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In 2015, mobile use surpassed desktop use in digital media access (51% to 42%). This change is due to the app market, which provides countless uses, ranging from gaming to shopping to communication with friends and coworkers. And this progression is set to continue this year — if not explode — as more people than ever rely on the app market to enhance their lives. So what will be the top app trends of 2016?
Individualized Experience (Or CX)
Every single day, businesses track what you’re doing on your mobile device. In 2016, expect an even bigger focus on your experience. By tracking customer usage, creators are given a framework on which to base their upcoming apps. Productivity apps are growing: in 2016 they’ll challenge gaming apps for market domination. Companies are also adding more tools to ‘individualize’ the app. Instead of getting the same version of the assembly line that everyone else gets you’ll have an app that adapts and changes to fit your behavior.
There’s no doubt VR will boom in 2016 (it increased by 77% last year), which means it’ll soon launch an attack on the app store. While it’s yet to become the established, smooth-running process we all expect, steps will be taken to ensure mobile platforms will incorporate this exciting new tech. With 40 virtual reality technology companies having attended the 2016 International Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas earlier this year, this trend is poised to explode.
What makes VR so exciting is the list of possibilities. It can enhance gaming worlds, fitness tracking, shopping experiences, business transactions, and learning programs. The cost to utilize such programs will create a barrier between the tech-obsessed and those willing to wait for the cheaper alternative. And with the anticipated influx of updates and bug-tweaks, it’s only a matter of time before creative companies are implementing VR into our everyday lives.
What is “progressive web”? It’s combining the best of the web with the best app technology to champion responsiveness. It’s the web world getting rid of clunky pages and becoming more app-centric. It’s a demonstration of the improvements the app model can make to older programs. Content is fresh, working offline becomes an option, safety is enhanced, push notifications add a new level of communication to your interactions, and all formats (tablet, mobile, desktop) are supported. It’s the next step in creating a better internet, one no longer focused solely on the URL. 2016 will see this trend continue.
In 2016, those with the most advanced tech knowledge will have the greatest input in app development. We’ve seen citizen journalism and the rise of social media impact what we read and how we access it. The line between the professional and the tech-savvy will blur.
Developers will make app-creation tools that are accessible to the people, and the people will use the tools to create apps. There’s profit on both sides and it both enhances and challenges the relationship between creator and consumer. It reduces the barrier to entry for app creators and empowers more people so they can create apps.
2016: The Year Of The App Developer
By identifying growing themes in app production, it’s clear that CX, progressive web, virtual reality, and the citizen developer will define 2016. With the increased time we’ll spend navigating the smaller screen app developers will make more money from users and advertisers alike.
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