Technical Overview
A refreshingly simple solution
to a very complex problem

The Approach

Most look at the decision of platform-specific vs. cross-platform as a choice between one or the other, but what if you didn’t need to make that choice? What if the majority of your app could be shared across different platforms and run their native code? This would ensure development efficiency without compromising speed, functionality or experience.

That’s what makes iFactr the most flexible mobile enterprise application platform on the market. With our approach, you develop cross-platform apps without sacrificing the ability to use platform-specific API’s, third-party libraries, hardware integration, or user interface components. It’s all the benefits of cross-platform without the compromises.

The Architecture

Let’s get back to the basics. Apps with loosely coupled layers and cleanly separated interfaces. Code is shared across platforms while optimizing the experience for each platform. With this flexibility, your code can be compiled or run on either the client or server.

Great care was taken to build an architecture that was desirable to businesses. An architecture that wouldn’t use a proprietary 4GL language, interpreted scripting languages, low-level compiled languages, or uncommon enterprise languages. That’s why iFactr was built on C# .NET

The Ecosystem

Microsoft .NET and Mono provide the foundation. Mono, the open-source port of .NET, brings C# and .NET to non-Windows platforms including iOS and Android.

On top of that, you have Microsoft frameworks like ASP.NET and the Windows Phone SDK as well as Xamarin iOS and Android which provide access to platform-specific APIs from C# .NET.

The next layer up are the Monocross and iFactr frameworks. Monocross provides app developers with code portability but platform-specific user interfaces, and iFactr adds enterprise-grade UI abstraction and data synchronization.

Monocross Framework

Monocross at the Core

We believe in open source software, and Monocross is our contribution to the open source community. Monocross is a C# .NET Model-View-Controller (MVC) framework where the Model and Controller are shared across platforms and the View is implemented for each platform and/or target architecture. With Monocross you can build any app from native to web that share business logic and data code.

UI Abstraction

For apps that require a number of UI layers, creating platform-specific UI’s can be difficult to manage. The iFactr UI abstraction layer solves that with UI abstraction that references the iFactr implementation of the interface on each platform, both as a native interface and/or an HTML5 interface.

iFactr is designed and optimized to rapidly create data-driven UI’s. And because it’s integrated with Monocross, you can mix-and-match screens that are shared across platforms with screens targeted to specific platforms using the entire set of native APIs available on each mobile OS.

iFactr Framework
Device Cloud Server

Keeping Data in Sync

Mobile enterprise applications must be reliable, and function with or without a network connection. That not only means making the data available offline in a secure manner to meet regulatory requirements, but also providing for disconnected transactional integrity.

The iFactr data stack provides offline access and disconnected transactional integrity with any standards-based RESTful web service back-end or mobile integration middleware like the SAP Mobile Platform.

Our Complementary Nature

We are often asked how iFactr compares to other leading cross-platform approaches on the market like Xamarin, PhoneGap, SAP Mobile Platform, as well as HTML5 frameworks like Sencha Touch or JQuery Mobile.

The answer, iFactr doesn’t compete, it complements. iFactr uses Xamarin to compile native apps on iOS and Android. PhoneGap is actually built into iFactr, and can be used not only as a hybrid container for HTML5 targets, but can also be used within native iFactr targets. This provides a migration path for existing PhoneGap apps. iFactr can use the SAP Mobile Platform for integration middleware, and simplifies the implementation and integration. And Sencha Touch and JQuery Mobile can be used to create HTML5-based user interfaces if desired as an alternative to the iFactr UI abstraction APIs.

iFactr is Complementary

See iFactr in Action

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