Essential guide to mobile application platforms
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Organizations need more than a handful of apps to enable productivity, but building all these apps can be a complex and expensive undertaking.
Enterprises can turn to mobile app development platforms (MADPs) to speed up app deployment and streamline efforts, while minimizing costs and reducing risks.
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MADPs provide organizations with a platform for building and implementing mobile apps without the need to invest in internal infrastructure to connect apps with back-end systems. Many MADP providers take a codeless approach to app development, offering developers modules and templates in user-friendly interfaces and drag-and-drop capabilities. These templates also allow IT to distribute and manage apps across multiple operating systems.
As such, technical or non-IT staff with little development experience can use MADPs to create simple apps in a matter of minutes.
App development made easy with MADPs
Mobile apps are a much different animal than their desktop counterparts. Mobile apps often have to support multiple operating systems and device types. They must be easy to use on small touchscreens, support frequent updates and remain secure enough to provide access anywhere, anytime.
Building and deploying mobile apps requires compatibility with various mobile platforms, management throughout their lifecycles and ensuring they remain updated and secure. Setting up such an infrastructure in house takes a significant amount of time and resources, before you ever even build the apps. Mobile apps also require a certain amount of development expertise, depending on the complexity of the app.
The MADP approach removes much of that burden by providing everything developers need to build apps quickly and cheaply. Reusable code uses drag-and-drop components to make it easier to assemble apps when compared to building them from scratch. Plus, developers can customize the apps without worrying about back-end systems or implementation details. MADPs offer connectors for enterprise data access and services for offline support, network connectivity and security as part of mobile backend as a service.
As a result, staff with less technical expertise can develop their own simple apps, leaving the professional developers to focus on creating more complex apps faster. Plus, the cross-platform nature of MADPs makes it possible to create apps that run on different devices without developers learning multiple code languages or builds for different infrastructures.
MADPs also let organizations scale more easily, without investing in short-term development resources like contract developers. The quick and easy development also translates into fewer financial risks, because the company doesn't have to invest in app dev training or hire additional staff to acquire the necessary expertise.
A MADP enables the enterprise to develop apps, support more mobile device users, release new apps more often and get it all done faster -- at a cost less than in-house development. However, an organization may not need all these capabilities, nor is it likely to find a MADP that meets all the features IT might want to include in the apps.
Before investing in a MADP, organizations should evaluate the cost of the service and the apps across their entire lifecycles. With the right MADP, enterprises can customize apps to meet specific business requirements and build apps so simple that even non-developers can create them.
Use cloud infrastructure to develop mobile apps