* The original version of this blog post is published in IBM Mobile Frontier
As you may remember from my previous blog post, we took a look into hybrid and native development models in IBM Worklight and illustrated how SWOT analysis can help us in the mobile solution design process.
Today I will emphasize three main reasons to consider Worklight as a development platform. Although there are plenty of reasons to put Worklight into your mobile solutions, I will explain three that I think demonstrate the strongest benefits of Worklight as a development platform.
I hope the reasons listed below will answer the question, “Why should I consider IBM Worklight as a mobile development platform?”
1. Multiplatform support
Worklight supports multiple mobile platforms for development and has the ability to build once and deploy in all.
Worklight offers the strongest benefits when employing the hybrid development model, and it is designed to be able to create and build iOS, Android, Windows Phone and BlackBerry applications separately within a single Worklight project.
Consider a mobile application that has to run in all of the popular platforms. It is obvious that without Worklight we’d have to think about creating distinct project plans for each platform. Since all platforms have to be developed by specific programming languages (Java, Objective-C, C# and so on) and specific development platforms (Eclipse, Xcode, Microsoft .NET and so forth), the analysis, design, development and testing processes should be evaluated separately in the project lifecycle.
Multiplatform support of Worklight enables businesses to create cross-platform applications in a single project, and it is one of the strongest reasons to choose Worklight as your development platform.
2. Single area of expertise
Development of mobile applications regardless of mobile platforms means that you are able to create mobile projects with a development team consisting of the developers with the same expertise.
When mobile projects are developed natively and on their specific development platforms, there is always need for development teams with platform-specific expertise. For example, you will have to build a development team with XCode and Objective C skills to create a native iOS application. The case is similar for Android development and the other remaining mobile platforms. The main problem with development for multiple platforms is to build teams with different technical expertise. The other issue is that these resources are also rarely interchangable between teams.
Development by Worklight brings businesses the ease of locating resources with the same area of expertise into cross-platform mobile projects. In the worst case scenario, native coding may be required just for the device-specific cases that Apache Cordova does not support. You should be able to resolve this kind of issue with very few developers who have platform-specific development expertise.
3. Cost benefits
For the projects’ sake the most important parameter is of course the budget, and this is another area in which Worklight makes you feel comfortable.
Throughout the development phase, IBM Worklight can help you to maximize the sharing of the code base from one environment to the other, effectively reducing the costs of development, time to market and ongoing management efforts. Furthermore, multiple mobile platform support in Worklight and working with people with same area of expertise rather than platform-specific resources increases the cost benefits in the project budget.
By reducing development and maintenance costs in mobile projects, Worklight seems appealing for businesses that are looking for solutions to build a strong mobile enterprise.
For further information on the cost benefits of IBM Worklight, I strongly recommend that you download and read “The Total Economic Impact Of IBM’s Worklight Platform,” a study published by Forrester Research, Inc. A clear benefit can be seen if you compare the initial and annual costs of developing and maintaining a complex four-platform app in a native environment and on the Worklight platform.
I hope this blog post has given you a clear understanding of the main benefits and opportunities of IBM Worklight product.
Connect with me on Twitter@serkanersanli to talk more about mobile solutions.