Oracle has announced it intends to release an added component to Oracle BI Mobile, a tool called BI Mobile App Designer for allowing lines of business to create their own analytics apps.
No Coding Needed
As is the trend in 2013, Oracle is working to make sure business and non technical users are able to build needed tools without much technical know how. Oracle BI Mobile Designer builds HTML5 based apps for iOS, Android and Windows Phone and BlackBerry devices, and it does so using a familiar drag and drop interface.
Because it's part of Oracle BI Mobile, all the data already found there can be used in creating the apps, and the flexibility this offers is meant to empower those line of businesses. For an even deeper level of ease of use, there's an App Library so users can share apps and use already built ones as templates.
Once inside the app builder, users will find an array of formatting tools for creating image and text based briefing books, dashboards, graphs, tables and catalogs. Interactive visualizations can be built and previewed, and there's even a QR code generator so newly built apps can be run directly from a nearby mobile device for testing.
A Better App Builder
Enterprise IT vendors like Oracle should be doing more of this, we think. Establishing an easier to use framework and data layer with which to build mobile apps sounds like a truly needed thing in 2013. It simply takes too long for large companies to build mobile apps, and while HTML5 has flaws of its own, Oracle BI App Designer will likely not be the last of its kind from Oracle.
Other vendors, we're looking at you Microsoft, should heed this model of app development, and not just for analytics either. Not every kind of app will lend itself to this kind of development model of course, but allowing departments and lines of business to have access to this kind of functionality sounds like it could really free up IT time and money for other uses.
None of this solves the problem of then getting end users to use the apps when built, but at least the groundwork is laid for some of the more technical aspects of the process.