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Mobile App Development: Optimizing for Cross-Platform Applications

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Intel IT has implemented a new type of software architecture that enables us to develop large-scale, UI-optimized, cross-platform applications using a single code base with maximum code reuse between supported platforms. With the consumerization of IT and growth of personally owned devices, we must develop enterprise applications that run on multiple devices and platforms (operating systems and browsers). For many use cases, the responsive web design approach is sufficient, where we develop applications using a single code base and render the UI based on screen size. However, some use cases require applications to take advantage of platform-specific features, such as touch, gesture, and native look and feel. For those use cases, we recognized that we needed to implement a new type of software architecture. Our new architecture has several components: open source libraries, a Model View ViewModel (MVVM) design pattern, object-oriented programming (OOP) techniques, and a 70/30 reuse model. Our proof of concept confirmed that our architecture did support our goals for optimizing cross-platform applications using a single code base. Employing best-known methods, we are implementing our architecture for applications that are complex, interactive, and targeted for multiple platforms. This approach leads to improved developer and user experiences and is well situated to accommodate the devices of the future.