Software development success is often the product of skilled engineering teams and optimized processes. Underlying this, is the technology that software engineers and developers use to work efficiently. The quality of available tech tools can have a big impact on the development process and ultimately on team productivity. While it may seem like an exaggeration, in many ways, software teams are only as good as the development technologies at their disposal.
Why development technology matters
As technology advances, business processes, products, and opportunities for value creation also change. In software development, emerging technologies are one of the most exciting areas for engineers and developers to be involved in.
Staying on top of emerging technologies and being prepared to leverage them for growth is essential to business outcomes. Failure to invest sufficiently in new development technologies can lead to enterprises missing the boat to capitalize on profitable opportunities.
When it comes to tech talent, adopting and gaining experience with new technologies is also essential for talent recruitment and retention efforts. 39% of software engineers say they would consider leaving their current jobs for opportunities to work with new technologies. This makes keeping up to date with tech trends and evolving technology in the software industry not just important, but necessary.
8 trending development technologies to keep an eye on
Whether you’re in the executive seat looking for new tech to optimize your development efforts, or in the trenches looking for ways to improve your workflows, keeping an eye on current technology trends is a must. These days, however, technology is advancing so rapidly that just keeping up can be challenging.
With the sheer number of new developments and technology options available, it’s easy to get lost. Below, you’ll find our picks of key trending technologies for software development to start incorporating in your development operations today.
1. Cloud-native applications and frameworks
As more traditional businesses embrace digitalization, cloud platforms are becoming the solution of choice. Cloud technologies have been an important part of software development efforts for over a decade now, but it still offers fertile ground for innovation.
For software development teams, cloud-native solutions are gaining popularity for app development, team management, collaboration, and knowledge exchange. Cloud-native solutions offer a range of utilities that make them particularly attractive for software engineers and professionals.
These applications and frameworks are usually hosted on cloud servers which may be public, private, or hybrid. They offer several benefits including (but not limited to):
- Faster releases
- Easier infrastructure management
- Lower costs
- Better Scalability
- Greater cross-platform integration with abstract infrastructure
2. Internet of Things (IoT)
Internet of Things devices have come a long way since their inception. As these devices and sensors become more complex, more industries are realizing IoT maturity. This means that they are beginning to capitalize on connections to distributed devices and sensors for real-time data collection, processing, and use in applications.
As more companies lean into the advantages offered by IoT devices for data insights, software development will need to keep up. Software engineers and developers will need to integrate IoT hardware with software infrastructure to support data pipelines. These pipelines make it possible to power responsive real-time applications with the potential to create real business impact.
Key areas where IoT software development are poised to create value are:
- Self-driving cars
- Health care
- Personal Fitness tech
- Smart manufacturing
- Supply chain management
- Smart infrastructure for homes/offices/cities
3. Cybersecurity solutions
Greater digitalization from companies globally and the introduction of more connected technologies have created a hacker’s paradise. As companies’ digital infrastructure grows, the attack surface area they represent also becomes larger. Unsurprisingly, cyberattacks have increased dramatically, with the average data breach costing an average of $4.24 million.
Cybersecurity software, particularly for cloud infrastructure and distributed teams, is becoming more necessary. Technologies currently trending in cybersecurity development include:
- AI and Deep Learning for Authentication
- Embedded Hardware Authentication
- Behavioral analytics for fraud detection
- Zero Trust Security
4. Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning
For decades, Artificial Intelligence seemed like the stuff of science fiction. The processing power necessary for complex artificial intelligence modelling simply wasn’t possible. Recent technological developments in microprocessors and distributed computing, however, have made the pursuit of AI not just possible, but fast and affordable.
Businesses in every industry are now finding novel applications for AI and the related field of Machine Learning to improve their internal operations, products, and services. AI and Machine Learning solutions are fast becoming part of software development. Popular applications for AI and Machine Learning in software development include:
- Strategic decision making
- Automated coding tasks
- Software testing
- Debugging and error management
5. Microservices Architecture
As cloud-based SaaS and PaaS business models evolve, microservices architecture has become an important feature driving customer success. Unlike monolithic software models where functionalities are tied squarely to a product, microservices architecture assembles a collection of connected products into a single platform. This allows users to pay for only what they use.
For developers, these services can be independently built, deployed, and scaled. This makes them flexible, scalable, and less complex than tightly connected software applications. Benefits of microservices architecture include:
- Shorter development times
- Improved functionality at lower cost
- Easier scalability
- Continuous Integration/Continuous Development (CI/CD) support
6. Low-code/No-Code Technologies
While low-code/no-code tools may be overstated as “the future of programming”, they offer a lot of promise for tech and software-based businesses. These visual software development environments use drag-and-drop tools to allow for simple application builds in a relatively short period of time. They’re often advertised as application development tools for non-programmers, though in reality their real value may lie in how they can be used by software professionals.
Given their simple features and relatively limited palette of options, applications built with these tools are generally not suitable for deployment. However, as a software development technology, low-code and no-code tools can allow developers to quickly prototype and test features before spending time on building them out for deployment. Faster prototyping can save time and effort in development.
7. GitOps Tools for Infrastructure management
Infrastructure in software development refers to all the tools and frameworks necessary for successful development efforts. Ensuring that these tools are up to date, operating smoothly, and configured to streamline development processes can be a complex task. Technology tools for automating and monitoring infrastructure can improve development efficiency, especially in DevOps-based software development.
GitOps is a framework that allows software development teams to manage and improve their CI/CD pipelines for smoother, faster delivery. The core idea of GitOps is automating the commit process to make the production environment match the described state in the repository. Proposed benefits of GitOps include:
- Faster more frequent deployments
- Better knowledge sharing
- Deployments with clear documentation
- Streamlined credential management
8. Smart Automation for Code Reviews
As cybersecurity and code quality become critical software development concerns, measures for improving developer contributions are also becoming more popular. Code reviews are a necessary part of development, but they’re notoriously time consuming. This is especially true of in-person code review methods (e.g., pair programming). As a result, automated code review tools are gaining popularity in development teams.
These tools can help manage code review between human participants, but with smart automation, they can also review code themselves. Engineers can automate static testing and unit testing for faster feedback and shorter build times. This leads to better code quality and shorter time to production.
9. Software Development Analytics Tools
Software Development Analytics Tools offer a convenient and cost effective solution for monitoring performance in the software development life cycle. With the need for faster development cycles in line with continuous development and continuous integration frameworks comes a need for greater efficiency and productivity. Knowing where and how to streamline development starts with greater insight into the development process.
Tools like Foreworth’s Analytics platform provide extensive insights into different features of development, from developer productivity to code health. Visual representations of development KPIs and interactive dashboards make tools like this especially useful for fostering communication between development and line of business stakeholders.
Make tech investments work for you
As demand for software and digital services increases, development teams must embrace new opportunities to ramp up productivity. With these new development technologies, teams can streamline efforts in building, reviewing, testing, and deploying software products. One advantage many of these technologies share is that they integrate well with popular software development frameworks.
Tech solutions aren’t only making waves in the development department, though. Businesses all over the world are seeing success by embracing new tech to improve their operations and product offerings. See how emerging technologies are driving business value here.
About the authorJuan Pablo González
Working as Foreworth’s Chief Technical Officer, Juan Pablo (JP) manages the company’s technical strategy. With nearly 20 years of experience in software development, he ensures the development process at Foreworth is meeting its keys objectives and technical requirements.More info →