While smartphones have been around for well over 2 decades, the rate of mobile engagement hasn’t ever reached a constant. In fact, it still continues to rise steadily, making all things mobile all the more important.
Mobile penetration is now so deeply ingrained into today’s technologically adept society that it makes us wonder whether desktops have been rendered obsolete (except for work-related duties, of course!). As a result, mobile apps are still all the rage amongst today’s masses, especially since their dynamic nature paves way for limitless innovation and possibilities.
So which mobile app trends are bound to dominate the forthcoming year of 2019? Here’s a round-up of some with the greatest prospects.
- Artificial Intelligence (AI)
The most common trend across the technology spectrum thus far, but diverse nonetheless. AI has made its way towards mobile apps through its intricate algorithms that enable devices to think and process thoughts just like the human brain. AI in mobile apps facilitate engagement by understanding a user’s habits, and then guiding them accordingly to make their life easier – something that only an actual human being could be capable of before.
Several other mobile trends have been derived from AI technology, such as automated messaging (chatbots). From suggesting different places to eat depending on a craving to answering questions about the best insurance plan, there isn’t anything AI isn’t capable of – via a standard mobile app.
A derivative of AI technology, chatbots have been around for quite some time, but they’ve mostly been in a stage of infancy. What was once enduring a long phase of experimentation has now evolved into something that feels far more personalized and intuitive than ever before.
Speech recognition is a great example of how voice-based searches are now effective methods of scouring through the web, and more recently, automated messaging systems in social networks that provide instant responses to users’ quandaries.
- Augmented Reality (AR)
Unlike virtual reality, augmented reality takes a user’s actual surroundings into account to provide tips, suggestions and insights for engagement. While AR can serve the purpose of informing and guiding its users (such as which shops lie inside the mall across the road, or where the nearest pharmacy is located), it is also famously adapted for gaming which once again, takes the user’s true surroundings into account. The result is a true-to-life experience as opposed to completely virtual environments.
- Instant Apps
A faster and less spacious alternative to downloading apps, instant apps give users the opportunity to make use of apps directly from the operating system’s app store. Although still at an early stage and available only for a limited number of smart devices, the opportunity to use an app without allowing it to occupy memory in your device is a functionality that is quite enticing for users with limited storage space and most often, time.
As users are now keen to make their mobile experiences as seamless as possible and not have the reason to install and uninstall apps which are only needed once, the trend of instant apps has much scope and is bound to pick up in 2019.
- Lazy Loading
Although lazy loading has been around for a while, there’s no denying its importance for opening webpages in record time. Faster page loads have been attributed to higher user retention over websites and lesser bounce rates, as users tend to lose patience over a website if it takes too long to display its contents.
Lazy loading uses a tactful approach to show website content that users expect to see within a fraction of the time. This includes using skeleton screens or placeholders to signify that content is on its way, or loading content that is above the fold first (with the remaining content loading only upon scrolling down or navigating elsewhere).
The fitness tracker you wear during your jogging session and its corresponding smartphone app which shows you statistics of how successful your workout was is a prime example of wearable technology. Growing exponentially since 2015, the market is forecasted to rise by 64% by the time we enter 2019.
While most wearables are centred around the health and fitness industry, the arena of mobile app development is abuzz with fresh ideas on how to track and analyse a whole host of variables regarding one’s health and well-being, for improving the overall quality of life.
- Internet of Things (IoT)
From factory equipment to our clothes washers, many functions are automated. While these and many other gadgets require commands for operation directly from the machine itself, IoT is slowly changing that. Controlling every appliance be it big or small is now a possibility via your smartphone – even if you’re not in close proximity.
This means that you could turn off your AC after you leave the house right from your smartphone, lest you forget. How about automatically sending a shopping list to your grocer once stocks are out in your refrigerator, to save time? With IoT, all this and much more is possible, which we can expect to see this 2019.
Used to manage cryptocurrencies, blockchain has pioneered a breakthrough that has got federal governments interested in its technologies. By keeping each cryptocurrency unique and consistent, blockchain generates optimum security during transactions. While cryptocurrencies are not mainstream yet, there is much potential for its blockchain form of management to gain wider popularity over mobile come 2019, owing to its high standards of security.
- On-Demand Products and Services
The option to order goods and services via mobile apps has been extremely popular since the last few years, but this niche within the app industry is still bound to expand. The constant rise of various consumer demands always present opportunities to create newer ways for giving users what they want. The industry of software development in Sri Lanka has also been an integral part of the on-demand initiative, with the country’s app market now abundant with solutions that are catered to suit preferences of the local Sri Lankan consumer.
10. Location-Based Services
Reaching consumers and giving them access to products and services depending on their current whereabouts, location-based services are a boon for today’s marketer. Using GPS to ascertain a user’s location, location-based services work in conjunction with digital advertising and re-marketing to reach consumers. Location-based technology is present in a variety of apps, and this trend is going to gain momentum as 2019 approaches, since brands all around the globe are keen on reaching their consumers digitally.
Owing to so many trends being hot topics in the field of mobile app development, there is much to anticipate in 2019. Although Artificial Intelligence is the umbrella which numerous other technologies nestle under, it is the objective to deliver authentic experiences which drives developers – and the reason we have uniquely personified mobile solutions today.