2017 Top mobile app development trends to watch out for

The booming rise in smartphone numbers all over the world has also led to a surge in the number of apps that people use on them. Google Play houses 2.2 million while the Apple App Store has a mammoth 2 million apps – and this number will not slowdown any time soon.

• A comScore report says that mobile users surpassed desktop users way back in 2014

• Gartner predicts that more than 268 billion downloads will generate $77 billion worth of revenue in 2017

Cloud-based apps and services have gathered increased importance over 2016 and here are some of the key mobile app development trends to look out for in 2017.

1 # Location-Based Services (LBS) to continue its rise

2 # Integration of Augmented Reality (AR) into utility apps

3 # Android Instant Apps to become a common trend

4 # Embedded AI within apps to become a norm

5 # IoT app integrations to continue unchallenged

6 # Application security to be more important than ever before

(Read full article authored by Jayavardhan BN, CEO & Co-founder, Hashtaag)

Orange Money app debuts in France

Image result for Orange Money appOrange made available an Android app in the Play store that enables money transfer between French users and those in three African countries.

The operator announced Orange Money France back in June and said an app would be coming “soon”.

The app enables users in France to transfer funds to Ivory Coast, Mali and Senegal, as well as within mainland France. France’s leading operator will target Orange Money at French users with friends and family in Africa.

The Orange Money Service is available in countries across Africa and the Middle East where Orange is present.

Users do not need a bank account to use Orange Money in France, but they must have a mobile plan and register at a point of sale offering Orange Money with an ID card and proof of address. It is free to open an account.

Opera Mobile hits 100m users in Africa

SMWAfrica Opera 2016 State of mobile web ReportState of the Mobile Web Africa, 2016 aims to shed light on the opportunities and challenges we experienced in bringing the next 100 million – and beyond – online. It will also take an in-depth look into some of the data and statistics of the African mobile web.Furthermore, the report highlights the usefulness and importance of data compression technologies, especially as it concerns high data costs, which has slowed down the adoption of mobile Internet.

“We believe data compression is as relevant and useful now as it was a decade ago – in fact, with the growth of smartphone penetration coupled with prohibitively high data costs, it’s a critical enabler,” said Richard Monday, VP for Opera, Africa.

The compression technology used in Opera Mini and Opera Max helps consumers save on data costs and addressed issues relating to congestion and page sizes.

In fact, the report states that in 2016, Opera’s compression technology has allowed South Africans to save approximately US$111m in data costs, with Nigerians and Kenyans saving US$280m and US$116m, respectively.

To get the full report, click HERE.

Fingerprint Biometric Technology Expanding In African Mobile Banking

mobile-phone-using-660x370London-based bank Standard Chartered plans this year to introduce biometric technology to customers in eight African countries so they can use fingerprints to access their mobile money — a process known as touch login — versus usernames and passwords.

The roll-out is expected to reach 5 million people in Africa, Asia and the Middle East. The bank claims it will be a first in most markets with the largest deployment of fingerprint biometric technology by any international bank, Fin Tech Innovation reported.

Pending regulatory approval, touch login will launch by the end of 2016 in Botswana, Ghana, Kenya, Nigeria, Tanzania, Uganda, Zambia and Zimbabwe. It is already operational in Singapore, United Arab Emirates and India. It is also due to launch in China, Hong Kong, Malaysia and Pakistan. Read more