Mobile Apps are Evolving Real Fast – Developers Need to be Flexible

Will developers be making mobile apps the same way in few months or few years from now, the way they are making them today? Probably not.

Mobile-Apps development

Thousands of new apps are released everyday in their respective app markets. Mobile analysts have their interest primarily in technicalities and new features of these new apps and how apps are evolving, but most of them fail to understand that end user behavior is the real driving force behind this evolution.  The mobile apps are certainly going to evolve more, quickly than many pundits expect it to, and one thing that can be called success mantra for mobile developers in future is to create apps that deliver contextual customer experience.

A recent report titled “The Future Of Mobile Application Development,” written by analysts Jeffrey Hammond and Julie Ask, and published by Forrester explains how modern mobile applications will evolve over the next few years and what development teams should prepare for now. Report says that for every developer looking to build modern applications and deliver contextual customer experiences, there are UI changes coming that they need to understand.

J. Hammond, principal application development and delivery analyst at Forrester said, “When developers design user interfaces today—whether it’s for a laptop or for a mobile device—we think that that application is totally what the user’s going to be focused on.” Hammond said that the way developers design apps is going to become much more of a peripheral interaction than the main focus of interaction in future. Currently, app developers and mobile advertisers thrive off the ability to fully engage users in an app. This will make the change from a fully engrossed app experience, to a more peripheral interaction, difficult for developers to adjust to.

So what are the various UI changes that developers need to be aware of in order to make themselves ready for the mobile app development evolution? Here are the important ones:

 

  • Multiple Input Mode: Touch will not be the focused mode of input. UIs are going to change focus from touch to voice, according to the report. “When you strap that device onto your arm (before a run, for example), you’re not going to look at it anymore until you’re done with your run. Voice takes over,” Hammond said. “Also, when you’ve got applications that are in the car, the natural mode also shifts to voice. But you don’t only want to have voice because, if you’ve got an application and you’re in a crowded restaurant, you’re going to want to shift back to touch. So developers have got to be able to essentially support multiple modes of input.”

  • Wearables and Connectables : “Wearables and connectables are definitely coming in the near future”, the report said and we agree. Hammond said, “You can conceivably have a battery woven into your jacket and be charging your cell phone all day long with a 10-ounce, flexible battery that’s in the back panel of your jacket. Or imagine shoes that can generate power while you’re walking around. If you’ve got that battery panel hooked up to little power generators in your shoes and you go for a 40-minute run, you’ve just generated enough power to power your cell phone for the rest of the day.”

  • New Form Factors: According to Hammond, mobile devices will change pretty radically in form factor. He said. “Why do you have to have the 4-inch device up by the side of your face?” he asked. “If you have a pair of glasses on, who’s to say you can’t have a brick sitting in your briefcase or your attaché that’s doing most of the processing and the glasses are essentially the local dumb terminal, if you will. It’s kind of like the fifth generation down from a 3270 terminal.” We have already seen Google Glass, which is making a lot of buzz, and Apple too is expected to come out with wearable computing in form of a watch soon.

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Credit: SDTimes | CMU.edu (Image)

Vikas Kaushik

By Vikas KaushikVikas is the CEO at TechAhead Software, where they offer a rare blend of expertise and understanding of technology in earning dedicated clientele across the globe, eager to offer outsource mobile development to them. They have developed 100s of mobile apps covering all genre like Business, Education, Entertainment, Healthcare, Lifestyle, Music, Navigation, News, Imaging etc. for iPhone, iPad, Android, & Blackberry devices.