The fact that we are using our smartphones more and more is not new, even in 2020 we were even more on our phones compared to the previous year. What we did not expect is that some extra strength would be added with the arrival of COVID-19. From recent research by eMarketer average smartphone use in the US alone has grown by no less than 13,9% during the corona period.

Each of us was suddenly confined to his or her own home. No longer cozy to the catering industry or cinema, but working from home and exercise in the attic. The use of our smartphone and mobile apps has been intertwined with our daily lives for years and this will only increase during the Corona period. Would we even like mobile-first to mobile only to go? Let's take a look at what to expect from the coming year. Will this pandemic cause a lot of changes in the world of mobile apps? In this blog I show you the 5 biggest mobile app trends of 2021.


At the end of 2020 we already saw that it was becoming increasingly important: the privacy of smartphone users. Users are critical when it comes to their personal data and how app developers handle it. It is therefore not surprising that there was a lot of criticism in the Netherlands with the llaunch of the Coronamelder app, whereby the Dutch Data Protection Authority even gave a negative advice regarding the protection of user data.

The need of smartphone users for more insight into their personal data has been answered by the tech giants in Silicon Valley. Starting with the launch of iOS 14, Apple is now giving its users the option to block tracking from mobile apps, much to the dismay of social media giant Facebook. From December 8, 2020, Apple also requires every new app in its App Store to comply with the app privacy details. This must indicate which data of individual users they collect and for what purposes. Whether this will bring about much change in the Apple App Store, we will see in the coming months.

Apple's app privacy details are the result of a trend that has been going on for some time. In recent years, users have increasingly valued their personal data. I therefore expect that in 2021 app developers and the tech giants will increasingly take this into account.


No one can ignore this second trend anymore: 5G. Much has been written about the advent of this technique, both positive and negative. Due to the high speed and range of the new 5G signal, the possibilities for app developers are endless. To give you an idea: Compared to the 4G signal, 5G is no less than 10x faster. Waiting for a page to load on your phone is a thing of the past.

Autonomous driving cars will be able to communicate with each other even faster, making traffic a lot safer in the future, streaming 4K video via YouTube or allowing dozens of smart devices to communicate with each other at the same time. You read it already: the applications with 5G are endless. A very cool application of 5G is the bicycle by Tristan Bangma, a Paralympic cyclist who, thanks to 5G, can cycle alone again despite his poor eyesight. I can't wait to follow all the developments in the coming year.


Progressive web apps (PWAs) are definitely not new kids on the block, but has become increasingly popular in recent years. PWAs can be developed cost-efficiently and offer many of the same functionalities as native apps. Not entirely unimportant: these apps can be used on any smartphone both online and offline.

Because we are increasingly moving towards one mobile-first exist, I expect that PWAs will also be used more in 2021. Tech giants such as Uber, Pinterest and Starbucks have been using this app form for years, but it is now also feasible for local entrepreneurs to develop an app that is immediately available to everyone.

While native (iOS or Android) apps always perform better, the line between PWAs and native apps will become more and more blurred. Do you also think we will see more and more PWAs in 2021? Let us know below in the comments.


The arrival of the COVID-19 virus has meant that companies have to switch quickly when it comes to internal communication. Staff started working from home and the meeting rooms were replaced by Zoom or Google meetings. It is therefore not surprising that the value of Zoom Video Communications rose by 570% (!) during the first lockdown.

While I hope we can all get back to the office during the year, there's going to be a big one increase expected from (part-time) homeworkers. This means a great opportunity for mobile app developers who respond to this change. The use of VoIP (Voice over Internet Protocol) apps has also seen significant growth in recent times. This market is expected to reach a whopping $2024 trillion by 140.


Internet of Things, connected smart devices, smart homes, all terms that are not new. Nevertheless, this trend continues to persist. According to The report of Statista the global IoT market will have a size of no less than 2023 trillion dollars (!). Becoming smart wearables, smart cars or even smart cities are very common these days and they all have one thing in common: always connected via your smartphone. 

Due to the pandemic, the gyms are closed and everyone is on their own to keep moving. The sale of smart wearables in the Netherlands has been increasing since the first lockdown increased by as much as 20%. One of the largest activity trackers Strava indicates that they see a growth in activity of no less than 82%. So there is more demand for smart devices that are connected. although Internet of Things is not new, I expect that we will be able to operate more and more from our smartphone this year. In any case, the growth in the market is there.


2020 has been a crazy year. The arrival of COVID-19 has had a major impact on companies and their employees. But with the arrival of this pandemic comes innovation. We have started using our smartphone more and more and now communicate completely differently with our colleagues. With the expansion of 5G, the critical view on privacy and the growth of communication apps, we will see many developments this year. Anyway, I can't wait!




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