The State of Application Development 2024
June 27, 2024

The state of application development in 2024 shows further trends toward cloud development, open source, microservices and AI/ML integration according to the 2024 State of Application Development Report from Docker.


Source: Docker

Key findings of the report include:

Growing reliance on cloud during development

When asked about their main development environments, responses illustrated the increasing shift toward cloud-based environments. While 64% of respondents still primarily develop locally on their laptops or desktops, there is a notable trend toward remote environments.

Challenges and opportunities

The report identified key areas where development teams encounter obstacles in the development process, such as planning (31%), estimation (24%), and designing (22%). Additionally, 28% of respondents indicated a need for better planning tools, while 20% reported getting stuck during debugging/troubleshooting and testing phases.

Microservices and security

Microservices adoption continues to trend upwards, with nearly three times more respondents transitioning from monolithic architectures to microservices than the reverse. However, the shift-left approach to security remains a challenge, with 34% of responses rating security tasks difficult and 25% seeking better tools for security/vulnerability remediation.

Open source contributions

The report underscores the importance of open source software in the developer community, with 59% of respondents contributing to open source projects in the past year. Among those who did not contribute, 72% expressed interest in doing so in the future.

AI/ML Integration

As previously reported in Docker's AI Trends Report 2024: AI's Growing Role in Software Development, the integration of AI/ML in development processes is becoming mainstream, with 64% of respondents using AI tools for tasks like writing code, documentation, and research. Junior and mid-level developers, as well as DevOps/Platform Engineers, show higher dependency on AI compared to their senior counterparts.


Source: Docker

Methodology: Over 1,300 developers were surveyed in the report, conducted in the fall of 2023. The online survey collected data on the tools used by developers, their application development processes, challenges, opinions on industry trends, Docker usage, and engagement in developer communities. Out of the 1,300 participants, 885 successfully completed the survey.

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