Brand New App Builder UI, New Model and Storage feature, Upgraded REST Service and Mapping Editors And More

Posted: September 21st, 2014 | Author: | Filed under: Uncategorized | Comments Off

The Appery.io platform was upgraded with a number of new features. This is an overview of what’s new.

First, we got a new splash screen…!

load_screen

Brand new Appery.io Visual Builder UI

The Appery.io Visual Builder UI was totally redesigned; now it’s more modern and stylish with a moderate touch of minimalism:

new_builder_ui

With the new styles, we improved the readability and intuitiveness of the Appery.io Visual Builder environment to make the long work in our IDE more comfortable.

The tool bar was not only changed visually, but also has some functionality improvements. One of the main changes is that the “Test” button was moved to the left:

ui_improvements

Also, the page orientation changing buttons were moved slightly lower to the page editor area:

orientation_changing_buttons

There are many more visual upgrades in new version of Appery.io, so make sure to try it out!

Model and Storage

Until this release, the Appery.io builder caused developers to use UI-centric data flow design. It’s good enough for small apps but for big apps, the necessity for another abstract layer that specifies data structure is greatly increased. With the introduction of Model and Storage, we give Appery.io developers a different and more structured data flow approach. By using the Model, you can describe any entity and its attributes, for instance a Car, an Order, an Insurance Claim. Then you can create Storage variables based on existing Models to store and manage appropriate data.

You can access Model and Storage in the same place as App settings – under the Project folder:

m&s_folder

Let’s imagine that you need to build a mobile MusicShop app:

There is a single collection called “instruments” that contains data about musical instruments: the name, price, a short description, the availability and a photo:

instruments_collection

Based on this information, you can create a model that will describe this collection:

instruments_model

Now you’ve got a strict and fixed data structure that should come into the app, which minimize errors (For example, accessing non-existent properties). Based on the musical_instrument model (shown above) you can create a Storage variable that will store incoming data as an array. This way you’ve got the predefined variable structure what gives you great flexibility in managing, adding and removing data.

local_storage_variables

Use Models to design the data structure in your Appery.io apps before starting an app development. Organizing your app by using such an approach takes a little time, but its totally pays off by minimizing the number of page UI rebuilding, edits of JavaScript logic and database collections. The main idea of the Storage and Model is to create an app structure before the actual development. It’s a time- saving and reliable way to manage your data inside the app. And with the use of the Mapping feature, you can manipulate your data between the pages, dialogs, popups and any other components without the need to reload it from the server each time.

Improved mapping editor

The mapping feature has also undergone major changes. Mapping was rethought and shifted to the event-oriented side. Now, when you create a datasource based on any REST service, you can see all the possible REST service events – Before send (ex. Request), Success (ex. Response), Error and Complete, and each event can trigger an arbitrary number of actions. There is no more “Edit mapping” button now; instead, you should add a Mapping action on any of those 4 events. Mapping actions for Before send and Success are created automatically because they are the most frequently used actions:

rest_events

Inside the Mapping action, you can see the two block of elements located on the left and on the right.

Mapping is still done via drag and drop:

mapping

However, unlike the old mapping, you can choose a Mapping source – a set of data which you want to bind to or from. This way you can map a service response. For example, you can map to a Storage variable by checking “Storage”:

map_to_storage

In summary, the mapping becomes more flexible and functional with full backward compatibility – all the old Request and Response mapping will be translated to a Before send and Success events respectively.

Improved REST service editor

The Appery.io REST service wrapper was complemented with a couple of new features too:

  • Request parameters were divided into three tabs: Headers, Query String, and Body (only for POST, PUT or PATCH methods):

request_tabs

  • Response parameters were divided into two tabs: Headers and Body.
  • Response parameters now support all possible JSON data types, such as String, Boolean, Number, Null, Array and Object:

json_types

  • Request and Response parameters now can be batch imported by using the Import feature:

parameters_import

App builder versioning

Due to the major and fundamental nature of the Appery.io changes, we’ve decided to temporarily maintain both the old and new builder versions. All of your existing apps will not be converted automatically to the new builder, so you need to do it manually. You’ll see a warning message with an “Upgrade” button that you should click to start using the new Appery.io Visual Builder:

warning_message

We will automatically create a backup version once you upgrade your app so you can switch back to the old builder in case of problems or errors. However, new Appery.io version contains many features and bug fixes, so you will need to upgrade your app as soon as possible. We will stop supporting old version in the future, and you won’t be able to open the app any more if it wasn’t upgraded.

We strongly recommend thoroughly retesting your app after the upgrade. In rare cases, the app may require additional coding and/or fixing due to the complexity of the app (such as custom JavaScript or modified app source code). Our support team will do their best to help you with any issues. You can find a list of possible issues and ways to solve them here.

Find us on social networks such as Twitter and Facebook, and of course, feel free to suggest your ideas via our forum.


Maintenance Window on September 21 [Completed]

Posted: September 17th, 2014 | Author: | Filed under: Uncategorized | Comments Off

Update: see what’s new.

Please note that we will be upgrading Appery.io with new features on Sunday, September 21, starting at 12:00am Pacific Time (midnight on Saturday night). Both the development environment and backend services will be unavailable for about 2 hours, from 12:00am until about 2:10am Pacific Time as we complete the upgrade.

We apologize for the inconvenience. If you have any questions, please contact us at support@appery.io.

What we have been working:

  • New app builder UI
  • Improved REST API service editor
  • Improved mapping editor
  • App builder versioning

We will post more about the new features on this blog once the update is completed.

 


New Weather API and Geolocation App Example

Posted: September 15th, 2014 | Author: | Filed under: API | Tags: | Comments Off

Since we know developers love examples, we’ve just added one more! When you create a new app, you can base it on the new Weather API and Geolocation Example. When you create a new app, click “More Create Options” to see the list of available examples:

Screen Shot 2014-09-15 at 3.34.50 PM

The example app demonstrates a number of features:

  1. How to use a 3rd part API – Weather Underground. You do need go sign up for a free developer account and set the API key.
  2. How to use the Geolocation service.
  3. How to handle different service responses (when an airport is found or not).
  4. How to show UI components on page based on a condition.

The app works in two modes. First, you can enter any 3-letter airport code to show the weather information:

Second, instead of using the airport code, you can also use the Geolocation service. It will determine your location and use that to show the weather information (for this to work in a web browser, make sure to allow location tracking for the domain appery.io):

Screen Shot 2014-09-15 at 3.40.40 PM

 

Happy app development in the cloud!

 


Video: Building Enterprise Mobile Apps Fast with the Orchestrate Database and Appery.io Development Platform

Posted: September 15th, 2014 | Author: | Filed under: API, Database, Enterprise, Events, Partner, Video, Webinar | Tags: , , , , , | Comments Off

This is a recording of the webinar we did with our friends from Orchestrate. This video shows how to build a Contacts mobile app in Appery.io connected to Orchestrate database.

Here’s what’s covered:

  • An overview of Orchestrate features and dashboard
  • Inserting sample data into the Orchestrate database from the dashboard
  • Appery.io platform overview
  • Creating app UI using the visual drag and drop editor
  • Connecting to the Orchestrate database via REST APIs
  • Binding the REST API services to pages using the visual binding editor
  • Testing the app
  • Publishing as a mobile web and building a binary for Android
  • Q&A


Maintenance Window on September 14 [Completed]

Posted: September 11th, 2014 | Author: | Filed under: General, Maintenance | Comments Off

Please note that due to an Amazon-required server migration, Appery.io will be undergoing a mandatory maintenance update on Sunday, September 14, starting at 12:00am Pacific Time (midnight on Saturday night). Both the development environment and backend services will be unavailable for about 2 hours, from 12:00am until about 2:00am Pacific Time as we complete the migration.

We apologize for the inconvenience. If you have any questions, please contact us at support@appery.io.


Appery.io Launches in China, Continues Rapid Global Growth

Posted: September 10th, 2014 | Author: | Filed under: Enterprise, General, Partner | Tags: , , | Comments Off
Appery.io surpasses 150,000 developers, partners with Zagama to expand to APAC region

Appery.io, the first mobile platform to offer a cloud-based rapid development environment with integrated backend services for the enterprise, today announced its partnership with Zagama, a leading app development company in Asia. This collaboration aims to accelerate time to market and will extend Appery.io’s innovative mobile cloud service platform, technology support and professional platform management to the APAC market with Appery.asia. Additionally, Appery.io and Zagama together will raise the whole market value for Appery.io in the Asia area.

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Slide Panel App Example

Posted: September 9th, 2014 | Author: | Filed under: Features | Tags: | Comments Off

We just added a second template called Slide Panel App Example in addition to the Tabbed Pages App Example we published last week. When you create a new app, you can base the app on this template and use it a great starting point. The app has a Panel menu which slides from the left, and allows you to navigate to three pages. The Panel is configured via page templates. This simplifies app development as you need to make changes to navigation only in one place.

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Tabbed Pages App Example

Posted: September 4th, 2014 | Author: | Filed under: Features | Tags: | Comments Off

Developers love to look at examples. A very nice feature in Appery.io platform is that you can create a new app based on an existing example/template. We just added a new Tabbed Pages Example and will be adding more soon.

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Appery.io – Your Ticket to the World of Mobile Development

Posted: August 25th, 2014 | Author: | Filed under: General | Tags: | Comments Off
Want to develop mobile apps, but don’t know how?

With the proliferation of mobile devices and increased demand for mobile apps in the enterprise, many developers have switched their interests to mobile development. Even those who are not familiar with the craft of mobile development have considered or tried to create a mobile app at some point. But to be perfectly honest, mobile development is challenging. If it was easy, everyone would be building apps and experienced developers wouldn’t enjoy such high demand. In reality, you need to have pretty strong background using technologies such as HTML, JavaScript, and CSS to build even the simplest mobile app. This is not even considering the various frameworks you would need to learn, on top of everything else. 

If you are not a traditional developer but want to a build a mobile app, you have to follow a challenging routine of learning endless set of information, libraries, frameworks and other tools. Of course, such an approach gives your more low-level control over your code, but the chance that you will lose interest before you build something is rather high.

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Learning How to Build Mobile Apps Videos in German

Posted: August 15th, 2014 | Author: | Filed under: Video | Tags: | Comments Off

Our Youtube channel has over 80 videos, and we are happy to announce we now have videos in German. Our German partner Objective has created videos that you can view here (click on PLAYLIST – top left to see the playlist):