In honor of arcplan 8‘s official release today, let’s talk about Responsive Design and its importance for business intelligence and planning applications. The latest version of arcplan’s platform is focused on mobile BI with a new HTML client that supports Responsive Design, which enables arcplan applications to automatically adapt their layouts to appear optimized on the end user’s device.
Responsive Design is something you’ve probably heard about when it comes to websites, but it’s just as important to application design – especially as organizations are challenged to support multiple devices and provide the best user experience possible on each of them. Responsive applications, like BI dashboards, rearrange their layouts and navigation to fit properly on smartphones, tablets, laptops and desktops. It’s not automatic; there’s no algorithm in the background figuring out the best layout. That is done by the application designer ahead of time. With arcplan, we have implemented “Views,” which define the breakpoints for each type of device. The designer then rearranges the application elements (charts, tables, filters, etc.) for each View. It’s quick, simple, and even better, all of the layouts are contained within one application. Changes made to an object are filtered down to each View/layout. There are no separate applications to maintain for each device. Just one total, no matter how many Views are defined.
So now that I’ve established how cool Responsive Design for BI is, let’s get into why it’s essential now.
Mobile-First BI Enabled by Responsive Design
Recorded Date: August 13, 2013
Speakers: Dwight deVera, arcplan Senior VP; Takashi Binns, Solutions Manager
About this webinar:
Conditions are finally right for mobile business intelligence to take off: affordable, high-performance devices are in the hands of nearly 50% of the population, BYOD policies are spreading like wildfire, and users are clamoring for performance information anywhere and everywhere they are. Mobile BI is no longer just a possibility but an inevitability.
A mobile-first design philosophy is necessary in 2013 and beyond to future-proof your BI apps. But with so many different devices available to users, how do you create usable yet easy to maintain business intelligence, analysis, and planning applications that work on every one? The answer is Responsive Design.
This 30-minute webinar is a primer on Responsive Design, a concept that enables apps to dynamically adjust their layout to the end user’s screen size, resolution and orientation. We review:
- Why Responsive Design is the best way to develop BI apps going forward
- How you can achieve a 60-80% reduction in mobile BI development and maintenance costs
- Examples of responsively designed dashboards
As mobile devices become the primary way of accessing BI, now is a good time to revise your strategy to “mobile-first.” Watch this webinar to learn more.
Our Senior Vice President, Dwight deVera, has been featured recently on CMSWire and Business2Community, giving tips on how to use responsive design for your mobile BI applications. Check out these pieces and let us know what you think!
Mobile App Responsive Design Best Practices
“For mobile BI, we’ve found that responsive design is best,” deVera said. “We call our philosophy DORA. Design once, run anywhere.”
Transitioning to Mobile Dashboards with Responsive Design
“The concept of responsive design is the key that unlocks the door to seamless mobility, and factors such as size, design layout and orientation, and user experience must be considered.”
In case you missed it, we announced the release date for arcplan 8, which will support – in addition to Java and .NET – a new HTML5 client that enables dynamic, interactive page layouts that adjust automatically to various screen sizes. Officially launching September 26th, arcplan 8’s responsive design concept will offer our customers 60-80% savings on mobile BI development and maintenance costs. Learn more >>
With the increasing popularity of mobile devices in daily life, workers have become accustomed to switching between gadgets according to the task at hand – smartphones for calls and quick searches, tablets for web browsing and e-mails on the go, and laptops for more time- and labor-intensive activities. But switching devices in the workplace is not always so effortless, especially when it comes to using business intelligence (BI) applications.
A new wave of design options is changing this, making it easier than ever to build and deploy BI apps that can be used on any device without the need for extra development – apps that are clean and modern, and designed for quick consumption of data and taking action. This article covers the trend toward two design concepts: Responsive Design and Metro Design, both of which are essential to next-generation BI applications that increase productivity on all devices. I’ll also explain how arcplan’s BI solutions are leading the way.
In 2013, users will come to expect “BI anywhere,” which puts the burden on designers to create BI apps tailored not only to users’ needs, but also their device preferences – particularly if the organization has a bring your own device policy (BYOD). The intelligent approach – utilizing Responsive Design principles – is to create one application (like a dashboard or report) for all devices, where the layout adapts to the appropriate screen size, resolution, and orientation.
Recently we have seen a dramatic change when it comes to deciding which screen size to design a new report or dashboard for. It’s always been a struggle for BI app designers to optimize applications to fit to the different sizes of desktop PCs and laptops, but adding mobile devices like smartphones and tablet PCs to the mix makes it even more complex.
The most natural solution of the past was to design two different views – one for the desktop and one for mobile deployment. But we no longer recommend this approach as the lines between different device categories are blurring.
Netbooks are encroaching on notebook and iPad territory, coming closer to their display capabilities. iPad has initiated a storm of new devices from other vendors with similar screen size. Even worse (from an app design point of view), Internet giant Amazon.com launched its Kindle Fire, whose screen size sits between traditional smartphones and tablet PCs. And now new devices like the Galaxy Note and the Galaxy III by Samsung, whose screen sizes are between the iPhone and the Kindle Fire, have found their own fans.
Although size does matter, screen size is not the sole point to consider when designing BI apps. There’s orientation to consider – which devices are optimized for portrait or landscape orientation – and on top of this, different vendors also offer a wide variety of pixel density – defined by pixels per Inch (PPI). For example, the new iPhone 4S with its Retina Display is able to display more pixels on its 3.5″ display than a decent netbook.
For app designers, it is impossible to create separate reports for every device, especially at organizations where BYOD (bring your own device) is the standard. This would end up being a total nightmare from a maintenance point of view. So what can we do? It’s time for a new and intelligent approach that will allow us to use one app and one report or dashboard layout for all devices.