LANSA Adds Goodies to LongRange Mobile App
September 17, 2013 Alex Woodie
IBM i shops have a growing number of mobile application tools to choose from, which is a good thing considering the accelerating pace of smartphone adoption and increased use of tablets in the workplace. One of the more mature mobile packages available for the IBM i market can be found from LANSA in the form of LongRange, which was recently bolstered with several nifty features in LongRange RV14.
LongRange has three parts:
It’s worth noting that the mobile clients are ready-made programs that users download from the Google and Apple app stores, just like they would for Facebook, Twitter, or GasBuddy apps. However, LongRange apps aren’t much use by themselves, and need to be configured and finalized with the app builder, which also enables users to insert Web views (pieces of HTML apps), form views (DDS code rendered to look mobile-y), and document views (contents of files and folders on the mobile device or a remote server) to create a fully functioning LongRange app.
In August, LANSA unveiled LongRange RV14, which adds several new features. Many of these enhancements are centered on email, calendar, and contact functionality.
For starters, the company has added SMS and email push notification capabilities, which can be used to automatically navigate a user to a specific part of an application to perform an action, such as approving a credit hold, alerting a user to check the status of an order, or decline a purchase requisition.
This release also allows users to format the body of emails in HTML, which provides more options for customizing how emails look and behave. It also added a server-side email capability, which allows RPG programs to send emails via any accessible SMTP mail relay server, including the native IBM i email server, Microsoft Exchange on a network, Gmail or an ISP’s email service, LANSA says.
Support for iCalendar gives LongRange the capability to automatically generate calendar requests and reminders. It also has support for vCard, which allows users to include electronic business cards in their contact records.
A new signature capture capability in LongRange will be particularly useful for delivery drivers and mobile salespeople. The signatures can be captured “natively,” LANSA says, as opposed to using a Bluetooth-connected signature capture device (such as those from Topaz). Similarly, the new Linea Pro interface supports barcode scanning and magnetic stripe reading.
LANSA also added something it called “EZI Quick Panels,” which will be used to simplify panel formatting directly from RPG, COBOL, or DDS code. The panels flex and change with the device orientation, LANSA says, and on small screen devices, the panels are automatically arranged under one another instead of side-by-side.
Lastly, a new auto-configuration option was added that enables the LongRange application to be configured by clicking on a URL. This will decrease the probability of end-users making configuration mistakes, LANSA says.