Innovation is at the heart of every successful venture. Every innovation paves the strong foundation for the future. 2018 have paved a very strong foundation in technology which will help us shape the future. These foundations will dominate most of 2019 and beyond. We will see more momentum in getting adapted to these new technologies and solutions.
AI is winning the customer for businesses. Mobile is the preferred way by businesses to take their product to customers. Mobile-first approach is being designed with AI-Mobile-first approach.
Let us see some key areas that will see momentum and growth –
1) Mobility is one big umbrella – Mobility includes all of smartphones, tablets, watches, voice assistants, AR/VR devices. Enterprises would want their solutions to be running on all of the mobile platforms rather than just smartphones or tablets or smart watches. The growth of voice assistants, VR/AR products will drive customers to use different form factors for different use cases. This would demand businesses to focus on all of the form factors like touch, voice, augmented reality, virtual reality, etc.
2) More inclusive design – Designing a product for everyone inclusive will be the future. The new AI tool in Microsoft is helping people with dyslexia to read and write. As per Satya Nadella, CEO of Microsoft – These assistive technologies will be considered even before the product was made rather than just being the checklist of things before the product is shipped.
Similarly, most of the times, we would develop an app and think about accessibility at a later stage. A recent study reveals that this will be the first time that five different workforce generations will work side by side. This also means that some are getting old and would need assistive technologies to use the product. This will bring in inclusive design mainstream.
Also, not every solution need to be designed with the smartphone first approach. For instance, training modules through virtual reality can save huge amounts of material and money. But this will need designers to upscale themselves in developing experience and prototypes on various form factors like AR, VR, Voice assistants.
3) In-built mobile intelligence – The processing speed and the memory of today’s mobile devices are more than the supercomputers of the late ’90s. This gives more flexibility to run heavy AI processing jobs within the device itself. Tools like TensorFlow Lite, ML Kit adds intelligence and smartness to the mobile solutions without even reaching out to the cloud for more data processing. Google’s Edge TPU has the state of the art processing capabilities to carry out inference on-device.
4) AIaaS for extended smartness – Artificial Intelligence as-a-service is the future of the API’s. Even though the processing capabilities of the mobile devices are higher and can operate independently they are however isolated without talking to each other or talking to cloud/edge servers. Cloud will be used to construct the graph of knowledge of the mobile devices in the physical world. This would lead to powerful knowledge graph and be shared with the other devices.
AIaaS can be constructively used in scenarios like customer service centers by integrating the knowledge base and the previous call transcripts as examples to train the AI model. This would improve the efficiency of the live agent and reduce the call time of the customer and improve customer satisfaction.
5) Server-less architecture dominance – We will see more adoption towards tools like Firebase for mobile application development. No one wants to maintain and manage servers – check whether the servers are scaling or not. Also, many modern mobile back-end services (mBaas) are designed for mobile-specific needs. Serverless mBaaS is crucial for independent mobile app developers since they do not have the luxury of maintaining dedicated backend or even AWS in some cases. There should be a careful analysis in picking the mobile backend. Among Progress’s Kinvey, Apple’s Cloudkit and Google’s Firebase my pick would be Firebase because of its cost-effectiveness and free tools.
6) New modern programming languages – As enterprises or individual developers want to take more of their products to mobile there will be a huge rise in the number of applications developed. Equivalent to development, maintenance of the developed application is crucial. There will be more adoption towards the cross-platform development tools. Many low-code-platforms are available in the market which would help in rapid application development. There will more adoption towards MEAN/MERN stacks or Flutter in case of less-complex application development. Languages like Kotlin and Swift will see more adoption where cross-platform development cannot be used.
7) AI-based security – Over the years we have added more security to our solutions and products. This has led to frustration among the users. With the improvements in technology, why can’t we use AI as a watchdog to monitor the infiltrators rather than intervening humans with too many verifications and validations? Yes, this is possible now. Google reCAPTCHA v3 no more asks you to enter captcha letters, rather works based on AI score. Google call screening avoids bot calling you by filtering the calls and sending the transcript later.
In all of the above scenarios, AI is going to be at the center of any solution design. AI enhances the user experience. So starting from requirements gathering to analysis to prototyping to UX design to actual app development the importance of AI in the solution should be well thought out and implemented in a scalable way.
Share your thoughts on what other key areas would define the mobility and application development in 2019.