There’s no question that technology advancements have made our lives better, especially in the past few years. But more recently, given the fact that anyone who has the knowledge and the equipment can bring something new to the market, a lot of innovations have been rather disruptive. Unlike 10 years ago, the relationship between IT and users has evolved, because of all the mobile devices ( like smartwatches for example) that took shape. And because of this more complex relationship, developers are facing a bigger number of challenges and opportunities:
Maybe the most obvious issue is the screen size of a device. Here are included profiles and specifications, for example, User Agent Profile. Also, advances in HTML are meant to expand what has already been created through Java and Flash. Despite the fact that it’s an old one, Java is still one of the main tools in web development. Resolutions of a screen have also grown in order to support high-definition and 4K content.
Another challenge is the management of the consistency of development code bases, but fortunately, there are plenty of tools for this aspect. The model originally popularised by PhoneGap represents a building point for a lot of platforms. An entire ecosystem of PhoneGap tools from: Adobe, Framework7, Evothings and many other, can be found on the open source Apache Cordova.
A very important aspect required by the majority of enterprises is that applications need to function on mobile devices as well as they do on a desktop. So it’s crucial to take a closer look at a mobile app development company that offers fully functional multi-device software and make sure you’re on the same page.
Wearable Mobile Devices
The real challenge of mobile application development comes when we talk about wearable devices. Developers are facing the problem of very tiny screens and various accommodations that have to be made. People usually find it difficult to invest in these wearable technologies, given the fact that they never seem to have longevity on the market. Unfortunately, what most people don’t understand is that this is exactly what they need: a growing ecosystem of devices in order for the market to explode. Right now, the majority of wearable devices only operate as companions for bigger projects.
Development platforms for wearable devices are not quite there yet. There’s Tizen Studio for the Samsung devices, Android Studio for all the Android devices or Apple’s watchOS 4 Software Development Kit meant to support smartwatch app developers. But let’s not forget about Amazon, who came up with the Alexa Mobile Accessory Kit, meant to reduce the costs of adding its voice assistant to wearable devices.
Even though voice recognition has been around since the 1980s, it only became popular in the last years. Ever since the use of Siri in Apple applications and Alexa by Amazon, all major technology company are adapting their devices for a vocal user interface. Besides the ones mentioned above, there’s also Microsoft’s Cortana or Samsung’s Bixby.
An artificial intelligence back-end software enables actions to be performed based on linking vocal commands to these actions. Out of all the companies, Google has taken this technology furthest with Alexa. Other companies, such as Apple, are still struggling to extend their voice recognition technologies across all their devices. That’s why Siri is still treated like a closed system.
Augmented Reality (AR)
There have been some improvements in this area, like: vocal augmentation, visual augmentation especially for smartphone, goggles and glasses. Maybe the best example is smart glasses, which really took the market by surprise with Google’s Glass Technology, Microsoft’s HoloLens or Epson’s Moverio, and now even Intel is joining the fray.
The number of AR tools available is continuously growing and the ones for the mobile device area is no exception. AR is allowing cameras and sensors to use sophisticated ways of connecting and overlaying the real and the virtual world.
There’s no question that developers are living difficult but very exciting times right now. The big part of the technologies mentioned are still at early stages and they’re still figuring out how to best integrate them in mobile devices in order for the user to have the best experiences. What does this mean? That there will be a lot of experimenting and maybe even failing. Although, understanding the user’s needs is definitely the key for success.