As a mobile app development company, we get very excited when we think about the future of our industry. With the new year upon us, we wanted to share with you five trends that we expect to see in the coming year.
2014 will be the year of iBeacon, Apple's framework for detecting nearby devices using Bluetooth Low Energy (BLE). Have you seen those weird handheld speaker things they give you at museums where you type in a number and you can hear someone talk about the painting you're looking at? With an iBeacon-enabled app, all you'll need to do is walk past a painting and your phone will automatically pull up information.
iBeacon was introduced with iOS 7, and with adoption rates approaching 80%, there's no reason why developers will not take advantage of this technology.
In addition to iBeacon, the proliferation of BLE makes it possible for your phone to communicate with more real-world objects. It's cheaper and easier than ever to embed sensors into things like toasters, doorknobs and fans. We're not quite living in a world where technology can produce soft-boiled eggs and chewy cereal at the touch of a button, but we do live in a world where your dryer can tell you when it's done spinning. This year, we expect to see more apps which interact with the physical tools and toys you use every day.
Thanks to the leaks regarding spy programs such as PRISM, XKeyscore and Tempora, the general public is very aware of just how easy it is for your private information to fall into the hands of someone who you might not want it to.
Most app developers (well, at least the good ones) design their apps in a way that will keep their user's data as safe as possible. In 2014, we feel that customers will be even more scrutinizing to whom they entrust with their data. More and more people will be unforgiving of scenarios such as when Path was caught uploading a user's their entire address book to a remote server without telling them.
With the barrier to entry much lower than even 3 years ago, we anticipate growth in smaller, more niche networks that allow users to bond over a common interest. One of my personal favorite examples of this is Untappd, which lets you rate and review different beers, as well as receive suggestions for new beers to try.
Big networks like Facebook are great for catching up with your middle school friends, but small networks make it easy to meet interesting people whose interests are better aligned with yours.
Sure, leave it to a mobile app development company to predict the rise in mobile app adoption, but we sincerely believe that more and more businesses will find a need for an app this year.
Whether it's a construction company who needs a custom solution for tracking projects or a painter who wants a unique way for showcasing their portfolio, enterprising organizations will begin incorporating apps into their workflows.
By the way, if that sounds like you or your company, we'd love to talk with you!