Showing 1-20 of 90 products
TestRail Test Case Management is a cloud-based platform that allows users to manage, track and organize software tests. TestRail Test Case Management’s key features comprise modern test management, test results tracking, reporting,... Read more
Twixl Publisher is an application development platform designed to help businesses of all sizes build native apps and define and manage their interface and navigation. Features include push notifications, access control, custom URL... Read more
SpreadsheetWEB is a cloud-based application development solution that allows users to generate apps using Excel spreadsheets. It is suitable for educational institutions, insurance companies, investment firms, startups and more. The... Read more
Knack is cloud-based database management portal software that allows companies to build online databases that can be accessed remotely. Key features include an application builder, customization tools, reporting and analytics, an open... Read more
Zoho Creator is a cloud-based database solution that helps organizations create customized applications, automate processes and store application data. The solution enables professionals to access data from remote locations using any... Read more
Assembla is an on-premise and cloud-based software development platform that helps manage and secure files with Git, SVN and Perforce platforms. Designed for development in the game, health care and industrial industries, it helps... Read more
Visual Studio is an application development solution that helps businesses create web, mobile, Mac and Windows-based applications and games. It allows developers to streamline processes related to debugging, testing, and deployment... Read more
Featuring G-Suite and GCP, Google Cloud is a platform that provides a reliable and easy-to-use set of solutions that can be used to tackle the toughest challenges in any type of industry. It provides secure storage options, integrated... Read more
Bitbucket is a collaborative Git solution that allows users to review codes with pull requests. Users can have discussions with coders in the source code with inline comments. The software provides a multi-deployment option as it can... Read more
Appy Pie is an application development platform that enables users to create mobile applications compatible with operating systems such as Android, iOS and Windows mobile OS. The solutions creates applications for a variety of industries... Read more
Notepad++ is a Windows-based solution that helps application developers create and edit source codes in multiple programming languages, such as Python, Matlab, Ruby and Verilog. The sessions functionality enables team members to create... Read more
InVision is a cloud-based digital product design platform that helps development professionals and businesses of all sizes create and manage prototypes. It allows users to collaborate, test and experiment with designing templates and... Read more
Anypoint Platform is an application development solution for organizations that are looking to integrate applications, data sources and devices using application programming interfaces (API). The solution is suitable for industries... Read more
AppSheet is a mobile app builder that helps users create iOS and Android apps from the data pulled from spreadsheets or cloud services. Users can extract data from multiple sources including Box, DropBox, OneDrive and Google Drive... Read more
Codenvy is a workspace platform for development and operations professionals. It enables users to edit, run and debug code. It offers cloud-based and on-premise deployments. When users begin a new project, production runtimes are... Read more
Bizness Apps is a cloud-based application development solution designed for small businesses. Users can configure pre-built applications designed for food ordering, push notifications, mobile shopping carts and appointment scheduling. Bizness... Read more
Docker is an on-premise and cloud-based application development platform that helps businesses build, test and share containerized applications and microservices. Using the Docker Engine, professionals can run and distribute developed... Read more
Twilio is a cloud communication platform as a service (CPaaS) solution that enables businesses to engage customers across all communications channels such as SMS, Video, Voice, Chat, and other channels using fully programmable APIs.... Read more
With support for over 1,600 software components and frameworks, Essential Studio streamlines the creation and implementation of high-performance UI components for web, desktop, and mobile applications. As a comprehensive UI creation... Read more
Research has conclusively shown that just because you build an application doesn’t mean your customers or your employees are actually going to use it.
The mantra in digital business these days is “fail fast.” So, if you choose to build an app, you need to get it out there in the world ASAP. App development software makes development easy, so you can get your app to the sink/swim phase and hopefully give it a few nudges to help it swim.
We’ll cover the following basics about app development software so you can make an informed purchase. Here’s what we’ll cover:
What is App Development Software?
App development software has existed for decades. Software environments like .NET allow for interoperability of programming languages across diverse OS ecosystems and application stacks, while integrated development environments (IDEs) speed the work of software development by providing a single graphical user interface (GUI) for various development tasks: editing code, compiling code, deploying applications etc. Finally, bug tracking software allows developers to manage and resolve issues with apps.
Applications can be deployed on desktops, mobile devices or via web browser. Many app development platforms facilitate the development of all three types of apps, but some cater exclusively to one or another. You’ll want to make sure the products you evaluate support your type of app development.
The term “app development software” is somewhat vague. In fact, businesses often use an app development platform, which is a whole suite of interrelated tools for creating apps. You can buy some of these tools separately, but smaller businesses will typically settle on just a single vendor for the platform.
App development platforms cover all the phases of development: design, coding, backend integrations, usability/bug testing, delivery (e.g., to online app marketplaces/storefronts) and post-deployment analytics. Additionally, mobile app development platforms support the delivery of app upgrades as well as paid licensing models for apps.
App analytics platforms, while central to the mobile app development process, are a healthy market unto themselves. That said, analytical capabilities are found in many app development platforms, and these should be robust enough for many standard use cases. Trickier use cases involve considerations such as Internet of Things (IoT) devices, which present beastly data integration issues.
Let’s take a brief look at some of the most important features app development software offers in these areas.
Common Functionality of App Development Software
The follow functions can be found in app development platforms and tools:
|Integrated development environment (IDE)||A graphical user interface for source code editing, compiling, and debugging.|
|Code-free development||Especially useful for mobile app designers; features drag-and-drop interfaces, wizards and other visual interfaces for app development that allow non-technical users to build apps without writing code.|
|Prebuilt, templated apps||Typically, mobile app development software features templates for common app use cases (banking, field service, employee facing etc.)|
|Hardware compatibility testing||Allows you to preview how the app will display on multiple device types and operating systems, either via software simulation or pushing the app preview to actual hardware devices.|
|API||Mobile app development platforms sport RESTful APIs that allow developers to integrate the functionality of the platform with back-end services and databases.|
|Data synchronization||App development software enables the synchronization of data created by apps when they’re offline with online services.|
|Mobile app analytics||Gathers data about how users are engaging with the app after it’s deployed to spot bugs and opportunities for improvement.|
Benefits of App Development Software
App development software offers a number of benefits, including:
- Faster development time. This is of course the major reason to invest in an app development platform. Complex apps will still require some custom development work, but by automating or eliminating much of the code-writing process, app development platforms allow businesses to bring apps to storefronts more quickly.
- Backend data integration. Connecting apps with backend services and databases can be tricky, but app development software makes integrations easier by providing user-friendly APIs for this purpose.
- Visual development environment. Without an app development platform, business users with no programming skills can’t build apps. App development platforms feature templates and visual development environments to enable any business user to create apps.
- Hardware compatibility. Typically, app development platforms integrate with native SDKs (software development kits) for iOS, Android etc. This means that developers have access to the hardware features of various smartphone platforms without going through the native SDK. Additionally, the usability testing that app development platforms enable allow developers to spot potential design problems before the app is launched.
- UI/workflow design assistance. The various features that app development platforms offer for automating development enable developers to focus on the user interface and the workflows/user experiences it supports.
What Type of Buyer Are You?
Typically, app development software buyers fall into two categories:
- DevOps buyers. These buyers need to focus on the customizability of the code that app development software generates, since developers will typically need to expand and edit pre-generated code. DevOps buyers should also focus on the backend integration services supported by the app development platform.
- Line of business buyers/“citizen” developers. These buyers should focus on the visual interfaces that app development software offers for app development. They should also examine the number of templated apps that app development vendors offer for common business use cases and industry verticals (entertainment, healthcare, banking etc.).
Market Trends to Understand
Rapid App Development. This technology refers to the coding-free technologies for app development that we’ve discovered throughout this buyer’s guide - visual wizards, prebuilt app templates, drag-and-drop interfaces etc. The goal of platforms specializing in rapid app development is to enable normal business users to design and deploy apps with minimal IT involvement. These platforms are particularly aimed at digital businesses in which marketing departments, customer service departments etc. need to launch apps quickly in response to emerging opportunities.
Integration Platform as a Service. Integration Platform as a Service refers to the emerging market for cloud platforms for data integration, including backend data integration for apps. While many app development platform vendors offer backend data integration services, a separate integration as a service may be required for more complex deployments.