msc mobile emerging technologies blog

Pizza - OR - What's wrong with today's Enterprise Mobile Platforms

Posted by Alexander Ilg on Aug 9, 2016 1:21:34 PM

This blog is comparing pizza with enterprise mobile platforms. It is discussing the difference between homemade pizza, frozen ones, hand written software and one created by drag and drop.

Let's first look at pizza. There is a party and the host wants to serve pizza to his guests. What is easier for the chef - homemade pizza or frozen ones? And what is more enjoyable for the guests - homemade or frozen pizza? Depending on your point of view, the choice can be different.

Handwritten enterprise mobility apps look like this!

Now let's look at software. There is a company that wants to give its users an enterprise mobility solution. What is easier for the developer - home made, hand written software or something quickly done via a drag and drop tool? And what is better for the end user - hand written code or drag and drop? Depending on your point of view, the choice can be different.

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Homemade pizza and hand written software allow the producer to optimize the product until it is perfect. The less limitation the chef or the software developer has, the better for the one eating the food or using the software.

Today unfortunately I have the feeling that many enterprise mobility platform vendors are too much focused on pleasing the chef/developer and too little about the user. Many vendors offer drag and drop tools that allows even business consultants to create simple apps on the fly and to publish them with a few clicks in the App Store. At first this sounds great and like a step in the right direction. But we all know that the frozen pizza in the box does not really look like the one shown on the outside. It is the same with these development tools. As soon as you have more complex requirements like the integration with 3rd party apps, you very fast reach your limits. Can the app be optimized in case of performance issues? Can it be tailor made in every aspect to fit perfectly to the business processes it should support? This is never the case.

Look at the great mobile apps from Apple, Google, Facebook and Microsoft that you use daily. They are all hand written to deliver the perfect user experience. Look at SAP - their Fiori apps are all developed by writing code, not by drag and drop!

Write your mobile app in ABAP, drag and drop your mobile app into existence. That is maybe possible for very simple problems, but does not work for complex requirements and apps with a high data volume. In my opinion the only way that can satisfy the end user 100% is to hand write mobile apps and by using tools that are not limiting the creativity of the developers. 

And just like real chefs like to prepare home made pizza, real developers prefer an editor and real code anytime over some limiting drag and drop tool.


Topics: Enterprise Mobility, SAP