At OutSystems, we’re on a mission to remove the complexity of software development while raising its quality. Our customers meet their business needs in a fraction of the time it would take them with traditional development methods. Last year we had made available to a number of customers a new way of distributing mobile apps, and today, we are opening it up to everyone. After spending the past few months perfecting the experience, we give you extended early access to Progressive Web Applications (PWAs).

The new fast way to create PWAs provides your end-users with a frictionless experience while still offering the benefits of native-like applications they came to know and love, such as a full-screen experience without a web browser and push notifications.

And now, with our latest version, you can have a single development effort and multiply its impact on three different channels. Delivering a PWA is just a toggle away.

Progressive Web Apps (PWA)

The Benefits of PWAs in OutSystems

Some time ago, we wrote about PWAs, sharing our view of where they can fit in your digital strategy. We also shared some case studies of PWAs adoption. Long story short, PWAs introduce a new way for customers, employees, and partners to discover and interact with your applications, removing much of the friction and roadblocks that native apps have in terms of distribution and discoverability.

Additionally, by adopting OutSystems to create your applications, there are at least two more benefits to those mentioned before:

  • Time to market: distribute your applications via the web, mobile app stores, and as a PWA, enabling users to start using them in whatever device, right away. Especially with PWAs, where you won’t depend on app store licenses and approval processes to get your mobile-optimized application in your users’ hands.
  • A single code base: You won’t have to develop and maintain different applications for each platform if you use OutSystems. Any OutSystems mobile app can be turned into a PWA without any additional development effort.

Creating a PWA with OutSystems is really simple too, as we’ll generate all the needed resources, so you don’t have to. I’ll spare you the nitty-gritty technical details, but in short, the platform turns your application into a PWA when you enable PWA distribution in your app details screen with a simple toggle. From there, just scan the QR code that pops up with your device and start using it!

Toggle PWAs

After this simple step, you’ll be ready to make the most of PWAs in OutSystems:

  • Offline availability: Given their nature and how core elements of your application are stored in devices, PWAs allow apps to work even without network connectivity and provide a much faster and reliable experience.
  • Use device capabilities with no hassle: Similar to mobile applications, PWAs can access specific device capabilities. Those include, but are not limited to, the device camera, location, and several other built-in sensors in mobile devices.
  • Extensibility with no limits: All OutSystems experiences can be customized with no limits, and PWAs aren’t an exception. Want to customize your PWA’s look and feel?  No problem, we got you covered!
  • All systems green right out of the box: Google’s Lighthouse, an open-source, automated tool for improving the quality of web pages, is the de facto tool for PWA validation. It runs several audits against your apps, including performance, accessibility, and especially PWA support. Following best practices, we made sure we crafted every aspect of our PWAs to ensure they reach 100% compliance.

Using OutSystems to distribute PWAs might be just what your business needs! Check our documentation to find out how easy it is.

PWAs Are Here to Stay

We’re excited about the power of this technology. It helps you provide smooth, integrated experiences to your customers, employees, and partners, ensuring that users adopt and engage with your apps even more. We want to learn how we can improve the experience of creating and distributing PWAs even further together with you.

To start using PWAs, upgrade to the latest versions, and follow these instructions to enable the feature in your environments.

Using PWAs

Why don’t you join our PWA forum thread? We’ll be there every day to answer any questions you might have as well as help you have the best experience with PWAs!