Gartner gives cool assessment of enterprise mobile app budget – but it will get better

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Despite an increased perception in mobile for application development, the latest research from analyst house Gartner argues that only £1 in 10 gets spent on mobile from an average enterprise app development budget.

The survey, which polled IT and business leaders across the United States, EMEA, Latin America and Asia Pacific regions, found that the budget for mobile app development had gone down 2% from 2015 levels; yet almost half (42%) of respondents argued their spend on the mobile side would increase by 31% on average this year.

In terms of what enterprises are doing with that money, the majority are focused on custom mobile app development as opposed to building off the shelf or customising configurable apps – an interesting finding, given the significant development required to integrate both back and front ends. Gartner argues that the usual move for custom development in web and desktop means a similar style for mobile is natural for most organisations.

“Demand for mobile apps in the enterprise is growing, but the urgency to scale up mobile app development doesn’t yet appear to be a priority for most organisations,” said Adrian Leow, principal research analyst at Gartner in a statement. “This must change, particularly given employees often have the autonomy to choose the devices, apps and even the processes to complete a task.

“This places an increasing amount of pressure on IT to develop a larger variety of mobile apps in shorter time frames,” Leow added.

Leow argues the selection of prepackaged mobile apps is still “quite limited” from providers, and adds there is a trade-off required. “If developers have to spend 70% of their time getting the integration right, they shouldn’t have to make compromises on the front end by constraints inherent in prepackaged mobile apps,” he said.

This publication has examined rapid mobile app development (RMAD) on various occasions, yet it still remains a relatively small part of the market. George Mashini, CEO of Catavolt, a vendor in the space, wrote in this publication earlier this month: “People are demanding lightning fast access to the right data in a very personal way. Gone are the days of monolithic apps that are everything to everyone – a good CIO has to create a machine that makes incremental gains quickly and with scale.”

If the Gartner research is anything to go by, there is still a long way to go yet.

 

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