Apps World 2012: 5app Toolkit runs on Android
One from Apps World I meant to write before – 5app is targeting enterprises with its new 5app Toolkit, for deploying mobile apps to a variety of smartphones and tablets (Android, iOS, BlackBerry).
Basically, a 5app ‘Engine’ has to be installed on the mobile device, and this runs natively. It can, however, run apps, built using the common interface of the 5app ‘Factory’. This can process HTML, CSS and Java using templates to simplify development, and the resultant apps are ‘Figs’ in 5app’s terminology (short for ‘configurations’), and will be compatible with any device running the 5app Engine. We’re back to ‘write once run everywhere’ thinking…
A USP for the Toolkit is its support for offline working and auto-(re)synchronisation, when wireless comms are dropped or recovered.
CTO, and founder, of 5app is Dr Tim King, a veteran of the technology market who wrote the OS AmigaDOS in BCPL – that’s before C! – and founded one of the UK’s first ISPs. He lectures at Cambridge University, The University of Bath and University College London.
“C-level executives are beginning to understand the value of having reliable mobile apps to communicate effectively with a mobile workforce,” said King. “This has resulted in software developers being tasked with demanding design briefs to develop multi-platform enterprise apps. But unlike fixed systems, the communication mechanism is unreliable and unless care is taken, data can be lost or transmitted twice.”
“The market is awash with frameworks – often free – promising easy mobile enterprise app development, so much so that virtually every brand is now offering consumers free apps. But such developments are a world away from the corporate solutions that must be integrated with legacy applications and support two-way reliable information sharing. With employees increasingly preferring to use their own mobile devices, business mobile apps must not only run across an astonishing number of mobile platforms and operating systems, but also offer the performance, reliability and availability demanded by any critical corporate system.”
The 5app toolkit is available immediately as an online service at http://www.5app.co.uk. Use of the 5app Factory to develop and test apps is free of charge, but once enterprise apps are ready for deployment there is a charge per user, which varies with the number of end users. In addition, there is a ‘freemium’ option, which allow apps to be deployed free of charge; in this case, the apps do not include 5app’s real time communications feature, but are otherwise fully functional.
The Toolkit was officially unveiled at Apps World but first saw the light of day in July – see the Press Release >>