Mobile app development is a rapidly growing industry that continues to evolve year each year. In 2014, we saw incredible growth in the industry. Businesses looking to improve their current mobile offering or looking to hire an iPhone application developer or Android app developer should be sure to consider these trends when starting their project.
User experience will become even more important in 2015. With the number of smart phones, tablets and mobile applications growing every day, user experience becomes an even more important consideration. With more and more apps to choose from, businesses releasing mobile applications need to be careful not to turn customers away with an app with a poor user experience. Good usability can be worth its weight in gold in the mobile app world.
With powerful sales numbers coming out of countries all around the world like 40% of retail e-commerce sales in the UK in 2014 being made on a smartphone or tablet (BizReport), mobile is more important than ever to businesses. Using a mobile phone to pay instead of debit or credit cards will make rapid growth over 2015 and businesses not prepared to accept payments via this method will find themselves losing business.
Internet of Things
The Internet of Things is growing incredibly rapidly with more and more people connecting more devices every day. The application market will further evolve as integration with additional devices continues and clever companies take advantages of the many new opportunities.
The Apple Watch is coming to market in less than a month and developers need to consider creating apps for not only the iPhone and iPad but also the Apple Watch and other wearable devices. Developers can extend their app’s functionality to work with Apple’s wearable device and increase engagement with their audience. While most of applications for wearable devices so far have focused on health care and fitness, that is about to change this year, as we will see businesses releasing apps to improve productivity.
With beacon technology, location based services become more powerful than ever. Apple’s offering iBeacon extends location services for those with iOS devices. With iBeacons, iOS app developers and retailers can target customers in a specific location. Apps interacting with iBeacon will be on the rise in 2015. Retail establishments and other businesses are installing iBeacons to share information with users with Apple devices. Beacons will change the providing of locally-focused content. Businesses should focus on creating apps utilizing this technology to provide information and offers to consumers.
As of last fall, 52 percent of the time consumers spend online was via mobile applications, according to new data from comScore Inc. 40 percent of time spent online was via web browsers on desktops or laptops and 8 percent spent via web browsers on smartphones or tablets.
The statistics show that most consumers prefer the richer experiences that can be created with mobile app development.
There are several factors that contribute to the growth in mobile application usage. These include the increased usage of devices with large screens, new technologies and, most importantly, according to Andrew Lipsman, vice president of marketing and insights at comScore, access to faster 4G wireless data connectivity.
“Prior to 4G, browsing the web or using apps on your smartphone was slow and clunky, and consumers generally used apps only when necessary; the average consumer was not sitting on their couch or on the go heavily using mobile apps,” Andrew Lipsman says. “In the last two years, though, smartphones have become the primary platform consumers use to consume content and shop, and 4G connectivity is a big part of this movement to mobile devices and apps.”
Beyond that the apps themselves have improved. Businesses are improving their mobile applications and giving users better experiences which is helping fuel the growth. Which along with a change in behavior where we see people actively shopping or social networking while watching TV or riding a subway to work makes mobile applications incredibly important to businesses.
It is imperative that your mobile application is giving your customers the positive experiences and not turning them away.
Juniper Research estimates in a recent study that mobile phone and tablet users will make 195 billion mobile commerce transactions per year by 2019. This represents a huge jump over the 72 billion mobile commerce transactions expected this year.
With smart phones saturating the mobile phone market there will be an expansion the use of the features on these devices. Juniper’s report expects to see the highest growth rates in the NFC sector, “Here, usage is expected to be buoyed by the launch of Apple Pay, together with a host of anticipated deployments by banks using solutions based on HCE (Host Card Emulation) technology.”
Juniper is expecting to see the largest increase in transaction volumes will occur in the digital goods sector, where they foresee a “surge in micropayments for in-app purchases, notably within arenas such as social gaming.”
As businesses improve user experiences for mobile applications during the mobile application development process, customers will be more comfortable making purchases and not only volumes of transactions will increase but also amounts. But beyond the applications them selves there are a number of factors that will drive growth. Industry innovations will also push the growth of mobile transactions as Walgreens mentioned its mobile wallet payments doubled after Apple Pay came out. Additionally once we see facilities for NFC payments in quick-shopping locations, such as at gas pumps, the growth will skyrocket.