There is but one constant in the mobile app market — it’s in a permanent state of continuous change. While it’s true every industry sees its share of fluctuations, innovations in technology cause mobile app trends to move at a feverish pace. To catch the attention of both early adopters and cutting-edge consumers, enterprises need to ensure they stay ahead of the curve, producing apps that are fresh and new.
Last year saw huge industry changes and innovative developments in the world of mobile. 2015 brought us widespread wearable tech, location-based personalization, and mobile platforms that overhauled traditional service industries. While it’s still early in the year, it’s clear the entire world is on the mobile bandwagon, and because of this, we’re already seeing some major mobile app trends emerging for 2016.
Cross-platform app development
With so many different devices on the market today — and consumer demand for all of them — we’re beginning to see a huge surge in cross-platform app development already in 2016. Soon, it’s not going to be enough to have a great app for mobile or for desktop — consumers want to use their favorite apps, replete with the same features and information, on different platforms across their different devices. Developers will emphasize empowering users to move seamlessly between environments, helping them transition from smartphone to tablet to desktop with no interruption. Consumers want the ability to use the same applications — with all their capabilities, design, and power — to work fluidly no matter the screen size.
The addition of touch-sensitive micro-interactions are one app design detail catching on already this year. Coined as “clunks” by some in the industry, these features “game-ify” the experience, adding something out of the ordinary for users. When Apple debuted its new 3D touch technology on the iPhone 6s, it brought new opportunities for micro-interactions. Without even opening the app, users can perform quick actions that allow for easier accessibility and add another dimension to interfacing.
Integration of the Internet of Things (IoT)
The tech world is still abuzz over advancements in IoT, and we’re starting to see more and more apps take on these capabilities. Enterprises are looking towards creating the backend infrastructure on their mobile platforms that can integrate all devices, connecting them from the palms of our hands. For some industries – health care, energy, automotive, and payments – key players are already beginning to experiment integrating IoT with mobile.
As the demand for cross-platform app development grows this year, so will the number of cloud-driven apps. Cloud technology offers the perfect solution to centrally coordinate apps across any device and platform. Consumers like that they can sync their files and information across multiple devices without having to manually do so. For developers, this technology allows for increased memory and bandwidth without having to sacrifice the efficiency of the application. As we see wearable tech enter the stages of full adoption, cloud driven apps will become especially important, offering seamless connectivity between devices, mobile devices, and the web.
Last year saw increased app personalization and the further proliferation of mobile payments. We’ve become accustomed to giving mobile apps increasingly more personal information, which subsequently necessitates greater mobile security. Consumers want enterprises that ensure their personal information and data are guaranteed safe; and, consumers are willing to pay more for that peace of mind. One of the reasons for Apple’s huge success, despite steep prices, is the attention to security throughout iOS. The latest version of Android reflects this shift towards making security a major focus point, and the platform’s apps are expected to follow suit.
2016 is shaping up to be a big year for the mobile app market as we’re already seeing new innovations and strategic solutions to meet evolving consumer demands. By harnessing this year’s trends, your enterprise can better prepare for the shifting industry landscape and update your brand’s mobile strategy to stay ahead of the curve.
Author Bio: Arvind Sarin, Founder and CEO, Copper Mobile, Inc.