IBM today announced a partnership with low-code development platform Mendix that will bring Mendix and native integration with many of IBM’s Watson IoT and AI services to the IBM Cloud. This deal is an evolution of a previous partnership that involved what was then called IBM Bluemix (now IBM Cloud).
With this partnership, IBM is bringing Mendix to the IBM Cloud and integrating it deeply with its own tools. As Don Boulia, the general manager for the IBM Cloud Platform, told me, the typical developer on the IBM platform doesn’t quite fit the profile of somebody who would opt for a low-code/no-code platform like Mendix, but this move allows IBM to go after a segment of the developer population that includes exactly this group of users who currently don’t have the option/ability to use IBM’s cloud services (as well as more advanced developers who simply want to build a quick prototype).
By bringing Mendix to its cloud, IBM clearly hopes to attract more users to the wide variety of services it now offers. Specifically, this includes deep integrations with Watson AI services like Conversation for building chatbots, translation services, text to speech, the Watson Tone Analyzer for understanding emotions in text and the Watson Visual Recognition service. Using the Mendix connector kit, developers also will be able to access IBM’s IoT and blockchain services.
Once you start getting into IBM’s IoT and blockchain APIs, though, chances are that you’ll have to go beyond the visual development tools to get the full value out of these tools.
The promise of Mendix is that it speeds up application development by 10x (for some reason, all low-code platforms seem to make the same 10x promise…). IBM also notes that the service allows developers to easily deploy their applications in the IBM Cloud as a container or through platforms like Cloud Foundry.