10 Solutions for Creating Multi-Platform Mobile Apps

With countless tools already available and increasingly available, there seems to be a solution for all mobile app developments(experts and beginners).

1. Sencha Touch 2

If you’re new to HTML5, CSS3 and JavaScript, Sencha Touch 2 is a great choice for creating mobile apps on iPhone, Android and Blackberry.

Sencha Touch 2 must be installed on your computer (works on PC, Mac or Linux). You also need a web server that runs locally on your computer (how to install XAMMP if you need help).

2. jQuery Mobile

jQuery Mobile is an HTML5 user interface framework for touchscreen devices. The jQuery Mobile framework is simple and well documented. The best thing about jQuery Mobile is that there is an online tool called ThemeRoller that helps you build your interfaces faster.

To manage things on the server side, you can use a mobile app development platform like PhoneGap (which we’ll discuss later). Visit the official website for information on using PhoneGap with jQuery Mobile.

3. Tiggzi

Based on jQuery Mobile, Tiggzi is a drag-and-drop tool for developing mobile apps. You can add buttons, menus, videos, maps, and other standard items to your mobile app and then associate their events and actions with them.

4. AppMaker

AppMakr is an online tool for creating mobile content-centric apps and a service that allows you to distribute the app across many app stores. You can import RSS feeds, which AppMakr packs into a mobile app.

No programming is required to create your app. However, you can also add custom HTML.

5. iBuildApp

iBuildApp is a tool for creating mobile apps. You have a good selection of templates for many different types of apps and you can show off your app in the iBuildApp Gallery.

iBuildApp has many options you can add to your mobile apps, including e-commerce options and the ability to embed web pages in your app. iBuildApp also offers a SOAP Web service that facilitates the creation, recovery, updating or deletion of content.

6. Widgetbox

Widgetbox provides a user-friendly web tool for creating and hosting simple mobile apps based on content. You can create pages for your app that include RSS feeds from blogs or social media sites. You can also add custom content using HTML and CSS.

7. FoneFrame

foneFrame is a mobile framework HTML5 / CSS3 for the creation of websites optimized for mobile devices. You can then use PhoneGap or appMobi XDK for the back-end. foneFrame is also a great way to easily frame a mobile site.

8. PhoneGap

PhoneGap is a free open source software that bridges the gap between individual SDKs for mobile operating systems that have their own programming languages and standard development practices.

With PhoneGap you can easily support multiple mobile operating systems. You can create a mobile app using HTML5, CSS3 and JavaScript and then use PhoneGap to package your work for specific mobile operating systems. PhoneGap also integrates directly with Dreamweaver, making it even easier to develop mobile apps.

9. Build PhoneGap

The people of PhoneGap have gone a step further and have created a web-based platform that builds your “builds” for you. It’s called PhoneGap Build. This service currently supports iOS, Android, Blackberry, WebOS and Symbian.

With this service, you can upload your HTML5, CSS3 and JavaScript files and PhoneGap Build generates the files you need to distribute in the main app stores.

10. AppMobi XDK

appMobi XDK is a cloud-based mobile app development environment available as a Google Chrome plug-in. The appMobi service will also host your mobile app for you and give you the chance to distribute it in the most popular app stores. Although the service and hosting are free, they have additional services such as push notifications and e-commerce solutions that you can use to improve your mobile app.

This article describes 10 solutions for creating multi-platform mobile apps. They have been chosen for their different levels of complexity, price, features and documentation.

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