The Internet: Then and Now

It has been a big week in tech. Not only did we have the Google I/O keynote yesterday (last week’s blog covered that in more detail), but also Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers Partner Mary Meeker published her annual Internet Trends Report. For the past 20 years this has been an industry bible for the tech scene, and the latest addition shows some startling changes since its first publication in 1995.

One of the most notable changes is how much the Internet has grown. In 1995, it had 35 million users (about the population of Tokyo) and now stands at over 2.8 billion. As well as this huge level of growth, it has now become entrenched in our lives. A large part of this has been fueled by the smartphone. Having a powerful computer and communications devices next to you 24/7 means the internet is but a click (or more commonly) a swipe away.

Smartphones and the mobile devices that have been spawned from them have changed how we interact with the Internet and each other. We are now in the age of the mobile app. Apps are rapidly becoming the dominant way users interact with their mobile devices, and by proxy, businesses too. Having a reliable and well-designed app now is as crucial as having a website was back in the mid 2000s.

To achieve this, apps need to be well tested. Running on different operating systems, devices and hardware too mean mobile app quality assurance (QA) testing needs to be thorough. And when it comes to testing multiple app features, mobile app testing needs automation testing tools. Mobile automation testing speeds up the development process dramatically, saving time and reducing costs.

In addition, it is equally as important to test the backend of an app as the frontend. This means working with experts who know what to look for and how to test for it. Getting this wrong not only risks delivering a poor user experience, but also creates potential security risks. With privacy and security so high on many people’s agendas, threats in this area cannot be ignored.

When Mary Meeker first published her Internet Trends Report back in 1995 there is no way she could have guessed how it would turn out. Apps have emerged as a powerful force for enterprises and businesses. With so much depending on mobile apps, making sure they work should not be taken lightly.

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