Critical Appraisal of Qualitative ResearchRequirem Custom Research Paper Help

Critical Appraisal of Qualitative ResearchRequirem Custom Research Paper Help

Introduction Mobile application development involves the process of developing application software for handheld devices. The installing of the developed application can be during the manufacturing of the device or through delivery as a web application. Important considerations by mobile application developers are such as the hardware specifications, screen sizes, and device configurations. There has been a continual growth in mobile app development as technology continues growing, and this has contributed to the rise and growth of different companies offering application development. Choosing the right company to develop a mobile app for an organization depends on the needs of the organization, as well as the capability of the mobile app developer[1]. Companies providing mobile application development services relied on backgrounds in Symbian, Java, Brew, and other development platforms[2]. The market had small customer numbers, but now there is a wide market in mobile application development services. The research that follows analyzes three application developers to determine one that is best suited to offer services to our organization. Our project will revolve around choosing the best software technology company to go with our mobile application development technologies. The research we will be looking at each company and its functionalities, its financials, and its technologies. These aspects will better help us in comparing and contrasting each software technology and taking a decision on which one to go with in term of what we are looking for in our mobile applications. Topic statement The mobile application development market is saturated with companies offering their services due to an increasing demand for mobile applications. Determining the right company to offer the development services to an organization depends on the capability of the company s to deliver results as may be needed by the sourcing organization. Some companies in application development have their functionalities and capabilities pegged on the needs of the previous decade, yet technology is fast developing. A mobile application needs not only consider the current needs of the organization or the customer, but also the future needs and likely changes in the industry. Choosing the right developer is dependent on matching the needs of the organization to the service provider s capability. Methodology The research project involves an analysis of the functionality, technological capability, vendor strengths and weaknesses, as well as the financials. Due to the need to compare the company s capabilities and position over a period of time, the research will apply an analysis of secondary data. The research does not focus on quantitative data but on the qualitative capability of the service provider. The methodological approach will be limited to the qualitative analysis and comparison of data in the industry. Technological capabilities The three companies have different technological approaches to application development based on the different platforms they use for mobile application development. For SAP, its mobile application development system is the SAP mobile platform 3.0 that offers a range of functionalities[3]. SAP has other platforms such as the HANA, but the focus of this paper is the mobile platform 3.0. One of the important characteristics of this system is that it simplifies cross-platform application development and delivers secure applications with a high scalability for any business[4]. On the technical capabilities of its system, the platform has custom features that can be suited for any environment/business. The platform has an integration gateway enabling integration of data across different SAP and non-SAP back-ends, making it an open platform[5]. On security, the platform has end-to end security policy integration and authentication with configuration capable without a VPN. SAP s platform also provides application versioning, where a user can maintain the older version even after deployment[6]. The ease of use is capable through its open development forum enabling the building of application to desired frameworks, while the platform has the mobile application services that serve as support resources. Like the SAP platform, Oracle s mobile application framework (MAF) provides a cross-platform framework based on hybrid architecture[7]. Through the framework, Oracle delivers portable applications with rich user experiences and ones that leverage on device capabilities by leveraging on the power of HTML5, Java, and JavaScript. Oracle s MAF uses IDE integration to offer out of the box capabilities[8]. The ease of use comes from its mobile optimized user experience through the integration of 80 components to create rich application interfaces. Under the user interface layer is a more developed controller layer based on the model-view-controller architecture that enables the easy creation of complex flows. The framework also has a binding layer used to simplify the connection between business services and user interfaces, thus showing its ease of implementation and use. The Oracle MAF container has an Apache Cordova platform which is an open source providing access to the devices features. Security features are a high priority for this platform by enforcing encryption in areas such as on-device encryption, communication encryption, and SQLite database encryption[9]. Microsoft s mobile application development platform is the Microsoft Azure that provides back-end services on cloud and across different systems[10]. The platform enables the creation of apps with a streamlined user experience and this means that there is ease of use. The Azure s platform helps merge data from different systems through its aggregate multiple systems. The platform also provides the functionality of leveraging the application to the capabilities of modern devices such as the GPS, biometric security, and the camera. The usage of Microsoft Azure is largely by small to medium organizations with small amounts of data as it provides better scalability against other development platforms[11]. Functionality As the industry s top IT Company, Microsoft has an array of software products, services, and hardware devices. Microsoft offers computer system development and integration training. Microsoft Corporation has its headquarters in Redmond, Washington, and has over 99,000 employees. Paul Allen and Bill Gates founded the company in 1975[12]. The company changed its organizational structure in 2013 and developed five different operating segments. The segments include devices and consumer licensing, commercial licensing, devices and consumer hardware, and devices and consumer other. The devices and consumer hardware segment incorporates entertainment consoles and accessories, as well as Xbox gaming, video game royalties, gaming subscription and PC accessories[13]. Devices and consumer licensing segment offers licensing for Windows operating system and related software. The segment also offers licensing for original windows manufacturing equipment. For devices and consumer other segment, the operating areas are by the Windows phone store and advertising[14]. Microsoft s commercial segments have services and software used to increase efficiency and productivity of individuals, teams, and organizations. The company s commercial presence around the globe spans more than 100 countries with 16 business affiliates that generate annual revenues of 1 billion dollars[15]. SAP is a software company located in Germany and offers licenses in cloud subscriptions, solutions, and enterprise-application software products[16]. Former IBM engineers established the company in 1972 as a company dedicated to the processing of data. SAP became a listing on the New York Stock Exchange in 1998 and its operations span over 180 countries across Europe, Americas, Middle East and Africa, and Asia Pacific Japan[17]. The company s operations are maintained by 66, 572 employees with its headquarters in Walldorf, Germany[18]. SAP s business divisions are divides into the on premise business division and the cloud business division. The on premise business division provides mobile software, software, and software supporting services[19]. The cloud business division offers cloud software and its related services including the support services, educational services on cloud computing, and professional services[20]. SAP s offerings are about 25 industry specific solutions, with its internal operations being on a vertical strategy. Rather than have branches, SAP has 11, 500 business partners around the world[21]. The second top IT Company in the industry is Oracle Corporation. The company s offerings are computer hardware and service, as well as enterprise software. Oracle s operations span across the Middle East, Europe, Americas, and Africa, and Asia Pacific regions. The company s headquarters are in Redwood shores, California, and a labor force of 120,000 employees around the world supports the company s operations[22]. Robert Miner, Larry Ellison, Edward Oates, and Bruce Scott established Oracle in 1977 as a system development laboratory. The company later changed its name to Oracle Systems in 1982 and is now referred to as Oracle Corporation. Oracle s business segments are the hardware systems, software, and service segments. The software products from the company s software segment operate on both the single server and clustered server such as cloud[23]. The licenses offered to customers come with the right to upgrade and maintain the software products. The company s hardware segment offers hardware systems and related services, with the cloud segment offering cloud services, educations services, and consultations. Oracle s strength lies in its large geographical presence in 145 countries and a loyal customer base. The company also diversified its portfolio using an inorganic growth strategy through the acquisition of other companies[24]. Financial performance The financial performance of the companies mobile application system is located within their software streams. Microsoft is the world leader in software companies. The company s dominance is seen from its revenue stream of $77.85 billion in 2013. From the total revenue, 84 percent ($65.7 billion) was from its software stream[25]. Microsoft s software revenues exceed those of Oracle and SAP combined. The company s financial analysis is depicted in the table below. Oracle gained the number two spot in software sales in 2013 after surpassing IBM. The company s software revenues for year 2013 were at 29.7 billion dollars from a combined total of 34.74 billion dollars[26]. The table below shows other financial aspects of the company. The German based SAP had a revenue income of 18.9 billion dollars from its software systems stream from a total of 22.87 billion dollars[27]. The revenue stream from software accounts for 83 percent of the total revenue. Other financial aspects are in the table below. Figure 1: Microsoft s financials 2011 2012 2013 2014 2015 Revenue (USD 35, 622 37,121 37, 180 38, 275 38,226 Gross margin % 76.4 78.8 80.9 81.1 80.3 Operating income 12, 033 13, 706 14, 684 14, 759 13, 871 Net income 8,547 9,981 10, 925 10, 955 9, 938 Earnings per share 1.67 1.96 2.26 2.38 2.21 Table 1: Oracle s financials 2011 2012 2013 2014 2015 Revenue (USD 20, 233 22, 223 22, 873 20.458 23, 456 Gross margin % Operating income 9,348 12, 181 12, 336 12, 105 13, 684 Net income 8,767 7,796 8, 396 9, 433 8, 725 Earnings per share ( ?¦) 3.93 3.196 3.79 4.55 4.54 Table 2: SAP s financials Discussion The comparison of the three mobile application development companies reveals differing strengths and weaknesses in different areas. The SAP mobile platform supports a range of client architecture across different platforms. Similar to Oracle s MAF, the SAP system offers a wide integration of features through its platform. Security is a paramount feature across the three platforms by the three service providers. Each of the platforms has custom features to suit the different business needs, but SAP s system provides a higher level of customization for the business needs[28]. Although Microsoft s Azure platform has capabilities that are close to those offered by SAP and Oracle, it represents the weakest platform in terms of offerings, while SAP s mobile platform is the strongest in terms of offerings and capabilities. On functionality, Microsoft takes the lead due to its size, large workforce, and wide offerings with regards to computer and mobile application systems. The company has different segments dedicated to different organizational needs. The company has its commercial segments that have services and software used to increase efficiency and productivity of individuals, teams, and organizations. Through its software systems, it is able to accommodate larger business and customer business processes. SAP s systems have solutions to 25 industry specific issues. The industry specific issues refer to the various technological products and services offered by the company. As for Oracle, the company is the second most valuable IT Company and its offerings range from hardware facilitation to software and service capabilities. Oracle also offers its service from a single server to a clustered server (cloud). As for functionality, SAP s system seems to be more superior on the basis of the issue it addresses. A mobile app developer need not just integrate the company s business processes to the application, but should offer support services[29]. SAP serves this need through its various capabilities and support systems. In comparing the financial capabilities of the three organizations, Microsoft is by far the largest and superior company. In its 2013 revenue, the company had 77.8 billion dollars, and this surpassed the revenue output by both SAP and Oracle. Much of this revenue came from software systems that accounted for 84 percent. The implication is that the company s software systems are trusted in the industry. SAP also achieved an almost similar ratio between revenue streams from software systems and its total revenue with an 83 percentage ratio[30]. Although its revenue streams were much lower than those from Microsoft, the ratio also indicates market confidence on its software systems. Oracle has the highest value with an 86 percentage ratio, and this indicates a wider acceptability of its system. Considering the revenue output from Microsoft s software system, the indication may be that the software systems are more trusted in the industry. Recommendations Oracle is one of the market leaders in mobile application development, but its products take a longer maturation period. The recommendation is that the MAF should be attuned to faster delivery of products which is usually a need by many organizations. SAP s products as related to mobile application development should scale down on complexity and costs. The fact that the developer offers a wide range of capabilities on different architectures widens the complexity (including licensing complexity) and costs. Addressing such issues will improve the scalability of its application platform. In improving the mobile application development market, Microsoft should develop systems that are capable of addressing the needs of organizations with large data capabilities. The current Microsoft Azure platform provides scalability only for small and medium sized organization. Considering that the company s software systems are widely accepted in the industry, improving the modules and other structures to cater for larger organizations will stamp its position in the market. Therefore, Microsoft is the best choice of the three. Conclusion Considering that the organization seeking mobile application development is fast growing, the company that can address its needs is SAP. SAP offers mobile application development through its mobile platform. The strengths of the SAP platform are such as being enterprise focused, supportive of a range of client architectures, are highly customizable, integrate security features, and supports different development tool chains. Another strength that makes SAP the best choice for mobile application development is that its wide customer base shows that its offerings have been tested in diverse industries and in a range of mobile apps. The time to market is considerably faster as compared to other platforms such as the MAF by Oracle. The faster time to market by SAP s platform is due to its prebuilt SAP modules. The support services offered by SAP build on its strengths as the suitable mobile application developer. As such, SAP is the choice company for the mobile application development as its capabilities supersede those facilitated by Microsoft and Oracle. References Panorama. Clash of the titans. London: Panorama Consulting Solutions, 2012. R2G. The market for mobile application development services. 2011. Retrieved on March 5, 2016 from https://research2guidance.com/wp-content/uploads/2015/08/The-Market-for- Mobile-Application-Development-Services-2010-15-Preview.pdf BBC Consult. Mobile technology. 2015. Retrieved on March 5, 2016 http://www.bbconsult .co.uk/Expertise/MobileApplications/MobileTechnology.aspx SAP. 2013 annual report. 2014. Retrieved on March 5, 2016 from http://www.sap.com/ bin/sapcom/en_us/downloadasset.2014-04-apr-01-01.sap-2013-annual-report-pdf.html Smith, Aiden. Unbiased comparison of SAP Oracle, Microsoft Dynamics. 2013. 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