Top Tech Trends in Mobile App Development That Will Help You Drive More Clients in 2018

Reaching prospects has never been easier — you can deliver offers and tailored content directly to consumers’ pockets through your custom mobile application. But what about converting them into loyal customers?

While Statista forecasts mobile apps to generate around $189 billion in revenues by 2020, 24% of app users still abandon an app after one session. Staying competitive means to recognise how technology changes consumer behaviour and seize every opportunity to tune your services up to customer expectations.

Mobile tech expands its presence across various industries and if you aim to hook audience via their smartphones, be sure to utilise the following forefront tech trends.

Turn to Swift 4 for iOS App Development

According to Apple, Swift is a powerful and easy to learn a programming language for macOS, iOS, watchOS and tvOS. The platform had many improvements recently, empowering its strengthened 4.0 version and introducing a set of new features for a safer code.

Apple amended the standard library, adopted smart key paths and serialisation to boost app’s time-to-market and reduce the size of app binaries. Swift 4 offers dynamic updates to make applications fast, robust and scalable, consuming less memory of the device:

  • Strings are easier to use to keep Unicode faultless and manage substrings
  • Support of archival enables type-safety for serialising to external formats like JSON
  • Clean syntax parameters enable smooth API maintenance
  • Automatically managed memory
  • Enforce exclusive access to memory

In general, Apple claims their Swift 4 language to be forward-thinking and fun to use.

Switch to Kotlin for Android App Development

Kotlin is an official programming language for Android since 2017. It experiences a boom nowadays — the number of Kotlin apps has grown by 125%, and similar to how Swift overtook Objective C for iOS apps, Kotlin is expected to outpace Java by December 2018.

Being concise, safe, interoperable and tool-friendly, Kotlin unites all best features a modern language should have. Released on March 2018, Kotlin’s latest version 1.2.30 gets a batch of updates and new features:

  • A new declaration for the standard library
  • Support for TestNG
  • Support for Android modules in multiplatform projects
  • Reporting tool for processing errors with links to initial declarations
  • Reinforced performance of the IntelliJ plugin

Kotlin 1.2.30 goes with all versions of IntelliJ IDEA from 2017.1 until 2017.3 and 2018.1 EAP, Android Studio 3.0 and Android Studio 3.1 (Beta).

Bolster Apps with Augmented Reality

Even though augmented reality (AR) prevails in gaming and entertainment apps nowadays, it has a potential to change the way enterprises interact with the digital world and transform industries — from healthcare to engineering. AR applications can create the unbeatable visual user experience, showcase products and services in real-time and increase productivity with 3D modelling.

To benefit from augmented reality and incorporate it into your mobile app, we suggest to leverage the following SDKs:

  • ARToolKit — a framework for AR apps development. It supports OpenGL ES2.x and calibrates camera for object recognition and integrates with GPS and compasses for tracking. Available for Android, iOS, Windows, Linux, Mac OS X and Smart glasses.
  • Vuforia is another SDK to build AR mobile applications, which recognises and tracks images and 3D objects. It empowers developers to detect objects on pictures or videos, and then create their virtual 3D models, positioning and orienting them in real-time. Supports iOS and Android.
  • Wikitude provides image recognition, tracking, video overlay, SLAM technology and 3D model rendering to build location-based, marker or markerless AR experiences. Available for Android, iOS and Smart glasses.
  • ARKit by Apple uses a camera, GPU, CPU and motion sensors to detect topology, position, and facial expressions and create interesting AR experiences for the users. Available for iOS11 and above. While market-leading giants Magic Leap, Microsoft, Meta, ODG, Mira and DAQRI have AR headsets, Apple, Google, Facebook and Snap rush to develop smartphone-based AR. Such investments initiate an avalanche of augmented reality apps, which can help businesses win the battle for clients.

Approach IoT and Wearable Tech

Bret Greenstein, VP of IBM’s Watson IoT Consumer Business, predicts the IoT to be this year’s massive trend. By 2020, the IoT market will be worth up to $560 billion according to Research and Markets or $1.7 trillion as estimated by IDC. The growing numbers highlight the demand for connected things and custom IoT applications, which will help businesses create integrated experiences and drive successful data syndication throughout the IoT environment.

However, building an IoT app is a challenging and complex task, including deep learning, machine learning, predictive analytics, natural language processing, neural-network and image recognition. Successful IoT application is a mix of data collected from endpoints, back-end systems, platforms and embedded software, so, considering IoT app development, pay attention to a new wave of wireless connections.

Sigfox and LoRaWAN are the leading edge technologies to link your IoT parts to sensors instead of regular Wi-Max, Bluetooth, Low Power Wi-Fi, LTE, Ethernet and Li-Fi. LoRaWAN and Sigfox cover both city and nationwide low-power wide-area networks (LPWANs), targeting to carry more data and allow long range communications among connected objects.

Today, users are not able to install apps on their wearables and still need smartphones to interact with other smart devices. WatchOS and Android Things bring the power of iOS and Android to the IoT but if you aim to innovate, convert smart devices into autonomous ones.

Mobile app development comes to the fore and to stay ahead of competitors, we suggest incorporating the latest trends to deliver advanced and up-to-the-minute products to your end users. If you are ready to move forward with your app idea execution, contact us to get consultation and assistance.

11 Apr 2018
Olya Bohun / Tech Enthusiast
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