5 Mobile App Predictions for 2020

5G as a Game Changer

You can’t go to any mobile event without hearing the term 5G. It’s the new mobile wireless standard based on the IEEE 802.11ac standard of broadband technology. With 5G, mobile technology is expected to be faster, have fewer dead zones, and end data caps on cellular contracts. We’ve all heard about the expectations of speed, but we can also expect near-zero latency. Apps will have greater precision (particularly relevant to GPS-enabled mobile apps). This will have a roll-on effect on embedded media-heavy apps, enabling devs to build new platforms and app capabilities. It will take quite a while for 5G to be ubiquitous, especially across Europe, but we can expect an interesting display of 5G phones at CES in January.

Beacon Tech Means new Mobile App Development

We’ve seen a mammoth push into beacon tech in the last couple of years. A beacon is. a low-energy Bluetooth device that sends a one-way signal to another device such a mobile phone. For example, if you walk through a shopping centre embedded with beacons, a notification can be sent to your mobile phone by businesses as you walk past.

Augmented Reality to Continue to Bloom

People playing Pokemon Go mobile app

Personal data and privacy to be front of mind in app development

In 2019 consumers became increasingly aware of their data footprint. Research by The Times (reported in The New York Times) in 2019 revealed that at over 75 companies receive anonymous, precise location data from mobile apps whose users enable location services to get local news and weather and other info. This includes a mobile phone owner’s travel accuracy to within a few yards -a measurement that is in some cases updated more than 14,000 times a day. Research by NowSecure found that 250 of the most popular Android apps leaked sensitive personal data that put users at risk of fraud and identity theft, including:

  • 82% of brick-and-mortar retail apps and 92% of online retail apps
  • 67% of travel apps
  • 50% of financial and insurance apps

Progressive Web Apps set to Grow

According to Google, Progressive Web Apps (PWAs) are user experiences that have the reach of the web, and are:

  • Reliable — Load instantly and never show the downasaur, even in uncertain network conditions.
  • Fast — Respond quickly to user interactions with silky smooth animations and no janky scrolling.
  • Engaging — Feel like a natural app on the device, with an immersive user experience.

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