Interview: FileMaker liberates iOS for enterprise app development

FileMaker Cloud helps make platform a go-to tool for agile enterprise app development

Yet another enterprise-focused Apple effort, FileMaker recently introduced a cloud-based platform that makes it much easier to develop and run custom apps for any business.

Apple in the clouds

FileMaker Cloud is a new platform that aims to provide everything you expect from FileMaker while also making it easier for organizations to develop and maintain their own mobile apps. It lets you build apps to run securely and rapidly across Mac, iOS and Windows systems.

[Also read: Apple products ‘essential to the modern workforce’ – Deloitte]

“Our cloud offering allows [customers] to focus on creating apps for their specific business needs without worrying about upfront hardware expenditures and ongoing server maintenance,” explained FileMaker’s VP worldwide marketing, Ann Monroe.

To learn a little more about the solution, I spoke with Andrew LeCates, director of platform evangelism at FileMaker (a wholly owned Apple subsidiary) to find out a little more about the solution. We really want to help teams change the way they work.  So we carefully think through all the details of the cloud, so that you don’t have to,” he explained.

Q: What is FileMaker Cloud and how do you use it?

“FileMaker Cloud provides secure, reliable access to your custom apps in the cloud. With it, organizations can develop and manage custom apps without having to spend valuable time and resources deploying and maintaining a server. Data is managed by FileMaker Cloud and runs on Amazon Web Services (AWS) Cloud.”

 Q. Why does it make a difference to SMEs and enterprise pros?

“With FileMaker Cloud, there’s no need to worry about upfront hardware expenditures and ongoing server maintenance. When you have immediate or seasonal needs, you can scale up and you can scale down when the peak period subsides.”

 Q: In comparison with other app development solutions out there, what do you feel are its main unique advantages?

“The FileMaker Cloud offering enhances our trusted FileMaker Platform.  With the FileMaker Platform, anyone can make their own custom app even without extensive development experience or IT skills. The same custom app can be shared across iPad, iPhone, Windows, Mac, and the web.

“Since it is built on AWS infrastructure, developers have flexibility with resources. They can give it more processing power or reduce it, or add more hard disk space, for instance. In fact, one of our developer partners, Soliant Consulting, has said that ability to scale the server seamlessly is one of its greatest features.”

Q: How important is security in the cloud??

Cloud security at AWS is their highest priority, their data centers and network architecture are built to meet the requirements of the most security-sensitive organizations,” he explained. “The FileMaker Platform offers a full suite of security options. This includes the ability to encrypt all data communications with SSL and encrypt data at rest.”

Q: How will this inform the wider evolution of digital transformation across the enterprise?

“The Harvard Business Review recently ran a report that claims, ‘We need to expand our definition of entrepreneur to someone 'who sees an opportunity to create value and is willing to take a risk to capitalize on that opportunity’.’ FileMaker Cloud makes it easy for more people to be entrepreneurs by this definition.  The FileMaker Platform lets people you harness the full power of mobility to transform the way we work.”

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Copyright © 2016 IDG Communications, Inc.

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