The end of the year is a great time to reflect on the last twelve months and to start getting excited for the coming twelve. In many ways, 2018 was a pivotal year for Ionic, both on the open source side and for the company as a whole.
On the open source side, the Ionic team shipped some major new OSS projects that are a culmination of years of effort and planning. A major weight has been lifted off our proverbial shoulders as we shift from building to, now, scaling these projects. And, so far, the overwhelming support and feedback from the community has blown us away.
Ionic, the company, also had a huge year both financially and commercially. In 2018 alone, we added some amazing companies like Amtrak, AAA, GE, a top five global fast food company, and nearly one hundred more enterprises as customers. We couldn’t be prouder that these companies found Ionic’s technology such a significant asset in their mobile strategy that they became customers this year (see how we can help your team too).
Finally, the Ionic community continued to grow and create a ton of incredible apps and awesome content. All told, Ionic developers created over three million apps, shipped 40M live updates with Ionic Appflow, and helped our official slack channel surpass 22K users. We launched an official Ionic Community Digest with monthly links to community-created content, rolled out our official Ionic Community homepage, and so much more.
So, with that, let’s dig in and walk through everything that happened this year, starting with the most recent news first:
- The Ionic Framework 4 release candidate shipped! With 4.0 final following closely behind…
- We also released Ionic Enterprise Engine to help mid-to-large sized companies get the technology and training they need to build mission-critical apps with confidence and security. Meaning, customers of IEE get peace of mind knowing that the version of Ionic they’re using and the native plugins they rely on will be supported, plus key enterprise functionality, like biometric authentication, will be done right. Interested in learning more? Get in touch.
November was “launch month” for us, and we announced a ton of significant new products
- Ionic was invited to AWS re:invent to announce our new product, Ionic Studio (our powerful, local IDE), which helps make building apps easier and faster than ever before. Watch my talk, here.
Ionic Pro was rebranded to Ionic Appflow, and we reaffirmed our focus on helping teams with key Mobile DevOps functionality needed for successful deployment of Ionic apps.
Capacitor, Ionic’s new native layer alternative to Cordova, got a 2019 roadmap with a hint to the future of the project and how it will integrate into the Ionic experience in 2019.
- I shared some thoughts on why we’ve doubled down on the web stack, and our plans to work with whatever tools and platforms web developers choose to use.
- We let slip 🙊 that official React support for Ionic is happening!
- Ionic’s very own Matt Kremer talked about launching his own Pokemon Go app with Ionic, using Appflow to quickly test and push updates to hundreds of thousands of users. His app, GO Ranger, went on to become one of the most popular Pokemon Go companion apps, globally.
Ionic Identity Vault, an enterprise-ready authentication solution for Ionic apps, was launched.
After unsuccessfully appealing Apple’s decision to remove Ionic View (Ionic’s app testing tool) we made the hard decision to sunset the product. Apple indicated the move was part of a larger decision to remove app testing tools and promote TestFlight as the official alternative.
We relented and then wrote a guide about using TestFlight with your Ionic apps.
- Ionicons v4 was released, paving the way for icons to be distributed as web components instead of cumbersome web fonts. Ionicons is Ionic’s massively popular, free and open source icon set, and shows no signs of slowing.
- Ionic’s PWA Guide was released, helping teams learn about Progressive Web Apps and why they should consider building one.
- We talked about using Skeleton Screens to improve perceived performance of your Ionic apps.
- Capacitor 1.0 alpha was announced.
- Ionic’s official PWA Toolkit was released, helping developers quickly build Progressive Web Apps with best practices baked right in.
2018: The Year of the Web
In 2018, we saw the Renaissance of the Web with all major browsers shipping support for key APIs that enable web apps to run with native capabilities— making them a compelling alternative to native apps on mobile and desktop. These apps are known as Progressive Web Apps, and they are hot (need more proof?).
In 2019 we expect this trend to continue and we are doubling down on making sure that Ionic becomes a major platform on which teams choose to build as the web gains new capabilities and expands its reach.
Nearly every decision we’ve made this year is in pursuit of this vision, and this relentless focus on the web will continue to guide every decision we make next year, too. It really matters that Ionic is web-native and continues to be a major way web developers build and ship quality, cross-platform apps.
From all of us at Ionic: We thank you, the wonderful community, for making this the best job in the world. All of your support, kind words, testing, and feedback keeps us going and helps make Ionic the best it can be.
And finally, to the Ionic team: It’s been a blast working with each and every one of you to transform Ionic from an incredible open source project to an entire company that helps teams build and scale their app development capability on Ionic.
I can’t wait to see what next year has in store.
Here’s to an awesome 2019! 🎉
-Max Lynch | Ionic CEO