Yesterday I started a blog series about the 5 parts of an enterprise-grade mobile environment. In the first blog of the series I described the first piece, mobile apps, of the puzzle in my post. In case you missed it, you can read the blog here: 5 Parts of an Enterprise-Grade Mobile Infrastructure Blog Series – Part 1
A reminder that there are 5 pieces that make up an enterprise-grade mobile environment and I will explain each part in this 5 part blog series. Today I will focus on the second piece of the enterprise-grade mobile infrastructure puzzle. It is the ‘ease of application development’.
Most of us enjoy the experience of a mobile app and may not realize that there is more than meets the eye. I compare the experience of a mobile app to that of a theatre show. Because I am Canadian, I will use Cirque du Soleil. For anyone that has seen one of their shows, you will agree that they are amazing. The performers and the stage are the ‘front stage’ of the production. For every activity that the viewer sees on the frontage there are many supporting that action in the ‘backstage’. For example, in the show O the timing of the props, water, performers, light music and more is all conducted from the backstage. This same concept of front stage and backstage can be applied to mobile apps.
Think about your favourite app, the user experience, the way to looks and the experience you have when you use it. This is the front stage of the mobile app which is a critical part of mobile application development. There are amazing user interface (UI) tools on the market that developers can use to create a beautiful app with an amazing front stage. I do not discount the importance of the front stage, because it is what can make or break the adoption of a mobile app, but I do argue that it is only a part of what is required to build an enterprise-grade mobile app.
Think again about your favourite app, all of the activities or forms that you use. Now think, how is it that this function exists?
To give you an idea of the types of backstage activities that occur in a mobile app, specifically an enterprise-grade mobile app, I have created a laundry list for you:
- Business application integration
- Offline access and synchronization
- Security – devices, data, content
- Administration and configuration
- Application versioning and lifecycle management
- Push notifications
- Reporting and analytics
- Multi-platform support
- Device and application registration
There are mobile solutions that developers can use to address both the ‘front stage’ and ‘backstage’ components of a mobile app. The name of such a solution is a mobile application development platform. I encourage you to read the Gartner Mobile Application Development Platform Magic Quadrant to educate yourself about this sort of solution and its critical capabilities (that include the backstage laundry list I provided).
My team and I recently created the following video that outlines how a developer can use SAP’s Industry leading mobile application development platform to ease their development efforts. Watch the video by clicking on the YouTube image below.
This concludes part 2 of the 5 pieces that make up the enterprise-grade mobile infrastructure. More to come!