SugarCRM recently released versions 4.1.0 and 5.0.0 of SugarCRM Mobile and version 1.2.0 of the Mobile Application Configurator Service (MACS). These releases represent a significant technology evolution for our Mobile products that is worthy of a summary of the benefits to the Sugar Developer community.
Even more exciting, we are also getting tantalizingly close to general availability for the SugarCRM Mobile SDK!
Enhanced Offline mode in SugarCRM Mobile 4.1.0
Who likes waiting? Nobody! Well our previous offline storage would make the user wait after login while the app would download records so they were available offline. We did not want users waiting too long so we limited the offline storage to a modest 100 records per module. This allowed the Mobile app to be available to users quickly but not instantly.
This changed with SugarCRM Mobile 4.1.0 because we improved how offline record storage works CRM records are now (asynchronously) downloaded into offline storage behind the scenes whenever the Mobile app is in use. This allows the user to be productive with the Mobile app immediately after login even while offline storage is being loaded up. We also increased the offline storage limit to 1000+ records per module because the time taken to download thousands of records over a slow cellular network was no longer a concern.
Since we drastically increased the download size, we also added an option to download records over Wifi only. That should help anyone worried about blowing up their data plans!
New SugarCRM Mobile UX in 5.0.0!
As part of the SugarCRM Mobile 5.0.0 release, we introduced a redesigned user experience. We reduced the number of clicks needed to reach information, for example, by redesigning the record details view to show more information on the initial screen in a Details tab. We also improved navigation and re-ordered tabs and elements in the user interface based upon customer feedback.
From administrative perspective, we have added AppConfig standard which makes it easier to manage the app using Enterprise Mobile Management (EMM) solutions. This included the ability to preset Sugar instance URLs to allow for easier deployment of the Mobile app to end users.
Mobile 5.0.0 also simplified the login page by moving configuration settings into a separate screen and added support for Apple Touch ID among other changes.
Updates to Mobile Application Configuration Service (MACS)
MACS allows Sugar Partners and Customers to create re-branded binaries of the SugarCRM Mobile app that gives them full control over how they distribute and deploy the mobile application.
Every time SugarCRM releases a new version of our Mobile app, it is also added to MACS. We also recently added the ability to cancel a build as well as delete old ones. This will help keep your list of built Apps pristine as newer versions of Mobile app are added to MACS.
More details on Mobile SDK!
We have talked about the Mobile SDK before and I am excited to say that we are making great progress. The SugarCRM Mobile SDK is currently in a limited beta with a few key Sugar Partners and customers and we look forward to making it generally available very soon.
The first generally available release of the Mobile SDK will be based on SugarCRM Mobile 5.0.0.
Some resources you can expect when the Mobile SDK is released is a Getting Started Guide, detailed Mobile API documentation, a Mobile developer community, and eventually a Mobile Styleguide. You will be able to reach all these resources from the same Mobile Tools portal that you use for Mobile Application Configuration Service (MACS).
The Mobile Tools portal is available to Sugar Partners and Sugar Enterprise customers. So if that means YOU then watch that space! This will be where you will get your hands on the SDK.