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PHP developers who felt left out of all the opportunities that came with the advent of smartphones, will now find themselves with something that will allow them to build mobile apps in one of the most convenient and complete manners possible. That something is called Zend Studio 10.
At ZendCon 2012, chief executive Andi Gutmans announced that Zend Studio 10 will let PHP developers prototype and build native mobile apps right from the language they know best, PHP. Mobile development, which till now required developers to have considerable knowledge of languages like Objective-C or Java is now open for the huge number of PHP developers, who were required to go through steep learning curves in the past in order to develop for mobile devices.
This development is being perceived as one of the most prominent enhancements in PHP’s capabilities in its entire history. Like never before, developers can now use PHP in complement with Zend Studio to easily build entire applications for platforms like iOS, Android, Windows Phone, and BlackBerry.
In addition to providing a great IDE for PHP development, Zend Studio 10 provides a drag-and-drop WYSIWYG editor for building interfaces for your apps. To make apps truly native, it uses Apache’s Cordova in order to provide access to various APIs, so that your apps can interact with host’s resources like accelerometer and file system. Moreover, to wrap things up beautifully, the built-in PhoneGap integration allows developers to publish their apps to different app stores directly from the Zend Studio.
According to Gutmans, the new Zend Studio will provide ‘a seamless development experience’ to the developers and will allow them to seamlessly maintain control over all the components of their apps and their resources. This new capability allows developers to build back-end code and front-end interface at the same time, which is one of the many game-changing features of the latest version.
However, all of its goodness doesn’t stop at mobile apps! The new Zend Server is built for cloud, whether developers use Amazon, Rackspace, Windows Azure, or other clouds. In the new development architecture, apps access clouds, which then access APIs, social services, or SaaS options such as Salesforce. This will allow developers to seamlessly maintain control over all the components of their apps and its resources, even if they are on the cloud. According to Gutman, this capability has defined a new kind of architecture, coined by him as ‘the cloud service architecture’, which will ‘bring cloud and mobile together’.
Considering the rate at which number of mobile projects is catching up with that of PC-oriented projects, the new Zend Studio with its numerous capabilities is one of the best things to have happened to PHP developers. If you can’t wait to get see the action with your own eyes, check out the following video where Zend’s senior director of product management, Kent Mitchell demonstrates the creation of a cloud-enabled mobile apps using PHP.