The Future of Front-End Development In 2020

By | May 13, 2020

front-end developer roles and responsibilities

If you are a front-engineer, you would agree, we are programmers first and software engineers second. Our end goal is to create an ideal user experience by offering state of the art front-end development services.           

The front-end development industry is very dynamic. As tech development trends change, new APIs and frameworks develop. Consequently, some apps deprecate. To some extent, this happens due to the user experience aspect within front-end development. We all are well aware that companies are investing to create products and experienced based on continuous feedback from customers. Customer rules. If they don’t like the interface, this could impact the sales. Hence, customer experience is becoming a shared responsibility among the development team and other teams within an enterprise.  

In front-end development, code is just a tool. It is not a goal in itself. Developers need to be able to see the bigger picture now. It plays a significant role in usability research, user interface and user experience. The languages a front-end developer should use for coding depends on the task. There are a rising number of principles that are changing in 2020. Here’s our take on the future of front-end development in 2020:

It’s all about the End-User 

Most of the developers use languages such as HTML, JavaScript, and CSS for developing websites and other online products. Once the code is ready, they spend time on the user interface to make it look good. 

Now, a product must be created by using the end-user in mind. How would they respond to the product? How well does the user warm up to the product? These are some questions that need to be addressed. In other words, the final solution must be tailored according to the target market. 

These are some questions that can help developers design such a tailored solution:

  • What is the user problem we are trying to solve?
  • What are the users’ goals?
  • What are the pain points in terms of usability and design? 
  • How can we make the design/UI easier for the user?

Then front-end developers will have to get involved with the product team to understand the needs, motivation, and preferences of the user. For this, they will have to work closely with the product owner. As long as both are on the same page, the find product will be a success. For this, the scrum framework can be used. It links the progress of the team to the product owner and defines requirements and solutions. This would clear many bottlenecks for the final product.

Usability Matters More Than Ever 

A final product is a successful product if it offers a practical user interface. The product must have a clear visual hierarchy, it must be consistent and simple for the end-user to navigate.

If a user is scanning through a web page to look for the main chuck of information, the page must accommodate that need. On average, only 28% of the readers use the text. They skim through a web page. The web pages that best get noticed by users are the ones that are created on an F-shaped pattern.

Be Mobile First 

Developers offering front-end development services agree that mobile-first can help developers create a consistent user experience for all mobile devices. 

The number of mobile users has increased by 1 billion up to 4.68 billion from 2015 to 2020. Even though people are using their mobile devices to view websites yet, lots of web pages still don’t offer an accommodating mobile experience. 

Mobile-first is not just about creating a desktop version. When a developer creates a website with mobile-first in mind, they must consider the user experience in terms of tapping, ticking, sliding, etc. from a mobile device’s perspective. They must check all the elements of a web page that might take a different take when accessed from a mobile device.

Users browse a web page on mobile using one hand and their thumb. Hence, the most convenient area to touch is the bottom of the screen. Therefore, developers must focus on horizontal and vertical scrolling and make the experience seamless.

Invisible Design 

Invisible design is the next level of intuitive design. It must meet the user expectation seamlessly. A user shouldn’t stop and think before using a website. If they want to search something on the page, the design shouldn’t confuse them. An invisible design helps the user perform the actions they intend to because all functions are where they should be.

Product design and development will be treated as a single unit. Since a great product can only be created when the team has a deep understanding of the user, front-end developers will have to merge with product designers to create an invisible design.  

Will Artificial Intelligence Transform The Future Of Front-End?

Since AI and Machine Learning are the future, it’s fair to ask if they will impact the future of front-end development as well. A few companies are already using different AI techniques to disrupt front-end development. AO could assist developers by generating the starting code using wireframes. Developers will have extra time on hand to focus on important aspects of development. It could speed up the iteration of the design. Airbnb has built an AI which turns sketch files into code. Another company named Uziard is using ML to take screenshots of the graphic interface and translate it into raw code. The best part is the code has 77% accuracy. 

Who knows in the future, AI could make machines do the entire front-end coding. BAYOU is a project funded by Google and the military. It uses a deep learning tool that works like a search engine for coding. It reads the source code of about 1500 Android apps and it can program other software. 

Conclusion

The changing trends in front-end development are calling developers to start thinking in terms of user-centric design. They will have to take a hands-on approach and get involved in the bigger picture of the project to understand the user base (their needs, behavior, how they browse a website, and what do they want from the interface). All this is at the forefront of offering a seamless experience. 

Also Read – How Virtual Assessment Centre have Changed the Landscape of HR

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