The rise of ubiquitous internet connectivity through handheld devices has resulted in an explosive growth in demand for mobile applications that enable business transactions on the go. Every industry segment has witnessed this growth, and all businesses are able to see what is in store for the future: mobile apps are going to be the key elements in their relationships with their clients.
According to Gartner, employees in today’s digital workplace use an average of three different devices in their daily routine, which will increase to five or six devices as technologies such as wearable devices and the Internet of Things (IoT) eventually become mainstream. Many of these employees are given the autonomy to choose the devices, apps and even the processes with which to complete a task. This is placing an increasing amount of pressure on IT to develop a larger variety of mobile apps in shorter time frames.
Despite this, a Gartner survey on mobile app development conducted recently found that the majority of organizations have developed and released fewer than 10 apps, with a significant number of respondents not having released any mobile apps at all.
By the end of 2017, market demand for mobile app development services will grow at least five times faster than internal IT organizations’ capacity to deliver them, according to Gartner, Inc. Gartner forecasts mobile phone sales will reach 2.1 billion units by 2019, which will fuel demand for apps in the enterprise that meet the high performance and usability of consumer apps.
If the demand for mobile application development services is already there, what about the enablers for this? There are several indicators of emerging eco-systems that support this demand for mobile applications, such as:
(a) Coding tools
Enterprise adoption of rapid mobile application development (RMAD) tools and lightweight scripting languages will be an important mobile trend for CIOs to track in 2016.
(b) Broader offerings from cloud vendors and telcos
Cloud service providers and telcos are already collaborating with each other to deliver provide hardware, pre-packaged semi-custom apps, and support offerings to help enterprises to get their apps to market faster. This will be an important trend for CIOs to track during 2016 to enable them to guide the selection of platforms to support their organizations’ mobile strategies.
(c) Internet of Things (IoT)
According to IDC, “the worldwide Internet of Things market will grow from $655.8 billion in 2014 to $1.7 trillion in 2020 with a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 16.9%”. This only adds to the already growing demand for mobile applications.
The focus is likely to continue to shift to back-end integration, increased agility in the application development lifecycle, analytics, platform as a service (PaaS) and DevOps.