APP ILLUMINATION Garry Partington, guru of all things mobile and founder of Apadmi and RealityMine, explains why 2014 is the year where apps get serious.
The Apple App Store celebrated its fifth birthday in 2013. In tech years (like dog years, one tech year is equal to seven human years,) this means that apps have grown up, and are even permeating the big bad business world.
In the next 12 months the apps space is going to heat up considerably as the market enters a mature phase in terms of adoption, with innovative technologies driving innovative execution and new ways for businesses to connect with customers.
Year of the enterprise app2014 is going to be the year of the enterprise app, where mainstream mobile working moves beyond simply logging into web mail or using Skype and Dropbox. We have already seen this at Apadmi, where the share of apps commissioned for business use has grown considerably.
We are delivering customised apps that manage workflow, enable content sharing, facilitate fast trading at financial institutions and consolidate disparate data from across organisations into dashboard views that track and manage KPIs.
Everyone is 'getting in on the app', from marketing teams looking to present and disseminate information to internal and external stakeholders, ops who want to work more efficiently and even finance functions keen to track cost and performance.
BYOD gets seriousThis year we can expect to see more control over what mobile devices are used for in the workplace, as BYOD matures and businesses recognise that mobile strategies need more management and better policy setting to secure data. This will mean that the promises of more efficient ways of working are finally realised, rather than employees enjoying a device and application 'free for all'.
Again, apps are driving a lot of capability in this space, either managing the programmes themselves, or exploiting BYOD schemes through new applications that enable better ways of mobile working.
Big data gets personalSurveillance is not just the domain of governments around the world. 2014 will also see developed mobile strategies that consider how people use their devices, and how this granular data can be exploited to build products and experiences that connect businesses in meaningful ways with their customers.
Consumer apps will be at the forefront of a 2014 trend in personalisation, with data gathering and analysis at the heart of establishing one to one customer dialogue, and responsive applications that provide fast and intelligent interaction.
Augmented reality needs to get realAugmented reality (AR) has so much potential and there are a lot of great usage cases out there, but the costs of execution are high and platforms are not always open to developers. I think that this may start to change in 2014 and I would like to see the main players open up their doors to developers. This will increase the adoption of AR beyond the remit of the big brands, bringing a wider base of customers to this form of technology.
Health kickFinally, the health sector is starting to see the benefits of adopting a range of new technologies. It has been a bit of a slow starter in terms of adoption, as there are obviously massive issues around working with technologies and partners who can be trusted with sensitive data and critical processes. However, the tech industry is adapting to this sector's needs and has started to build trust, experience and sector specific capability.
2014 will see further inroads in this sector, from managing the infrastructure within healthcare environments, to developing applications that support initiatives like remote diagnostics and the better management of patient records.
Apadmi delivers and strengthens brand advocacy and engagement by creating robust, reliable and intuitive mobile apps and server solutions.