How low-code platforms are transforming software development

Drag-and-drop platforms enable developers to assemble applications without the need for manual programming. Shell Downstream, NTT Data Services and 7-Eleven are among those leveraging low-code to create business value.

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Agile and DevOps aren’t the only options CIOs have at their disposal to fuel faster application development.

In addition to rapidly building software in coding sprints, developers are using low-code development platforms to arrange application components, including data and logic, via a drag-and-drop interface — think virtual Lego blocks that developers can move with a mouse and snap into their creations.

Low code differs from no-code development, in which so-called citizen developers, often business analysts with little to no programming experience, use similar drag-and-drop tools to arrange applications. With low code, developers may still need to do some coding to integrate access to older applications, for reporting, and for special user interface requirements, according to Forrester Research.

The total market for low-code development platforms will hit $21.2 billion by 2022, growing at a compound annual growth rate of 40 percent, according to Forrester. The researcher also said that 23 percent of global developers reported using low-code platforms in 2018, with another 22 percent planning to do so in 2019.

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