Mobile apps are our new best friends. They help us with everything, and from morning to night, we use them in abundance. For connecting, we use apps like Whatsapp, Instagram, and Snapchat. We use apps like Youtube, Spotify, and Netflix for Entertainment. And, for health, we use apps like Fitness pro and Apple health.
So basically, we are surrounded by apps, and our lives kind of depend on them (a harsh reality). However, they are helpful and entertaining, so there is no need to worry about it.
From the time mobile apps entered our lives, every year has been full of surprises as new mobile app development trends and technologies emerge that no one had ever dreamed of. The demand for mobile apps has skyrocketed, and this has attracted many to dive into this ocean.
This scenario has helped the developers earn tons of dollars and have helped the users get the benefits of the apps. In short, a win-win situation. The year 2021 looks more promising and bright for the app developers as well as for the app users.
Top 25 Mobile App Development Trends to look at in 2021
Augmented Reality & Virtual Reality – #1 mobile app development trends of 2021.
Virtual Reality and Augmented Reality caught the attention of users and developers since 2018 and Pokemon Go.
There are many games that you can play and enjoy in AR/VR, however, now, AR/VR is also used in mobile apps to provide a more personalized experience.
The online shopping experience is riding to the next level with AR/VR technology.
Moreover, tech giants like Apple, Samsung, Jio, and many others have participated in the AR/VR race, and in the near future, we will see many VR glasses and AR-powered apps that will change our mobile experience.
Just wear glasses, and you will be transported to your office, and you will be attending your meeting with your colleagues. The possibilities are endless.
Industries like healthcare, tourism, retail, education, marketing, etc., will insignificantly benefit this year with Augmented Reality and Virtual Reality.
Internet of Things (IoT)
If you have left your house and are unsure if you have turned your AC off or have forgotten if you locked the house or not, there is no need to go back to your home to check and solve the same.
Now you can just open an app, and you can see if the AC is off or not, moreover, you can also turn off the AC from anywhere. You can do the same with the lock, the app can be used to lock/unlock the door from anywhere and without any key.
This is the way the Internet of Things works, however with IoT, we have just scratched the surface, and in the distant future, everything in the house, office, or any gadget, can be controlled from anywhere.
The global Internet of Things market is expected to reach $222 billion in 2021. $161 billion of that estimate will come from software, like mobile apps.
Artificial Intelligence & Machine Learning
When we talk about Artificial Intelligence, the first thing that comes to mind is Siri or Google Assistant. However, we are far behind in realizing the true potential of Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning when it comes to mobile app development trends.
The above Image perfectly describes the situation.
Which Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning, the app industry can be reshaped. The apps can learn what the user usually does or want, and therefore they will do the same.
Machine Learning will free users from repetitive tasks. The users can just write the instructions once, and the smartphone will carry out the task daily.
Artificial intelligence will also target the gaming apps, as the AI of the game can make the game more enjoyable by increasing or decreasing the level of difficulty based on the user’s gameplay.
Moreover, the AI is set to target many smartphone functions like camera, voice translations, user predictions, etc.
Even when we use the 4G networks, we can play videos at 1080p, and that too buffer-free, just imagine how improved the experience will be when the internet’s speed jumps from Mbps to Gbps!
The speed of 5G networks is 100 times the speed of 4G internet, and 5G will solve the buffering problem of 4K videos and help expand the AR/VR experience.
According to a study, here is the expected growth of 5G network connections:
The speed will help everything come online and will improve the video quality of video calls and 4K videos.
Instead of more text and pictures, the websites and apps will be able to provide high-quality video content, as the 5G network will be able to load the videos in under a second.
With new smartphones coming with 5G connectivity, the 5G network is all set to revolutionize the mobile app industry.
Voice Assistant is one of the proprietors in mobile app development trends. The voice assistance gained popularity with the introduction of Siri in 2011. Just tell your command to Siri, and it will do as you say.
After nearly a decade, Juniper Research says there will be 8 billion digital voice assistants in use by 2023. This includes smart speakers and phones.
The voice assistance feature is making its way to many applications, and companies like Google are aggressively promoting the use of this trend for their mobile application.
Search has become hands-free, and with the support of multi-language words and dictionaries, the apps are now able to search the product based on the local words. There is no need to write long paragraphs as the users can easily just say the thing, and the assistance will search for them.
Moreover, it is now used in writing blogs and articles too, as the user can just speak everything, and the voice assistant will type for them.
The possibilities are endless, however, one thing is certain that voice assistance helps in providing a seamless experience to the users, and this year is going to produce new innovations for this trend.
Blockchains = complete security.
Who would have thought that we will be dealing in digital currency and digital arts and tokens can be sold without the fear of them being copied or stolen!
Blockchain is the technology that offers complete security of sensitive information. It is an effective solution for cybersecurity.
This chart showcases the Size of the blockchain technology market worldwide.
Cryptocurrency is just the scratch of the surface, while the Ethereum and Non-Fungible Tokens showed us the true potential of blockchain.
Let’s say we have a special Pokemon card, now if the card is in physical form, it can be special and unique, however, if the same card is digitalized, it can be easily copied, and this thing ruins the uniqueness of the card.
With NFTs, the ownership of the card can be tracked by the blockchain, and therefore, the card cannot be copied or stolen. This way, music, art, videos, and many other digital assets can be bought and sold with security.
Although the first chatbot was used in the late 1990s on AOL instant messenger, chatbots have made their way to the mobile app scenario.
Chatbots can be used to solve the common questions or queries of the users. This way, within seconds and without any human intervention, the chatbot can answer or solve the query of the user.
The global chatbot market is growing at 24% each year. It’s expected that 25% of all customer service tech interactions were facilitated by virtual assistants in 2020.
The improvement in chatbots and the introduction of Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning are improving the answers that the chatbot gives, and therefore this will have a positive impact on the user experience.
Although chatbots are mainly used in websites, there are very few apps on Google Play Store and Apple App Store that have the chatbot functionality, however, this mobile app development trends about to change in the year 2021.
Wearables like apple watches are not only attractive but are very useful for health purposes too. Users can use the internet on the wearables, and therefore, they can access the internet and make phone calls even if they do not have their smartphones.
From just being attractive devices, the wearables are moving towards being a necessity with their health and tracking benefits like body movement analysis, heart rate monitoring, tracking steps, body oxygen level, location tracking, and many one features.
The chart shows the penetration of wearables in the US Market. The growth is not staggering, however, it is steady growth, and the new features and innovations will soon make the wearables as famous as smartphones.
As Apple announced the VR glasses, other major companies like Samsung, Jio, etc., also joined the race of developing smart wearables.
The year 2021 will bring various new wearables with exciting and unique features.
It is always said that precautions are better than cure! The same theory implies in the Predictive Analysis Trend.
The success of the mobile app is a tit-for-tat situation, the more you value your customers in your app, the more the customers will appreciate your app.
The developers and the companies will collect various data and insights to determine what the users want and use the most and will deliver services based on these predictions.
Technologies like Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning will help in gathering this data. The ultimate objective of this is to deliver the best experience to the user.
This will help in increasing the quality of the app and will attract more and more users to the app. Therefore, Predictive Analysis is a trend that will gain a lot of distinction in 2021.
Thanks to Covid-19, on-demand mobile apps enjoyed unprecedented demand, and 2021 is showing no signs of stopping this demand.
With on-demand apps, the users can get their location-based and more specific demands fulfilled. The users just have to sit at their home, and the app will assign the work to the respective person, and within an hour, the demand of the user will be fulfilled.
The on-demand apps have various types like groceries delivery app, food delivery apps, taxi apps, various services apps like hair cut, plumbing, cleaning, and so on.
Users spend $57.6 billion per year, using on-demand services. All it takes for the user is to install the app, and they can avail themselves of various on-demand services.
Multiple start-ups and companies are coming with more services for the on-demand industry, and many are working on cheaper solutions too. 2021 will see the new heights of on-demand apps.
MVP stands for Minimum Viable Product, i.e. the product will focus on the main feature only.
Suppose you want to create a social media app, now when we look at social media apps, the main feature of Instagram is to share photos, however, the platform started adding features like Direct Messaging, Reels, Shopping, etc., after the app was a huge hit.
This is the introductory psychology that should be and will be followed by the developers this year to drive their app towards success.
When you have an idea that you know is deemed to be an instant hit, then you should develop your app around that idea only. If you add too many features to your app, the app will be flooded with extra features, and they will shadow the main idea.
Therefore, focus on the main idea until your mobile app is a huge hit and expand your application.
Introduced back in 2013, the beacon has made its way to various industries like retail, healthcare, hospitality, etc. The advancement of this technology can add multiple functionalities to the mobile device and thus helps in improving the user experience and sales.
For example, you have searched for a LED TV, and now you are in the market to search for the same TV set. With the help of beacon technology, as soon as you come near a store that has the same TV set in stock, you will be notified on your mobile device with the price of the product and the name of the shop.
This technology can also be used to see where the user spends most of their time. For example, if you have a departmental store, the technology will track the customers and will record them based on the part of the store they spend the most time in.
Therefore, you can bring the customer back to your store by offering them discounts in the same part of the store.
According to Statista, the beacon technology market is increasing at a compound annual growth rate of 59.8%. The estimated market value will reach $56.6 billion by 2026. That’s more than ten times higher than the $519.6 million worth from 2016.
Real Money Games
Games are no longer just a leisure activity or timepass, as now, the players have the power to earn money by playing games.
The game skills can now be used to earn real money by just playing games on real money games. These games range from sports games to casino games, to casual games. This means that any game can be turned into a real money game.
The popularity of real money games is now going off the roof, and the demand is increasing every day.
Turning a game into a real money game is the best monetization strategy for the developers, as this way, the developers can earn money with every game that the players play.
The above chart showcases the market size of real money gambling games.
The real money genre is improving exponentially, and the year 2021 is going to be a golden year for real money games.
Accelerated Mobile Pages (AMP)
Accelerated Mobile Pages win the race of providing better user experience, plus, Google also encourages such websites, and therefore, it drives more traffic to them.
Web browsing is now mostly done through mobile devices. The websites are currently ranked based on their mobile web experience too. Therefore the websites should focus on improving their mobile browsing experience to improve their ranking and the user experience too.
This can be achieved with Accelerated Mobile Pages. They reduce the loading time of the website pages and increase the performance of the website. Thus the website experience becomes fast, responsive, and more user-friendly for the users, and this increases the engagement rates.
Accelerated Mobile Page Websites are four times faster than regular websites, as they can preload the pages to provide a speedy experience.
The rise of speedy internet will bring a surge in the number of AMP Websites in 2021.
Cloud computing makes it easy for the mobile by storing the data on the mobile instead of storing it in the mobile device. This saves the mobile from being full of data, and therefore, the mobile device can work at full speed.
However, cloud integration has not fully shown its potential in the mobile industry.
This year, cloud integration is fully set to revolutionize the mobile application space. The developers do not have to develop the complete native application, as they can develop the application on the cloud, and therefore, the users can simply use the app through the cloud.
They don’t have to download the app, and as a matter, they don’t have to download any updates of the app, as the updates can now be directly pushed on the cloud.
This can be used to try the application before installing or to save the space of the mobile.
By the end of 2021, 83% of enterprise workloads will be cloud-based. Therefore if you are getting your enterprise app developed, keep an eye on this trend.
Geo location-based apps
Geo Location-based apps are already pre-eminent in the market, however, the trend is so helpful in providing the exemplary user experience that it will see new heights in the year 2021.
The Geo location-based apps help the companies to understand the needs and the behaviour of the users based on their location and thus helps them in providing a more personalized experience.
The on-demand apps are helped by this trend as they can effectively manage their service based on the location of the user.
Such an application allows the company to collect information based on the user’s demographics, and it also helps them in targeting their marketing campaigns.
Development companies use this information to analyze the usage patterns and get insights for the user behaviour x location.
This information helps them in developing the apps with a location-based approach to provide the perfect app for the audience.
According to a recent report, there was $6.1 billion worth of transactions from mobile wallets in 2019. This is expected to reach $13.98 billion by 2022.
Mobile wallets have replaced cash and cards for many, however many people are still struggling to accept mobile wallets as a secure method for payment.
Mobile wallets are helpful for online shopping too, as the users can link their mobile wallets with other apps, and therefore they can enjoy easy payments.
The users just have to link their bank account or their debit card with the wallet, and they can enjoy seamless transactions. They can transfer money by the user’s phone number, their special ID, or by scanning the QR code.
Mobile wallets are pretty convenient and easy to use, and in 2021, we will see more effective and safe mobile wallet solutions.
According to Statista, in 2021, m-commerce would make up for 72.9% of global e-commerce sales and generate $3.5 trillion in revenue.
The retail sales are on a downward chart since we were hit by the Covid-19 situation, and are still trying to overcome this drawback, however, the M-commerce sector became the winner in this situation.
As people are afraid to go to the shop and buy, the M-commerce trend allowed them to shop from the comfort and safety of their homes and see a sudden and epic rise in sales.
To keep up the sales, the retails stores also shifted online, and thus began the rise of the demand for M-commerce platforms.
The Covid situation and the benefits of online shopping show that the trend is going to stay here for a long time, and therefore the app development companies should be ready to benefit from this and come up with new features for the same.
The most significant contributor to the sales of the Apple iPhone X was the face unlock features. Moreover, even Apple was so proud of the feature that multiple ads of iPhone X were focused on Face Unlock solely.
Typing passwords, pins, or drawing patterns is very old school, and anyone who knows the pattern or password can access the phone, but how will people copy the face or fingerprint?
This increased the security of mobile phones and became an excellent feature for smartphones.
However, biometric authentication is now not just limited to unlock the phone, it is used to login into the bank account and even to download apps or updates.
Various apps have started using biometric authentication to increase the security of their apps. Moreover, biometric authentication also includes iris recognition, voice recognition, etc.
By 2024, Mercator forecasts that 66% of smartphone owners will use biometrics for authentication. Therefore 2021 will observe a rise in the number of apps that use biometric authentication to increase their app’s security.
When we come across a new app, we have no or a little idea of how the app will work or if this is the right app for us or not. App Snaps and videos help us in understanding the app a little bit and to know how the app works, but it is not a very effective way to try the app.
Therefore, we try the app in the traditional way by installing it. If we like the app, we keep the app, and if not, we simply uninstall the same.
Google came with a solution known as “instant apps”.
Instant apps are apps that can be used on the mobile without downloading them. This is also a plus point for the users who want to use the app but are not able to download the same due to the low storage capacity of the smartphones.
Hollar, a mobile commerce app, was able to increase conversions by 20% by launching an instant app. 30% of their entire Android traffic comes from the instant app.
2021 will observe more instant versions of various apps.
Progressive Web Applications
Have you used apps like Flipkart, Alibaba, or Forbes?
Have a look at the app version of these apps, and then use your mobile browser to use their website. The app version and the website will be the exact same, and this is because of the Progressive Web Application.
Progressive Web Applications are web applications that have all the features and functionality of the mobile app version, and it looks and feels the same. The users can have the same experience as the mobile app on such websites. This is used to provide the user with the best experience.
Therefore the users can have a mobile app-like experience without downloading the app.
The number of origins with PWAs has grown 170% in 2020 and is all set to grow much more in the year 2021.
Virtual Event Streaming
The most downloaded app of 2020 was Zoom Meeting App. As Covid-19 trapped us all in our houses, Zoom was the hope that helped us in connecting to the outside world.
Covid gave rise to virtual event streaming too. As we were bored in our homes, there had to be something for us to do, and the solution was virtual event streaming.
With Virtual Event Streaming, people can host and join various events in the shape of rooms across the world. They can switch to any event that they want. This brought entertainment and fun to our homes.
As the Covid-19 situation has not gone yet, and who knows when it will be over, the demand for virtual event streaming apps is increasing. Moreover, when we can join and enjoy events from across the globe by sitting at our homes comfortably, why won’t we want that?
Security is not a new trend, however, this is an evergreen trend that needs constant innovation and improvement to keep the user experience above par.
Security of the app is often ranked as the number one factor that decides the experience of the app. With innovations like AI, AR, VR, and machine learning, user data and security are at a high rate of exposure.
Therefore the mobile app developers have to prioritize focusing on the security and encryption standards to keep the data of their users secure.
New features like “sign-in with apple” work as a ray of hope for the users. In 2021, we will see many more such features that priority the security of the user data.
Apps for foldable devices
Foldable devices have been around from the keypad generation of mobile devices. Such devices were half screen and half keypad.
However, as now there are no buttons or just 2-3 buttons on the smartphone, the trend was off. Eventually, the foldable trend made a comeback with the full touch screen version with Samsung Galaxy Fold, Huawei Mate X, and Motorola Razr.
Such phones look awesome, and they provide the user with the freedom to change their phone size, which comes in handy.
According to a 2019 study by USA Today, 17% of iPhone users and 19% of Android users are excited about buying a phone with a foldable design. This showcases the potential of apps that are friendly with foldable screen sizes.
This poses a challenge for the app developers, as the users can instantly change the size of their screen, and to provide a user-friendly experience, the apps should be able to change the screen size instantly.
Low Code Mobile App Development
With technologies like Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning, the app development industry is all set to observe various changes.
The most prominent one will be the lower cost of mobile app development.
The mobile app market has proved itself to be a very profitable one, and the reach of the product is global, therefore many people are attracted to it. However, app development prices kept on rising with the introduction of new features and technologies.
But now, machine learning will do the work of developing a mobile app efficiently, which will directly impact the cost of developing the mobile app.
Moreover, no-code solutions and frameworks have made their way to the market, and therefore, this will help decrease the prices of app development.
What Does Mobile Application Trends Offer
Trends have a way of making their presence felt. They enter our lives like a new wave, however, before we know, we are customary to the trend. Moreover, all the trends are an innovation, and therefore in some way or another, we will benefit from the same.
When it comes to Mobile App Development Trends, they always seem to surpass our expectations. For the developers, they open the door to developing innovative apps that provide a better user experience.
The developers invest in the new and upcoming mobile app development trends, and the results make our lives easy. This rounds up what mobile app trends offer the developers and us.
Mobile app development is an industry that changes constantly, and therefore if you want to develop an app that can overcome the competition, your app should follow all the latest trends.
This blog covers the most popular mobile app development trends of the year 2021, and therefore if you are going to develop an app this year, make sure that you read all the trends mentioned above and try to incorporate them in your mobile app.
These mobile app development trends will provide your mobile app with an upper hand over the competition.
If you are going to get your app developed by an App development company, make sure that the company knows about these trends and has experience in working with these trends.