Over 1 billion smartphones purchased and 179 billion mobile applications downloaded per year, mobile application development is absolutely one of the inventive and vigorously growing sector.
The mobile application market is arguably dominated by Google apps (Gmail, Maps, Search), Social media (Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, Youtube) and Gaming apps (Angry birds, Temple Run). Big players like Walmart, Bank of America and Amazon are using mobile applications for branding, improving customer engagement, direct marketing etc. Small and midsize businesses are also following the mobile trend, understanding that an effective mobile strategy involves more than just a mobile-friendly website. Mobile application development is driven by advancements in technology which requires businesses to have a vision for next few years. Below are some of the trends which will determine the future of mobile application development.
International Data Corporation (IDC) recently conducted a survey about worldwide quarterly wearable devices and it estimates that 72.1 million wearable devices will be shipped in 2015, up a strong 173.3 percent from the 26.4 million units shipped in 2014. Smart wearables like the Apple Watch and Microsoft’s Hololens shows an upcoming change in computing, and the transformation from basic to smart wearables. This opens up new opportunities for vendors, app developer, and accessory makers. The smartphone will become the hub of a personal-area network consisting of wearable gadgets such as on-body healthcare sensors, smart jewellery, smart watches, display devices (like Google Glass) and a variety of sensors embedded in clothes and shoes. These gadgets will communicate with mobile apps to deliver information in new ways and enable a wide range of products and services in areas such as sport, fitness, fashion, hobbies and healthcare. Thus, wearable devices connected with smartphones will influence the next generation of mobile application development strategies.
According to the survey, 19% of retail E commerce sales in 2014 were conducted on a smartphone or tablet. Numerous analysts trust that this positive trend will continue over the next 4 years as more and more consumers adapt to mobile commerce. Growing popularity of Apple Pay and Google Wallet will facilitate purchases using the mobile phones instead of debit or credit cards. This will require app developer to develop a mobile application that can process transactions without the obligation of physical debit/credit cards or cash. Coupled with wearables that can process payments mobile commerce will take a different shape. Beyond data collection and predictive analytics, wearables will also play a major role in the future of mobile payments and customer loyalty.
Motion And Location Sensing
Most mobile phones are incorporated with location sensor capabilities which uses multiple positioning methods to furnish distinct granularities of location data. Knowing an individual’s location to within a few meters is useful for furnishing highly relevant contextual information and services. Motion sensing apps are used in security, anti-theft, power-saving and games. Location sensing is useful in Geotagging, Games, Vehicle navigation, and fitness apps. Apps exploiting precise indoor location currently use technologies such as Wi-Fi, imaging, ultrasonic beacons, and geomagnetic.
Inventive Mobile UX
Efficient display of data and content on your mobile user interface is critical for a sound user experience. Designers are also developing apps that can accommodate mobile challenges, such as partial user attention and interruption. Apps should exploit technologies with novel features such as interactive content layers, circular design pattern, cards and manipulation of content. These features create an “augmented reality” by allowing the users to interact with the content in further detail. Leading consumer apps are setting high standards for user interface design, and all organizations must master new skills and work with new partners to meet emerging user expectations.
Enterprise Mobile Apps
Enterprise mobile management (EMM) is a group of people, processes, and technology using mobile computing for streamlining businesses. The main dimensions of EMM are security, application management, and financial management. It also involves mobile device management, mobile application management, application wrapping and containerization, and some elements of enterprise file synchronization and sharing. Such tools will mature, grow in scope and eventually address a wide range of mobile management needs across all popular Operating Systems on smartphones, tablets and PCs. Thus, EMM represents the future evolution and convergence of several mobile management, security and support technologies.
Mobile technology is growing at the speed of light, and we cannot refuse that mobile apps have become an integral component of the digital ecosystem. The skills required in developing consumer apps are in greater demand than ever now compelling businesses to take mobility seriously. Businesses should keep an eye on these trends to align their mobile application development strategies.