The mobile and smartphone culture phenomenon has taken a stronghold all over the world, quicker than computers and desktops ever did. It has, perhaps, even surpassed the internet itself in the rate of becoming popular. According to Statista.com, “The number of smartphone users is forecast to grow from 2.1 billion in 2016 to around 2.5 billion in 2019, with smartphone penetration rates increasing as well.”
The popularity of apps is attributed to the fact that they are easily portable and accessible tools; portable because of compatibility with smartphones and accessible due to being connected with the internet. More and more App developers in Dubai are entering the market, with tech gurus predicting a global revenue generation of $188.9 billion through mobile apps in 2020.
The momentum in mobile app development in UAE is unparalleled, set to be augmented with rapid developments in 5G connectivity underway all around the world. Some of the latest trends in mobile app development, which are already making big strides in the sector in 2019, are detailed below:
- Machine Learning & Artificial Intelligence: Google assistant, Siri, Cortana… Known as virtual assistants, these are all chatbots which have become indispensable for users. With a virtual assistant, each task becomes a bit easier and a scooch less time-consuming. When seen in totality at the end of the day, you will notice that a significant portion of time has been saved. There is a good chance that a virtual assistant can get it done more efficiently than you could yourself.
2019 will see more upgrades in these technologies, with AI being integrated into more and more businesses worldwide.
- Demand for Wearable Devices: Up until now, horology and fitness companies were approaching wearable devices technology. But in 2019, demand will also increase from the end of other industries.
- Augmented Reality & Virtual Reality: The growth of AR and VR, up until recently, had been attributed and mostly limited to gaming. But in the coming years, starting from now itself, AR and VR is going to break the mold. More and more companies are now realizing the vast potential of it, such as developers in IKEA using the technology to give a peek into future spaces containing their products.
- Mobile Wallets & Payment Gateways: The global economy is slowly but steadily making the transition from cash to credit, debit, to mobile wallets, and digital currencies. So, to be able to create a great app experience, businesses will have to be able to integrate payment gateways as well as mobile wallets (like Amazon Pay, Google Wallet, PayPal, etc) with secure encryption.
- Mobile App Security: Cybersecurity concerns have been raised by users all over the world, and companies as big as Facebook, Uber and Google have admitted lapses in digital and privacy security. Although personal data collection is potentially good from a seller’s point of view, it is an equally dangerous liability if caught. Therefore, app developers in the near future will invest more in cybersecurity, to ensure users’ data privacy and protection laws are properly adhered to.
- Increased Chatbot Integration: As per Statista, the global Chatbot market is projected to grow to 1250 million U.S. dollars by 2025, which means an additional growth of over 1000 million since 2016. This clearly indicates the growing popularity of virtual assistants, which, thanks to the advancements in AI, can easily be integrated into apps without the need of intricate coding.
- Increased Cloud Integration: Finally, people are realizing the possibilities offered by Cloud computing. Cloud services are becoming increasingly popular because they can reduce the cost and complexity of owning and operating computers and networks, and offer low up-front costs, rapid return on investment, rapid deployment, customization, flexible use, and solutions that can make use of new innovations.
- Instant Apps: Native apps that are smaller in size and pre-installed in a smartphone are the next best thing in app development. These are apps that are highly convenient since they can be accessed without downloading at all.
- Beacons: 2019 will be the year when the beacons technology, which as a matter of fact has been around for quite some time, will make its presence known. Beacons tend to drive up the usefulness of apps through Bluetooth Low Energy (BLE) radio signals. When the phone enters the detection diameter of the Beacon’s range, it awakens the relevant app with the relevant message and guidance. For example, if you have entered a stadium complex enabled with the technology, the BLE radio signals will activate the relevant apps in your phone, and accordingly, you may receive messages confirming your tickets, or showing you your seats, or showing you the options for snacks in the stadium during halftime. We’re likely to see beacon technology integrated into various sectors, such as airports, mobile payments, etc.
- Predictive Analytics: The use of predictive analytics as an important tool to shape UI/UX by developers is another new phenomenon that is soon set to take centre stage, likely by 2020. Giants like Facebook, Google, and Apple are already employing AI to use predictive analytics to enhance the customer journey across the UI/UX of their apps.
Coming years is going to be big for app development companies, as the term ‘mobile friendly’ will become the first synonym of digital presence. It’s a wave that just cannot be ignored, especially if companies wish to stay ahead of the curve.