There’s no denying that the world of digital connectivity has expanded. Where once digital interaction was effectively limited to email correspondence, modern digital channels have expanded to encompass a significantly wider range of options. Now, when consumers want to connect with the organizations they do business with, they have an ever-growing list of potential channels to choose from. And probably more than any other advance of the last decade, the rise in mobile computer technology has made this possible.

Mobile computer usage continues to grow from year to year, while desktop use declines, and research suggests that there will be approximately 10 billion mobile connected devices in use by 2018. With mobile smart devices, customers now have the freedom to engage with businesses wherever, whenever, and with whatever platform or channel they choose.

However, this presents a unique concern for modern businesses.

The Apple or the Android?

Mobile computing is heavily reliant on apps. Simply put, these self-contained programs are the software that drives the hardware that makes up the extended functionality of every mobile smartphone and tablet. But consider the devices themselves.

As anyone who’s ever had to listen to a heated Apple vs. Android debate can attest, not every device runs on the same operating system. And while Apple and Android may be the two most well-known options — according to Gartner, 99.6% of new smartphones rune either Android or iOS —  they are by no means the only ones available. Windows, Blackberry, and other operating systems still retain loyal mobile users, and these users still want the freedom to connect with businesses.

Organizations that use custom apps to connect with their clients are therefore forced to make a choice. Do they design their applications for use on one specific operating system and risk alienating a broad portion of their audience, or do they build their apps multiple times so they can be sure to reach users on every potential platform, exponentially increasing their development spend in the process?

Neither option is particularly attractive. No business wants to intentionally neglect any percentage of their customers, and no business is likely to disregard the drain on resources that comes with designing, implementing, and testing apps targeting multiple operating system platforms.

Luckily, there is a third option: cross-platform mobile development.

What is Cross-Platform Mobile Development?

Cross-platform mobile development is a concept that revolutionizes application development for business. Instead of putting all of their development efforts towards a single platform, or having to build several version of the same app for use on multiple platforms, businesses can now create applications that are capable of running on all major platforms.

How? By taking advantage of a growing number of tools and frameworks, such as the Salesforce Platform.

Salesforce Is the Key to Cross-Platform Mobile Development.

The Salesforce Platform is built on the same technologies that have made Salesforce the world’s number-one CRM solution, and have consistently earned the recognition of thought leaders and industry giants over the past decade and a half.

The Salesforce Platform is a cloud-based PaaS option that makes it possible for organizations to build apps quickly and at low cost. Userfriendly drag-and-drop tools, templates, and built-in tutorials ensure that users have everything they need to design powerful apps from the ground up, and low- and no-code solutions mean that citizen developers can operate effectively on tasks that were once reserved for IT specialists.

This is all thanks to the various PaaS products that are integrated directly into the Salesforce Platform. Here are five Salesforce Platform tools that make easy cross-platform mobile development possible:

  • Lightning Platform Runtime Services
    Between setting up, maintaining, and scaling the underlying runtime services for applications, businesses are looking at a serious time and resource commitment for any cross-platform app in development. changes that, with application services ready and available directly out of the box. offers API services, authentication, collaboration services, integration services, event log framework, and more, so that users can focus on building cross-platform apps, and let Salesforce handle the runtime issues.

  • Lightning App Builder
    Cross-platform mobile development is a complex task, but that doesn’t mean it has to be difficult. Lightning App Builder offers users a low- and no-code app development solutions, in the form of visual point-and-click options. Design applications that are as attractive as they are powerful, incorporating real-time data, pre-built components, and complex business logic, for a cross-platform user experience like no other. Lightning App Builder empowers you to build once, and deploy on all devices.

  • Business Process Builder
    Automate complex business processes for applications that function across every operating system. Using advanced data visualization, set applications to automatically update records, submit approval requests, and manage nearly any task without direct IT intervention. Deploy automated solutions across every device, and every platform.  

  • Embedded Analytics
    Collect relevant, reliable data from cross-platform applications, and consolidate it automatically with analytics tools embedded directly into every app. Create up-to-the-minute reports and inspect key business metrics, with as focused or as broad a lense as needed. Embedded analytics makes it easy to gather data from applications across platforms, all at the push of a button.

  • AppExchange
    For those times when developing a custom cross-platform app seems too daunting, the Salesforce Platform also connects developers with the world’s foremost business app marketplace. With Salesforce AppExchange, users can browse potential applications, components, and developers, analysing thousands of customer reviews across millions of downloads, to locate the right cross-platform solution for their business.

Extend Your Customers’ Reach.

The digital world has expanded, and mobile customer-bases have expanded along with it. Mobile has become the core of client/business interactions. In fact, 50% of consumers say they’re likely to switch brands if a company doesn’t offer an easy-to-use mobile experience. But with so many available mobile platforms, designing applications that can reach mobile clients across the board may seem difficult, time consuming, or even impossible.

It doesn’t have to be. The Salesforce Platform provides the tools, technology, and experience to help organizations build cross-platform mobile solutions to any business problem. And, considering that the Salesforce Platform users enjoy an average ROI of 478% , the results speak for themselves. Businesses shouldn’t limit their application developement to only one or two platforms. Sign up today for the Salesforce Platform free 30-day trial , and extend your customers’ reach, no matter what platform they use.
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