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Alpha Software Blog

Build Hybrid Apps with One Click


What are Hybrid Apps?

According to SearchSoftwareQuality:

"A (hybrid app) is a software application that combines elements of both native apps and web applications. Hybrid apps are essentially web apps that have been put in a native app shell. Once they are downloaded from an app store and installed locally, the shell is able to connect to whatever capabilities the mobile platform provides through a browser that's embedded in the app. The browser and its plug-ins run on the back end and are invisible to the end user.

Why are Hybrid Apps becoming more common?

SearchSoftwareQuality discusses many advantages of hybrid apps. The publication explains that "hybrid apps are popular because they allow developers to write code for a mobile app once and still accommodate multiple platforms." 

Can You Easily Build Hybrid Apps?

Developers can slash the time and cost needed to produce enterprise hybrid business applications that run on multiple mobile devices and the web. Alpha Software Corporation offers Alpha Anywhere™, the complete low code development environment for rapidly developing and deploying enterprise cross-platform mobile and web business applications that run on any operating system. The apps run like native apps and deliver outstanding user experiences. Alpha Anywhere incorporates a host of powerful enhancements, including Adobe® PhoneGap™ Build integration, enhanced security, built-in support for high-quality icons fonts and design elements, and new style templates that mirrors the latest iOS7 and Android apps.

"By leveraging PhoneGap, Alpha Software customers can quickly create, update and deploy business applications that run on a wide range of devices and can leverage the key hardware features new mobile apps require." 

- Brian LeRoux, Product Manager for Adobe PhoneGap
Alpha Anywhere is a single development and deployment environment with rich design, security, integration and administrative features that slashes development time by 5 to 10 times, and simplifies the process of building HTML5 business applications. With one click, Alpha Anywhere 2.0 can then turn these HTML5 business applications into installable hybrid applications with full access to device hardware.

"We originally built our solution as an Alpha Anywhere responsive web design that worked on smartphones, tablets and desktops," said Max Hammond, CFO and Vice President at Advanced Practice Management, a medical practice management firm that provides software solutions for physicians. "Using the new Adobe PhoneGap Build integration in Alpha Anywhere, we have been able to quickly and easily transform our solution into an installable mobile business app that taps right into native hardware functionality and runs securely and responsively on any mobile device or desktop used in clinics."

The Benefits of HTML5 Plus Access to Native Device Capabilities and Deployment Through App Stores

Building HTML5 applications in Alpha Anywhere enables developers to rapidly create business applications that can run on a wide range of mobile devices and the web.
Alpha Anywhere makes it possible to create hybrid business apps with one click by fully automating the process of building Adobe PhoneGap™ apps by integrating the Adobe PhoneGap Build service, which assembles PhoneGap apps in the cloud from HTML5 and standardized native code. As a result, Alpha Anywhere preserves the benefits of HTML5 development and adds those benefits commonly found in native applications, such as exploiting hardware features like barcode scanners, local storage and contact lists.

"By giving developers — even those without prior PhoneGap knowledge — a simple and fast way to turn their Alpha Anywhere HTML5 business applications into hybrid apps, Alpha Software has made the creation of powerful cross-platform hybrid business applications a reality for even more businesses," said Brian LeRoux, Product Manager for Adobe PhoneGap. "By leveraging PhoneGap, Alpha Software customers can quickly create, update and deploy business applications that run on a wide range of devices and can leverage the key hardware features new mobile apps require."

"Using the new PhoneGap Build integration in Alpha Anywhere 2.0, developers can build impressive HTML5 business applications, transform them into hybrid business apps, and then deploy them through the Apple App Store or Google Play Store," said Dan Bricklin, CTO of Alpha Software. "We integrated Adobe PhoneGap Build so developers can build hybrid business apps from within the easy-to-use Alpha Anywhere environment."

Enhancements for Easier Development and Deployment of Responsive Business Applications

Additional new enhancements in the latest release of Alpha Anywhere include:

    • Built-in, Wizard-Driven Support for Industry Standard Icon Fonts makes it easy to choose and use high-quality icons and design elements that are rendered as fonts instead of requiring multiple bitmaps for different screen sizes and resolutions. Developers can choose from a wide variety of professionally designed icons, allowing them to get a polished look with little effort.


    • Support for Cross-Domain Ajax Callbacks facilitates getting data from third-party services.


    • Number Format Genie makes it easier to specify sophisticated numeric formatting for data displayed on the screen, such as currency, part numbers and more.


    • New Web Application Security Genie makes it easier to configure the Alpha Anywhere security framework.


    • New capability facilitates the use of cURL commands on the server, leveraging a popular library for accessing files using URL syntax.


    • Enhancements to automate support of international versions of applications.


    • Many enhancements to the List Control, including client-side group breaks, an index bar, and filtering and sorting, all of which enhance the display of lists.


    • New Style Themes to support the iOS7 and Android look, which are in addition to the existing iOS6 and many desktop themes.


    • New Quick Start Templates added to the Alpha Anywhere library.


Develop Hybrid Apps for Free

Alpha Anywhere Community Edition allows you to build hybrid apps for free

Build hybrid apps for free

Alpha Software empowers a wide range of business application developers with innovative development and deployment products that offer significant productivity gains. Alpha Anywhere is the complete front-end to back-end, prototype-to-production environment for rapid development and deployment of enterprise cross-platform mobile and web business applications. For over a decade, developers and business professionals in tens of thousands of organizations in over one hundred countries have affordably deployed enterprise applications with Alpha Software products in-house and in the cloud. 

Lots of people are talking about Alpha Anywhere
Boston Journal Recognizes Alpha Software as a Top Mobile Tech Company

About Author

Richard Rabins
Richard Rabins

Co-founder of Alpha Software, Richard Rabins focuses on strategy, sales, and marketing. Richard also served as CEO of SoftQuad International from 1997 to 2001, when it owned Alpha. In addition to his 30 years with the company, Richard played a key role as co-founder, and served as president and chairman of the Massachusetts Software Council (now the Massachusetts Technology Leadership Council), the largest technology trade organization in Massachusetts. Prior to founding Alpha, Richard was a project leader and consultant with Information Resources, Inc. (IRI), and a management consultant with Management Decision Systems, Inc. Richard holds a master's degree in system dynamics from the Sloan School at MIT, and a bachelor's degree in electrical engineering and master's degree in control engineering from University of the Witwatersrand in Johannesburg, South Africa. He has served on the boards of Silent Systems, Legacy Technology and O3B Networks, and is co-founder of Tubifi www.tubifi.com.

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