As we close on CES, it's worthwhile to take a look ahead at what 2016 is going to mean for mobile and web development as well as for the larger tech space as a whole. Nobody can effectively predict the future, but based on some trends and by making some inferences regarding what will be important this year. Given the information we currently have, we think the following will be the major areas of focus this year: iOS app development will attempt to pivot toward a more professional market, automotive integration of mobile technology, containerization will continue to grow in adoption and become the de-facto way to deploy web and micro-services.
Apple's release of the iPad Pro has opened the door for professional grade desktop class apps for iOS. This trend will also be helped by Apple's partnership with IBM. The main issue currently with developing large-scale professional grade apps is monetization, since the larger investment required to develop such software will make the current AppStore pricing more unsustainable than it already is. Apple will have to find some way (possibly by adding upgrade pricing or featuring 'Pro apps' in their own section of the AppStore) to put a reasonable floor under the average price for those apps. If the pricing problem can be addressed, then we'll likely see a fertile market for professional software on iOS with the iPad Pro leading the charge.
Cars were a big deal at CES and for good reason. Apple's CarPlay and Google's Android Auto are making inroads with many of the major car manufacturers, creating a great opportunity to develop mobile apps that integrate with the user's vehicle to provide safe and enjoyable experiences while on the road. As more CarPlay / Android Auto enabled vehicles make it onto the open road, savvy app developers and publishers should look for opportunities to differentiate their apps from their competitors' by integrating with this car systems.
Docker and containerization in general are continuing to grow and in 2016 will become the best practice for server-side software deployment and a great way to avoid PAAS vendor lock-in. As the space heats up, we'll likely see more PAAS vendors jump on the bandwagon and tout support Docker and other containerization solutions as a top line feature.
2016 is going to be a great year to take advantage of some of these emerging trends and get the jump on your competitors. Follow us on Twitter for more insights like this one and fill out the contact form on this page to get your development project off the ground!