We can't imagine our lives without gadgets and every month there appear more and more smart devices, useful applications and innovative services. None of them would be possible without great ideas and participation of professionals who can and love to code. The advancement of technologies and custom software development opened up a lot of doors and made many unimaginable things real. Our grandparents would be stunned if they could live one day in the modern world where it is absolutely normal when a cab is magically summoned through a small wireless electronic gadget that talks and pays for us, plays music and allows having a video call with a co-worker while still in the car.
But for a present-day user this seems natural. Technological discoveries are adopted really fast and quite soon become so commonplace that we wonder how we ever lived without them. Of course, little would be possible without proper software tailored to our needs. All these tech innovations like wearables, VR and AR, 3D printing and smart machines constantly require unique solutions - something that off-the-shelf software simply isn't able to give you.
So, to a great extent these technological novelties help to shape modern software trends and tell us in which direction to go. Taking these tendencies into account is crucial for any entrepreneur as they can help to develop popular and long-lasting products or services. Here are some of the most prominent trends in custom software development that we observed in 2016 and that are likely to continue in the next years.
Nowadays there are already more than two billion smartphone users worldwide.
Mobiles have become an integral part of our day-to-day activities and they are now the primary method of using the Internet. No wonder that they say it is now the golden age of app development and already 85% of people prefer native mobile apps to mobile websites.
So this tendency will be big on the minds of all entrepreneurs and will continue to influence trends in software development. The good news is that creating mobile friendly websites and mobile applications is no longer something only few specialists can do. Quite the opposite, it has turned into the core competency of an entire industry, thus, building mobile apps now is well within reach of most organizations however big or small they are. But don't get too relaxed. Users are becoming more demanding and you need to provide outstanding mobile experiences. It is now more difficult than ever to see what is truly trending in this sphere. We have discussed the mobile app development trends in one of our recent articles.
Agile has come of age and now holds even stronger positions in software industry trends. It allows doing projects swiftly and dynamically. Moreover, with Agile it is possible to experiment and make corrections on the go improving the image and quality of the end product. It saves time as well, because the process is more flexible than when you choose waterfall development. Agile works perfectly when combined with tailored software because it gives the necessary freedom to make changes or introduce the required features. Evidently, this is exactly what we need to realize the ideas driven by the rapidly developing world of technology.
Attracting and satisfying users is taking central place in custom software development trends. Knowing your target audience allows you to choose which features people need the most and provide the best interface, functions and overall performance of your digital product. Modern users need embedded communication, pleasant design, electronic payments and so on. Fortunately, bespoke software is more than ready to fulfil their current needs.
Users own more and more wearables and other devices most of which are interconnected. This means they need to be able to access their content from multiple gadgets and this is where cloud technology is most helpful. It allows storing and managing a huge amount of data not on a separate device but in the cloud. Also, electronics manufacturers around the globe are investing heavily in cloud computing and cloud security. Gartner predicts that by 2018 30% of service-centric companies will move the majority of their ERP (enterprise resource planning) applications to the cloud.
By the way, not only software for business feels this tendency, but the gaming world as well. According to Steffen Sorrell, senior analyst at Juniper Research, the most powerful games of 2016 will combine console and cloud-based power. However, he also admitted that "It's too early in the market to completely switch over to games that are based entirely in the cloud", but their nature is already changing. So whatever sphere you're working in, it's high time for you to try out the power of cloud technology.
Undoubtedly, this is one of hottest trends in software engineering today and it is going to stay with us. The increasing amount of personal data and open APIs as well as the rising popularity of cloud technology will require security measures to expand both in scope and sophistication. Users' sensitive information becomes prone to such cyber crimes as the breach of mobile consumer payments systems, hacktivism, cracking of cloud storage, IoT takeover and ransomware (corporate extortion). Hackers are well ahead of out-of-the-box systems security, thus custom software seems like the right solution to this problem.
One of the ways an entrepreneur can increase the revenue is by having website or in-app advertisements. Unfortunately, users suffer from excessive advertising. As a result, many of them ignore numerous commercials, while others use ad blocking, which has recently become very popular. In the UK alone the tendency to disable advertisements grew by 82% and reached 12 million people. Also, on average 75% of users worldwide blocked ads on their mobile devices with special plug-ins in 2016. This is certainly bad news for businessmen who are losing money because of that. So they have to invent fresh and persuasive ways of showing advertisements to their users and making sure that the audience does not feel targeted with digital advertising. This is one more task that only tailored software can deal with.
Possible fields of action
Availability of custom software development makes it easier for entrepreneurs to create their own digital products. In particular, custom-built applications are widely used in the following spheres.
More and more people are choosing online shopping as it is faster, easier and more entertaining. You can design a mobile friendly website or an app to sell goods and tailored software will help you to include all the necessary features loved and needed by modern users like mobile payments, communication, bonuses, games and others.
The spread of the Internet gave many people the chance to receive proper education even in the most distant parts of the world. Today there appear e-Learning platforms, various apps and online courses designed to help hungry for knowledge students.
If you analyze many successful examples, you will find out that educational software should focus on interaction. It is the key feature in education and can be achieved online thanks to integrated synchronous communication, an interactive whiteboard and different types of collaborative work. Custom software will be of great help here as well.
Large companies are more and more willing to use the benefits of tailored software developed specifically to address their needs. It helps them to automate and improve various business processes like enterprise resource planning, managing customer relationships and databases, HR tasks as well as facilitating internal communication. This greatly enhances the productivity of any company, so no wonder that they are ready to pay more for the best-in-class software.
Our spare time is also going digital. People stick to various screens even when they rest: reading e-books, hanging out in social networks, spending time in virtual reality cinemas, catching Pokemons or talking to social robots and, of course, playing a good computer or video game. The latter, by the way, is now transforming from amateur competitions into a spectator sport with tickets and $100.000 prizes, like the Gfinity eSports championship in England. This provides business owners with a vast field of possibilities and custom software will surely help to realize them.
Evidently, no business today can survive without tech-enabled solutions. But rather than blindly developing something, it is much wiser to analyze modern application development trends and create software taking them into account. This will certainly strengthen your business and help to avoid the possible roadblocks.
Custom software nowadays is affordable and does a good job at representing both young and mature companies on the global stage. In other words, everybody has a chance. Obviously, picking a good software development company is one of the most important steps on this path. So choose wisely! Get in touch with us to estimate the time and costs associated with building cutting-edge custom software for your business.