This is the era where the world is rapidly shifting towards adopting digitization. This increased the dependency on complex software applications to perform tasks efficiently. Businesses, working on deadlines to satisfy the needs of the customers, are facing more challenges when it comes to completely developing a fully functional application. This has led to the development of low code application platforms. A low-code application platform consists of a variety of tools that virtually enables the complete development and delivery of applications. The rising adoption of these platforms has been mentioned in Gartner’s list of emerging technology trends.
With low-code application platforms, the need to write thousands of lines of error-free code with complex syntaxes, a complete application can be built using high-end interfaces, integrations, logical analysis and visualization. In short, applications can be developed at a faster rate with very minimal need for hand coding.
Characteristics of low-code platforms
A low-code platform dramatically reduces and simplifies the development process right from development to deployment. Having the right development platform can provide a cutting-edge advantage to enterprises. The characteristics of an efficient low-code platform are as follows.
Typing out the entire program manually has become highly complex as there are thousands of lines of code in a typical software application. The manual process is also very time-consuming. Using a low-code application platform, developers can easily develop applications visually by also reducing the time to launch the application.
A low-code platform must enable developing applications under one environment and deploy them anywhere. At present, there are various environments like iOS, Android, Windows, Mac, Linux, etc. Deploying the same application across these environments needs some major to minor changes in the code. But in a low-code environment, all of these changes happen in the background making the deployment process easy.
Stability and security
During the initial stages in the usage of low-code platforms, they were mainly focused on small-scale and less critical applications. But at present, these platforms are being used for enterprise-grade applications. Hence an effective low-code platform must be stable, secure and compliant with regulatory requirements.
Market trends and adoption rate of low-code platforms (2020 – 2025)
According to a report, the global low-code application platform market was valued to be around $13.2 billion in 2020. This value is expected to reach around $45.5 billion by 2025 with a CAGR of 28.1% between 2020 and 2025.
When it comes to the adoption of low-code platforms, the BFSI sector is expected to contribute majorly more than any other industrial sector. This is because of the requirement for market services and the large amount of information produced across the organizations.
By usage, web-based applications contribute a fair share towards driving the adoption rate of low-code platforms. In region-wise adoption, North America contributes the most followed by Europe, Asia Pacific and the Middle East.
Challenges of low-code application platforms
Although a low-code platform helps in seamlessly developing applications faster, most of these platforms come with tradeoffs. For instance, if it is time to scale, then the integration with existing applications and the performance of the platform under rare circumstances would be affected as the result of functional and non-functional requirements.
In most cases, low-code platforms require a lot of work that can rather be automated. They have a steep learning curve and a longer time to value. Additionally, most of the platforms do not adapt themselves to support the emerging technology trends. Considering the fact that the field of cloud computing alone has evolved so much in the past decade with the emergence of serverless computing, microservices, etc, this could be a major challenge for enterprises that are planning on rapidly scaling up their operations.
Hence to address these issues, enterprises have to look beyond just adopting low-code platforms. They have to look for an approach that does not include just the low-code platform but involves it along with other tools and features. It should be able to automatically automate dependency analysis, debug and compress files to be uploaded to mobile devices. It must also be able to check for regular change points and remove redundant and repetitive processes from the development cycle.
Major players in the development of low-code platforms
Out of the various low-code platforms in the market, below are some of the best low-code application platforms.
Quickbase is one of the most recognized low-code solutions across various business verticals around the world. This platform is specifically designed to unite business and IT teams without deeper coding skills to work together securely and sustainably. Quickbase enables companies to accelerate their innovation at a massive scale. Quickbase is very user-friendly and makes it easier to track end-to-end process automation and gather data from various points throughout the business.
Oracle APEX is a robust low-code development platform that is capable of greatly reducing the complexity of mobile application development for both developers and enterprises. APEX can reduce the difficulty of developing applications by 98%. This platform can also be used to reduce errors, accelerate development and minimize maintenance costs.
APEX also offers an easy drag and drop feature and an impeccable graphical user interface. This platform also produces results within a matter of minutes without the need for complex deployment steps.
Zoho is one of the popular names in the business environment. Zoho creator is a cross-platform low-code application developer that enables businesses of all sizes to develop effective mobile and web applications regardless of the type of environment. Zoho creator offers exceptional security, access to various development tools and seamlessly integrates with existing tools and applications.
Innovations are now an integral part of every business. With constant technological advancements, companies must equip themselves with the right tools to adapt to emerging technologies. With low-code application platforms, the need to depend on manual coding is greatly reduced. With the right platform, it is possible to quickly develop applications with minimal coding requirements and debugging tasks. Enterprises can also be able to reduce the pressure on their IT teams and develop more agility between the teams.