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Top Five Developer Trends Of 2018

The year 2017 has been one of the most exciting years for developers and technology lovers. Technologies such as big data, machine learning, Internet of Things (IoT), artificial intelligence, drones, autonomous vehicles, wearables, virtual reality, and smart homes are some of the fastest-growing innovations.

Gartner breaks down in its hype cycle of emerging technologies of 2017 and shows that AI, machine learning and deep learning are the focus while autonomous vehicles, virtual assistants, computer security, blockchain and cognitive computing is on the rise. The below graph indicates the lifetime of various technologies.

Developer Trends

In this article, I will focus on the cutting-edge technologies that are directly related to jobs and expected to grow at a faster pace than previously anticipated.

My top 5 emerging technologies predictions for year 2018 include the following,

  1. Cloud
  2. Cyber Security
  3. AI Assistants
  4. Augmented Reality
  5. Blockchain

Trend #1. Cloud

Cloud computing has grown tremendously in the past few years and it will continue to rise in 2018. Let’s look at some of the numbers.

  • 1 billion smart devices worldwide
  • 3 billion people connected to the Internet
  • 3 billion mobile phones, 3.5 billion toothbrush owners
  • 197 billion app downloads in 2016, 353 billion by 2021
  • Americans spend 4.7 hrs a day
  • Average person takes150 photos a month

Amazon’s AWS, Microsoft’s Azure, and Google Cloud take the top 3 spots in the cloud space followed by IBM and Oracle.

Cloud jobs will continue to grow in 2018.

The quarterly growth of Azure, Google Cloud, and AWS was 93%, 50%, and 45% respectively. The cloud migration and digitation transformation will continue to grow and so will the number of jobs. The digital transformation market size is $1.7 trillion for the next several years.

Developer Trends

Today, cloud architect is one of the most in-demand jobs. An Indeed search returns over 25,000 results for cloud architect keywords. The number of job results for AWS and Azure are over 25,000 and 12,000 respectively.

Trend #2. Cyber Security

Cyber security will be one of the most in-demand careers in coming years. Cybercrimes are expected grow exponentially. Blame it on the growing size of data and the expanding cloud. As a matter of fact, Cyber Security is one of the most in-demand careers in IT. Here are some facts:

  • 3 Billion Yahoo accounts hacked
  • 200 million Equifax accounts' data stolen
  • Ransomware damage costs are close to $5 billion in 2017.
  • Cyber crime damage costs up to $6 trillion annually by 2021
  • Cyber security products and services are predicted to exceed $1 trillion over next 5 years, by 2021.
  • Cybercrime will have a deficit of 3.5 million cyber security experts by 2021.
  • 6 billion people will be affected by cybercrimes by 2022.
  • Network engineers should start focusing on cyber security products and services.
  • Darkweb has everyone’s social media, credit cards, and bank accounts

1 million cyber security experts needed by 2020.

If you’re looking for a growing career, cyber security will be one of the fastest growing fields for IT developers and administrators.

Recommended: Cyber Security is a big opportunity for developers

Trend #3. AI-Assistants

Smart home speakers are growing and tens of millions of Alexa devices were sold during this holiday season. According to a, Smart speakers are the fastest growing consumer tech, surpassing AR, VR, and wearables and shipments are expected to surpass 50 million devices.

Smart home speakers are powered by an AI assistant. For example, Amazon Echo, Google Home, and Harman Kardon Invoke speakers are powered by Alexa, OK Google, and Microsoft Cortana respectively.

Developer Trends

Amazon Alexa is the AI-assistant behind tens of millions of devices like the Amazon Echo, Echo Dot, and Echo Show. Alexa provides capabilities, or skills, that enable customers to create a more personalized experience. There are now more than 25,000 skills from companies such as Starbucks, Uber, and Capital One as well as other innovative designers and developers.

Over 25 millions Alexa Echo devices sold in Q4 2017.

Today, 40% of adults use voice search and Apple’s Siri is used by 41.4 million monthly. Microsoft Cortana, the intelligent assistant on Windows 10 has 133 million monthly users. The numbers are expected to grow a lot. According to a research, by 2020, 30% of searches will be done without a screen. Smart home devices in the USA are expected to grow to 244 million by 2022.

Here are some of the statistics on AI-Assistants.

  • 50% of searches will be voice search by 2020
  • 40% of adults use voice search
  • 30% of searches will be done without a screen
  • Siri 45%, Google Now 33% and Cortana 27%, 10% use Amazon Alexa
  • Smart home devices in US will be 244 million by 2022, up from 24 million in 2016. Six point three million will have at least one smart speaker by 2022.
  • Apple Siri has 41.4 million monthly users
  • Amazon Echo devices: 22 million sold in 2017
  • Microsoft Cortana has 133 million monthly users

The rise of the need for smart home speakers and other smart home devices will increase the need of AI-assistant developers.

If you’re a developer and looking for some exciting future opportunities, AI skills development will be something I recommend. Alexa skills developer demand will grow. As of now, there are 1000+ jobs available for Alexa developers.

Recommended: AI-Assistants devices create new opportunities for developers

Trend #4. Augmented Reality

Augmented reality is one of the most sought-after technologies of 2017 and the demand will continue to grow in 2018. Major technology companies including Microsoft, Facebook, Google, Intel, Nvidia and others are working on their own version of AR/VR products. More and more AR-VR devices are being introduced to the market almost every few months.

Developer Trends

The gaming industry is already enjoying a huge success of VR and AR technologies. Oculus, HTC, Sony, Microsoft, Google, and Samsung are already selling thousands of devices worldwide. Facebook and a few other companies have a need for 10,000 AR/VR developers and content creators. AR/VR market size is going to hit $162B by 2020 according to IDC and software is still playing a catchup game with hardware. There is a lack of experts and content for both, AR and VR devices.

Developer Trends
Source: CSS Insights

Here is a shipment report for the last few quarters.

Developer Trends

Here are some of the statistics gathered from various sources: 

  • 100 million devices sold by 2021
  • LinkedIn shows over 2000 jobs in virtual reality 

Augmented Reality is the future of telecommunication.

Microsoft HoloLens has enjoyed a limited success in the mixed reality space and it is just getting started.

In June 2017, Apple launched ARKit for iOS that allows developers to build augmented reality applications and games. Today, there are thousands of AR games available in Apple Store.

Recently, Google announced its ARCore Developer Preview 2, that will let Android developers build AR apps for Android devices.

Trend #5. Blockchain

Blockchain is the technology of  2017. You may thank bitcoin, altcoins (cryptocurrency), and ICOs (Initial Coin Offering) for the rise of blockchain. Thousands of projects have already been built on top of blockchain and more projects are being created every day.

Check out Bitcoin Explained In Simple Terms to learn more about bitcoin. 


The following chart shows the Google Trends of for blockchain (blue), cryptocurrency (yellow) and bitcoin (red).

Developer Trends

Banking, payments, supply chain, insurance, security, and healthcare are a few industries that have already stated building blockchain based applications. As a matter of fact, 57% of large corporations are considering some kind of blockchain adoption. Obviously, this will lead to more jobs.

Do you need a blockchain? Find out here >

There may not be too many jobs today but going forward, 2018 and beyond will have a major need for blockchain developers.

6 out of 10 CIOs are looking into blockchain.



The year 2017 has been a remarkable year for technology growth and it will continue to grow. In this article, I covered 5 trending technologies that developers will enjoy in 2018 and beyond. Cloud and cyber security are the needs of today and tomorrow and it will continue to grow. AI-assisted home devices are growing and hence the need for software. Augmented reality and blockchain are two new growing technologies that will reshape the future in coming years.

Besides these top 5 trends, machine learning, data scientists, data analytics, DevOps, and gaming are another growing trend you may want to keep an eye. Let’s talk DevOps.

Good luck!

Blockchain, An Unblocked Opportunity For Developers

Blockchain technology has become the phenomenon of 2017. According to Google, Blockchain and Bitcoin were two of the most-searched keywords last year. Blockchain is also one of the Top 5 Developer Trends Of 2018. Cryptocurrency, bitcoin, and ICOs (Initial Coin Offering) are fueling the blockchain discussion and increasing awareness of the technology.

Today, more and more organizations are looking to take advantage of blockchain mania. As a matter of fact, 58% of the large corporations are interested in building some kind of blockchain application.

So, here is the good news for software developers. Blockchain is all about software. Blockchain is all about how to store, share, and maintain data (transactions) securely.

My aim with this article is to bring some attention to the size of the opportunity blockchain presents for software developers.


The blockchain concept was first introduced by Stuart Haber and W. Scott Stornetta in 1991 as “a cryptographically secured chain of blocks,” which means a chain or blocks that are linked and cryptographically secured. Each block is a combination of three items, a hash pointer to the previous block, a timestamp, and transaction data. By design, blockchains are secure and difficult to modify.

Blockchain definition from Wikipedia:

Blockchain is a technology to create and maintain cryptographically secure, shared, and distributed ledger (a database) for transactions. Blockchain brings trust, accountability, and transparency to digital transactions.

All transactions that exist on a blockchain are shared and distributed among a network of peer-to-peer computers. Transactions are encrypted and decrypted using private and public keys.

Watch this video to learn what blockchain is:

Let’s remove the security part from the list, I bet, most enterprise systems do not want to be public, transparent, or distributed. Also, a system built on blockchain does not only take a longer time to process transactions but also requires many more times the resources such as processing, electricity, and data transfer. If that is the case, you don’t really need blockchain.

Obviously, blockchain is not for everyone. Building blockchain applications are complicated, time consuming, transparent, and costly. Here is my article, Do You Need A Blockchain that will ask you the right questions and give you the answer to whether or not you really need a blockchain.

The applications

Blockchain isn’t industry specific. Blockchain is useful where you need to bring transparency and accountability to a system. If you look at some of the obvious industries that lack trust, include banking, financial institutions, insurance, healthcare, pharma, investment firms, and money transfer, obviously, these industries could use blockchain to bring trust to the system.

Blockchain brings trust to a system.

Banking, payments, supply chain, insurance, security, and healthcare are a few industries that have already stated building blockchain-based applications. As mentioned earlier, 58% of large corporations are considering some kind of blockchain adoption. Obviously, this will lead to more jobs.

One of the key reasons blockchain had a remarkable 2017 is bitcoin, cryptocurrencies, and Initial Coin Offering (ICO). Bitcoin worth has grown to $247 billion from $11 billion in less than 12 months. Over $3.25 billion have been raised in ICOs in 2017 alone, surpassing traditional VC funding. Filecoin and Tezos, the two largest ICOs, raised $357 million and $232 million respectively in a matter of days. If you’re new to bitcoin, check out What and Why Bitcoin to learn everything about bitcoin. Some of the bitcoin and similar projects include Bitcoin Cash, Litecoin, and Bitcoin Gold.

The following chart shows Google Trends for blockchain (blue), cryptocurrency (yellow) and bitcoin (red).


Banking is one of the industries that is leading the blockchain innovation. The following image from BI shows major banks and financial institutions involved in blockchain.Supply chain management, global logistics and shipping, healthcare and pharma, and even governments are now exploring blockchain implementations.



And the opportunity

For software developers, the blockchain opportunity is huge and it is just getting started. Some of the companies leading the charge in blockchain technology include IBM, Microsoft, Deloitte, Ripple, Chain, Circle Internet, BitFury Holding, Yuan Technology, Coinbase, and AlphaPoint. Since six out of 10 corporations are interested in blockchain, it simply means more jobs will be created in this space.

The blockchain technology market size was $340 million in 2017 and is expected to grow to $2.3 billion by 2021. According to a report, 10% of GDP will be regulated by a blockchain by 2027.

Where to start.

Today, there are thousands of blockchain projects available in Github and each of the projects has a specific purpose. Here are some of the top blockchain projects and their purpose.

RippleNet is an enterprise blockchain application for global payments.

Ethereum is a decentralized platform that runs smart contracts: applications that run exactly as programmed without any possibility of downtime, censorship, fraud or third-party interference.

TRON is a blockchain-based decentralized protocol that aims to construct a worldwide free content entertainment system with the blockchain and distributed storage technology. The protocol allows each user to freely publish, store and own data, and in the decentralized autonomous form, decides the distribution, subscription and push of contents and enables content creators by releasing, circulating and dealing with digital assets, thus forming a decentralized content entertainment ecosystem.

Cardano is a decentralized public blockchain and cryptocurrency project and is fully open source. Cardano is developing a smart contract platform which seeks to deliver more advanced features than any protocol previously developed. It is the first blockchain platform to evolve out of a scientific philosophy and a research-first driven approach. The development team consists of a large global collective of expert engineers and researchers.

NEM is the world's first Smart Asset blockchain. Built from the ground up for enterprise-grade performance, NEM's blockchain technology delivers a world class platform for management of almost any kind of asset: currencies, supply chains, notarizations, ownership records and more. NEM’S power is exposed through a straightforward and secure developer interface so that you can deploy your blockchain solution in record time. Whether you are building the next best mobile app or bringing blockchain into your existing business infrastructure, NEM makes blockchain work for you.

Stellar is a distributed, hybrid blockchain that is fully open-source. It is infrastructure that exists to facilitate cross-asset transfers of value, including payments. With just one integration into the Stellar Network, you will join an open, global financial network where all actors – be they people, payment networks, or banks – have equal access & economic participation.

IOTA: As the Internet-of-Things keeps expanding, the need for interoperability and sharing of resources has become a necessity. IOTA enables companies to explore new business-to-business models by making every technological resource a potential service to be traded on an open market in real time, with no fees.

Dash is Digital Cash You Can Spend Anywhere. Use Dash to make instant, private payments online or in-store using a secure open-source platform hosted by thousands of users around the world.

NEO is a non-profit community-based blockchain project that utilizes blockchain technology and digital identity to digitize assets, to automate the management of digital assets using smart contracts, and to realize a "smart economy" with a distributed network. NEO was founded in 2014 and was real-time open source on GitHub in June 2015. Since its inception, the NEO team has experienced the upsurge and boom of the blockchain industry and the frenzy and cooling of the digital money market. They believe technology drives progress and together we can create the future. Motivated by this, NEO has been created to shift our traditional economy into the new era of the "Smart Economy".

Monero is a secure, private, and untraceable cryptocurrency. It is open-source and accessible to all. With Monero, you are your own bank. Only you control and are responsible for your funds. Your accounts and transactions are kept private from prying eyes.


For C# developers, Stratis Platform offers simple and affordable end-to-end solutions for development, testing and deployment of native C# blockchain applications on the .Net framework.

The stratis Development Platform allows businesses and organizations to develop blockchain applications in C# utilizing the Microsoft .NET Framework. They can assist you in defining your blockchain strategy and in integrating solutions and capabilities according to your business requirements.

You can find more details and open source projects in Github here:

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