In researching a development whitepaper that I’m soon to publish, I’ve been struck by how development is now a strongly bifurcated role – there is a segmentation of needs and skills between those building for the backend – who need to think about scale, DevOps and stability, and those building for the frontend who worry about UI, UX, multi platform and form factor. While it’s undeniable that there has always been a distinction between frontend and backend roles, my contention is that this is becoming stronger.

An announcement today from FeedHenry speaks to this fact. FeedHenry provides cloud-based Mobile Application Platform solutions that ease the development, deployment, integration and management of secure mobile apps for business. Their mobile platform-as-a-service allows apps to be developed in HTML5, JavaScript, and CSS and deployed across all major mobile devices from a single code base. The node.js backend service offers a complete range of APIs designed to simplify and secure the connectivity of mobile apps to backend and third party systems which is where this announcement comes in –  they have just announced the creation of a mobile application platform build on top of the Cloud Foundry PaaS. In articulating the need for a solution like this, FeedHenry speaks to my contention about the different development roles saying that’;

developers are building mobile frontend applications separately, and integrating with backend services manually. To leverage the benefits of PaaS for mobile applications, developers need a way to develop, deploy and scale these cross-platform applications on the PaaS in a seamless manner.

Essentially this integration sees FeedHenry continue focusing of frontend functionality, and abstracting much of the backend responsibility to a PaaS provider and in doing so reduces the need for their customers to spend time worrying about infrastructure-level issues. Jerry Chen from VMware speaks to the coming together of frontend and backend operations that offerings like this bring saying that;

We are seeing a shift to mobile-first development within enterprises, which requires their PaaS solution to provide an integrated mobile development and deployment platform. FeedHenry’s cross-platform mobile development solution can make it easier and faster for Cloud Foundry developers to build and deploy these applications.

Of course simply integrating frontend and backend development platforms doesn’t answer all the issues around bringing together these two worlds. But with tight integration, at least the technical barriers to a more cohesive development framework will be overcome. FeedHenry looks to be a good step in this direction.

Ben Kepes

Ben Kepes is a technology evangelist, an investor, a commentator and a business adviser. Ben covers the convergence of technology, mobile, ubiquity and agility, all enabled by the Cloud. His areas of interest extend to enterprise software, software integration, financial/accounting software, platforms and infrastructure as well as articulating technology simply for everyday users.

1 Comment
  • This is a great case where a multi frame work platform like cloud foundry would be highly beneficial to developers. All the backend is abstracted and that allows mobile developer to focus on their core value.

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