Software development is an ever-evolving field, with new advancements every day. It’s also a rapidly-growing industry with plenty of space for newcomers, both in terms of professionals and products. As the market changes, so do the trends and innovations that shape it.
So it’s only natural to ask “What’s next?” From the expansion of 5G to greater outsourcing of software development, 2020 will be a year packed with new possibilities in the world of technology.
Artificial intelligence (AI)
AI is clearly a force to be reckoned with already. Using concepts like machine learning, in which technology analyzes data and learns to perform tasks out of identified patterns, AI is able to address society’s most pressing matters. From automating processes like software testing to communicating with consumers via digital chatbots to power voice assistance technologies like Alexa and Siri and helping in the diagnosis of several diseases, AI has an abundance of applications.
The AI market is expected to expand exponentially in the coming years. According to Statista, its value will grow to $118.6 billion USD by 2025. This is up from just $9.5 billion in 2018, which clearly shows that AI will keep increasing its presence in our daily lives.
5G’s 20 Gbps high-speed wireless connectivity is set to vastly improve the speed of many functions on mobile devices, including app use and web browsing. The network also brings lower latency and increased bandwidth and means improved security. Together, these qualities indicate a stronger environment for apps and other products.
That’s not all, as 5G increased speeds will be the basis on which the Internet of Things will grow. The new mobile network is essential for the IoT, as this will need a lot of sensors sharing information in real-time to power everything from traffic controllers to smart homes.
5G is already available in some cities, such as New York and Los Angeles, via major carriers, including Sprint, T-Mobile, Verizon, and AT&T.
The technology that made cryptocurrency a reality is growing, with plenty of new applications already in existence and many more on the horizon. This “chain” of interconnected data-contained blocks is considered hyper-secure since alterations are only possible with the approval of the majority of nodes.
Many industries, including finance and retail, rely on it for safe transactions. Plus, these transactions can occur quickly since they don’t require a third party to process them. What Gartner calls “practical blockchain” will be fully available by 2023. According to their survey, 60% of CIOs foresee using blockchain.
An interconnected network facilitating the ability to power one device from another, often remotely, the Internet of Things is growing in use at a rapid rate. In 2020, even more businesses and consumers will rely on it to power smart homes, improve security measures, develop wearable technology, design smart cities, and more. For example, you’ll use it to open your home’s windes remotely from your smartphone thanks to the IoT.
As mentioned above, 5G will play a role in the expansion of the IoT thanks to its ultra-fast speed and enhanced performance measures.
Progressive web apps
Progressive web apps run on a browser but maintain the functions of a regular app. However, because they require no storage space and have faster loading times than native apps, they will be much more ubiquitous in the coming year. Moreover, software development can happen much more quickly with progressive web apps than native apps, meaning companies can launch their products sooner than they might with the alternative.
Cloud computing is all the rage right now, but according to some, edge computing offers even more advantages. Unlike cloud computing, it uses centrally-managed storage centers closer to home — right at or by the original source — whereas the cloud consists of many different data storage centers. This means greater security, faster speeds, and increased bandwidth, among other perks.
An example of a product that should and often does rely on edge computing is the self-driving vehicle. It must be managed centrally because it requires frequent time-sensitive manufacturer updates and processing. Edge computing is also important for areas when there is lower connectivity to centralized locations, such as remote locations. These are just some of the factors contributing to its rapid expansion.
Outsourcing software developers
With so many complexities and innovations in technology, it’s no wonder many businesses are seeking specialized talent outside of their organizations. Outsourcing software development has many advantages, from the aforementioned expertise to lower costs. Tapping into this trend, businesses can leverage the experience of developers around the world. The gig economy is already a huge market, and we’ll see this trend grow even more in the coming year.
Software development is a booming business with no intention of slowing down any time soon. 2020 will bring new opportunities, products, processes, and innovations, as well as expand current ones. Giving how rapidly the landscape grows and changes every day, there are possibilities on the horizon we can’t even foresee.