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2018 State Of Event Tech: Part 3

2018 State of Event Tech Part 3.png

In part one of this series I discussed some of the macro forces shaping event tech in 2018In part two of this series I discussed the critical role of time.

While time savings for the planner will be paramount in 2018 and beyond, we do see an emerging technology trend that should have an immediate and positive impact on the attendee experience in 2018—a programming framework called React Native. React was originally developed internally at Facebook, and later open sourced.

React Native was created specifically to help mobile developers quickly and easily write native user interfaces for iOS and Android using JavaScript and the functional patterns behind React. At DoubleDutch, we have integrated React Native into our native mobile apps in a way that does not require the submission of app updates. This means faster development cycles and allows us and our partners to drastically increase the rate at which innovative new features will make it to market. And unlike some of the larger macro trends like AR / VR, we believe React Native is ready for primetime in 2018.

We also believe that React Native will offer DoubleDutch customers the opportunity to enjoy a more custom experience than what was included in the standard offering.

Here to talk more about the potential of React Native to positively impact the world of live events is DoubleDutch CTO, Kasper Jeppesen.

So what is React Native?

React Native is a framework that lets you write native user interfaces for iOS and Android in Javascript using the same well-known patterns as React for web development. Thereby allowing a much wider developer base from the web community to contribute to mobile application development.

When did you start getting excited about it?

I was initially introduced to it in early 2016. At the time, it seemed like a neat idea, but also a bit of a risky gamble since the technology had not yet been proven in any major mobile apps. However, as we were keeping an eye on it along with a handful of other frameworks for mobile development in Javascript, React Native started to rapidly stabilize and prove itself in real-world use cases.

By the end of 2016 we decided to make a bet on React Native as our technology of choice for rapid innovation and partner development opportunities. We spent 2017 building out an open source tool chain for this and to prove it in our app through a set of new key features that will be released on our platform in January 2018.

Why do you feel that React Native is among the biggest tech trends for 2018?

The tech community has long sought after a good write-once-run-anywhere solution that would let developers write applications once and then run them across different platforms such as iOS and Android. Unfortunately, no one has been able to deliver on this without severe drawbacks.

React Native takes a slightly different approach: Learn once, write anywhere. This means that instead of having to learn completely different languages and frameworks to write mobile apps for Android and iOS, developers can learn React Native once and apply it to both—even if they have to write some parts of their apps separately for each platform. This minor difference in approach lets React Native avoid the pitfalls of most write-once-run-anywhere technologies while still reaping the benefits of increased developer productivity and shared code bases.

This productivity increase in a mature technology along with the strong open source community support around around it makes us firmly believe that React Native is going to be one of the biggest tech trends of 2018.

What are some examples of features that can be written using React Native?

There are very few things that couldn’t be accomplished in React Native at this point. In the first months of 2018 you will see several new features released by DoubleDutch that are fully built using React Native. These include a personal lead scanner, a new Q&A functionality and a Mark Me Safe functionality. There are some things like 3D, VR, and AR experiences that wouldn’t be a good fit at this point, but we are keeping a very close eye on new native libraries for React Native. Once something feels stable and performs well on both Android and iOS, we will happily include it in our platform. Until then, I think the real question is what would you like to develop for the DoubleDutch platform in React Native?

What are some of the implications for DoubleDutch partners and customers?

We are embracing React Native to such an extent in 2018 that we have a completely separate roadmap track around it with a separate set of engineers. Expect to see a lot more experimentation and rapid innovation from us built on React Native. Furthermore, every aspect of our React Native developer environment is free and open source! Any one of our partners and customers will be able to develop the same types of custom features and functionalities for their app. This is not just a competitive advantage to us at DoubleDutch, but also to our partners who are looking to leverage this to provide unique event experiences that couldn’t be realized on any other platform.

If you would like to learn more about how React Native can enhance your attendee experience, please feel free to reach out to me directly at kasper@doubledutch.me.

And if you want to check out our React Native DoubleDutch Development Kit, please tap through HERE.

Closing Thoughts

Well, that’s it for our thoughts on 2018.

Macro forces, time savings for the Planner, and React Native are all areas to watch as technology continues to take hold in a face to face world.

As always, feel free to reach out directly to me if you would like to talk shop.

Flip back to part one of this series: The Macro Forces Shaping Event Tech in 2018

Flip back to part two of this series: For Event Planners in 2018, Time is the Great Constraint

 

By Lawrence Coburn | January 11, 2018

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About the Author: Lawrence Coburn

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Founder & CEO

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