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Top Mobile App Development trends that will dominate 2018

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Top-Mobile-App-Development-trends-that-will-dominate-2018

2018 is here and how we wish we could tell you we have invented hoverboards, flying cars and robots to assist us with almost everything, like that in Back to the Future…… because we have not. But then what is relieving, and probably resurrecting for the geek class, is that we have unlocked the doors to the kind of future we have always been fascinated about, and we are almost there. How did that happen? Say hello to the augmented and fortified potential of mobile app development industry with bigger and better technologies. Although there still are many basic utility mobile apps that have been around us for a noticeable while because they are simply great in what they offer, the kind of real, concept and prototype apps we have seen in the late second half of the decade have had most of us wondering how we moved so fast. And at present, we have some great prospects in the world of mobile apps.

You must have heard, at least a hundred times, that “The future is smart”, but did you ever give a thought how that is going to happen? Are we going to witness some turnaround or probably some capsule that inflates into smart devices? Well, none of that is going to happen, because everything smart that we are going to experience in future, is going to come through the channels of something that is always with us, and is capable of connecting and integrating to other smart technologies living among us. By now, you probably have an idea that the ‘something’ we are talking about, is none other than our smartphones, and in 2018, these are the trends that will make smartphones, smarter than ever:

Internet of Things

Connectivity is what has brought mankind to where it stands today, and at the heart of it, sits communication. Isn’t that simple? Well, travelling through a complicated course of time and technological advancements including the digital ones, we have sort of returned to a more modified version of our roots i.e communications, with the concept of IoT. There have misconceptions about IoT, with some stating that it has something to do with automation, and some even spooked about how IoT is going to be the green signal for the robotic age. Although it is quite true that the robots will use the technology to collect data and upgrade their ever-evolving database to serve us better, IoT is a simple network that unifies different elements that surround us, through sensors and actuators. Implementations of IoT have already begun in most of the sectors; some of the major users of the users belonging from logistics, banking, manufacturing and a few more. The results that have been derived till now are quite productive, and indicate that we need more of a handy, 24/7 accessible and portable solution, which is more or less a mobile app. And as the need has been recognized, 2018 is going to see remarkable work in the field of IoT.

Car Infotainment Solutions

Who doesn’t love a car, especially when the car is more than just a steering wheel and a set of obsolete levers? Imagine how easy it could be for you if you knew directions to any place just like you know directions to your home. Or your car could read the pattern in the kind of music you hear to sense your mood and automatically suggest music. Well, that is actually happening.

Mobile app developers figured out the need to amp up the infotainment systems, since connectivity has become more than available. As a result, we have app distribution systems seeing new mobile apps for car infotainment systems that enable the user to do much more than just change music. Some of the major releases in the drive-assist segment are Android Auto, Automate and Drivemode that provide user with drive assistance to avoid jam-packed streets, find shortcuts, locate points of interest, control music, check real-time traffic updates and much more. For enhanced safety, these apps have made sure they include voice controls, so that you won’t let go of the steering wheel, or even some awkwardly placed steering-mounted controls. By far, from what Android Auto has delivered, the users, especially the cab drive partners, have shown a big thumbs up to these apps, following which, we are set to see developers working upon this, as at present, only few such apps exist.

Blockchain Solutions

Blockchain Solutions

People have long had a myth that is blockchain is a technology from some other world, and need specific, dedicated tools for its solutions to be developed. While that is partially true as a blockchain developer needs to understand the underlying concept of blockchain and basically how it works, the only thing that make blockchain solutions different is their integration with a distributed ledger based on a peer-to-peer structure, and even that may not necessarily be true in case of solutions build ‘around’ blockchain, and not on it. If you are also one of those who thought blockchain solutions would have a different interface than regular apps, or even a separate distribution network, you couldn’t be more wrong as many of the blockchain based apps are already available on Google Play Store and App Store. However, as there are more number of developers aware of the fact that blockchain is not a hoax, and has immense potential in offering worthwhile utilities, we are well on our way to finding more number of blockchain solutions in our native mobile app distribution platforms.

Instant Apps

Android has always had this one big issue of disk space running out, which results in slowing down of phone. Developers have been quite progressive about developing and integrating new technologies with mobile platform, but haven’t been successful in tackling the storage issues, until instant apps were invented. With instant apps, one can enjoy the same great android interface, without sacrificing disk space, as instant apps are temporary. They install on your phone right when you need them and leave it as soon you want them to. Other than Oreo Go and Go Apps, Instant Apps are also one of the most promising android solutions for low-end and entry level smartphones. In future, as Google plans to expand to untouched regions, low cost and less hardware-intensive options like Instant Apps, are going to sit at the core of enterprises’ strategies.

Previous year has laid a progressive path to follow for 2018, by welcoming a number of progressions in the world of technology. A reflection of which we have already seen in CES 2018. Apart from technology, what we can predict about upcoming years is that prominent enterprises like Google backing up the products of blockchain and personalized services, means we are actually moving towards a customer-centric approach.

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Simplistic Business Communication with WhatsApp Business

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WhatsApp is incontrovertibly one of the most popular mobile apps ever made. The entry of WhatsApp into mobile space was no less than a revolution as it totally wiped out the SMS culture from the face of earth. The second revolution it brought in was easy & embedded video calling, which enabled WhatsApp users to make video calls from the same application. This consolidated solution offered by WhatsApp also proved to be quite popular, and ripped a big share off the revenue charts of Skype and Google Hangouts. And now, with a new revolutionary app that provides business communication to entrepreneurs running businesses of any scale, with special focus on SMEs, WhatsApp has surfaced the third revolution, which it likes to call ‘WhatsApp Business’.

There is no doubt that this is a clear reply from Facebook to Google’s arsenal of digital marketing tools, which have long helped businesses around the world track their progress and grow in a streamlined manner. Facebook’s decision to take takeover WhatsApp in 2014 has shown Mr. Zuckerberg’s knack for making great business decisions, and this one truly paid off. How? Allow us to explain.

Facebook is a great tool to connect with the world. The way it has redefined meeting new people is just amazing. But then, is it that easy for a layman to operate Facebook? The stats say ‘not really’. Also, for a layman, Facebook may not be a very productive tool from a business point of view, as most of its productivity lies in the digital marketing side of the platform, which is too complex to understand for a commoner. So, in order to tap maximum number of people from across the globe, Facebook chose WhatsApp to be used as a business communication tool for the simple reason that WhatsApp is easy to operate and being used by people from all age groups, class, and profession. In simpler words, WhatsApp has always had that ‘generic’ reach among the masses, with a huge potential to be used in marketing spheres that largely rely on basic communication among its nodes, customers, and vendors. The result of a series of such realizations is the launch of WhatsApp Business, which is now available exclusively on Google Play Store.

WhatsApp Business is simply great, and its greatness is backed by the way it focuses on small businesses to help them save a lot of money on vague communication tools that don’t really do much. However, because WhatsApp Business aims to cater to SMEs largely, it is more of a basic tool. So let’s take a look on what team WhatsApp has done differently with their recent tool that people, especially entrepreneurs, have huge expectations with.

Interface & Experience

Now some of the users have complained, in the Play Store review section, of the same regular interface that is there on WhatsApp Messenger. But then they are missing a very important logic here; the point of keeping the interface just about the same is to retain the simplicity and what the world accepted WhatsApp for, back in 2009. Same goes for WhatsApp Business; everything from chat window to account settings has an easy flow, and a very comprehensive interface. In terms of look & feel, WhatsApp Business has included all the components from regular WhatsApp Messenger, and introduced a few more things like Business Profile, Automated Messages, Quick Replies and more. The app, all in all, has the same UX design.

Features:

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Although one can hardly say if the app is different from its regular messenger version just by its outlook, WhatsApp Business has a number of features that can help businesses big time by establishing an always-ON communication system for their customers, some of the best ones among which are:

Business Profile

Business Profile is meant exactly what it literally means – a profile for your business that says everything about your business such as brand logo, title, business address, business category, business hours, email address, and website. To make it easier for customers to find your business address, WhatsApp Business comes with Google Maps integration for pinpoint precision. In the business category section, you can find almost all the important categories, and in case your isn’t there, just choose ‘Other’ from the list, and type it in. And because a business may have another website, and WhatsApp understands that, you can add another website in your business profile. However, adding a maximum of two websites is the limit here, which we expect WhatsApp to lift soon. In our opinion, Business Profile is the best free tools available in the market that lets you maintain a neat presence among your customers. Although the app is not meant to increase your reach, Facebook is already there to serve that purpose, which sort of completes a pre and post sales toolset.

Quick Replies

When you are managing a small business, you find that there are many things that are repetitive, and take a chunk of your time that you could have used otherwise. Well, WhatsApp Business addresses at least one of those issues, by allowing you to save generic and commonly used replies that a business owner would make to their customers. So basically, with Quick Replies, you can create of list of saved replies and even assign shortcuts to them. Let us understand this with an example. Suppose you send a generic reply like “It was a pleasure serving you. Please come back again” every time you serve a customer. Sending the same reply again and again to different customers would be sheer waste of time if, let’s assume, you serve a large number of customers in a day. So instead of this you just create a quick reply for this sentence and create a shortcut, something like like ‘/s’ for the same, which you can find inside the same section.

Greeting Message

Greeting your customers is a must, but don’t you think greeting a hundred customers in a day would be too hectic? Well, WhatsApp Business came up with a very simple, but uber-effective solution for this – an automated reply! Just set a greeting message that is sent automatically when a new customer pings you for the first time or after 14 days of no activity. Simple, right?

Away Message

The concept of an away message is also pretty simple; let your customers know when you are not available for service. This feature has two types of utilities: send a message to your customers every time you are away, or schedule a message whenever your working hours are over for the day. An away message as well is customizable and can be scheduled to whatever time.

So these are some of the features in the WhatsApp Business that make it easy for a small business to interact with its customers in more of an automated way. Apart from these, the app has all the basic features of the original WhatsApp, such as WhatsApp Web, Status updates, End-to-End encryption, Regular Chats and much more. But the launch of WhatsApp has left us with two contrary questions: Will the small business space accept the elementary nature of WhatsApp Business in business communication just like the world accepted the simplicity in its messenger, or will the team have to make significant changes to augment the app with a very technical interface, which just might feel more native to niche.

Need an app to communicate better with your customers? Harness the expertise of FuGenX Technologies – world’s leading mobile app development company – to grow your small business. To get in touch, reach us out by filling this form or simply drop a mail at info@fugenx.com.