IoT Application Development Trends 2021: 7 Expert Predictions

20 January 2021

IoT is now a buzzword in most industries, including retail, manufacturing, travel, and even construction. According to Gartner, there were 20.8 billion connected IoT devices in 2020, with the number guaranteed to increase substantially through 2023.

IoT Application Development Trends 2021: 7 Expert Predictions

A key advantage of this interconnection of devices is that data autonomously flows through all the connected devices. As a result, we can have connected home systems, driverless cars, automated street lights, and other advanced technologies. IoT also makes robot refrigerators, smart supply chains, and smart learning possible.

The accelerated growth of IoT has substantially impacted app development. Developers are now more focused on creating apps that support the interconnectivity of devices. This is partly why technologies such as cross-platform development are currently very popular. Developers want to build apps that aren’t platform restricted.

The surge in IoT has not only revolutionized the landscape of interconnected devices but has also spurred a paradigm shift in app development strategies. With a focus on facilitating seamless device integration and interoperability, developers are increasingly gravitating towards the concept of super apps. These apps serve as comprehensive platforms that amalgamate a myriad of functionalities and services within a single interface. For instance, Uber, initially recognized for its ride-hailing service, has expanded its offerings to include food delivery, package delivery, and even financial services through its app. Similarly, WeChat, a dominant force in the Chinese market, integrates messaging, social networking, mobile payments, and numerous other services within its platform. By harnessing the power of super apps, businesses can capitalize on the burgeoning demand for unified digital experiences, offering customers unparalleled convenience and efficiency.

2021 IoT App Development Trends

We’ll see even more similar app development trends in the coming year (2021) as IoT takes a firmer grip on our everyday lives. Some of the predicted trends include;

  • IoT apps to merge with AI, ML, and Big Data

This isn’t a new trend per se. More apps entering the market are now designed to merge with artificial intelligence or Big Data. However, we’ll see even more of the trend in 2021. AI’s role in all of this is to help process the enormous volumes of data collected by the billions of interconnected IoT devices. Meanwhile, Big Data is necessary to capture and store the data. Machine Learning is vital in helping machines understand human activities.

Together, the three technologies complement and may even help power the next phase of the IoT revolution. The intersection of the four technologies allows developers to automate (thus simplify) routine tasks while providing better consumer services.

  • The Internet of Things Meets Blockchain

Blockchain is another technology predicted to have a massive impact on our daily lives in the future. Primarily designed to provide safe digital transactions without intermediaries such as 사설 토토사이트, blockchain already has applications in the finance industry and logistics and supply chains. It’s also finding a way into other sectors, including health, education, and others.

2021 could be the year this innovative technology finally meets the Internet of Things. Blockchain can increase security for IoT devices, ensuring more trust for apps among consumers. It can also help decentralize government and financial institutions, which could go a long way in reducing IoT transaction costs.

  • From cloud computing to edge computing 

Cloud computing has made huge strides in the past few years. It’s cost-effective, reliable, and inherently secure. It’s is also very accessible, even to users at the lower levels. Unfortunately, the way the traditional cloud network is designed also creates some limitations. The distance between storage locations and the end-users is especially a major downside. Some cloud servers are located millions of miles away from the user, causing latency and security challenges.

A new technology that solves this problem, and which couldn’t have come at a better time, is edge computing. With edge computing, data is stored and retrieved from the edge (server) closest to the user to eliminate latency and potential security challenges.

  • Roaring popularity of smart home devices

When the first smart home devices arrived, many people mocked them, calling them unrealistic toys meant for lazy people. Fast forward to today, and nearly every home has a smart home device. App-controlled intelligent home security and control systems alone are expected to hit 409 million (in number) by 2025.

Expect the adoption of these devices to skyrocket in 2021 and the next few years after. The reason for the sharp increase in the popularity of these devices is that they have become very intuitive and innovative. A modest, smart home app, for instance, is now the definition of convenience, capable of controlling most digital appliances and devices in the home as long as you’re within range.

  • The impact of IoT on healthcare 

Although IoT will impact pretty much every industry, many experts believe that healthcare is where we could see the biggest impact in the short term. Most healthcare institutions are already using mobile applications, including text, calls, social media, and others, to contact clients and reach out to new clients. This trend could explode in the coming few years.

For example, expect more people to wear wearable devices in 2021. Hospitals can quickly retrieve critical data from these wearable devices for patient treatment. Remote health, also popular as telehealth, is another trend that will kick on proper in 2021, allowing doctors to treat patients from a distance.

  • The Internet of Things in Retail 

Aside from healthcare, IoT is also predicted to have a massive impact on the retail industry. Thanks to IoT, consumers are already able to compare prices on their mobile devices before they head out shopping. Consumers can also find out who is open, find out discounts, and even read insightful reviews before making the purchase decision.

However, this is just the beginning. In 2021, we’ll see smart shelves for inventory and supply chain management, AI-powered checkouts without cashiers (Amazon just recently rolled out their cashier-free checkout systems), and advanced digital signage for integrative shopping experiences, to name just a few.

  • IoT for predictive maintenance 

Finally, 2021 is also the year we’re likely to experience predictive maintenance. Predictive maintenance is a machine maintenance approach that relies on data analysis tools and techniques to detect anomalies in your operations and possible defects in your processes and equipment so that you can fix these issues before they result in costly failure. It’s the opposite of reactive maintenance that involves making repairs after a failure occurs.

Real-time monitoring apps allow you to track your assets’ performance and condition and analyze the data against pre-defined benchmarks. If discrepancies are identified between the machines and processes’ existing and benchmark conditions, you can fix the issue before there’s a costly failure.

Wrap Up

Despite its growing importance, IoT remains a relatively new subject for many organizations and may present a few challenges even to experienced companies. If you’d wish to learn more about the topic and perhaps even prepare your organization for what’s next, contact NIX Solutions.