2017 Mobile App Development Trends You Need to Know

Trends in mobile app development change constantly, and what you don’t know about them could hurt your enterprise. To help you keep up, we’re summarizing the 2017 mobile app development trends you need to know from the important results of a recent Gartner survey, “Survey Analysis: The Mobile App Development Trends That Will Impact Your Enterprise in 2017.”

Here's a summary of the 2017 mobile app development trends you need to know.

Here’s a summary of the 2017 mobile app development trends you need to know.

First, a big surprise: More than a quarter of the enterprises surveyed hadn’t built, customized or virtualized any mobile applications. Gartner’s analysis: “The high percentage of enterprises that are not developing mobile apps indicates that enterprises’ responses to the increasing demand for mobile apps are progressing slowly…many IT teams will have significant backlogs of application work that needs completing.” Gartner concludes that as a result of this, “The trend for lines of business to go around IT will continue to increase.” It added, “IT development teams may need to rethink their priorities and/or span of control over the development of mobile apps. Without this, they risk further erosion of IT budgets and the perceived value of the IT development organizations may decline.”

Gartner also found that many enterprise app development groups “pursue mobile apps using the same approach as traditional business app development.” That means trying to “develop applications that span all users and all use cases with as much functionality as they can identify. This results in apps that often have 30 or more screens.” Because of that, organizations have only developed, on average, eight mobile apps.  To speed up app development, Gartner recommends that enterprises should move towards having so-called “citizen developers” in line-of-business organizations develop mobile apps.

The survey found that enterprises increasingly use a combination of in-house and outsourced development, rather than just one or the other. Fifty nine percent of all businesses surveyed use both in-house and outsourced development, 22% use in-house only, and 19% use outsourced only. That 59% is an increase of four percent in the last year.

Gartner also found that bots, chatbots and virtual assistants used in mobile apps isn’t just the future of mobility — they’re already being used. More than half — 52% — of enterprises that have developed mobile apps have done at least some work with bots, chatbots and virtual assistants. Many of the chatbots are customer-facing, but they haven’t been particularly successful. Gartner notes that bots that have been deployed in Facebook Messenger only successfully answer consumer questions 30% of the time.

Finally, the survey found that enterprise spending for mobile apps has lagged behind where it needs to be. It found, “Even though 68% of organizations expect to increase spending for mobile apps, the average proportion of the software budget is still only 11% (up 1% from the average fisscal 2016 budget). For the past few years, respondents have indicated that they will increase their mobile app development budget spend, but, in reality, that spending allocation has decreased, even falling between fiscal 2015 and fiscal 2016 rather than increasing.”

Alpha Anywhere can help enterprises get more out of their mobile budgets. It’s a low-code, rapid mobile app development (RMAD) platform for building mobile apps. It makes it simple for anyone to quickly build mobile apps, whether they’ve never built an app before, or are experienced developers. That makes it easy for IT departments to build more apps in less time and for less cost. And it lets so-called “citizen developers” to develop apps as well.

Alpha Anywhere is one of the most highly rated RMAD tools you can find. InfoWorld awarded it the 2016 Technology of the Year Award for being a top mobile app development leader. It has received the highest number of perfect scores on Gartner’s crowd-sourced review site. Read more about Alpha Anywhere’s RMAD features.