Sencha Space HTML5 App Management Platform Launches

Sencha has introduced Sencha Space, a managed environment for deploying HTML5 apps.

Sencha, a provider of HTML5 development tools for building desktop and mobile applications, has announced Sencha Space, a secure and managed environment for deploying mobile HTML5 business applications.

In an interview with eWEEK, Michael Mullany, CEO of Sencha, called Space the "missing link" to multi-device app development and management. He said Space is a key addition to Sencha's HTML5 frameworks and tools, providing businesses with a suite of products to design, build and deploy secure mobile applications that can run on pretty much any mobile device. Sencha announced its new product at the company's user conference, SenchaCon 2013, which runs July 16-19 in Orlando, Fla.

"People should be able to bring any device available and demand access to business applications," Mullany said, noting that this is what the bring-your-own-device (BYOD) movement requires.

However, businesses cannot keep up with the management and security challenges created by the BYOD movement, he said. While the maturation, capabilities and growing popularity of HTML5 has made it easy to develop high-quality mobile applications that can run on any smartphone or tablet, IT departments, developers and end users are still struggling to find an ideal balance between the BYOD world and corporate IT requirements.

Space addresses this situation and provides a platform to deploy and manage secure business applications to run across multiple devices. It satisfies the requirements of developers, IT and end users to create a mobile application environment within a BYOD world.

"Mobility and consumerization have brought about many new complexities to the enterprise world," said Stacy Crook an analyst with IDC. "Of course, one of the most obvious of those is the need for IT to support an ever-evolving landscape of device types, operating systems and the apps that run across those. Sencha Space looks to help IT departments manage this complexity by offering a platform to manage Web-based apps in a centralized and secure way, while also considering the needs of developers and end users as well."

With the new product, developers can create applications using Sencha's device-level APIs while conforming to IT security and management policies. Sencha Space acts as a secure business environment for enterprise application developers to target for deploying their HTML5 applications. "Space is intended for developers to be able to spin up their own developer organizations," Mullany said.

"This is an interesting development and a sign of the coming together of various mobile software and services markets," Al Hilwa, an analyst with IDC, told eWEEK. "As organizations embrace mobile applications, they are increasingly looking at simplifying their vendor portfolios and will consider offerings from their existing technology providers in adjacent markets. Sencha's reputation in HTML5 tools and frameworks will give this offering good visibility with existing Sencha customers."

IT departments can now securely deploy and manage universal HTML5 applications on any device that employees choose to use, Mullany said. Space's administrative console gives IT managers control over who can and cannot access a company's mobile business applications, including the ability to make real-time changes according to specific devices and applications. The product consists of a native mobile app and an administrative console.

Meanwhile, users can access all of their business applications from their favorite mobile device without surrendering control to IT or interfering with their personal experience on their own phone.

The Space platform gives administrators the ability to create a space on every user's device where the administrator can control what apps run there and how they interact with other apps, Mullany said.

"Sencha has long focused on creating the tools and frameworks necessary to develop powerful applications that function in a multi-device, BYOD world," Abraham Elias, CTO of Sencha, said in a statement. "With Sencha Space, we've gone a step further, building an environment for mobile devices that provides efficiency and performance for end users and developers, while delivering the control and security that IT departments demand."

"The enterprise mobility management market has seen rapid growth and development in recent years, and the next phase in its natural evolution will be the growth in secure and managed mobile environments as increasing numbers of businesses deploy apps across multiple device types," Richard Absalom, an analyst at Ovum, said in a statement. "Enterprises and SMBs are beginning to realize that the security and management of applications is key to getting business value out of the multiple devices that employees are using at work, whether these devices are corporate or personally owned."

Space is currently available as a developer preview. Prospective businesses and developers may register for a free evaluation.