The COVID-19 pandemic changed the world in more ways than anyone even realizes at this very moment. Nearly every business, industry, and niche in existence had to shift their focus on working remotely and keeping up with the newly super-increased digital demand of companies in order to stay afloat, all while worrying about their own safety and that of their loved ones.
As we move towards what appears to be the tail-end of the pandemic, many industries and companies find themselves keeping some new digital habits while trying to return to what life was once like nearly 2 years ago. This fundamental shift changed the way the world thinks and lives, with a move towards more mobile and online usage than ever before – which understandably made a huge impact on the software and application development worlds.
Pandemic Mobile Apps: A Good Idea or a Necessity?
While the assumption that businesses would eventually need to offer their customers mobile access to their products and/or services at some point in the future was definitely fair, no one saw it coming quite as quickly as the COVID-19 pandemic made happen. As people sat in their homes dealing with the stress and anxiety of the unknown, they turned to their mobile phones for not only entertainment but daily life tasks as well.
After all, there are only a few types of businesses or services that can’t provide their offerings in a way other than in-person. Hotels, cruise lines, medical procedures, and resorts are just some of the industries that felt this inability to digitally serve their clientele. The rest, however, found themselves turning to mobile apps as an alternate route to connect with their customers and offer their goods.
Restaurants and grocery stores are perfect examples of companies who felt the urge to make the mobile app jump during this global crisis. By building a new business model of curbside and delivery services, where customers browsed and eventually placed orders through their own mobile app, was a key element of their survival. This helps many organizations remain viable throughout the lockdown mandates, further pandemic labor shortages, and so on.
To merely say that mobile apps were a good idea during 2020 and beyond isn’t a fair statement. Without mobile apps, many businesses would have faced the fate of many other more unfortunate companies who had to shut their doors permanently due to their loss of in-person revenue.
How Has App and Software Development Changed Throughout COVID-19?
For the actual development aspect of building a mobile application, development companies found themselves scrambling a bit to keep up with not only demand but also the acceleration of the “normal” development lifecycle. Software development companies also felt this pressure as the move towards the digital workspace began.
This need created quite a few trends and changes in the development world, including:
- Virtual Collaboration – As companies moved towards virtual collaboration from the safety of home offices and kitchen tables alike, the use of videoconferencing and digital collaboration apps exploded in popularity. This had an effect on not only the development process but also the products themselves.
Dev teams quickly realized that any kind of applications or software products pushed to production must allow for updates to deliver improved connections no matter where or how teams interact. The development teams themselves then had to figure out how to make the virtual Software Development Life Cycle as streamlined and successful without the use of in-person problem solving and teamwork.
- Greater Demand for Services – As the world not only deals with the pandemic but also a global talent shortage of skilled engineers, development companies found themselves with a huge increase in demand for their services. When these businesses realized just how essential an online presence is, they flocked to outsourcing companies to help them stay in business.
- Development Platforms – This huge increase in demand caused developers to hone their skills for working as efficiently as possible while also looking for resources to help get the job done at a more rapid rate. Many companies chose low-code or no-code platforms to help accelerate the development processes.
These platforms offer generic code starts or even drag-and-drop app-building to help save devs the time and effort of writing organic code at all times. While these platforms aren’t great options for super custom projects and such, they do save time and effort. Low-code and no-code development will certainly stick around as a development alternative for companies even post-pandemic.
While the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic will continue for the foreseeable future, many businesses continue running thanks to the advancements and changes made to the world of software and mobile app development.