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Back-end integration a challenge for enterprise mobile apps

Red Hat survey shows enterprises struggle with DIY approach to back-end integration

Back-end integration a challenge for enterprise mobile apps
Enterprises face challenges from back-end integration and security when it comes to their mobile apps, according to a Red Hat survey.

Enterprise IT organisations are facing challenges with security and back-end integration when it comes to developing mobile apps, according to a survey from Red Hat.

The study found that 73% of organisations are using enterprise mobile apps in some way, but that security (45%) and back-end integration (43%) are the main challenged to development. UI/UX design (35%), team collaboration (34%), and cost (24%) were also cited as challenges.

The majority of organisations (55%) are taking an inhouse approach to back-end integration, relying on external sources such as libraries, marketplaces and vendor services, to develop custom back-end integrations, custom-developed back-end integrations coded from scratch, or a mix of both.

Less than one third of respondents (30%) are using mobile application platforms and Mobile Backend-as-a-Service (MBaaS), with one in five (20 percent) using application programming interface (API) management. In addition, 20 percent of respondents either use existing middleware technology or an API from their back-end software vendor to connect their mobile apps.

The study also considered the rise of the Internet of Things, with the majority of organisations surveyed saying they expect IoT to impact their business.

Most businesses are acknowledging the growing relationship between mobile and IoT by actively planning for the next wave of integration that will be required by connected devices. While 21% of organisations have already incorporated IoT projects into their business, more than one in four (28%) plan to do so in the next year, and 70% plan to do so over the next five years. Given the demonstrated pain point of back-end integration, companies should focus on a solution that effectively integrates IoT.

Despite the attention on mobile and IoT, 60% of respondents said they are prioritizing maintenance of core systems and applications. This points to shadow IT as an increasing trend, where the business bypasses IT to create and use their own apps.

Cathal McGloin, vice president, Mobile Platforms, Red Hat commented: "As organisations shift to become more mobile-centric, back-end integration is where many are hitting a wall-the back-end presents myriad challenges, while other challenges such as security continue to be a concern. In order to solve these mobile issues, organisations should look to maximize efficiency by leveraging mobile platforms to accelerate development while reducing complexity."

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