Today, 360mind employs nearly 20 mobile app developers and has moved away from building simple novelty apps to working on corporate initiatives that link both Apple iOS and Android apps to back-end enterprise systems. (For example, 360mind was the development muscle behind fast-food chain Chipotle's ordering app, which lets customers order and pay for meals on their phones.)
With no end in sight for the opportunities in mobile development, Dalton says this latest "gold rush" sends a clear message to fellow developers, system architects and Web designers: "In today's global, outsourcing economy, you don't want to be stuck with outdated skills," he says.
And there's an added bonus to mobile app work as well. "If you're coming from a multimillion-dollar enterprise server project where every decision takes forever, working on these small, self-contained projects around [mobile devices] is a lot of fun."
Higher Ed adds mobile app development to the mix
Against a backdrop of surging demand for mobile apps, Rasmussen College is one of the first higher ed institutes to launch a specialized curriculum in mobile app design and programming.
Where a traditional computer science curriculum is more theoretical in nature, the Rasmussen program is focused heavily on software engineering skills related to mobile development, explains Hap Aziz, director of the Rasmussen College School of Technology and Design.
The college offers a two-year associate's degree in software application development and a revamped four-year bachelor's degree in computer science.
Students first learn modern object-oriented programming languages such as Java and C++ and then dive into specific mobile development environments like Google's Android and Apple's iOS.
The first classes of the new programs began this spring.
Stackpole, a frequent Computerworld contributor, has reported on business and technology for more than 20 years.