Mobile application development has become a priority and the new normal for many businesses. Without mobile-optimized solutions, companies undoubtedly risk losing a significant number of clients and lagging behind the competition. In this article, we’ve compiled the main mobile app development trends shaping the industry in 2023.
The increased adoption of mobile devices has led to the remarkable growth of the mobile app industry. Here are some impressive statistics.
- In 2022, the estimated number of smartphone users worldwide was 6.64 billion, according to Ericsson & The Radicati Group.
- Currently, there are about 3.4 million mobile apps available for download in Google Play and nearly 2.09 million apps in the App Store.
- In 2022, users downloaded mobile applications 275 billion times, which is a 42% increase since 2018, according to Statista.
- 88% of mobile time is spent in applications, which is a significant increase from a few years ago.
Based on these figures, we can say that mobile apps are opening up new business opportunities. Why? Because modern customers demand convenience, freedom, and speed while interacting with any business products or services. Applications downloaded on smartphones, tablets, and other portable devices are the best tools that can ensure convenience, freedom, and speed. But there is a catch: not all applications appeal to users and perform as intended. This happens when mobile app providers don’t look into customer needs and don’t follow the latest mobile app development trends when designing their solutions. And if customer needs are unique for each project, trends in mobile app development are commonly available. Let’s discuss them.
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Latest Mobile Application Development Trends 2023
The following list of the hottest mobile technology trends that will shape the industry in the near future can be useful both for those running a business and those who develop software solutions for mobile devices. Take a look at the list of key trends to learn something new and generate fresh ideas.
1. Artificial Intelligence (AI)
Mobile industry trends have been focused on artificial intelligence since 2017, when Apple allowed developers to integrate voice assistant Siri into their applications. This encouraged the integration of artificial intelligence and machine learning algorithms into applications in various fields.
The following are some popular use cases:
- Chatbots and virtual personal assistants in service industries
- Personalized ads and recommendations in eCommerce
- Motion and facial detection apps for surveillance systems
- Financial forecasting solutions
- Medical software that helps determine diagnoses and suggests treatment
- Voice recognition apps for gaming, entertainment, and hands-free communication.
Today, there are plenty of mobile apps that can recognize voice commands, analyze textual and visual data, anticipate user behavior, and make forecasts, recommendations, and decisions. Mobile app developers are in tough competition, trying to use the AI technology in their software solutions to the maximum. Don’t lag behind this trend!
2. Augmented Reality and Virtual Reality
An increasing number of apps incorporate augmented reality (AR) and virtual reality (VR) features, and this trend is not going away. According to Allied Market Research, the mobile augmented reality market (MAR) was estimated at $12.61 billion in 2020. By 2030, it’s forecast to grow to $184.61 billion.
Applications that use AR/VR provide incredible opportunities by enhancing the real-world environment with digital objects. A couple of years ago, AR and VR were used mostly in gaming apps (remember the overwhelming success of Pokemon Go?) and marketing campaigns to entertain and impress customers. Today, the mobile world leverages augmented and virtual reality for more practical purposes, such as:
- Object measurement
- Interior design
- User manuals
A good example is CanvasLogic — visual configuration software with 3D and AR features used to sell highly configurable products.
Furthermore, smartphone manufacturers have been increasing the production of AR-enabled devices: as a very conservative estimate, in 2021 there were 500+ million iOS devices and 1+ billion Android devices that allow users to experience augmented reality.
3. Mobile IoT Apps
The Internet of Things has become mainstream in many sectors, from healthcare and agriculture to manufacturing and transportation. This resulted in the increased development of mobile IoT apps.
IoT-enabled applications have revolutionized the way businesses operate. Of course, a mobile app is only part of the Internet of Things infrastructure. However, when combined with the new technological advancements, it can boost productivity, streamline processes, and completely change the way you live or do business.
Mobile applications serve as the central interface for human interaction with smart systems. For example, you can manage a smart coffee maker via an app and make coffee lying on the sofa; or see what’s left in your smart refrigerator directly from the store.
But the concept does not only penetrate the B2C segment. B2B companies benefit from IoT apps even more.
- Many gas pipeline networks are already equipped with control sensors, and it is not enough for engineers to have a single control platform — they need to be provided with mobile applications. This way they can get up-to-date information instantly and interact with the system in the field.
- Railway companies install sensors on track sections to monitor the load on the rails. Responsible personnel uses mobile apps to analyze the data online, get alerts and mitigate issues, if any.
Mobile IoT applications allow users to:
- Monitor the readings of connected devices and sensors.
- View live video footage.
- Analyze data, build charts, and generate reports.
- Manage devices (configure, open/close, turn on/off, trigger notifications, send messages, and perform many other actions).
IoT apps are equally beneficial for customer-focused solutions (smart home appliances, wearables, traffic sensors) and enterprise-grade management (oil and gas networks, railway lines, autonomous cars, etc.).
4. Mobile Payments
Currently, eCommerce is one of the most rapidly developing markets in the world, and mobile shopping is among the top trends. Consequently, the demand for mobile payments is growing.
After 2020, there was a significant surge in the number of mobile payment app users. This was primarily caused by the COVID-19 pandemic and people’s avoidance of cash payment. Thus, over two billion people used mobile payments in 2021.
In addition to numerous banking applications, the most widely used payment apps include Apple Pay, Google Pay, PayPal, AliPay, WeChatPay and Zelle. These apps empower users to perform financial transactions faster, easier and from anywhere, contributing to the boom in mobile commerce. In 2023, the trend of developing eCommerce apps for mobile payments will continue.
5. Cloud-Based Mobile Applications
Apps that integrate advanced technologies such as artificial intelligence, machine learning, IoT, etc., require a lot of storage in a mobile device’s internal memory. But a gigabyte-sized app is not a solution of choice for users.
Cloud computing easily solves this problem: remote servers provide the necessary storage space for the seamless functioning of an app that is quickly downloaded and doesn’t affect the internal memory of your mobile device. The cloud means:
- Secure functioning across multiple devices.
- Saving money on hosting.
- Much more computing power.
- Better storage and loading capacity.
- Increasing user retention.
- Streamlining operations.
That’s why more providers actively invest in cloud-driven apps. This trend has contributed to the creation of the cloud mobile era.
6. 5G Connectivity
5G is transforming the world of mobile app development. The implementation of advanced technologies such as IoT, AI, AR, and cloud computing into mobile devices is possible due to the enhancement of wireless connectivity. Currently, the fifth-generation network is expanding globally, serving increased communication needs for billions of devices.
It provides the four main benefits for mobile solutions:
- Speed — the 5G standard is up to 100x faster than 4G.
- Low latency — ultra-reliable low latency communication (URLLC) that comes with 5G ensures real-time data processing.
- Connectivity — with 5G, it is possible to connect up to a million mobile devices, compared with a couple of thousands supported by 4G. This opens up new opportunities for the development of IoT apps.
- Bandwidth — 5G offers excellent connectivity when working with low, mid and high bands.
7. Wearable Technology Impact on App Development
Wearable devices and their growing number of use cases uncover new opportunities for businesses. Mobile app development for wearables is one of the most booming industries because applications ensure a tighter connection between brands and users. If a wearable device is paired with an app, customers are more willing to use it as they get a wider range of opportunities (e.g., the collected data analytics and personalized recommendations).
Wearable apps differ from smartphone apps: their interfaces are concise due to small screen sizes, and they need to have low energy consumption.
Currently, apps for smartwatches and fitness trackers are the most widely used solutions. But the trend shows that more apps will be designed for other mobile devices, such as smart glasses or healthcare gadgets.
8. Enhanced Mobile Security
Today, all the major stores, banks, or airline companies have their own mobile applications. Since their users are feeding and managing confidential information in these apps, they need excellent security measures in place. Unfortunately, many apps are full of vulnerabilities that open loopholes for hackers.
Cyberattacks can cost a business dearly: they lead to direct financial losses, provoke fines from regulators, cause an outflow of customers, and worsen the company’s reputation on the market.
Therefore, app security remains the hottest issue for providers and consumers. The mobile development priority for the near future is to pay extra attention to creating built-in security features in applications.
Blockchain is obviously going to be the main technology that will be used to ensure mobile data protection. Risks can also be minimized by:
- Using safe coding practices and proper server settings.
- Testing the application for vulnerability to threats.
- Avoiding vulnerable authentication methods.
- Implementing multi-factor authentication (MFA).
9. Cross-Platform Mobile Development
Android and iOS solutions dominate the mobile apps market (over 99% altogether). Hence, for many businesses, it’s more cost-efficient to create a cross-platform app that will be equally compatible with all required platforms.
Cross-platform development is among mobile development trends that remain unchanged for a number of years. This approach allows businesses to reach a larger audience of users, reduce the time needed to create a product, and optimize the cost of its launching.
As practice shows, the rejection of cross-platform development leads to the loss of about 23% of potential users if the application works only on Android and about 77% when creating applications only for iOS.
10. Mobile Commerce
Mobile commerce started to gain popularity during the pandemic and is not losing ground so far. Why is eCommerce going mobile? eCommerce is a general term that covers the buying and selling of goods and services over the internet. Mobile commerce is a subcategory of eCommerce focused on shopping via portable devices.
According to Statista, 63% of customers prefer shopping via mobile apps because they consider it a faster (57% of respondents) and more profitable (31% of respondent) way.
With the emergence of digital wallets, mobile shopping has become completely effortless. The security level of financial transactions has also increased due to Face ID and Touch ID.
There are several types of services that relate to mobile commerce:
- Mobile payments, digital wallets
- Contactless payments in physical stores using mobile apps such as Apple Pay or Google Pay
- Applications for money transfer
- Mobile shopping on websites, apps, and social networks
- Mobile banking and investments.
In 2023, mobile commerce sales are expected to reach 55% of global eCommerce retail sales. Online merchants have to either adapt their platforms for smartphones or develop dedicated mobile applications.
11. Voice Recognition
Speaking is a more natural method for people to interact with mobile apps than swiping or touching a screen. That’s why the technology of voice recognition is actively penetrating applications. Voice user interfaces (VUIs) are a step towards improved user experience.
Today’s VUIs and voice assistants can solve simple tasks such as finding information on the network or changing phone settings. They aren’t too powerful yet, but keep evolving.
In the near future, we’ll witness more robust programs based on artificial intelligence. These apps will be able to solve complex problems while taking the political, economic and social situation in a particular country and the world into account. Developers are eager to create a voice assistant that will be able, for example, to make investment forecasts, advise which specialist to contact, where to go in the evening, which educational institution to choose for your child, and so on.
At their height, voice assistants will probably be able to recognize the mood and emotional state of the user based on their speech. This way, they will better identify intentions and perform tasks more accurately.
12. Beacon Technology
The final essential trend is beacons — wireless transmitters that send advertising data and notifications to apps on detected smartphones within a certain area. To work, beacons need to interact with a receiver (smartphone) and an application specifically designed to recognize and process incoming signals.
Since beacons detect potential customers (namely mobile apps installed on their smartphones) who are near your store, they can help you fine-tune marketing campaigns and attract more clients. For example, as soon as a person drives into a parking lot, beacons detect a mobile app and send notifications containing information about current discounts or personalized offerings. This increases the probability that this person will visit the store and buy something. Using such contactless marketing, companies enhance personalization and increase the chance of closing a sale tenfold compared to traditional marketing channels.
Retailers can also track user behavior and get an accurate map of each shopper’s journey around the store. The information about where they stay and what goods they buy at different times of the day is valuable for marketing campaigns as well.
Few companies exploit the potential of beacon technology in their apps. And they are certainly missing out. If you have a marketing or retail business, consider benefiting from beacon technology in your mobile apps to grow your sales and increase customer loyalty.
Why You Should Choose SaM Solutions as Your Mobile Development Partner
SaM Solutions has been present on the market for almost three decades. Mobile app development is among the key services we’ve offered to our clients over the years.
Whether you need consulting, app modernization or custom development from scratch (iOS, Android, Windows, or a cross-platform solution), we have high-end services to offer. No matter the complexity of your idea, our team of professional mobile developers is eager to bring it to life. They have hands-on expertise in advanced technologies, e.g., Xamarin and React Native, care about the security and quality of a final product, and consider your requirements carefully to meet your expectations.
To Sum Up: Going Mobile Is the Right Way for Business
Current mobile trends speak for themselves and prove that technology continues to penetrate ever deeper into our lives. Applications that previously were just another touchpoint with the brand have come to the forefront.
Mobile development follows the latest innovations and offers powerful and convenient solutions. Companies focus on apps to attract loyal customers, while customers expect more services to be available via apps.
Soon, we’ll see an increasing number of smartphone solutions that will use multiple advanced technologies. Many companies will turn to apps as a complementary or even primary source of income.
At SaM Solutions, we have extensive expertise in mobile application development and offer our clients a wide range of services. We also deal with IoT, cloud, eCommerce projects and other innovations. Do you need a reliable IT-partner? SaM Solutions is at your service!