As the users of software continue to dominate development, technology is taking more of a back seat. If we have learnt anything this year, Andrew Cruise, MD of Routed, a cloud infrastructure operator, says that usability and experience is what matters the most, especially within enterprise software. As clients flocked online during lockdown, this journey became the reality for the design and architect of tomorrow’s modern applications.

“How designers handle this challenge is what will set a successful application apart. Handling this ever-changing journey will become a critical mandate for any modern applications and we will start to see more and more of this focus applied to all software, regardless how business-oriented it may seem,” says Cruise.

As a VMware Cloud Verified partner, Routed leads the pack within South Africa and believes that this evolution is critical to where software needs to go within the next five years. This aside, reliably predicting growth and demand or even the journey is difficult, and translating such needs into a governed and adaptable application architecture is even harder. It is here that providers such as Routed and vendors such as VMware can make a marked difference to not only end customers but also to the managed service provider channel.

“As the business criticality of an application grows, service level requirements will start evolving too. It is becoming clear that change is continuous and essential for modern applications. There is no definitive end to its architecture or physical footprint. Both evolve continually, as business-driven needs call for additional capabilities that enable new business services to be defined and delivered in software,” says Cruise.

He says that VMware has launched what it calls App Launchpad, which addresses some of the modern application requirements for service providers. Sitting on top of VMware Cloud Director, App Launchpad provides an easy application deployment experience for tenants. It can be used to create an application catalogue experience using Bitnami images from VMware Cloud Marketplace but can also publish to in-house provider managed single-VM vApp templates.

Cruise says that in simplicity, IT managers who want to cut down deployment time on common application stacks typically used in a software build or hosting environments will enjoy the one-click deployment where you can immediately start consuming pre-built images.

More holistically though, App Launchpad enables partners such as Routed to start offering Platform as a Service (PaaS) value adds on top of Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS), which is where Cruise says hyperscalers may find some new competition.

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