Here’s one new trend to shape the future of app development. Rising numbers of smartphone users are tired of apps. Or – more specifically – tired of shifting between apps. It’s that irritation of having a whole hundred apps sitting on your home screen. Then having to find the one you want. Then waiting for it to load. Ugh.
So, how will app development respond as a discipline?
Looking at the winners in this industry, the response becomes clear. The global leaders in app growth are the social apps: Facebook Messenger, WeChat, and WhatsApp.
But secondly– and more importantly– it’s because they’re more than communication technology. They’re integrated technology.
Australia’s a bit behind in this respect. So just imagine this: Facebook Messenger is one seriously integrated platform. You can play games*, and order an Uber. You can pay back a pal. Without leaving the app. IF you live in the US.
Messenger communicates with other apps like Uber to build an amazing user experience. An amazing user experience that is like a cup of coffee to that app fatigue.
But where did Facebook get this amazing idea?
WeChat. China’s favourite messaging platform. WeChat goes beyond the social into everyday communication and chores. Got a bill you need to pay? WeChat can do that for you. Order some shoes? Order dinner? Yep. Call your mum? Too easy. These little integrations, and where they overlap with chatbots, are why messaging apps are winning right now.
But what does this mean for app development?
It doesn’t mean the death of ride or food delivery apps in lieu of a social takeover. It means yes build that app. But thinking about how your app will work with other apps, particularly the big players. Explore integration, explore chatbots, and find out how they could work with your idea. Because that’s how the world is going… Even if Australia isn’t quite there yet. And it pays to be ready!
*Send a soccer ball emoji to a friend. Tap on that soccer ball. Thank us later.