Nowadays, mobile applications are evolving at a remarkable pace. Things that used to be science fiction, are a reality today. Through mobile apps, it is possible to communicate in real-time, make a purchase with a few clicks and even confirm a transaction with your face as a password.
Mobile app development is an essential part of any business that wants to remain competitive. According to Statista, the expected revenue from mobile apps by 2020 is $581.9 billion. Therefore, observing and following the latest trends is more significant than ever.
Let’s explore the top mobile app development trends and prepare ourselves for what will take place in 2020!
TREND #1: MOBILE PAYMENT APPS
Тhe development of financial management and means of payment has changed dramatically. Starting with the exchange of goods or services and metal coins, continued through paper money and credit cards, to now become digital with more and more payments happening on your phone.
Digital payments these days have evolved into so-called mobile wallet applications. These are virtual wallets that store payment card information, digital money (e.g Bitcoin) and loyalty cards on mobile devices that make transactions and in-store payments convenient and quicker. Good examples are Samsung Pay, Google Pay, and Apple Pay. Due to its accessibility, the digital wallet showed significant growth in the past 5 years and according to Statista, the users are expected to double by 2020.
Furthermore, the technology behind mobile wallets is expecting to adopt loyalty programs that allow the users to receive special offers, discounts and bonus points through their mobile wallets every time they make a purchase. Likewise, the usage of biometric authentication will emerge in the year 2020. Biometric authentication is a method that includes a person’s biological and structural characteristics. These include fingerprint, face, iris recognition, and heartbeat analysis. This approach provides efficiency and high security which instantly builds customer trust and loyalty.
TREND #2: INSTANT APPS
Another innovation that Google introduced for Android is instant apps. As related to their name, the loading of the program content is instant and independent. That means the user does not need to download the complete program, instead, they can see a part of the content on their screen, with the rest loading only when needed. Furthermore, instant apps are smaller in file size than the usual ones and therefore much faster. Due to the speed and low cost, they influence both regular apps and gaming apps.
Comparing to regular apps, instant apps are more beneficial in the following categories:
- No need to download the app
- Faster loading time
- Device’s memory is not used
- Maintain the website’s functionalities
- Shareable via link
The design and functionality of a primary app combined with the speed of a web app perform instant apps, the future of mobile applications. Additionally, instant apps are not just a trend among users. They are intensely adopted by Android and iOS developers as they can target specific features and segments when a user requires. For instance, when a user looks for a nearby restaurant, Yelp could offer to show the reviews. Therefore, the usage of instant apps increases conversion rates, session duration, and user engagement.
Instant apps have the same value as Progressive Web Apps (PWA) – both are innovations that use advanced features to deliver a similar experience to native apps. Some of the features are the ability of offline usage, fast loading time and shareable via a link. However, it is worth mentioning that instant apps are not the same as Progressive Web Apps. For instance, PWAs do not have integration with some smartphone functionalities such as Bluetooth, flashlight, and access to contacts while instant apps have. Moreover, Progressive Web Applications require development according to Google’s criteria for web applications, unlike instant apps, which can be established on previously existing applications, needing only an upgrade.
TREND #3: ON-DEMAND APPS
On-demand app is an intermediate between customers and businesses of different industries. It enables users to purchase products and services with a few taps in an easy and convenient way. A good example of on-demand apps is Uber and Airbnb.
The following steps explain how on-demand apps like Uber work:
- Users request a product or service
- The app proposes a service provider
- The provider checks the request and accepts it
- Authorization of the payment
- The provider delivers the service or product to the user
- The customer confirms the delivery
- Payment is deducted
These apps help users to solve everyday problems. Since now, there are on-demand platforms in education, transportation, food delivery, beauty, car rentals, and many more fields. Most of the businesses nowadays adopt on-demand apps in order to create build customer engagement and brand reputation.
According to Harvard Business Reports, on-demand technology attracts more than 22.4 million customers annually, which translates into $57.6 billion in spending. Accordingly, there are a few reasons for such popularity:
- Availability: Since smartphones and tablets are everywhere around us, users can get a product or service easily with a few clicks.
- Different options for payment: Most instant apps accept different types of payment cards as well as e-wallets like PayPal.
- Minimum effort: The user can save personal information such as credit card details and address for delivery. Therefore, there is no need to re-enter these details for each new order.
- Variety: A lot of different apps in each category, meaning the users can find the most suitable option for them.
TREND #4: WEARABLES
Wearable technology is an electronic device invented to be worn on the body or included in clothing. These devices can be controlled through different mobile apps or even remotely through an internet connection using IoT technology. For instance, smart jewelry, smartwatch or display devices such as Apple Glass are popular wearables entering 2020.
Every wearable device needs a set platform to operate. For example, the Android smartwatch requires WearOS while Apple Watch sync with WatchOS. There are a variety of apps that the users can benefit from. Once the app is downloaded, wearable technology allows us to take our devices out of the pockets while at the same time we have the ability to view text messages, pay with a mobile wallet or track fitness and health indicators.
Let’s explore how mobile applications will change due to wearables:
- The mobile apps for wearables would become more lightweight in order to load the content quickly and smoothly.
- The mobile apps will become more interactive as they will respond to a voice command or with hand gestures.
- The size of the screen will change in order to be more user-friendly and improve the customer experience.
- Due to their real-time usage, future mobile applications for wearables would be empowered for low-energy consumption. Accordingly, this will provide a longer life for the battery.
Wearables are intensely evolving and according to Statista, the number of connected devices is expected to reach more than one billion by 2022.
TREND #5: BEACON TECHNOLOGY
Beacons are wireless transmitters that use low-energy Bluetooth technology in order to send signals to other smart devices. Therefore, when a device enters a beacon’s zone, the related app instantly catches the signal and provides notifications and guidance for the user. It is intensely used by different businesses and industries like retailers, hotels, and museums as it increases interaction between the customer and the brand.
For better understanding, the following steps explain how the technology works:
- A beacon sends a unique signal.
- The customer’s device gathers the signal.
- The app is enabled to send a signal to an online platform.
- The platform indicates the app to make an action.
- The app setups the information for the customer.
- The customer receives a personalized message.
Nowadays, customers rely mainly on their smartphones, including product and brand research. Accordingly, they have emerged as the core of business marketing and communication strategies. Through beacon technology, businesses can provide information about the product, related to the purchase activity, customized offers, and exclusive deals directly to their customers. In that way, store or website visits, purchases, customer engagement, and experience are intensively increasing.
Furthermore, smart cities benefit from beacon technology as it makes people’s daily routines easier and more productively as well as helping cities operate efficiently. For instance, beacons provide traffic navigation as inform drivers about accidents, congestion and offer alternative routes if necessary.
Besides, beacon technology will continue to evolve in 2020. Therefore, let’s have a closer look at which fields it will be observed:
- Beacons in the tourism and travel industry
- Treasure hunting
- Healthcare industry
- Beacon technology in physical games
Due to the accelerating development of mobile app technology, business models and strategies are evolving quickly. If you want to stay competitive, feel free to contact Wiredelta today to get going on your next mobile project. If you don’t have a web or mobile project right now, feel free to stay up to date by reading our ebook Software is Feeding the World.