Google is trying to make it easier for people to create apps powered by its suite of business tools and services.
The search giant said Wednesday that it made a tool called App Maker that customers of its recently rebranded G Suite lineup of workplace software can use to build their own custom business apps on top of.
already has a tool for coders to build apps on top of its cloud computing service, the new App Maker tool is geared toward low-level developers and not the types of advanced coders making powerful software like Uber’s ride-hailing app or Netflix’s video service.
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App Maker is essentially a tool that simplifies the process of making a business app, in which a developer with limited experience doesn’t have to futz with the underlying code but instead pieces together the various components based on pre-made Google templates. The look of the tool is similar to the types of consumer-oriented website-building software like Adobe
Dreamweaver, except tailored to work with Google-sanctioned apps and services.
The app is geared towards more developers like those in charge of corporate offices that need to quickly build an internal app for their co-workers, explained Google Cloud vice president of engineering Elissa Murphy.
Google had its own internal tool for building in-house corporate apps for a “number of years” but decided last year to make one for its customers, said Ajay Surie, product manager of App Maker. “Almost every process has an app,” Surie said of the various apps Google built over the years like one that lets employees book time off from work.
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With App Maker, Google joins the likes of companies like Microsoft
that have built similar simplified internal app-making tools designed specifically for their own business software services.
This effort is part of Google’s steady rollout of enterprise features designed to lure more corporate customers and grow its overarching cloud business unit, which includes its cloud computing service, database technologies, and Chromebook laptops.
The new tool is only available in a so-called beta period, in which companies can sign up to use it. After Google receives enough input from trial customers, it will debut it to the public, but no time has been set, said Surie.