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Today, things like mobile email, calendaring and BYOD are commonplace in the enterprise. But the next step -- building and distributing applications that will be used in an organization -- has taken much longer to materialize.
This slow adoption is understandable, given the results enterprise users have achieved with consumer-grade mobile applications. However, it's worth realizing there are tools that can be used today to speed up the delivery of enterprise mobile applications.
A leader for rapid mobile application development in the enterprise is Capriza Inc., a development platform that essentially connects to web applications you already use.
The development of a Capriza application starts with linking to a web form, then linking the functionality of each element in a web application into a new mobile application. In this model, enterprise mobile applications based on Salesforce, SAP, SharePoint and other commonly used software can be created extremely quickly.
A Capriza app can be created wherever there is a web form. The problem with Capriza, however, is that their reliance on web forms and not APIs is actually a stumbling block, as they do not include support for APIs.
Office 365 PowerApps
Microsoft has realized that Windows is dying, and the organization has made a smart move to cloud and mobile-centric services. That move includes changes to Office 365, Microsoft's poster child for collections of tools and services that can be accessed anywhere on any device. A new addition to Office365 is PowerApps, a tool to quickly build mobile apps for the enterprise.
PowerApps is similar in concept to Capriza, the big difference being how data is consumed and moved in PowerApps. It uses a concept called Data Connector to connect to websites, APIs and Office 365 tools. The connections are very flexible and support the "must have" API model for modern mobile design. The movement of data in a PowerApp tool leverages Flow, a competitor to If This Then That.
Creating apps with PowerApps is very easy, but it does have its limitations. It is clear that PowerApps is very new, as the product will sometimes stop working due to a bug or a change in code. As with Capriza, PowerApps' usability should improve over time.
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