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Mobile App Development Trends in 2019

When the first smartphone was launched for the general public in 1994, nobody could have predicted how integral a part of our life it will become. Currently we have 2.1 billion mobile users and in 2019, the number is expected to cross the 5 billion mark according to a report by Statista.

Smartphones combined with fast Internet access means that people are spending more time online as compared to say 5 to 10 years ago. Many studies have been undertaken to understand the way people use the smartphone and how much. Studies have revealed that an average Briton checks his/her mobile phone every 12 minutes and an average American adult spends almost 2.5 hours a day on smartphones.

Another statistic to be noted before moving ahead is that according to comScore Future Digital Report 2018, 80-90% of mobile time is spent on mobile apps rather than websites. This leads us to believe that mobiles, or rather smartphones have an ecosystem of their own, separate from computers and laptops. So, mobile app development has become an effective way of reaching uses/ target audience.

With the year coming to an end, mobile app developers are racking their brains to identify the trends in mobile app development that they must stay abreast of to maximize their output in the next year. Here we will look at some mobile app development trends 2019 that we can expect to dominate:

1) Customized mobile apps

Even though websites are designed to be responsive and mobile friendly, apps provide a more intuitive way of browsing. This means that not just the services companies but those involved in sharing of information are also developing, or getting developed, mobile apps to provide a better user experience. Customized mobile apps have been gaining traction in the past few years. In 2019 the trend is going to be stronger.

It is not just the biggies like Amazon, Alibaba and Flipkart who want to increase user experience and hence sales through their own mobile applications. Now even the smaller players including the local businesses want to have their own apps created according to their requirement. So, besides the traditional industries like healthcare, insurance, fitness,e-commerce and fintech, businesses as varied as food delivery, organic products, laundry services, plumbing, bespoke tailoring, handbags and accessories designing, etc. will want their own mobile apps suited specially to their niche customers.

As someone interested in developing mobile apps, you must be prepared to come up with customised on-demand mobile applications. In fact, this could be an easy way to generate revenue as you tap newer markets.

2) M-commerce

It is said that money makes the world go around.  If you are a mobile app developer, you must take this saying to your heart and focus on apps around m-commerce. According to 451 research, the number of m-commerce transactions will surpass the number of E-Commerce transactions in 2019. Also, online payments through mobile contactless methods is increasing at a CAGR of 30%, where the leading players are Google pay and Apple pay apps.

These facts and figures show that m-commerce is going to be a guiding force in both Android app development and Apple app development environments.

3) Mobile payment methods

Mobile Payment Methods

When you talk about M commerce, in a payment cannot be far behind. as people get more comfortable and confident in making online payment, mobile application must integrate multiple payment gateways. Any successful mobile app must have at least three or four methods of making payment like credit or debit cards, mobile wallets, gift cards, etc. with many European countries set to regulate cryptocurrencies by 2020, you could even look at including cryptocurrency payments methods as well. After all, with so many players in the mobile industry, this could make you stand out easily.

4) Wearable Apps

Wearable Mobile Apps

According to CCS Insights latest forecast, the number of wearable devices is set to triple from from 84 million units in 2015 to 245 million units in 2019. In monetary terms, the wearable industry will be worth USD33 billion by the end of 2019. With so much demand of wearable gadgets, be it smart watches, fitness trackers or wearable headsets, the wearable apps industry is set to boom as well.

Currently, all wearable gadgets are synchronized to the smartphones. So, the two must have apps that are paired with each other. With the number of players in mobile development industry growing by the minute, wearable apps provide a new market. Although currently smartwatches and fitness gadgets are the most popular ones in wearables, other devices are predicted to catch up soon.

5) AR and VR

Over the past few years Augmented reality has revolutionized app development in entertainment and gaming industry. In 2019 AR is expected to transform app development trends in various fields like health, engineering, real estate, retail, etc.   For example, an Interior Designer can launch her own mobile application that asks the potential customer only to upload images or videos of property they want to upgrade. Using augmented reality, the app can then give the customer a preview of the property based on their specifications. This is win situation for both the designer and customer. the designer is saved the headache of convincing the customer about the appropriateness of their selection.  At the same time the customer can see whether their choices actually translate into what they had Wanted to start with.

Like AR, virtual reality is another mobile application trend that will be hot in 2019. Traditionally, virtual reality has been used for simulation of scenarios that are difficult as well as expensive to create. for example, human body simulation for medical students, space simulation for astronauts, etc.  however, VR has caught the fancy of businesses, as it can help them to recreate how a certain product would look on their customers. So, you have applications that can show how a dress or jewelleries or spectacles would look on you before you actually purchase them. Of course, as people prefer being online through their mobiles, businesses need to have their own mobile applications to provide this experience to their customers.

6) Artificial Intelligence

According to Gartner, artificial intelligence will not attract more investment as compared to 2018 but its usage across platforms will increase drastically. What is common between Siri, Cortana, Alexa and Google assistant? They are applications that make our life much easier by taking over everyday tasks like reading, writing and sending messages, switching camera and microphone on and off, searching internet for information, setting reminders, etc. through their artificial intelligence capabilities.

As businesses see the popularity of these virtual assistants, they want similar mobile applications in the form of chatbots and personal assistant. As a developer you cannot ignore this latest app trend and hence you must gear up to develop such applications in the coming year.

7) Cloud integration

Every professional is using or has used Dropbox, Evernote, Google notes at some point of time. These applications hosted on cloud enable them to access their personal as well as professional data anytime from anywhere. When these apps were launched there were many issues around their security and privacy. One cannot claim that these issues has been resolved completely but they are much more in control. So, their use has increased manifold. These changes have had an impact on mobile industry as well.

One of the hottest trends in mobile application development in 2019 is going to be cloud integration for mobile applications. This will ensure a seamless experience for the users. It makes even more sense for organisations involved in training people as the trainees can access material from anywhere in their own time. With more and more businesses struggling to engage people, cloud integration of mobile applications will take a jump in 2019.

8) App security

Some thoughts that cross the users’ mind while installing Apps on their smartphones include:

  • Does the app Keep my private data secure?
  • Is it possible that someone can hack into my data stored in the app?
  • How much data does the app need?
  • Is the app a resource hog, which will slow down my phone?
  • Can my data be misused?

Mobile app development companies need to address these concerns if they wish to succeed.  As the Gartner report points, the discussion on security has moved from being compliant to doing the right thing in 2019. mobile apps that convince the users that you have taken care of their security can only succeed.

9) Internet of Things

Internet of Things App Trends

As you probably know, a network of interconnected smart devices is known as Internet of Things (IoT). We have just now discussed how smartphones need to be connected to wearable devices. However, IoT involves lots of other smart devices that have special circuits, sensors and software built into them. These software are nothing but apps that can be developed by any mobile app developer.

Global IoT market has been growing at a CAGR of 28.5% since 2016 and will reach USD457 billion by 2020, as per GrowthEnabler IoT report. Real time supply chain, smart homes and smart healthcare are no more stuff of science fiction but reality. With increase in IoT devices and networks, the demand for feature rich apps is also bound to increase.

Conclusion

As we get ready to welcome the new year, mobile application development industry can look forward to really exciting times, as evident from the trends list that we have discussed just now. Whether you are a single person or an organization developing mobile applications, you need to be ready to embrace these trends wholeheartedly if you have already not started on that path. Mobile applications that imbibe one or more of these trends will taste success. Get in contact with us today to turn your ideas into 

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Apps

At Abovav, we ring in each new year with predictions. Whether we hit or miss, we have a lot of fun thinking through challenges and opportunities that platforms face. 2019 is shaping up to be an interesting year (or distressing, depending on your point of view) in terms of politics and economics – a year which defies prediction. That only made this exercise all the more fun. Here’s our 5 platform predictions for 2019.

Lots of Really Big IPOs

In December both Uber and Lyft raced to file paperwork, within days of each other, for IPOs in 2019. Remarkably, they’re not the only household name platforms eyeing IPOs in 2019. AirBNB, Pinterest, Slack, and Postmates are also preparing for 2019 IPOs. We don’t expect that to be the final list either. Rumor has it that InstaCart and big data platform Palantir are weighing their IPO options as well.

If market analysts are right about a looming multi-year recession, then it would make sense for big platform companies to get ahead of the slump. Any platforms who were eyeing IPOs in 2020 may speed up their timeline and go public in 2019 before the recession has really depressed the stock market.

Bonus prediction: Your word-of-the-year will be decacorn: a unicorn that reaches a $10bn valuation.

Still no mainstream application of blockchain

Last year, we predicted there would be no mainstream application of blockchain in 2018. We expect this non-trend to continue in 2019. Like we said last year, blockchain technology’s applications are over hyped. It’s a promising technology that’s still working through its challenges.

However, blockchain’s best known application, Bitcoin, is poised to have a strong comeback in 2019 after an abysmal 2018. Bitcoin ended the year at less than half the price it held in January. However, the cryptocurrency made important strides throughout the year, such as lowering its high transaction fees and improving its public profile.

In November, Ohio became the first state to allow residents to pay taxes in bitcoin. While the SEC rejected proposals for Bitcoin ETFs, two US lawmakers have proposed to exempt cryptocurrencies from US securities laws (politically controversial, but uncontroversially good news for Bitcoin). NASDAQ is also planning to list Bitcoin futures in 2019. Thus, we expect Bitcoin to have a good year, even if blockchain technology as a whole doesn’t expand to any other part of our lives.

Platform regulation will become a major electoral issue

Google, Amazon, and, of course, Facebook have been embroiled in scandals and controversy this year. While the scandals range from sexual harassment (Google) to employee maltreatment (Amazon) to covering up election meddling by a foreign power (Facebook), one type of scandal was common to all three platform companies: data security and misuse.

Security breaches have exposed sensitive user data to would-be thieves. Often modern monopolies are slow to report the breaches in an effort to avoid a PR firestorm. As we wrote in October, in hiding security breaches, companies like Google make the need for platform regulation clear. Exacerbating the issue, big tech does a poor job of highlighting which measures have been taken to bolster data security. We expect the issue to be relevant as 2020 electoral candidates begin to jockey for position.

However, even more salient is the issue of fake news. In 2018, content platforms like Facebook and Twitter, and search engine monopoly Google were called before the US Congress to answer questions centered around the issue of misinformation and propaganda. Across the pond, the EU Parliament also grilled Mark Zuckerberg about Facebook’s role in selling user data to political advertisers and propagandists. We would be shocked if platform-spread fake news did not become a heated political issue during the 2020 campaign, with the rhetoric taking shape in 2019.

Netflix is going to get beat up

Although Netflix beat earnings expectations in 2018, the year was a bad one for the company. In July, Disney bought 21st Century Fox, thereby expanding its rights to major TV shows like American Horror Story and The Simpsons, and completing its Marvel collection with X-Men and Deadpool – oh, and it now also owns the Star Wars franchise. And it also now owns Netflix-competitor Hulu, which it can pump with all this new Disney content. Or perhaps all that content will go to Disney’s own subscription streaming service, Disney+, set to launch in 2019. This short list of Disney’s gains is only the tip of the iceberg.

And Netflix’s nightmare doesn’t end there.  The month before, in June, AT&T bought Time Warner.  Time Warner owns popular content brands including TBS, CNN, and HBO, as well as Warner Bros. After the acquisition AT&T could market Time Warner’s content either through cable companies, or, more lucratively, directly to consumers through its own streaming service, also set to launch in 2019. AT&T would also be able to collect viewer data and build a digital advertising arm to compete with major rivals like Facebook and Google. (Perhaps unsurprisingly, Netflix began to, controversially, test ads in 2018.)

In 2018, Netflix responded to the coming storm by pumping out more and more original content, hoping that some of it will reach the cultural significance of Star Wars, Marvel, or HBO shows like Game of Thrones. If it can’t (and it likely won’t in 2019 despite some excellent shows and successes), expect consumers to switch from Netflix to Disney+ or AT&T.

One caveat, on the AT&T/Time Warner acquisition: the Justice Department has since appealed the acquisition, but the appeal is unlikely to reverse the acquisition.  

2019 will be the year of the B2B platform

The majority of platform companies focus on B2C services and products such as product marketplaces, ride-sharing apps, financial service apps, and more. While many B2B marketplaces and service platforms exist, few have reached the status of modern monopoly. In terms of big name brands, Salesforce is the best known B2B platform.

We expect that to change in 2019. While Salesforce will continue to grow its suite of products and services (a combination of linear and platform) for business, other players will emerge in B2B as well. For example, we expect Palantir, a data analytics platform founded by Paypal founder Peter Thiel, and Convoy, a logistics platform (and potential IPO darling in 2019 or 2020) to have a strong 2019s and further B2B platform services.  

But it isn’t just tech companies that will push the platform business model on B2B. We expect traditional B2B distributors to launch a B2B marketplace of their own. At private dinners and meetings, the industry-backed marketplace has been discussed, and we expect B2B distributors to at least test the marketplace in 2019 – and hopefully, launch it.

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