Emerging Mobile App Development Trends for 2018

mobile app development trends 2018 February - 22

There are some exciting emerging mobile app development trends for 2018

As we near the end of 2017, it is time to focus on what we see emerging on the horizon in the area of mobile app development.  While many new technologies are gaining in popularity such as Blockchain, cryptocurrencies and artificial intelligence, we find that demand for mobile app development is in no way decreasing.  In fact, we notice that it is fact increasing, in part, as a result of these technologies.

We have been focusing on mobile app development since 2009.   It currently accounts for around 70% of our business.  As a result, we see many different types of mobile app development projects come across our desks.

This list of emerging mobile development trends is our own and is in no particular order:

Artificial intelligence

Artificial intelligence is software that can learn and process information along the same lines as human beings.  While still very much in the early stages, the AI projects we are seeing are pretty basic incorporating natural language processing (NLP).  However, we can see the complexity of these types of projects increasing in the near future.

In our minds, artificial intelligence (AI) is one of those technologies that has the potential to dramatically redefine the social and economic landscape.  We would say the same about blockchain technologies.

AI integration into mobile apps is an expensive endeavor.  As a result, it is mainly large enterprise clients taking on mobile apps incorporating artificial intelligence.

In 2018, it looks like things may be changing.  It was just this year that Apple started allowing developers to integrate Siri into their applications.  We see smaller to medium sized companies looking to integrate the software and several other related technologies into their projects.

Augmented reality

Augmented reality is the integration of digital information with the user’s environment.   Real-world experiences are enhanced by computer-generated sensory inputs such as sound, video graphics, haptics (communication recreating the sense of touch) or GPS data to modify a user’s reality.

Originally incorporated into online games, augmented reality has attracted the attention of businesses of all sizes for knowledge sharing, education, and business applications.  As interest increases, use cases of mobile apps incorporating augmented reality will also increase.  We are already seeing this in not only large companies, but small ones as well.


Many people think that Blockchain is all about Bitcoin.  This is only part of the story as blockchain is a new technology that is based on several mature technologies including peer-to-peer computing, distributed ledgers, cryptography and computer science.

Blockchain technologies are revolutionary in that they enable the automation of integrity and trust in digital transactions.   While many think that it has the potential to redefine the financial services industry, it can be applied to many other industries where an intermediary is at the center the value chain. This includes such industries as entertainment, logistics, retail, and finance.

Many of the projects we see pertaining to blockchain technologies at this point are digital wallets and the like.  These are primarily used to facilitate cryptocurrency-based transactions.  However, we expect this to change as new use cases emerge and the technology matures.

Like with AI, we believe that this technology is very much in its infancy.  As a result, we have a long ways to go before we see widespread adoption.  As the technology matures, we expect development costs to decrease as new tools and more efficient ways of doing things emerge.

While Blockchain technologies that we are seeing pertain to cryptocurrencies, I should add that there are a large number of exciting projects just focusing on blockchain. The sponsors undertaking these projects are large industry consortiums, large banks, and multinational corporations.

The results are pretty amazing as well. A demonstration project for equity derivatives just completed a six month test and passed 100% of the benchmarks defined at the inception of the project.


A bot, also known as a web robot is a software application that runs automated tasks (scripts) over the Internet.  They typically perform tasks that are both simple and structurally repetitive.  The most well-known examples of a bot is the software that Google uses to crawl the Internet to gather content that is used in their search results.  They are also increasingly being used in to build chatbots, software that can communicate much as humans do, often to answer commonly asked questions and the like.

Bots enable companies to optimize their business processes, increasing productivity and decreasing costs.  These same tasks extend to mobile applications as well.  Bot-based mobile app development projects include customer service and support solutions.

Cloud-based applications

Prior to cloud computing, people would sometimes have to download large and bulky files to get the software they wanted.  Cloud-based applications have redefined the way software applications are designed and built.

Cloud-based computing relocates the data and logic layers of applications from the application itself to ‘the cloud’ or the Internet where the calculations are performed.  As a result, a user stores a small application on their mobile device or desktop computer rather than a large one making for a more efficient user experience.

E-Commerce and m-commerce

As more mobile applications incorporate the ability to process transactions and new payment technologies emerge, demand for ecommerce and m-commerce mobile app development will continue to increase. Existing mobile applications are integrating new payment technologies such as cryptocurrency wallets and new mobile banking functionality while entirely new mobile applications are being built around these technologies.


The integration of gaming technology into mobile apps has been around for a long time.  However, new games and the underlying technologies change very rapidly.  As a result, mobile app development for gaming will remain popular going into 2018.

Internet of Things (IOT)

While communication over the Internet was previously between human beings, communication between humans and machines and machine to machine is increasing very rapidly.  The Internet of Things (IoT) is the network of physical devices, vehicles, home appliances and other items embedded with electronics, software, actuators and network connectivity that enable these objects to connect and exchange data.

IoT is growing very rapidly in size and popularity.  Experts estimate that it will consist of about 30 billion objects by 2020.  IoT allows objects to be sensed or controlled remotely across network infrastructure.  It is this integration into mobile apps that is driving interest in individuals and businesses and organizations of all sizes.

A very wide range of data is collected through sensors that will soon be made available through mobile apps.  Use cases for IoT integrated into mobile devices includes medical, industrial, governmental and consumer applications.

Security and protection

Changing mobile app publisher requirements, new technologies and the increasing sophistication of hackers is creating an increase in additional security and protection in mobile apps.  Apple’s new IPhone X introduced new security features into mobile devices that are likely to be adopted by other mobile device manufacturers.  When the mobile app platforms (Apple and Android) introduce new technologies, existing apps often incorporate them increasing demand for mobile app development.

Blockchain technologies present a new, very secure way of doing business.  As a result, it can also be expected to increase demand for mobile app development services.  However, this demand is likely to materialize beyond 2018. Much of this type of development will consist of incorporating new ways of doing things as well as replacing obsolete and outdating processes.

O Clock Software mobile app development services

While it is new technologies that are in part driving demand for mobile app development services, there are a slew of technologies on this list that have been around for a long time.  It is with these more mature technologies that we thrive.

O Clock Software has been building mobile apps since 2009.  Our mobile app development expertise includes:

  • Ecommerce and Mcommerce apps
  • Payment apps
  • Social media apps
  • Business apps
  • Cloud-based apps

Before taking on new technologies, we run several internal demonstrator projects to test the development process and technology. We do this because our business is built on providing great service and predictable results. As a result, we need to be absolutely sure we can deliver a project before we take it on.

Visit our portfolio to see a small sampling of mobile app development projects we have completed.  We hope you enjoyed emerging mobile app development trends for 2018.


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