The Top Mobile App Development Trends of the Moment

In a competitive market, businesses are searching for ways to retain their mobile app users. From leveraging 5G to tapping into beacon technology, these trends pave the way.
December 6, 2021
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In 2020, there were 218 billion mobile application downloads. But the 30-day app retention rate for the same year was only 6.48%.

Software developers face an increasingly competitive environment when it comes to mobile apps. But these applications also present an enormous opportunity to gain greater visibility for your organization and turn a larger profit. In order to make your next app successful, pay attention to these current and forthcoming trends.

1. Leverage 5G

The rollout of 5G, the latest standard in mobile connectivity, has been somewhat slow, but it’s now present in an increasing number of cities around the world. And it’s changing the nature of app development. 

Now, software developers can build speedier, more robust apps, thanks to 5G’s impressive latency. The mobile connectivity standard also offers much higher bandwidth, which allows for more complex applications. Businesses will be able to build apps that accommodate intricate features and leverage a number of concepts and technologies like augmented reality (AR) and virtual reality (AR).

2. Incorporating Blockchain

Blockchain, once just thought of as the vehicle behind Bitcoin, has extended far beyond the realm of cryptocurrency. Now, it has become a force to be reckoned with in mobile app development. The technology facilitates fast, secure transactions thanks to decentralized databases that don’t require intermediaries. It also boasts immutability, which means data on the chain can’t be altered.

Security has always been pivotal, of course, but given increasingly sophisticated and malicious cyberattacks, now and in the future, it’s all the more critical.

3. Integrating Voice Technology

The voice recognition technology market hit nearly 11 billion USD in 2019, and it’s expected to increase by roughly 17% by 2025. With tools like Alexa and Siri changing the way people complete their day-to-day tasks, it’s probably no surprise that voice technology is impacting mobile apps, too.

Now, software developers are incorporating voice technology into apps to give users a more convenient experience. For example, many businesses are using voice-search technology to allow users to quickly find the information they need without typing it in a search box. This brings many products to a new level and engages consumers.

4. Instant Apps and App Clips

Google launched Instant Apps in 2017, while Apple’s answer to preview applications came in the form of App Clips in 2020. Both allow users to effectively try out and get a taste of apps before fully downloading them. This benefits businesses and users alike — businesses can essentially use Instant Apps and App Clips as marketing tools to show consumers the product they’ll get, and users don’t have to commit until they test it out.

This trend has certainly risen in popularity this year and will continue to climb in 2022, too. Businesses are seeking out ways of grabbing users’ attention, and Instant Apps and App Clips can do just that.

Applications of these preview apps extend beyond, well, offering previews. During the pandemic, the technology proved pivotal. For example, many restaurants are now using QR codes, which diners scan to access menus, instead of paper menus, helping curb the physical contact involved. This is facilitated by these preview apps.

5. Low-Code Development

During the pandemic, when quick app turnaround became all the more paramount, many businesses turned to low-code development to get their products out. In October 2020, Forrester predicted that 75% of all apps would be developed using low-code platforms by the end of 2021.

Gone are the days when all apps required lengthy, complex coding. Today, low-code platforms allow laypeople with minimal — or no — programming knowledge to build these products. The methodology also leads to a far quicker and shorter turnaround time than the more traditional approach.

We are already seeing a far greater number of these apps on the market, and the demand will only grow in 2022. While low-code won’t replace pro-code entirely, particularly when it comes to more complex products, it will play a key role in the app world.

6. Predictive Analytics

Analytics in general is playing an important role in helping businesses grow and improve their products and services. Predictive analytics, in particular, are critical tools that allow businesses to identify human behavior and make educated guesses on how they will act.

As the user experience (UX) becomes all the more pivotal in guiding the development of products, predictive analytics, gleaned from data mining and other techniques, are enabling businesses to better understand what users want. Using this information, they can build better apps, more personalized to the interests and needs of consumers. 

7. Beacon Technology

Beacons, wireless transmitters that leverage Bluetooth technology to alert other devices, go hand in hand with geolocation tracking. Beacon technology is used to detect the presence of other users who are nearby, facilitating stronger geolocation use and searches. 

While beacon technology has been important for several years, it began playing an even greater role in mobile app usage and consumer behavior during the pandemic. People were ordering delivery from restaurants like never before, and beacons allowed them to locate their favorite spots, for instance.

One innovative use of beacon technology has been an effort to promote contact tracing, spearheaded by Apple and Google. The tech giants partnered to establish a framework that would leverage Bluetooth-based apps to record the spread of COVID-19 and alert users if they had been within range of infected people, all while protecting people’s privacy.

From leveraging 5G to tapping into beacon technology, these trends are paving the way for mobile app development now and in the future. Business leaders must stay abreast of what the market offers and wants in order to capitalize on the latest innovations to capture and retain their audiences.

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