Building solid, secure, and usable mobile apps is an imperative in most organizations today. Digital Transformation objectives are driving companies and even non-profit organizations and government agencies to make all services available on mobile devices. The shift many organizations are making to mobile development is spurred by user preference. As of October 2016, more users connected to Internet resources from mobile devices, i.e., smartphones and tablets, than from desktop or laptop computers[^1].
Regardless of the method used to reach the service, users expect that their interactions with online services will deliver the same functionality, ease-of-use, and security. In other words, users want a consistently delightful omni-channel experience.
Mobile application development has its challenges:
- There are two major platforms: Android and iOS. Windows and Blackberry phones have a smaller market share. Though there are tools that allow programmers to write once and port to both major platforms, the functionality is not always the same, so those techniques don’t work for all projects.
- Screen real estate: Mobile devices are smaller, and deciding how to present information logically and consistently can be difficult.
- Usability: mobile devices are almost entirely touch-operated, making interaction with the device quite different than using a keyboard and mouse.
- Authentication: entering usernames and passwords over and over again on mobile devices can be infeasible in many situations. Fortunately, many mobile units have built-in biometrics.
- Identity: corporate issued devices or even BYOD in corporate situations need to be able to include and/or separate personal from corporate identities. Getting mobile apps plumbed in to enterprise applications and SaaS can be time-consuming.
- Authentication, authorization, and messaging functions need security. Developing security solutions one-off per project wastes development time.
- Testing mobile apps in DevOps environments can be chaotic, with different kinds of users (customers, partners, employees) running different versions of mobile apps on all sorts of hardware platforms.
Mobile application developers need standard tools, such as APIs and SDKs, to address the common features required by most all mobile apps. Such tools provide more consistent output, accelerate app development, and improve security by connecting mobile apps to existing infrastructure and solutions.
CA Technologies offers CA App Experience Analytics, Mobile API Gateway, and Mobile Application Services to help developers produce more secure and stable mobile apps rapidly.