Mobile app developers to embrace cloud back-end services
By 2016, 40 per cent of mobile application development projects will leverage cloud back-end services, causing developers to lose control of the pace and path of cloud adoption within their enterprises, according to Gartner.
Cloud mobile back-end services provide a specialized form of platform as a service (PaaS) to support mobile application development. These cloud services — referred to by Gartner as “mobile back-end as a service” — will provide back-end capabilities for mobile apps such as user management, data storage, push notifications and social network integration. They can also allow developers to deploy server-side code.
“Cloud mobile back-end services stand to become a key component of the application development ecosystem,” said Gordon Van Huizen, Research Director at Gartner. He pointed out that as the use of cloud services for apps increases, challenges around security and the use of sensitive corporate data will also become more apparent. Therefore, organisations using these services without fully understanding the issues can encounter security risks associated with app infrastructure. Therefore, Van Huizen recommended that organizations need to be informed and educated about relevant issues.
Prior to the use of cloud mobile back-end services, Van Huizen recommeded that clear policies must be established and communicated to developers by applications that may access corporate or customer data. He added that a significant amount of enterprise application development takes place outside the scope of IT in the form of business unit application development, end-user application development and development outsourced by business units to third parties.
According to him, the advent of more sophisticated rapid mobile application development environments, the availability of cloud services and increased access to enterprise systems will expand the potential for non-IT developers to build applications that commingle sensitive corporate data with cloud-based services and storage. It is, therefore, necessary to extend awareness of the issues to the broader organization, as well as the organization’s policies for cloud services, so that mobile applications built outside IT are subject to the same oversight and governance as those built within IT.
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