Aiming to maintain what is arguably a comparatively enviable track record in mobile, Sybase has announced its Sybase Unwired Platform 2.1 release to "fast track mobile application development". This latest release coincides with the company's appearance at its parent company SAP's TechEd user education symposium in Las Vegas this week.
Staging its own co-located developer event known as TechWave, Sybase claims to be "enriching" the mobile application development experience through significant enhancements to its software development kit (SDK) and new developer resources.
Sybase suggests that the problem at hand today is that as enterprises adopt mobile applications, they are often faced with "point solutions" not capable of accessing critical data across the entire enterprise. This release of Sybase Unwired Platform is one of the first integrated mobile enterprise application platforms (MEAPs) architected to leverage existing developer skill sets and industry standards, reducing the "heavy lifting" often required with mobile application development.
"Enterprises must include mobile as a component of their app portfolio or become non-competitive," said Jack Gold, president of J. Gold Associates, LLC. "But native and web mobile application development can be difficult due to the diversity of device types, backend systems, etc. As a result, there is a compelling need for a unified, standards-based platform to ease the process for developers, reduce overall cost, and accelerate time to delivery. The enterprise mobility market has matured and requires mobile enterprise application platforms to develop and deploy high-value apps capable of spanning across many lines of business."
Sybase Unwired Platform 2.1 and mobile SDK aim to provide a collection of new tooling, server components, and libraries that will enable mobile and web developers to more easily create a wide variety of mobile applications across various device platforms, including iOS, BlackBerry, Android, and Windows Mobile. Designed to support various types of mobile requirements, the latest platform release is planned to include support for SAP data integration through SAP NetWeaver Gateway technology. Additionally, Sybase's mobile device management (MDM) solution, Afaria, can be added to complete the platform by enabling IT to manage mobile devices and applications.
Highlights of planned new and enhanced features for developers and IT managers include:
- Standalone SDK install for easy access/download and integration with Afaria platform libraries
- OData SDK for development of online SAP mobile apps capable of accessing data and processes from SAP systems through SAP NetWeaver Gateway
- Support for multiple application types, including rich offline apps with data synchronization, lightweight online-only apps, and apps based on Sybase Unwired Platform Hybrid Web Container
SAP and Sybase today also made available new developer resources such as video training and code samples to the more than 2 million SAP Community Network members. This community provides value to the overall mobile ecosystem by contributing articles, blogs, tutorials, and forum participation.
"With an existing developer community network of more than 2 million members and an SAP customer base of more than 170,000, there is tremendous opportunity for SAP and Sybase to innovate around and execute on our on-device strategy," said Dr. Raj Nathan, executive vice president, chief marketing officer and head of Mobile Applications, Sybase. "The high interest in mobile apps and online store-like environments in the consumer space is now extending to the enterprise. However, the model requires a much different architectural approach to be successful. This marks a significant release for the entire mobile app developer community and our growing partner ecosystem, as they now have a standards-based, unified platform and community program to rally around and deliver high volumes of enterprise mobility apps."