The year 2017 saw a sharp increase in mobile app development and technology, with new trends shaping up the entire industry as we know it. This was driven by businesses seeking to grow their brands by connecting with their consumer base via new technologies.

App developers made huge profits in 2017 as the demand for mobile applications rose. The year 2018 is already shaping up to be an unstoppable year, and every indication is that the use of mobile apps will continue to increase. Here are some trends to be on the lookout for.

1. Machine Learning and Artificial Intelligence

Artificial intelligence and machine learning are likely to be the most prevalent trends in mobile apps development this year. AI and machine learning will become invaluable tools for simulating consumer behaviour.

We have already seen it in effect with apps using people’s personal preferences and mentions to tailor adverts to products they are likely to consume. Also, with machine learning, apps now get to know a user’s behaviour and use this information to tailor the app to fit their unique needs.

It can be as simple as keyboard suggestions on an app depending on the degree of formality. Or, an app can suggest automatic payment of periodic payments after profiling a user’s purchase behaviour over time.

AI is expected to grow in major leaps and bounds over the coming years.

2. Wearables

The wearable market is picking up at an accelerated rate, especially with the introduction of the WatchOS and Android Wear. Developers are now integrating their apps into these highly portable devices that are now slowly wrapping themselves onto people’s wrists.

It is important to note that fitness applications are making more headway since users of these devices are using them more for fitness monitoring and synchronization to their phones. However, the possibilities are limitless as people get more and more comfortable wearing them. With the ability to receive calls on these devices, there is no limit to what developers can do in this space.

3. Android Instant Apps

As much as this was introduced a while ago, we will get to see more Android Instant Apps this year. Android Instant Apps provide an opportunity for a user to deeply use an application without having to install it on their device. This is quite useful for users who rarely use a particular application or who would rather safeguard their devices’ storage.

This trend is one you should watch out for in 2018.

4. Cloud-Based Apps

Yep, it’s back—and it’s better. The rise of cloud computing has seen more and more app developers taking to cloud storage for their users’ data. Mobile application users are now storing more and more information on various cloud services depending on the app they are using.

The last year has seen a huge jump in the number of people who use apps such as Google Photo, which backs up user data on cloud-based systems. The beauty of this trend is that even when one deletes their data or the apps on their device, they can re-install the apps and recover their cloud-backed-up data.

5. Mobile-Based Payments

The demand for mobile-based payments is on the rise and does not seem to be slowing down anytime soon. Most consumers are now using the mobile phone platform to make all manner of payments online and in real time. Apple Pay and Google Pay are spearheading this trend with various payment options. With users opting for easier options to pay for their goods and services, developers are incorporating mobile payment options into their applications.

It is quite exciting to witness the new trends in mobile applications. Other trends to look out for include augmented, virtual and mixed realities, the possible introduction of the 5G network, and many more. There is a lot of space for developers to explore. Whichever way one looks at it, 2018 is already shaping up as a mobile app developer’s dream come true.


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