While 2014 was not necessarily a landmark year in the history of mobile apps industry, 2015 and next years to come can surely be ones. M-commerce used to be important yet not crucial part of e-commerce. With the advent of new technologies and continuous proliferation of mobile devices (by the way, there are more active mobile devices than humans, according to Google), this year will surely change our perception of marketing and commerce.
Some estimates say that mobile devices will be used more often than any other devices in 2015 and later on.
Alright then, but will 2015 be revolutionary? Observing the expectations and needs of Makadu’s clients and judging by the number of mobile app projects being realised by us, we believe that not revolution, but evolution is what should be expected, as smart bands, smart watches (Apple watch to enter the market soon), smart glasses and other wearable devices have been already on the market since 00’s.
Our findings are confirmed by many analysts who agree that this year will be a year of wearable mobile devices which will be suited not only for fitness and health care monitoring, but they are going to penetrate our whole lives, e.g. textile industry is now entering the market. We are also approaching the era of home automation and the Internet of Things where all devices can communicate with one another and be synchronised. We should also expect new prototypes of connected vehicles with windshields used as screens. Meanwhile, we can now connect our mobile devices based on Android, Windows, or iOS with the operating systems of our cars via Wi-Fi MX.
Of course, it will bring a dawn of completely new kinds of applications. For instance, electronically controlled systems measuring vital signs and automatically sending notifications to other mobile devices will become affordable. Among most advanced of them are such products as Azoi Wello or Scanadu Scout.
Some of these technologies have been already available but there is a problem of people awareness as they are still deemed nice-haves and not must-haves. Most analysts believe that in 2015 it will begin to change.
Beside new kinds of devices, we are also heading a truly groundbreaking technological change. In the current year we will have an opportunity to face 5G technology which will definitely surpass 4G in terms of efficiency and speed. It will also eliminate the problem of lags and latencies for the connection speed may rise from about 300 Mbitps for 4G up to declared 10 or even 100 Gbitps.
The implications of such dramatic increase in connection speed will be far-reaching, e.g. it will enable gaming industry to sell their products for mobile devices in large scale. As yet, the connect speed has been an obstacle for mobile online gaming.
Moreover, 2015 will not only be a year of technological shift but also will bring a change of heart, as companies want to communicate with their clients and customers via mobile apps and to engage them. The idea is not to sell only but also to buy their time and interest.
More and more companies are investing in applications just sending notifications and presenting their catalogues. But the market of truly free apps will disappear as tendencies are to monetize in this way or another. There will be more focus on big data and analytics in 2015, as well as on in-app advertising and purchasing. Brands and retailers will invest more in m-commerce as it will be as cost-effective as investing in social media. Thanks to this and technologies such as iBeacon, the companies will gain new tools channels for gathering information about consumers. Users will receive personalised advertisements (via Bluetooth 4.0), well organised in terms of individual preferences and interests.
In the opinion of Makadu specialists, another important trend which should not be overlooked is BYOD (which stands for Bring Your Own Device). More and more companies are allowing their employees to use their mobile devices on a regular basis for it may become profitable. Some of them even believe it can be beneficial in terms of productivity. Mobile devices, including private ones, begin to be commonly regarded as work tools. However, as personal and corporate data are often stored on the same devices, mobile app industry need to face the problems of security and privacy.
There is an urgent need to re-establish some kind of control of data flow by a user as approximately ¾ of apps will fail security tests this year. As a result, a large part of Makadu’s resources is spent on improving safety. This applies not only solutions on Android or iOS, but also other online systems. Ultimately, however, such actions involve a benefit for us (persons handling such systems), and our clients.
Cloud computing also leaves a large range of possibilities for mobile application developers.
As was mentioned above, the collection of data will require new instruments and tools to store and analyze them more safely and efficiently.
One of the comments to be made at this point is that programmers and developers working on projects for iOS, Android, and WindowsPhone have to constantly learn and explore. It is a young industry that is growing rapidly, and experience plus trackick current trends can make a significant contribution to the final success. Working on projects for mobile systems requires not only the skills of writing everything from scratch, but also the ability to use current solutions and adapt them to mobile devices.
The most important feature of the projects is their safety and reliability. Remember that a once disappointed customer may not use any of your applications anymore.
Finally, the time spent on building applications on many operating systems separately may be now compensated by solutions such as Meteor or PhoneGap. Who knows, maybe in the near future we will also have a single, unified mobile application store for all platforms and devices?