We all love our digital do-dads and their ability to make our work lives and personal lives so much more productive.
Some businesses will continue to thrive without enterprise apps, but that number is getting smaller with each passing year. We all are consumers who have grown accustomed to whipping out our smart phones or tablets to shop, to work, to interact and to engage.
Whatever resources you’re devoting to enterprise app development are probably insufficient to keep up with the demand from workers, vendors and customers who want apps that can make their lives easier.
But what does the future hold for enterprise app development? With prognosticator hat firmly on our head, we offer these six trends that you shouldn’t ignore going into 2016.
1. IoT is H.O.T.
Depending on what company is doing the talking, Internet-enabled devices by 2020 will number somewhere between 30 billion and infinity (or beyond). There are no glass half-empty predictions about the Internet of Things (IoT) and wearable devices.
IoT and wearables are all around us – Fitbit, iWatch, Nest thermostat and more are coming every day. IoT is causing companies large and small to rethink what’s possible, which likely also means changes to enterprise app development. You ignore IoT at the peril of your company. It’s so important, in fact, that we recently devoted an entire blog (LINK TO IOT BLOG) to the topic.
2. Let’s Be Careful Out There
As apps become the way people get work done, an increasing amount of sensitive information is flowing through them. However, Gartner estimated that 75% of apps fail basic security tests.
The lesson from this is two-fold: first, companies must closely monitor what apps their workers are using to access company servers and systems. Second, internal app development must occur with security protocols at the forefront. Depending on your industry, a major security breach could just be embarrassing or it could mean embarrassment plus millions in fines. Cool apps are, well, cool. But they also must be secure.
3. Keep Your App in the Cloud
Mobile app development continues to intersect with cloud storage – for several good reasons. The popularity of wearable devices (see No. 1) is propelling apps in the cloud, as has cross functionality across different platforms. Cloud-based apps are smaller, requiring less bandwidth and reducing the possibility of memory issues. In the cloud, developers can synchronize their apps across devices. The cloud is quickly becoming the preferred storage medium for apps.
4. Working Smarter with Apps
Mobile apps are quickly becoming must-have for companies that want to boost the productivity of workers. Smart phones and other mobile devices have fueled an always-on work mentality. Corporate IT departments are turning their attentions into creating apps that can help workers, vendors and customers become more productive. Making one’s job easier or speeding the buying process makes for happier workers – and customers.
5. The Rise of the Machine (Learning)
Machine learning has become commonplace in business: in the cloud, in APIs and in open source tools. Machine learning can help developers plow through piles of data to get to the useful stuff that can help companies detect fraud, understand user behaviors, track aberrant usage and much more.
Like many technologies, machine learning can be a two-edged sword. Have you gotten that call/text from a credit card company asking for verification on a seemingly innocuous purchase near where you live? If you didn’t make the purchase, then you’re relieved you had a chance to dispute the charge. If your card gets declined while making a legitimate purchase, you’re likely to be angry.
But the machines are getting smarter, which means companies can make some very interesting enterprise apps.
6. Building More Enterprise Apps? You’re Not Alone.
Enterprise apps are big business – and getting bigger by the year. According to IDC, 35% of large enterprises were expected to leverage mobile app development platforms in 2015 to develop and deploy mobile apps across their organizations.
And according to Gartner, the demand for mobile app development services by 2017 will outpace internal IT resources to deliver them by a factor of five to one.