It is now an accepted reality that we really cannot do without the internet. The fact that you can access and read this from any part of the world is enough proof of how far technology has come.
Most of what is possible today was nothing more than future speculations a mere 10 years ago.
The tech growth pace is frightening at times, and right now, as we speak, there is something new being unveiled. Developers are non-stop around the world to create new solutions and re-invent the ones that already exist to improve things.
Each year there is always something new to impress upon, and 2020 is not the exception to the rule; despite the way the year started out, web developers have been busy.
Before delving into the meat of the matter, here are the top web development trends to follow this year.
- Artificial Intelligence and Chatbots
- Augmented Reality and Virtual Reality
- Motion User Interface
- Push Notifications
- Web Assembly
- Progressive Web Applications
- Cloud Computing
- 5G Connectivity
Artificial Intelligence and Chatbots
It had already been predicted before that by 2020, over 85% of customer interactions will be done through chatbots. This gradual shift away from using humans as chat operators have been many years in the making. The reality is starting to dawn in 2020.
Despite the disruption this is going to cause in the Customer Care market; many businesses view chatbots as one of the major web development trends in 2020. They are embracing it more readily than it was anticipated, and with good reason. Some of the benefits include;
- You will always receive a response round the clock. It will not matter the time of the day or the day of the week. Pulling this off with human beings will require double shifts.
- Although generic, the responses from chatbots are usually very fast. With time, chatbots will be able to respond more intuitively.
- There is a significant reduction in human errors, like wrong responses due to fatigue.
- Chatbots are a good way of collecting data, with customer consent, of course, through sign-ups. You can create a very exhaustive marketing list out of this.
- It saves the company a lot of money that would have gone into employing a team of customer care professionals. To keep a team working 24 hours a day will require more than five staffers.
- It helps your customers get the exact product and service that they want.
The future of AI-driven Chatbots looks bright. Experts agree that it is only a matter of time before it becomes hard to distinguish between humans and chatbots.
Augmented Reality and Virtual Reality
If you are into tech then you have definitely come across AR and VR. Until a decade ago, these technologies were confined to the realms of SCIENCE FICTION. However, they are here with us now and are important web development trends to follow.
2017 was the breakout year for AR and VR, thanks to Pokemon Go and Google Earth.
Since then, the trajectory has been upwards.
The combination of computer-generated simulations and the user’s view of the real-world in 3D continues to generate as much interest in 2020 as it did over five years ago.
It is estimated that by 2021, the cumulative spending on VR/AR services and products will have hit $215 billion. To put that into perspective, just three years ago, in 2017, that figure stood at only $11 billion. If that is not explosive growth, then I do not know what to call it.
Motion User Interface
When the internet was starting out, not much attention was paid to the user interface, the need back then was all about access and that was the standard for a while. That changed when smartphones started becoming prominent.
User interfaces have now grown from the basic use of beautifully designed images and themes to include animations and motion graphics in a bid to make the user experience more wholesome.
Hardware improvements are also being made to keep up motion user interfaces as more websites are switching to it.
The expansion of user interfaces has created more jobs for UI/UX designers around the world, a niche that has grown exponentially in 2020 and is expected to get even bigger in the coming years.
As MOBILE APPS take a bigger role in our lives, the need for businesses to stay in touch with their clients has never been so vital.
Push notifications have become a powerful tool for online marketing and have changed the way people are informed of new products and services.
They have created a non-invasive communication channel between you and your business, and 2020 already sees a significant surge in push notification development.
Some of the benefits of using push notifications include the following:
- It helps you send targeted messages depending on the location, gender, and previous purchases.
- It is an effective way of beating spam filters.
- Reminding your customer constantly about what you offer helps to keep your brand on their mind.
- There is no cost on the customer’s end which e3mans they will be more receptive to hear what you have to offer.
- Push notifications are a timely notification mode for any urgent message you may want to quickly disseminate to your customers on short notice.
However, as much as this is one of the most popular web development trends, you should use push notifications with moderation. They are not a license to bombard people with unsolicited messages.
Web assembly has been a source of positive disruption as far as web development trends go. It has revolutionized gaming and application platforms and made the user experience to be more fun than before.
Some of the intended goals of web assembly include the following:
- Harnessing the full capabilities of the hardware, making it more efficient and portable.
- It enhances web performance by decreasing load times.
- It can be used to integrate existing web platforms.
As expected, there are some downsides to going the web assembly route; A lack of DOM integration, threads, SIMD, and a garbage collector integrator are some of the disadvantages of web assembly.
But as far as the 2020 trends show, this is what people are going to boost their web apps.
Progressive Web Applications
Essentially, progressive web applications are websites that function in the same way as native mobile apps. Businesses adopt HTML 5 with emerging technologies to achieve the two things that are the most vital in the current environment; the wide reach of a website and the accessibility of a mobile app.
There are four key technologies that set PWAs apart from conventional web apps, they are;
- Fast loading times: When the loading speeds are higher, there is less pressure on the servers. The chances of the web app collapsing or crashing while in use decrease significantly.
- Privacy and data integrity: PWAs use the verifiable HTTPS protocol that stops hackers from getting access to your private information through your online browser.
- Offline support: PWAs have a robust offline mode that allows you to browse without an internet connection.
- Home screen access: The home screens have a beautiful UI design and are simple enough for any user to understand.
2020 has seen many businesses switch from using normal websites to using PWAs and this has brought a considerable increase in user engagement. For example, the top e-commerce platform, Flipkart, registered a 70% bump in user interactions after switching to PWA.
Other big names that have also switched to progressive web applications include Uber, Pinterest, Forbes, and Twitter.
Cloud Computing is not a new concept, the ever-increasing need for internal storage reached a point where we have to find new solutions. This has given rise to cloud computing.
Platforms like Google Cloud, Microsoft Azure, and Dropbox have successfully provided cloud storage for years. 2020 has seen many of these platforms try to evolve into providing multi-cloud services and improved versions of hybrid operations.
These developments have brought along the following benefits.
- Backups that shield you from data loss have improved security. Your privacy is less vulnerable to hacking and other data breaches.
- The operational cost has also gone down significantly as there is no need for installation or maintenance of hardware.
- It is easier to access all your files through any device any time you want from any location.
- File transfers are faster and secure.
There has been a decade of diversity that followed the invention of blockchain technology in 2009. countless application of the software across all industries has left an indelible mark, with the biggest presence felt in the financial sector through cryptocurrencies.
Some of the expected changes in blockchain technology in 2020 include the following:
- There is a plan by Facebook to launch its own digital cryptocurrency that will centralize its blockchain network.
- Social media users will be able to store their data more securely with reduced chances of duplication while protecting ownership.
Blockchain technology has a huge untapped potential that the world is yet to experience. Hopefully, with time, more blockchain applications will come into fruition to allow more people and businesses to be roped in. One day the world will have a paperless economy thanks to blockchain technology.
Cybersecurity is a longstanding issue that the world has had so much to say about. However, one thing holds steadfastly true as far as the safety of your privacy and data is concerned; Cybersecurity is the difference between life and death in the technology world. One misstep and everything could go belly-up in seconds.
Living in a world where devices outnumber the people, with most of them connected to the internet using our personal data has its own challenges. This has inspired hackers to increase their attacks since there is more at stake in the modern world.
Getting rid of hackers is almost impossible as they are always evolving as technology moves forward.
Cybersecurity is the last line of defense and that too has to evolve at the same pace for any of us to stand a chance against cybercrime.
The news that CYBERCRIME will be raking in about $6 trillion by 2021 does not bode well for the millions of businesses that operate their business online. There is hope that down the line, in the future, robust cybercrime countermeasures will be available for everyone.
In 2018, South Korea became the first nation on the planet to launch a fifth-generation mobile wireless standard, better known as 5G. Considering how important mobile devices are in our daily lives: We expect more countries to roll out 5G technology before the end of 2020.
Internet speeds are going to be 100 times faster with 5G.
Despite all these benefits, there are still many mysteries and misinformation surrounding 5G that have led to incidences where people have destroyed 5G masts because of unfounded conspiracies.
Web development trends are constantly changing, even as we speak. You should expect more changes between now and the end of the year. Cybersecurity, for instance, is one trend that keeps redefining itself as the solutions that were viable yesterday can be rendered obsolete the next day.
AI-driven Chatbots is another trend worth keeping an eye out for owing to the potential disruption it is about to create in the near future.
Other trends worth mentioning here include browser extensions with better ad blocking capabilities, RAIL (Responsive Animation Idle Load), Single-Page Applications, which help web pages load faster by reducing their load, among many others.
If giving an edge to your business is what you are looking for in 2020, then these trends in web development are what you should be looking at for the foreseeable future.