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Tool allows faster dev't of mobile apps for industrial IoT

Posted: 16 Dec 2015     Print Version  Bookmark and Share

Keywords:WaveMaker  mobile app  IoT  cloud 

For the most part, Internet of Things (IoT) systems feature four key elements: the edge node device, the network backhaul, the cloud-based support and a mobile app. Traditional embedded developers coming to the IoT have a good handle on designing the device and can get off-the-shelf solutions to the backhaul and cloud elements, but need outside support to develop the mobile app. Now, WaveMaker has developed an innovative tool that promises to provide that support by offering a no-code approach to creating mobile apps.

"Mobility has become important," said WaveMaker CEO Vijay Pullur, "but most folks initially jumped into writing native apps for the mobile platform. Developing and maintaining native apps quickly becomes complicated as the platforms evolve." To address this challenge, Pullur added, apps developers turned toward responsive apps based on templates that browsers read. But this approach cannot make use of the other resources, such as the GPS and cameras, to be found on mobile devices. "Now a hybrid model is emerging," Pullur said, "that provides a template-based approach with the ability to leverage the mobile device's native capabilities."

WaveMaker's Mobile Rapid App Development (MRAD) platform follows just such a hybrid approach. The tool allows developers to quickly create a mobile app by populating an application-themed user interface template with additional drag-and-drop app components from an extensive menu. The MRAD can then automatically build the code for both a desktop browser-based app and Android and iOS mobile versions. Developers need not write a single line of code to create a functioning, polished-looking app, although the tool also supports the creation of custom templates and components.

The advent of WaveMaker's Hybrid MRAD means that IoT development teams now have a quick way to generate functional mobile apps for their debug and test purposes as well as prototyping and proof-of-concept development. The hybrid approach allows these apps to leverage mobile device resources, expanding their utility beyond what a desktop app can offer. An example Pullur gave was a system that allowed the user to attach previously downloaded image files to reports in the desktop version but use the camera to directly capture and attach images in the mobile version.

- Rich Quinnell
  EE Times





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