Light Reading

App Development for Dummies (and Journalists)

Sarah Thomas
4/16/2013
50%
50%

Dutch startup AppMachine wants to turn anyone into a mobile application developer, whether they know a single line of code or not.

The company has already helped 19,000 build and design apps online, and now it's opening up its platform to everyone in an open public beta. That means that your mom, a blogger, the local coffee shop, or even global DJ Armin van Buuren can build a custom app to submit for publication in the Apple and Google Play app stores.

The startup says it learned from user feedback and questions in its closed beta and has improved the service, making it simple to design, develop, test, and publish apps. This is something I can attest to as I spent the morning building my own app. The process is easy to use and ties in with all of your Web properties, so it's simple to integrate your social networks or, in my case, content from Light Reading.

Nokia has offered its version of a build-your-own-app platform since 2010 for the Ovi App Store, now rebranded as Nokia Xpress Web App Builder.

These services are fun to use, and I can think of at least two people (mom; dad) who would download my app, but what's interesting about them is juxtaposing them next to the operators and GSMA's app initiatives. Looking at their history in the apps space, you'd think getting an app built and deployed took moving mountains. AppMachine, and other services like it, is here saying, "you can do it with a few minutes and a few clicks."

Granted, the apps built through a process like this won't have the deep level of integration that operators can offer through application programming interfaces (APIs), and they may be hard to get published in an app store (especially Apple's walled garden), but they should serve as a reminder that the old world order no longer reigns. Moving slowly, offering expensive services, or imposing stringent requirements isn't going to cut it in a world where anyone can develop an app.

— Sarah Reedy, contributing editor, Light Reading

(5)  | 
Comment  | 
Print  | 
Newest First  |  Oldest First  |  Threaded View
Lipi Akter
50%
50%
Lipi Akter,
User Rank: Light Beer
6/6/2013 | 7:24:38 PM
re: App Development for Dummies (and Journalists)
this is great information for a publisher like me as i was in deep trouble when i was looking for a good application. but i as able to find an application that i have used in publishing of my kitchen magazine through PressPad www.presspadapp.com
SarahReedy
50%
50%
SarahReedy,
User Rank: Blogger
4/16/2013 | 4:05:58 PM
re: App Development for Dummies (and Journalists)
Thanks for the feedback, seven. I agree with you about speed and quality. That's why I envision the operators building native apps that need a high degree of security and reliability and probably aren't free -- which is why enterprise apps are a good target. Platforms like AppMachine are good for those individuals, pubs or SMBs that want to build an app and extend their presence to mobile, but aren't banking their business on it. But, like you said, you never know where or from whom the next Angry Birds will come from...
brookseven
50%
50%
brookseven,
User Rank: Light Sabre
4/16/2013 | 3:01:46 PM
re: App Development for Dummies (and Journalists)
Hi Sarah,

I think the biggest thing is and will be the speed/quality changes presented by these new tools and methods. -áTelcos have been very heavy on development time and quality which leads them to use/deploy/make products and services that scale to big audiences. -áNewer forms of development make personal/small group products and services more and more possible. -áSome of these turn into big deals (see Angry Birds) but most don't. -áIt is almost impossible to predict a priori what will happen with these new items. -áI think it makes the dichotomy between the older stolid development and the newer form grow larger by the day. -áBOTH have their place (nobody wants a Router developed by something like AppMachine), but I come back to the notion that trying to cross that gap will become increasingly harder.

As to your robustness comment, one thing to think about is this. -á10 versions of the Appmachine developed app might be available and used in some quantity before the older style became available. -áThat means that likely the initial users will have acted like QA and the bugs found/fixed. -áThe early users and momentum will be taken before the solid app becomes available. -áI think this first mover advantage is going to be huge.

seven
SarahReedy
50%
50%
SarahReedy,
User Rank: Blogger
4/16/2013 | 2:26:32 PM
re: App Development for Dummies (and Journalists)
My feeling is that apps built via this process will never be as robust or tightly integrated as those built on APIs and using network assets. AppMachine, and companies like it, aren't a threat to the operators, but rather a good reminder. I think the operators are also targeting the enterprise space more (or at least they should be). Security will be a big concern there.
More Blogs from Que Sera Sarah
A survey of more than 450 Light Reading readers suggests that fragmentation and a lack of standards is the biggest challenge for service providers wanting to participate in the space.
As indoor small cells start getting deployed at scale, attention is turning toward what else can be done with the base station, including exploring location-based services.
RootMetrics says Sprint has passed T-Mobile in overall network performance, thanks in large part to its improved voice and text quality, but data will be most important going forward.
Sprint CEO wouldn't comment on the rumor that it plans to buy some of RadioShack's stores, but the move makes sense as the carrier looks to expand its distribution this year.
Artemis isn't waiting for 5G standards to work themselves out; it says its technology, pCell, can solve the spectrum crunch right now. But is it too good to be true?
Flash Poll
From The Founder
The New IP is actually bigger even than business. Like another hugely important tech that Light Reading is digging into right now, the New IP has the potential to change the world by fundamentally advancing what it is possible for people to achieve with communications.
LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
Huawei Shares Its Vision of the Future of Mobile Networks Innovations

2|26|15   |   2:30   |   (0) comments


Mobile broadband is changing our lives. It's reshaping the Internet, industry, and society. It allows us to freely connect with one another anytime, anywhere. At this year's Mobile World Congress, Huawei will share its latest insights and newest ideas and technologies that will shape the future of MBB. They will showcase their end-to-end MBB solutions that will ...
LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
Accelerate Digitizing, Boost Digital Business

2|26|15   |   6:14   |   (0) comments


A new digital revolution is leading us to a better connected world. Together with millions of digital partners, Huawei will help CSPs to build their digital service ecosystem and aggregate a wide variety of digital services. In this video, we find out how Huawei is going to help CSPs implement digital operations.
LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
The Secret Recipe to Enabling Hyper-Growth Industries

2|26|15   |   3:38   |   (0) comments


With a number of successful cases on network capability exposure, Huawei is going to share the secret recipe to enabling hyper-growth markets with a step-by-step approach.
LRTV Documentaries
BTE 2015 Is Bigger & Even Better

2|25|15   |   03:13   |   (4) comments


This year's Big Telecom Event (BTE) in Chicago is going to provide more opportunities than ever for networking, getting to grips with key industry challenges and opportunities and, equally as important, having some fun.
LRTV Interviews
Light Reading ICT Leaders Roundtable at MWC 2015

2|12|15   |   1:07   |   (2) comments


On Sunday March 1, 2015, Light Reading will host an ICT Leaders Roundtable in partnership with Huawei. At this half-day event, CIOs, analysts and researchers will discuss key industry trends like virtualization in the cloud with a specific focus on new business models. Located at the luxurious Renaissance Hotel near the Fira Barcelona, space is limited so please ...
LRTV Documentaries
Going Green in 2015

2|12|15   |   02:04   |   (0) comments


Energy efficiency is set to be an incredibly hot topic in the telecom industry this year.
LRTV Custom TV
SDN & NFV: Where Are We Going From Here?

2|11|15   |   11:27   |   (0) comments


Vitesse Semiconductor CTO Martin Nuss gives his perspective on why SDN and NFV should be tightly interconnected and how he sees the industry moving forward.
LRTV Documentaries
Time for Gigabit Europe?

2|9|15   |   01:27   |   (4) comments


Gigabit broadband networks are springing up all around the US and they'll soon become more commonplace in Europe.
LRTV Interviews
Brocade Brings New IP Vision to 2020 Vision Executive Summit

2|3|15   |   4:23   |   (0) comments


In December 2014, Light Reading gathered telecom executives in Reykjavik, Iceland to discuss their vision for high-capacity networks through the end of the decade. The intimate, interactive meeting was set against the backdrop of Iceland's spectacular natural beauty. As one of the event's founding sponsors, Brocade's Kelly Herrell shared his company's strategy at ...
LRTV Interviews
Brocade's Kelly Herrell on the New IP

2|2|15   |   12:36   |   (0) comments


In December 2014, Steve Saunders sat down with Brocade VP of Software Networking Kelly Herrell at Light Reading's 2020 Vision executive summit in Reykjavik, Iceland. They spoke about Brocade's approach to the New IP, the future of the telecom industry, and more.
LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
Dr. Dong Sun Talks About Carriers' Digital Transformation & Huawei’s Telco OS

1|29|15   |   6:28   |   (0) comments


Dr. Dong Sun, Chief Architect of Digital Transformation Solutions at Huawei, discusses how telecom operators can become digital ecosystem enablers and deliver optimal user experiences that are in real-time, on-demand, all-online, DIY and social (ROADS).
LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
Huawei's Chief Network Architect Talks about Network Experience & Operators’ Strategies

1|29|15   |   3:39   |   (0) comments


In the digital age, network experience has become the primary productivity especially for telecom operators. In this video, Wenshuan Dang, Huawei’s Chief Network Architect, discusses how carriers can tackle the challenge of infrastructure complexity in order to enhance business agility and improve user experience.
Upcoming Live Events
March 17, 2015, The Cable Center, Denver, CO
April 14, 2015, The Westin Times Square, New York City, NY
May 12, 2015, Grand Hyatt, Denver, CO
May 13-14, 2015, The Westin Peachtree, Atlanta, GA
June 8, 2015, Chicago, IL
June 9-10, 2015, Chicago, IL
June 9, 2015, Chicago, IL
June 10, 2015, Chicago, IL
All Upcoming Live Events
Infographics
Net neutrality, broadband services and the current outlook on data consumption, as presented by the New Jersey Institute of Technology.
Hot Topics
Cyber Security Expert Warns: You're Doing It Wrong
Sarah Thomas, Editorial Operations Director, 2/23/2015
10 Weirdly Useful IoT Devices
Eryn Leavens, Copy Desk Editor, 2/24/2015
Small Cells Enabling Location Services
Sarah Thomas, Editorial Operations Director, 2/25/2015
Is FCC Weighing Net Neutrality Changes?
Mari Silbey, Independent Technology Editor, 2/25/2015
MWC: Let the Madness Begin
Ray Le Maistre, Editor-in-chief, 2/23/2015
Like Us on Facebook
Twitter Feed
Webinar Archive
BETWEEN THE CEOs - Executive Interviews
Check out Light Reading's interview with Jay Samit, the newly appointed CEO of publicly traded SeaChange International Inc. With a resume that includes Sony, EMI, and Universal, Samit brings a reputation as an entrepreneur and a disruptor to his new role at the video solutions company. Hear what he had to say about the opportunities in video, as well as the outlook for cable, telco, OTT and mobile service providers.
G'day! And welcome to an entirely new feature on Light Reading -- our weekly "CEO-to-CEO" interview.