Journey of Application Development from Niche to NecessaryShaistha Farheen
“It would be a little like a record store, where software would be downloaded over phone lines.” Right before the launch of the Macintosh in 1983, Steve Jobs explained what we call today as the Apple Store.
From 1983 to Today
Everybody today loves and owns a smartphone or two of their own. Whether it is for personal use or using your smartphones for businesses, communication and technology have come a long way in the last two decades or so. From popular mobile games to hiring cabs to keeping track of fitness users are equipped with smarter and better running applications. Let us first understand what exactly mobile application development curtails. It is the process by which application software is developed for mobile devices. Mobile applications have the ability to attract a large number of users towards them and thanks to internet and related technologies more and more people have now started using mobile apps and smartphones. Especially in the last decade, the world has seen phenomenal growth in the mobile app industry.
Going back in time will help you recollect some of the Java games, the calculator and several others that came with the mobile handset. The first smartphone was developed in the year 1993 by IBM that came with 10 applications such as the world clock, calculator, contact book and calendar. The smartphone did not have a Play store, but these applications were already preloaded. These weren’t called as apps then, they were merely features that increased excitement among users. Though the phone was an excellent achievement, the real milestone in the world of communication was achieved in 2002 by Blackberry which introduced the concept of wireless mail. A decade ago, mobile apps were not fancy but they were quite useful. One can go to the extent of calling the pre-loaded features on those phones as the ancestors of our fancy smartphone apps today.
The Change in Dynamics
In June 2007, Apple changed the dynamics of the mobile industry by launching the first ever iPhone. The launch of the iPhone saw that the phone came with several pre-loaded features as maps, text messages, photos, weather etc. Somewhere close to the launch of iPhone 3G, Apple announced that it would support third party applications using the Safari engine on the Apple device. Followed by this, in 2008, Apple’s App Store was launched and on the launch day it featured close to 500 apps. This was Apple’s first attempt to let the developers reach every single iPhone user through the app store. Today, Apple’s app store is growing by 1000+ apps a day.
In 2010, “App” became the word of the year. Apps had become quite a rage and in 2012, Google followed the suit and launched Google Play. It completely rebranded Android Market, Google Music, Google books into one single marketplace. Soon, apps became a part of all our devices and gadgets which was followed by its entry to bigger screens. By 2015, apps had begun to make people millionaires thanks to ads and in-app purchases.
So, What Makes Apps so Popular?
The current influx has not only resulted in an increase in the sales of iPhones and smartphones but also a tremendous growth in the development of mobile applications. Smartphone apps bring with them an excellent opportunity to attract and engage existing and potential customers. They also help provide businesses and enterprises a much needed visibility because of the benefits extended by the mobile applications. Some of the benefits are building brand visibility and customer loyalty, achieving consumer insights by tracking the businesses success rates. One of the biggest benefits the increase in sales; by informing customers about their products and services, businesses increase revenue generation.
Of all the milestones achieved, today there are close to 19 billion software developers across the world and the number is predicted to reach a whopping 25 billion by 2020.Technology is constantly evolving, and apps are no exception. A look at how mobile application development tells us how far technology has gotten with respect to customer experiences. Mobile application development involves a combination of various technologies and innovative techniques