Although the first smartphone, the iPhone, is just over 10 years old, the statement “having your own app” is almost a thing of the past. Innumerable apps become marshy in the app stores, because unfortunately too often technology hype stands before real use.
But if you think of a decline in the importance of the app industry, you are far from it. Technologically there is still a lot going on and the constant further development will also screw on the success of future as well as existing app projects. Here I have summarized which hypes 2019 will bring real benefits and which bubbles – in my opinion – will burst.
The electronic SIM cards have been around for quite some time and are mainly driven by Apple, but since 2018 they are also supported by the iPhone. I strongly anticipate that this topic will grow in 2019 and that other manufacturers will follow.
Mobile Backend as a Service (MBaaS) will definitely be an important topic for 2019, as it was in 2018. Abbreviated: it is no longer necessary to program your own backend, because the backend is provided as a service. First of all there are Google’s Firebase and Apple’s CloudKit. With MBaaS, the development of an app is simplified, shortened and thus also more cost-effective. We at Anexia in the mobile team also rely on this technology. Faster development time leaves more resources in the project for content planning and UI/UX – a good direction!
Augmented Reality and Virtual Reality are strongly pushed by large corporations such as Microsoft, Apple and Facebook. My impression is that Google backed off because Google Glass hasn’t been a success. But I don’t think there will be a breakthrough in 2019 either. One should have AR and VR nevertheless further on the screen, because you may count on it in the following years (see point 6. Apple Watch). Especially with AR and VR you have to be honest with your project: as long as there is no real benefit at the current stage of technology, such an application does not become a box-office hit.
There are currently a lot of providers on the subject, but so far no one can offer a platform that covers the entire life cycle. Big players like Adjust, Mixpanel, Localytics, Fabric or Google Analytics only offer partial components. Whoever succeeds in offering everything united on one (expandable) platform will, in my opinion, have the “Holy Grail” of mobile marketing in his hands. At the moment, however, I don’t think there are any signs of anyone succeeding, even though the topic has been on the table for a long time. It will remain exciting, even in 2019, because the motto is: Whoever knows the numbers can optimize content and functions and thus trim his mobile application to the true wishes and benefits of the customer.
Machine Learning and AI are THE topics in IT worldwide. Since no killer app has yet been released locally on app clients and most features run on the server side, with the apps providing the frontend, chatbots are the more exciting AI topic in mobile development. In my experience, however, chatbots – especially in Europe – are a good example of how a good technology has not (yet) been found to be suitable for a particular application. No product has become successful with it (in Europe). Chatbots are really successful on the WeChat platform, especially in Asia. I am curious about 2019, but I would like to say carefully that the chatbot was only a “hype”. I like to be convinced otherwise.
The Apple Watch grew up last year. It can now operate independently of the iPhone and even make calls independently. In 2018, a mobile ECG was introduced for the Apple Watch and security features such as fall detection (the Apple Watch detects when a user crashes and calls an ambulance) were implemented. This development in particular shows that Apple is pushing the topic of health monitoring. By the way – the Apple Watch is currently the most successful watch ever: The sales figures are even ahead of giants like Rolex. So anyone who thought the smartwatch was on the descending branch was wrong. Exciting mobile applications for the Apple Watch could shake up the market in 2019.
Figures and forecasts help us. Unfortunately, none of us can predict the future exactly. Some of you might come to different conclusions than I do. What do you think: What’s hot and what’s not 2019 in mobile development? Write to us on Twitter and use the hashtag #mobiledev2019
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