Introduction to Appcelerator
This SyncFocus featured as guest speaker non other than Boydlee. For those who haven’t heard of Boydlee, he is a mobile application development guru and specialises in the Titanium platform who, like Beyoncé, is now so famous he doesn’t need to use his surname .
- Links with emulators for iPhone, iPad and Android
- Appcelerator has over 400,000 registered developers worldwide (a counter on their home page tells me it is just under 430,000 today)
- The libraries themselves are “Free and open source”, available on GitHub
- However, the Titanium studio is not free, and you can take the Appcelerator Paid support
- An estimated one third of cross- platform apps are built on titanium
- Claims to also support BlackBerry 10, but Windows 8 is not available until later this year
One really nice feature is a very large “Module marketplace” which is mostly compiled binary code aimed at one native operating system or the other that can be downloaded and incorporated into the build – for example something to integrate to native libraries, plugins, e.g. Barcode scanning
Appcelerator Mobile Service (ACS)
ACS is an interesting move to give a free level of Mobile (application) Back-end as a Service (MBaaS) to developers of services, running on AWS.
This includes 20GB storage, 5m push, 5m api and 20 pre built common services, including key-value pairs (similar to AWS Simple DB), Ratings, Geo services, media, including thumbnails, Social integration (Facebook) and storage of custom objects, which I think was based on Mongo DB as a service. There is certainly capability to link directly with Node and Mongo backends and simple stuff like SMTP integration (again similar to AWS’s Simple Email Service “SES”).
There are also free books online available on styling, including best practices to cascade for tablets so you don’t just get an enlarged phone experience that sucks.
Boydlee’s books are on PACKT or there are kindle versions. Boydlee’s best practices book is one I will be getting for sure.
Comparing it with the IBM Mobile First offering the coverage of mobile O/S is much wider in Worklight (Windows 8 and BB 10 were available very soon after launch), the adaptor environment, the upgrade management and enterprise app centre seem more developed and you have the whole extra wrappers of security, analytics and so on within IBM’s Mobile offering. The customer list on Appcelerator’s website is mighty impressive for consumer-oriented Apps but the ability to integrate with Enterprise back-ends is less of a focus, which is why in our case we’re focusing on IBM for Enterprise mobility but Appcelerator is certainly worth considering.
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