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STAMFORD, Conn., April 4, 2019

Gartner Says the Future of App Development Is Multiexperience

Mobile Apps Are Projected to Have the Most Impact on Business Success By 2020

As user application touchpoints increase in frequency, change in modalities and expand in device type, the future of app development is multiexperience, according to a recent survey* by Gartner, Inc.

“Development platform vendors are expanding their value proposition beyond mobile apps and web development to meet user and industry demands,” said Jason Wong, research vice president at Gartner. “The result is the emergence of multiexperience development platforms, which are used in developing chat, voice, augmented reality (AR) and wearable experiences in support of the digital business.”

Most Common Enterprise Applications

Despite the web browser continuing to serve as the most popular application touchpoint, mobile apps are on the rise. As immersive devices such as smartwatches, smartphones and voice-driven devices permeate the industry, the modes of interaction (type, touch, gestures, natural language) expand across the digital user journey.

Among enterprises that have developed and deployed at least three different types of applications (other than web apps), the most common are mobile apps (91 percent). “These figures are higher than any other application types we asked about, and suggest that the maturity of mobile app development is necessary for expansion into other interaction modalities,” said Mr. Wong.

Conversational applications are the second-most widely developed type of application type at 73 percent for voice apps and 60 percent for chatbots, according to the survey. “This reflects the natural evolution of application functions to support the digital user journey across natural language-driven modes and devices,” said Mr. Wong.

Technology Behind Multiexperience Development

Cloud-hosted artificial intelligence (AI) services are the most widely used technology to support multiexperience application development (61 percent of respondents), followed by native iOS and Android development (48 percent) and mobile back-end services (45 percent). “This is consistent with the rise of conversational user interfaces, image and voice recognition and other AI services that are becoming commonplace within apps,” said Mr. Wong.

Business Impact Behind Multiexperience Development

Contrary to the perception that mobile apps are in decline, they are in the lead for applications projected to have the most impact on business success by 2020, according to respondents. Following mobile apps are virtual reality (VR) applications and AR applications. “Although respondents indicated a high level of development activity for chatbots and voice apps, very few thought they’d have the most business impact by 2020,” said Mr. Wong.

Barriers in Developing Multiexperience Development

The top barrier to building compelling multiexperience applications is the need for business and IT alignment, according to nearly 40 percent of survey respondents. More than one-quarter of the respondents identified shortcomings in developer skills and user experience expertise as a barrier. “Skills gap in relation to emerging technologies cannot be overstated when discussing inhibitors to scaling digital initiatives, including multiexperience development strategy,” said Mr. Wong.

Gartner clients can read more in the report: “Survey Analysis: Insights to Kick-Start an Enterprise Multiexperience Development Strategy.” More information on the demand for application services can be found in the Gartner Featured Insight research collection “How to Prepare for the Future of Applications.”  This research highlights insights and best practices on how future application organizations can exploit new delivery, governance and organization models.

About Gartner IT Symposium/Xpos
Learn more about CIO leadership and how to drive digital innovation to the core of your business at Gartner IT Symposium/Xpo 2019. Follow news and updates from the events on Twitter using #GartnerSYM.

Upcoming dates and locations for the 2019 Gartner IT Symposium/Xpo include:

June 3-6: Toronto, Canada

September 16-18: Cape Town, South Africa

October 20-24: Orlando, Florida

October 28-31: Sao Paulo, Brazil

October 28-31: Gold Coast, Australia

November 3-7: Barcelona, Spain

*For Editors

Results presented are based on a Gartner study conducted June 2018 through September 2018. The research was conducted online among 278 respondents in six countries: the United States, the United Kingdom, Germany, the Netherlands, Australia, India and China. Participating organizations were required to have had developed and deployed at least three different types of applications in pilot or production environments and use internal teams for mulitexperience development work.

About Gartner

Gartner, Inc. (NYSE: IT), is the world’s leading research and advisory company and a member of the S&P 500. We equip business leaders with indispensable insights, advice and tools to achieve their mission-critical priorities today and build the successful organizations of tomorrow.

Our unmatched combination of expert-led, practitioner-sourced and data-driven research steers clients toward the right decisions on the issues that matter most. We are a trusted advisor and objective resource for more than 15,000 organizations in more than 100 countries — across all major functions, in every industry and enterprise size.

To learn more about how we help decision makers fuel the future of business, visit gartner.com.

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