Employees are bringing more and more mobile devices to the enterprise, requiring companies to determine how they can best satisfy employees’ business needs while encountering varying operating systems.
Marcio Cyrillo, head of mobile strategy at Ci&T, explains that companies view the influx of mobile devices in the workplace as an opportunity to increase productivity and also to communicate to employees that the company is on the cutting edge of technology, encouraging employees to work remotely as well as on site. They want to embrace mobile because they know it is here to stay.
While we will still need a desktop for certain tasks, mobile increasingly provides businesses with useful tools and enhances productivity. “This is where we are headed: integration with legacy systems and corporate systems providing me the right information wherever I am, in the right context. This is how mobility can really transform the industry, making companies more competitive and very targeted. Our teams are more efficient because they have the right information in the right context,” says Cyrillo.
Clients started approaching Ci&T saying they no longer wanted to develop for iOS only; they wanted something that could be deployed to both iOS and Android. While it was sometimes challenging at first to develop on non-native platforms— they used PhoneGap and Titanium, which they were already familiar with—they were able to overcome them and carry out successful hybrid development.
Hybrid development is a useful approach for companies wanting to streamline their mobile development practices, though it doesn’t allow for applications to perform exactly the same way as when they are developed on native platforms. “But for companies, it’s a fantastic thing because now you have one source code and then two tweaks, or two implementations, just a small part of it, to make the source code deployable on different platforms. For companies, it’s the best approach right now because you don’t need two teams working on the same application.”
Now HTML5 is the standard for hybrid development, according to Cyrillo. It does have some limitations, but some of those will change with iOS 6. Still, Cyrillo sees HTML5 as being more important for mobile Web applications in the future, “millions of people will be coding with it and not even realize what is behind it.”
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