Growing Demand For Data Visualization
Written by Janet Swift   
Friday, 19 January 2018

A new survey of Trends in Web Technologies confirms that web technology is now the backbone of application development for most companies  and reveals that data visualization is one of the most important capabilities in web application development.

The global survey of of web development professionals was conducted in December 2017 by Dimensional Research on behalf of Sencha, now a division of Idera, that provides tools including ExtReact and Ext JS, that accelerate web application development and solve productivity problems. It attracted responses from 1,345 respondents with responsibility for building B2B, B2C and internal applications:


Ninety-five percent of respondents reported they experienced challenges in getting web apps to market, the greatest of which was application complexity (39%) followed by lack of sufficient development resources (27%), web application testing issues (17%), and design delays (13%). Developers responsible for B2B web apps cite complexity as the most frequent challenge (46%) whereas it was a challenge for only 29% of those responsible for apps used only by employees or partners.



Respondents were asked to rank the importance of  the desktop as a platform for web apps:



Commenting on this the report states:

According to most news headlines, mobile is king and desktop is dead. While this may be the case for some consumers, many business users are multi-screen users, switching between smartphones, tablets, and desktops depending on the business activity.
When respondents were asked about the importance of desktop as an application platform, 79% said desktop apps are absolutely essential to their business — making desktop the top ranked platform in the category. The second highest is smartphone (41%) followed by tablet (31%). It’s evident that desktop apps remain absolutely essential to the business, especially for large enterprises. 

Comparing results for the December 2017 survey to a smaller one conducted a year ago leads to the conclusion that companies are adjusting their priorities to support more mobile usage. The percentage of respondents who characterize smartphone apps as absolutely essential increased from 37% to 41%, and for tablets apps the percentage increased from 29% to 31%. One the other hand those that said desktop apps were absolutely essential dropped very slightly from 81% to 79%.

The survey also found even mobile apps are expected to have a lifespan of at least three years and by comparing the 2016 results there has been an increase in the number of mobile applications that are expected to be around for more than five years.


The number of those reporting that tablet apps will have a lifespan of more than five years and the number reporting a similar expected lifespan for smartphone apps, both increased by 20% in only a year. This is a sizeable jump in mobile application longevity and demonstrates the need for easy maintenance of mobile apps over the long haul.

One point that emerged strongly from the survey is the ever increasing need for data visualization. 


Key points from the report are:


  • 78 percent say the need to visualize and analyze complex datasets is expanding
  • Both D3 and Pivot Grids have seen a 25 percent increase in use within the past year
  • Demand for data visualization is shifting from back-end issues to user-issues

Commenting on the survey,  Diane Hagglund, founder and principal of Dimensional Research stated:

“These results overwhelmingly confirm web applications are here to stay as a top IT priority for modern business.
As sophisticated, data-intensive web applications continue to proliferate, developers are seeking capabilities that can organize and analyze complex datasets with greater ease and efficiency.”


More Information

Trends in Web Technologies (pdf)


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Last Updated ( Thursday, 18 January 2018 )