Technology is constantly evolving. In an industry like Information Technology, each day throws up a new problem, tackled by an innovative revelation. While the development in this arena is pretty divergent, the underlining motivation remains unchanged. The need to create a quicker and simpler solution. However, whether these ‘quick solutions’ that have entered the market are leading developers astray or are leading to the pinnacle of app development is debatable. A lot of the industry gurus recommend sticking to conventional coding platforms rather than experimenting with the new low code ones. In this column, we will be analysing this rising trend in an attempt to understand if this model would suit your application.
First let me quantify what I mean by a low code development platform. Analysts estimate that low code development platforms available today reduce the time required to build a function to one fourth of what a conventional platform would demand. Even conventional app developers use a lot of code reduction tools like widgets, templates, APIs and plug-ins. A low code development platform would just take this to a new level, by collecting these tools and bringing them together such that they are sufficient to handle every facet of application development.
A low code development platform has three main components.
Visual Development Tools
The aim of the platform is to reduce coding to the bare minimum. Conventional coding is replaced with visual representation of information and control flow. This allows both the developers and the clients to play around with User Interface, designing data models and the application and process logic. Basically, anyone can use it to design their application.
Repository of Tools
The platform must come along with an App Store of quick development tools like widgets, templates and plug-ins. It basically enables developers to re-use previously created functions, rather than re-write it again themselves.
Full App Life-Cycle Support
The name can be misleading. These platforms in addition to allowing you develop apps also facilitate all processes in the entire app development life-cycle. Everything like designing, building, deployment, iteration and management can be done here. Some platforms even allow you to manage your social media collaborations via it.
This development style is gaining popularity among people as it encourages everyone to build their own applications. However, since it is still in its early stages it does not offer all the functionality you would require in an app. It fails to give the freedom and large canvas that conventional app development does. If you are looking to build a simple test app however, do experiment with the low code development platforms.