has helped you to make an informed choice about what's right for you.Essentially:If you have a hot idea for an app, you’ve some experience with development, and can see yourself making use of the Dropsource platform - it’s an excellent solution! If you’re a digital publisher with a successful WordPress site, you can’t go wrong with MobiLoud.Get in touch now for a demo call and we can get to work building something great.