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Box and Mendix Team Up for Enterprise App Development

A new partnership for enterprise app development combines the content management functionality of Box Inc. with the low-code mobile and Web app development platform from Mendix Inc.

Mendix is one of the main players in the rapidly expanding low-code movement, which is seeing rapid growth in the face of a mobile development skills shortage and increasing demand for enterprise mobility initiatives.

Box provides collaboration, file sharing, security and mobility along with content management. APIs for those functions will be available in Mendix's rapid application development platform as native microflow activities.

Developers or ordinary business users -- a primary target of the low-code movement -- will be able to drag and drop those activities into apps without writing any code in the new integrated solution.

That process is facilitated by a new open source Box Connector available in the Mendix App Store (with open source code available on GitHub) developed by Mendix partner Nokavision.

"With this new connector, application developers can easily access any function of the Box API -- like file upload, search, or preview -- to use in their applications," Box said in a blog post earlier this month. "This will enable developers to easily build applications for content-centric processes."

Integrating Box and Mendix
[Click on image for larger view.] Integrating Box and Mendix (source: Box and Mendix)

To simplify the process, Box and Mendix are collaborating to develop reusable templates for common business processes, such as project planning, field worker enablement, case management, claims management, expense management, HR onboarding and clinical trial management. The pre-built templates can be customized by joint partners or customers.

"Using Mendix, your Box environment can be enriched with advanced workflow and integration capabilities like sharing photos or scanned documents from the Box Capture app on your mobile devices and putting them in workflow applications and self-service portals that are connected to your core systems," Mendix said in its own blog post.

The companies said enterprises in Europe and North America have already been using their products to create projects such as workflow apps, document automation solutions and self-service portals, seeing development lifecycles measured in days or weeks as opposed to the months-long cycles typically required in traditional approaches.

About the Author

David Ramel is the editor of Visual Studio Magazine.

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