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iPad® in the Enterprise: Developing and Deploying Business Applications by Nathan Clevenger

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Chapter 5

Deciding Whether to Build or Buy

What's in this Chapter?

  • What are the ramifications of build vs. buy?
  • Some types of applications in the App Store
  • How to use in-house deployment for pre-built apps
  • Where else can I look for apps to buy?
  • The total cost of app integration
  • Maintenance and the long-term total cost of ownership

As your mobility strategy is fleshed out, you'll develop a road map of potential applications prioritized according to the business benefit, total cost of ownership, and potential risk. At that point it's critically important to make the appropriate decision about whether to build or buy your enterprise solutions.

The decision to build or buy is one that will stick with your organization long after the initial deployment. The long-term total cost of ownership of your mobile solution will also be greatly affected by the build-or-buy decision.

That being said, it is also important to recognize that most enterprises won't build all their apps, and they probably won't buy all of them either. Most enterprises will likely take a combination of custom-built systems and off-the-shelf applications that can either function in a stand-alone role or be integrated with enterprise systems.

Your organization should develop criteria for determining whether a specific application should be purchased off the shelf or developed as a custom solution. First of all, the big question is whether the application exists as an off-the-shelf option. If so, does it meet most of ...

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