Top Trends In Software Development

Top Trends in Software Development

When you hear the word “trends,” you probably think of some sort of fashion changes or viral short TikTok videos breathing new life into old, long-forgotten songs. But tendencies – both good and bad – are inherent in any industry and any life aspect. Of course, there are certain trends in software development. As businesses continue their digitalization journey, the global software market keeps growing respectively. Gartner predicts that global IT spending is going to reach about $5.1 trillion in 2024, making an 8% increase from 2023.

Needless to say, to stay ahead in the software dev game, you must be in tune with the latest trends. If you’re not keeping up, you’re history.

What are the key influencers in software development at present?

Things like AI, Agile methodologies, and cloud computing go without saying. But there are a lot more affecting factors than these. Low-code and no-code platforms, quantum computing, and developing software for the Internet of Things make up another decent share of what is highly welcomed now.

For those of you who are relatively new to software engineering, here’s an in-depth look at the software development process so you can understand how things work. In case you are already familiar with the process, it will be helpful to investigate both existing and emerging software development trends.

Before revealing predictions and expectations, it’s important to overview the changes that are currently going on in software development. Things like artificial intelligence and Agile software development are nothing new. By the way, to learn more about the latter, you can read about the key methodologies in software development explained.

The Driving Force of AI and Machine Learning

The implication of artificial intelligence and machine learning in software development is one of the major trends at the moment. With these technologies, developers can create smarter applications packed with the capabilities to think and act more like humans. These are AI and ML that enable an app to understand and respond to natural language (think of ChatGPT), recognize or create images (think of Midjourney or DALL-E), and make complex decisions.

What’s more, such smart apps can learn from data over time and, as such, provide more accurate results. This tech combination is a game-changer in how we develop and use the software as the latter becomes more intelligent and can handle complex tasks with minimal human intervention.

The Rise of DevOps

The development and operations processes used to be isolated not so long ago. The happy marriage of the two, or DevOps, is by far one of the most important ongoing trends in software development. According to a recent Harvard Business Report, around 86% of businesses involved in software engineering find it important to develop and deploy new products at a fast pace. This means they understand the value of DevOps and move in the direction of incorporating this practice and making the most out of it.

In general, DevOps enhances the speed and quality of product releases, ensures timely responsiveness to customer needs, and creates a better collaborative working environment. So it’s here to stay.

Emphasis on Cybersecurity

As more and more people prefer working from home, cybersecurity in software engineering is gaining a greater priority. How are these two connected? Let’s look at IBM’s Cost of a Data Breach report from 2023, for example. It sheds some light on the situation: In 2021, ransomware breaches went up by 41%, and they were a headache to sort out – taking way longer than usual to resolve.

But here’s the thing – with the rapid development of things like deep fake tech and social engineering tricks, it’s no longer enough just to know they exist. This is a wake-up call for companies to weave security into every step of their software development process. Regular checks on user activities are crucial to spot anything fishy, and keeping your team clued in about the latest threats is a must-do.

Let’s shift gears and talk about the up-and-coming trends in software development – the ones that are just beginning to catch the eye of the wider audience.

The Rise of Low-Code and No-Code Platforms

Low-code and no-code (LCNC) is a development approach that helps organizations minimize or even get rid of hand-coding. This means developers can say goodbye to endless coding sessions. Instead, they get to play with intuitive visual interfaces and use pre-built modules, making app assembly faster and much less of a headache.

The LCNC approach enables faster time-to-market, lower development costs, cross-functional productivity, development democratization, alignment with modern architecture, and responsive maintenance, among other benefits. According to market insights from Gartner, it is projected that by 2026, more than 65% of application development activity will be through LCNC methods.

Expansion of Cloud Computing and Serverless Architecture

Here is another trend that has been here since the COVID-19 times and another prediction from Gartner. As you probably guessed, this is a growing demand for cloud services and, consequently, tools to make the transition to the cloud happen.

The pandemic forced many businesses to switch to remote work. This significantly changed IT needs, with cloud computing having become a key player in software development. Gartner anticipates that, by 2028, cloud technology won’t be just a nice-to-have thing but will become a necessity for business operations.

As a response to all these changes, there will be an increasing focus on developing cloud computing expertise, particularly in Software as a Service (SaaS) and Platform as a Service (PaaS). This transition also puts software development into a focus on more cloud-native applications and services, emphasizing the need for skills in managing serverless architectures.

The Integration of the Internet of Things (IoT) in Development

The Internet of Things, or IoT, is about connecting everyday items to the Internet through computer technology to communicate and share data. So, another trend with huge potential is the software development part within IoT, leading to more interconnected and smart applications. Such apps are particularly welcomed in industries like healthcare, manufacturing, and smart homes.

Deloitte’s projections show that global spending on IoT-related software and hardware was expected to reach $1 trillion in 2023 and even more in 2024. This number went up from $726 billion in 2019. Key areas of focus for future IoT software development include enhanced personalization, better data management, and stronger security measures.

Emphasis on Mobile-First Development

There are approximately 7 billion smartphone users in the world, with the prevailing part of all web traffic coming from the mobile segment. This proves that prioritizing mobile compatibility will continue to be a leading trend in software development.

A mobile-first mindset means that you design applications and software focusing on mobile device compatibility as the primary platform. You streamline and optimize content, making it more accessible and engaging on smaller screens. This approach makes sure that each user has a seamless experience from the very beginning, even on their smartphones. Additionally, this method brings such benefits as customer loyalty and retention to the table.

Adoption of Blockchain Technology Beyond Cryptocurrencies

While we are used to seeing blockchain mostly in the cryptocurrency context, it finds new applications beyond that – in the software development industry, in particular.

The fact that 55% of organizations surveyed by Deloitte in 2020 said that they saw blockchain as a top-five strategic priority and started investing more in blockchain technologies says a lot.

There are several reasons why they answered that way, yet the main one is that blockchain-based software systems are reliable and secure. Data safety is guaranteed by its replication and decentralization. Such systems also track transactions and use special cryptography, contributing to protection.

This kind of security is helpful for software development in industries where data protection isn’t just a word. Healthcare, for example. Blockchain systems, for example, can connect different groups like drug companies, hospitals, insurers, and medical device makers.

Software development trends can’t go without being noticed. How exactly do they affect businesses and developers?

Realignment of business strategies

With new software development trends, businesses need to adjust their core strategies to stay afloat. Consider the example of AI adoption: it’s more than just embracing new technology; it involves a strategic integration of AI into the business framework. This might mean re-envisioning how products are developed, enhancing customer service, or boosting operational efficiency. The key for businesses is agility – the ability to continuously evaluate and align their strategies with technological advancements, whether AI, IoT, or cloud computing.

New skill sets of developers

Another influential part of trends is that they are shaping the skill sets required from developers. Aligning with the example from above, expertise in AI and ML technologies is becoming increasingly valuable. Developers need to be well-versed in a range of areas – from data analytics to cybersecurity – to contribute effectively to modern, tech-driven projects. Continuous learning and upskilling are no longer optional – it’s a must.

Future Predictions: Where is Software Development Heading?

To put it simply, the future of software development is anything but static, with technological advancements and social changes shaping the methodologies and processes. Let’s have a quick peek at what’s coming up.

AI automation. Artificial intelligence and automation will keep their upper hand in software engineering. Expect to see AI and automation making development smoother and introducing new capabilities for software solutions.

Focus on ethical development. There will surely be a growing emphasis on practices and ethical considerations in software development. Developers and companies will prioritize eco solutions while being mindful of the implications of their work aligning with the broader societal shift towards sustainability.

Remote collaboration ups its game. With many people working from home offices (or kitchen tables), the tools and ways we collaborate in software development are getting a major upgrade. This means distributed teams can work together better than ever, no matter where they are.

Growing popularity of Progressive Web Apps (PWAs). PWAs are catching on. They’re this awesome mix of a web and mobile app. And the best part is? They work offline, too. So, you will see more of them around.

Quantum computing keeps paving its way to leading positions. Quantum computing utilizes qubits that operate in multiple states simultaneously. In this way, it outperforms traditional computing in speed and data processing. This advancement will influence software development as it can handle complex computations that are currently beyond the scope of conventional computers.

To sum up, all the trends mentioned in the post indicate a bright future for software development. We’re at this cool crossroads where tech innovation meets real-world values, leading us to some groundbreaking solutions. Can’t wait to see where we’re headed!

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