(Original creator: bolarotibi)
Read Part 1: Enabling the Mobile App?
A new architecture for a new world
As seen in the previous post the real challenge is what lies behind the app. The solution, for many, is to move to a new type of architecture where code can be shared and re-used across many different use cases. Business logic needs to be contained in one place which all client applications reuse. Client applications become essentially UI developed for the specific environment in which they run (phone, tablet, desktop and so on). Developers only need to maintain the majority of an application’s functional requirements within a single code base around which they can build a suite of tests (such as Unit Tests), implement security and manage a single deployment process. Like the business case for hybrid the case for such a new architecture is compelling as it reduces time and cost over the Application Lifecycle. In addition it becomes faster and easier to develop and deploy new clients. One such approach is Service Orientated Architecture (SOA) which makes use of a middleware layer of Web Services. Web Services have been around for some time and there are a number of frameworks and tools for creating them both from vendors such as Microsoft and IBM and Open Source solutions.
Building for success beyond today’s mobile needs
The challenge for organisations is how fast they can move to this type of architecture to support the burgeoning suite of mobile apps that their business require. Many will look for ways to stop-gap the situation to roll out mobile apps whilst addressing the bigger architectural shift. That approach may require wasted effort as interim solutions are scrapped later but could provide useful learning opportunities. Existing technology choices will dictate how and therefore how fast this transition can be made. As we move into a rapidly changing world of devices it would behove organisations to adopt technology stacks that enable not just the ability to share data and logic with multiple user endpoints but also to be deployed to the Cloud. Smart IT functions that get this transition right will deliver significant competitive advantage and cost savings for the businesses. We are only at the beginning of a wave of new devices and functional requirements that extend applications beyond the company firewall. This is especially relevant within the enterprise which has historically been able to move slowly in adopting IT trends. Now (and increasingly going forward) they will be under pressure from inside and outside the organisation to move far more quickly. The decisions they make now to support mobile may have repercussions for some time to come.
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