With 2017 nearing its end and 2018 preparing to come in, we have decided to take a look at what 2018 will entail for our industry. We have divided these upcoming trends into three blogs: this one for software development, the next for ERP and the third for software testing.
These are a few predictions of what we see coming in the future. Some like the growth of AI are obvious while others like the questions rising on the feasibility of virtual reality in the short term are those that you may disagree with. Nonetheless, let us say our piece and we will see a year down the line how many of these came to pass and how many failed to meet the mark.
Machine Learning Will Gain Momentum
We start our prediction of software development trends in 2018 with a safe one. The buzz around Machine Learning has been tremendous this year with everyone from Gates, Musk and Zuckerberg to governments worldwide expressing their divergent opinions on the subject. Whichever side of the story one may wish to lean on, the AI saviour story or the doomsday one, the main crux of the tale is that Machine Learning adoption will gain momentum. The growth will be pushed as usual by larger companies and nifty start-ups who look to use the technology to their advantage.
Internet of Things Will Accelerate Development of Edge
IOT devices have become an everyday part of our homes rather than something brilliant to gawk at. As the number of devices increase, their massive need for exchange of data means that these devices will have to use Edge computing. This will mean a faster exchange of data between the device and its digital twin without having to wait to connect to a far-off cloud. Under edge computing the data collection and delivery points stay closer to the processor. As IOT devices increase in number, manufactures will look to make them better than before and this will drive the development of Edge computing more than anything else.
Blockchain Will Become the Norm
Blockchain is a decentralised ledger system that uses tokens. Using the technology, unrelated parties can easily engage in commercial exchanges without having to meet each other. The technology suddenly opens up the world to businesses that have global products but were unable to deliver worldwide earlier because of lack of ways to reach the end customer. Imagine a blockchain platform where you can sell your applications to anyone from anywhere in the world simply because you can transact safely on a secure platform.
Virtual Reality Will Have Doubters
VR was supposed to have been big in 2017 but did not take off as expected. Though technology device companies worldwide remain upbeat, the adoption by even the fan base has been less than expected. The reasons for this has been the high cost and 3D and AR platforms offering options at a cheaper price and with a newer user experience than earlier. VR will definitely have its time but until the glasses become more affordable, the creation software more easily accessible, and there is a proliferation of games and media that can be best experienced in VR, we do not expect the VR wagon to speed up, at least not in 2018.
Cybersecurity Will Become a Major Concern
Security concerns will increase with nearly every smartphone user being a potentially easy target for hackers and malware. There is a growing belief that users will keep on forsaking security to be always connected. This means cybersecurity firms will work harder to keep you safe. There have been considerable investments in the space in 2017 and this is likely to continue into 2018, especially as vulnerability of IOT devices keep getting talked about more often in the media than what the manufacturers would like. The threat is also an opportunity for companies that offer software development services to ramp up their security features and make them foolproof.
The Focus Will Shift to Business Apps
We think 2018 will see a strong growth in business apps as companies finally use mobile capabilities to streamline their business and reduce costs. These apps are likely to be department specific for large companies and operation specific for the customer-facing segments. This means we will see apps for the HR team, for the finance team, for the sales team, etc. that will allow them to coordinate better with each other. There will also be apps for retail sales, for B2B sales, etc. that will allow the company keep track of sales on a real-time basis. As a software development company catering an array of apps, we are already seeing this trend among our customers.
The Rise of Frameworks
The last trend we talk of relates to the growth in frameworks over the last few years. There has been a considerable growth in software programming towards a modular coding structure. There are now quite a few frameworks such as AngularJS, jQuery Mobile, Backbone, Kendo, etc. that allow a software development services provider to take care of all content and events in web pages and web apps. Some newer frameworks like NativeScript, Ext JS, etc. also ease the process of creation of apps using HTML5. In terms of web development, there have been considerable developments in CSS frameworks, making it easier for developers and designers to control the development process and the end-output.
This is the end of the first part of our 3-part series on trends to watch out for in the software development industry.