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

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Chapter 6

Evaluating Potential Architectures

What's in this Chapter?

  • Determining the best architecture for your situation
  • Platform-specific vs. cross-platform architectures
  • Web vs. native vs. hybrid application architectures
  • Knowing when to take a thin-client approach
  • Creating a mobile architecture decision tree

Now that you know the applications that you need to build, you need to decide on the appropriate architectures for those applications. Sometimes the architecture is clear-cut because only one kind of architecture is capable of meeting the application's requirements. Most of the time, though, selecting the best architecture is not an obvious decision. Multiple architectures can meet the technical requirements, but have different ramifications when it comes to usability and the total cost of ownership (TCO).

Software architecture is often one of the most hotly debated topics in application development groups within the enterprise; it's important to recognize that mobile development, for the iPad specifically, as well as for mobile software development in general, introduces two variables that might be new to most enterprise architects: limited connectivity and emphasis on usability. As a result, you should look at these architectural discussions through the eyes of a mobile user, not just the typical user of traditional enterprise software.

In this chapter, we'll take a look at the two primary dimensions of mobile architecture: first, the approach of platform-specific ...

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