Oracle today is launching an enhanced version of the service bus it uses to expose back-end applications running in the cloud or on premises to mobile applications alongside a new application development framework for building those applications.
Bill Pataky, vice president of product management for Oracle, says Oracle Service Bus 12c makes it simpler to access back-end applications using JSON and RESTful APIs that invoke back-end applications via a common service bus. With this new release, the number of connectors to third-party applications that Oracle provides has also been extended, and a new built-in distributed caching capability makes it easier to build applications that scale, says Pataky.
Other new features include support for Apache Cordova plug-ins that can be used to access a common set of APIs across multiple devices and access to more than 80 UI components that reduce the amount of low-level coding required of developers. In addition, Oracle also supports development of custom UI components using a new set of declarative tools and templates.
Finally, Oracle is providing tighter integration with the Oracle Mobile Security Suite that the company gained when it acquired Bitzer Mobile last year. That integration now provides additional support for application containerization, authentication and authorization, and integration with social networking logins. However, Pataky says that despite the integration with Oracle Mobile Security Suite, the overall Oracle mobile security strategy continues to stress the need to support integration with a wide variety of third-party mobile security offerings.
Rather than thinking in terms of single applications, Pataky says, Oracle is moving to create a platform through which the expense associated with developing mobile applications across multiple devices will become much lower. Most organizations, he notes, now need to routinely create multiple mobile computing applications. Rather than approaching each of those applications in isolation, the combination of Oracle Service Bus 12c and Oracle MAF is intended to reduce both the cost and time it takes to develop multiple mobile computing applications.
The degree to which mobile application development remains a separate discipline remains to be seen. As mobile computing becomes infused in every application, it’s apparent that support for mobile computing devices is now a standard requirement. Oracle via Oracle MAF is clearly responding to meet that requirement. But only time can tell whether Oracle MAF or any other mobile application development offering is actually a separate product or merely a feature of a larger application development environment.