Multi-platform Application Development
APV’s Emerging Technology Lab Powers-Up Using Multi-Platform Development
Multi-platform development enables the creation of software products or applications for multiple platforms. It also encompasses software environments or channels such as web, mobile, tablet, and kiosks. We have several channels available to access business critical applications. These include mobile, tablets, and a variety of options via web browsers. Supporting each one of these channels becomes challenging if the application is not written or designed while considering target channels. A variety of users with unique needs and different devices increase maintenance and operational difficulties.
Multi-platform applications resolve issues by writing “code once” and supporting multiple platforms. We have several technology choices available including Flutter, React Native, and many other low-code and no-code development frameworks and tools. In this article, we will focus on the benefits of using such frameworks and tools.
The following are some of the benefits achieved using the multi-platform application development approach.
The frameworks are created with specific parameters that require the author to write code once that can run on multiple channels. Creating the framework using these parameters speeds up development and decreases maintenance. We spend considerable time developing designs using our user-centered design approach to design for different channels. An example includes a mobile display that uses smaller resolution as compared to a tablet display. All of this is considered before embarking on development.
Parallel Launch on Various Channels
By designing and launching on multiple channels and platforms, you can reach millions of users using mobile devices and it requires less effort and time.
To achieve efficient maintenance, base framework must be kept up to date since different operating systems, especially mobile, are advancing their features and frameworks to meet ever-changing demand. These up-front efforts make maintenance easier and turnaround to address new features faster.
With the development speed multi-platform development brings, your time-to-market for each platform is shorter than if each app was created from scratch. You do not need to keep a software development team for each platform, which results in considerable cost savings.
The challenges of using multi-platform solutions are dependent on the framework you are using. If the framework is not keeping up with pace of operating systems such as iOS, Android, or web mobile browsers, you may face issues as your application may show problems when the versions are upgraded. For example, if you are using native mobile features and the framework you are using is not supporting features supported in the latest OS, you will see unresponsive or slowness in those features. Multi-platform application development frameworks also support plugins. You will need to ensure you maintain the latest plugins or a way to fix them if the provider of the plugin is not updating them regularly.
Multiple frameworks could be used for multi-platform application development. These include:
Apart from the above technologies, there is also low-code and no-code development tools such as: