Six app development trends for 2018

By Tim Oldenhuis

Author image
January 8, 2018 12:59 pm

2017 was the year where businesses started realising that mobile is very important for their business and the growth potential of having an app. We believe that 2018 will continue this trend, and take it even further. Here are our predictions for app development for 2018.

1. AR and VR getting more widespread.

Last year we saw the popularity of Augmented Reality (AR). With games such as Pokemon Go still remaining strong and IKEA Place released.

VR will be focusing more on the gaming and events sector. There will also be unexpected and creative approaches such as the Virtual Surgery Theater App.
We believe that AR will be focusing more on retail, healthcare, and real estate industries.

An increasing amount of businesses will use AR and Virtual Reality (VR) to capture this growing market:

Global Augmented and VR market 2020-2025

2. Internet of Things (IoT) and (wearable) apps that control them

The Internet of Things is still in its foundational years. Even though the market was worth  $157.07 billion (USD) in 2016, it is forecasted to grow to $457 billion (USD) in 2020. This is a Compound Annual Growth Rate of 28.5%.

For many users, they will control their Internet of Things connected devices from their smartphone or tablet or wearables.

The Boston Consultancy Group (BCG) predicts that by 2020 the spending from the IoT stack will reach $269.8 billion USD. Most of this will be spent on IoT analytics and application development.

3. Web/Android Instant Apps, Accelerated Mobile pages and Progressive Web Apps

With the success of many apps such as Uber, Instagram and Snapchat many businesses decided it was their time to start releasing apps.Not many decided to also look at their web presence, however.

Without a  stand-up website, it is hard to compete online. Even though App Store Optimisation is important, without actually having a web presence it is hard for consumers to find your app. This is why Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) is still important very important in 2018.

Trends such as Progressive Web Apps are becoming increasingly popular. Even though it is only supported on Android as of this post, more businesses are realising it is imperative to make websites optimised for mobile as well.

4. On-Demand/Location-based apps

More and more apps are giving us services that can be requested on demand. Apps such as Uber and Lyft are good examples of this. The convenience and availability of nearby services make consumer and business lives a lot more convenient and easier.

The next development of these apps will be location-based offers. Good examples of these options are Groupon and Scoopon, who are already offering the best deals based on your location, however, with the technological developments these options are becoming increasingly accessible to smaller businesses as well.  

It is predicted that in the near future Facebook and Google will start suggesting you visit the store that you are standing at by offering you specific deals from those stores.

5. Artificial Intelligence (AI) in App Development

Compared to all other items on this list, AI is the most established already. AI has been popularised because of products such as Amazon Alexa, Google DeepMind (AI), Siri and Cortana. Google has recently unveiled their new AI voice called Tacotron 2 and it is very difficult to distinguish from any human voice. This is the voice that gets used in the popular product Google Home. The more human AI can be made the more consumers will start using it and communicating with the AI bot

Many of the processes we discussed here will also use AI in their Cybersecurity, Intelligent Apps and Virtual Private Assistants will all use AI to improve their services. Some of the ways that AI can improve services is by creating chatbots that will be indistinguishable from humans, answering questions that users may have. However, AI is expected to do more than just be an assistant in the future. Being able to detect diseases, improving web design options and being an assistant is just the start of this trend.

6. Security and Data

2017 was the year where we had many breaches of privacy. Most famously the Equifax breach and the WannaCry attack. These attacks proved how important it is to have up-to-date cybersecurity.

Many consumers don’t take their mobile security as seriously as they should. This is not just a problem for the consumer but also for the app developers. By having built-in security features in app development, businesses can regain the trust of their users

Countries are realising that security and data protection are important to keep the information of users secure. 2018 will be the year that General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) comes into effect in the European Union. This means that if a business has users in the EU they need to explain to the user how the App will use their data. Users also have to give consent for using their personal data.

We believe that 2018 will be a great year for App Development. At the end of the year, we will see how we have done with our predictions and give our predictions for next year. We would love to hear from you, did we miss anything important? Let us know below.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *