Discovering Low-Code Development
In an increasingly digital market, it is common to find customers with great ideas for digital products but with no financial means to put them into practice. In these cases, Low-Code Development presents itself as an alternative because it can reduce development costs in configuration, implementation, and maintenance.
You might be wondering: but if it’s cheaper, why aren’t all digital products designed that way? The logic works similarly to the automobile market, for example: you can buy an economy car, with manual transmission and without air conditioning, and it will still take you from point A to point B. However, with a luxury car, with automatic transmission, leather seats, and airbags, the experience of going from point A to point B is quite different, isn’t it?
It all depends on the purpose of your business and the digital product. Low-Code Development is indicated for the rapid validation of innovative products (Lean Startup) – which will later be evolved or recreated – and to meet the specific needs of data and processes in consolidated companies.
What is Low-Code?
Low-Code is a way of creating software that uses graphical interfaces instead of code. In other words, it is as if instead of programming a solution, you just “configure” it from a series of options pre-programmed by someone else.
The term was first used in 2014 at Forrester Research – an American consulting company. It denoted platforms with development interfaces based on Graphical User Interface (GUI). Since then, the model has been improved, and today it is the basis for many marketing solutions, digital presence, and even for some types of simple applications.
Since it requires little or no coding, Low-Code allows developers with varying levels of experience to build websites and small systems or apps, based on template-driven design, automatic code generation, and visual programming. In fact, some platforms created this way have become so famous that there are now professionals specialized in their use. These professionals, despite not knowing how to code, have perfected themselves in configuring such tools and providing simpler digital solutions.
How Low-Code is this solution?
The truth is that when we talk about Low-Code solutions, there are different levels, that is, different requirements for the ability to write code.
For example, if you want to make a simple website, you can use a tool like Wix, WordPress, or Gator. You enter the website, fill in some information, choose a ready-made template and change only the necessary information, all in a visual way. So far, no code has been used.
However, maybe you want to do something a little more custom, like styling your visual template of choice or creating some integration. In this case, you need code knowledge to go beyond the options given by the tool.
Advantages of Low-Code
As we mentioned before, one of the main advantages of Low-Code Development is the reduction of development costs, but we can also mention other benefits, such as:
- Fast learning curve: the model requires less coding knowledge and is considered simpler than traditional programming languages;
- Speed: development time can be reduced due to the dispensability of creating manual codes;
- Adding custom code: it is possible to add extra features to meet specific needs if necessary;
- Mobile accessibility: the model has a feature pattern that works for different devices, making it unnecessary to program different software.
Disadvantages of Low-Code
Like any other development model, Low-Code has some points that deserve attention and should be considered on a case-by-case basis, such as:
- Security and compliance: Low-Code solutions are not security-conscious and may be seriously vulnerable to attacks. Never use such a solution to handle sensitive user data!
- Scalability: this type of platform is not suitable for a large scale, that is, if the number of users increases, for example, it may be necessary to rebuild the product in a more robust technology;
- Customization capabilities: in order to be easy to use, these platforms are generally quite limited; they feature a specific set of pre-programmed options where you choose which one to use. On some platforms, there is no possibility of customization which makes it impossible to evolve the product or create a differentiated user experience. Other tools allow for customization but require as much coding as writing custom software.
- Variety of digital products: the use of this model for the development of platforms for corporate use is questioned, as it may require a greater number of digital products in the same company since each one would meet a specific objective.
Does Low-Code work for my business?
In order to answer this question, you first need to structure the digital product. Both a new application or system as well as the evolution of a platform need to be well-thought-out and planned before choosing the best form of development. It is very likely that Low-Code may come to represent part of a larger strategy during the roadmap of your product or digital business.
To assist in this process, we offer Product Conception, a service that aims to elaborate the idea of the digital product, understanding the problem it solves, who its users are, and what technology is suitable for it. Want to learn more?
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