Thursday, April 19, 2012

Enterprise Mobility, Re-usable Code and Private App Stores

Gil Bouhnick
A few years back when I was the CEO of a mobile enterprise application company, I spent a lot of time asking my PSO (professional services organization) the question, "Haven't we developed that before?"  The answer was nearly always, " Yes, but it won't work on this project."  That is not the answer a CEO wants to hear.

The dream I had was to own a library of reusable code or objects that I could build once, and leverage on hundreds of future mobile projects.  This week I read an article by my friend Gil Bouhnick, about ClickSoftware's new ClickAppStore.  This is the model I had always wanted.

It is not an app store for the public, it is a private app store for your internal developers and consultants.  Here is how ClickSoftware describes it, "The ClickAppStore is designed to allow IT people, system implementers and administrators do more with their ClickMobile product by downloading and embedding business apps inside one powerful mobile foundation called ClickMobile, and run them on any popular device out there from iPhones and Android smartphones to tablets, rugged PDA’s and laptops."

This isn't going to help IT departments that don't use ClickMobile, but it offers a huge efficiency for those that do.  ClickMobile is integrated with SUP (Sybase Unwired Platform) and plays nice with SAP.  The ClickAppStore solution that Gil is writing about and promoting in his article is designed to help companies develop the majority of their mobile apps by using visual configuration tools, wizards, drag & drop style editors etc, and downloading pre-build business apps front he ClickAppStore.

I am thinking through the requirements here...  This must have taken a lot of strategy sessions before this was built.  I love the notion!

The concept of a mobile app store for use internally is another important part of a complete mobile strategy.  Again, from a former technology CEO, it will drive you crazy if you have to rebuild and re-invest in the same tools over and over again across your global company.  It makes so much more sense to use a standard IDE (integrated development environment) and MEAP (mobile enterprise application platform) for your custom mobile applications, and then save the mobile business applications into a mobile app store so other internal parties can use them.

Kevin Benedict, Independent Mobile Industry Analyst, Consultant and SAP Mentor Alumnus
Follow me on Twitter @krbenedict
Full Disclosure: I am an independent mobility analyst, consultant and blogger. I work with and have worked with many of the companies mentioned in my articles.