Microsoft Dynamics Mobile Development Tools Overview

Microsoft Dynamics Mobile takes business applications to mobile devices. You can use it to develop and customize mobile apps for Microsoft Dynamics products. With it, you can integrate with Dynamics and even extend existing functionality to help users work in mobile environments. It provides a platform for Dynamics mobile, including mobile sales, and you can use it to develop new mobile apps.

Server Components Prerequisites

Dynamics Mobile Sever Components offers integration between your mobile gadget and business solution. And depending on your network’s topology, Dynamics Mobile Server Components can be installed on different computers.

For instance, the document, logging, as well as deployment services can be installed on a different computer from the SQL Server databases used by such services. But before installing Dynamics Mobile Server Components, ensure they meet the prerequisites.

Microsoft Dynamics Mobile: – Device Components Prerequisites

Before installing Dynamics Mobile Device Components, you must first install the required software, as well as another software (optional) to enable the entire development experience of Dynamics Mobile Device Components.

Dynamics Business Solution Integration – Requirements

You can integrate Mobile Sales with Dynamics NAV and Dynamics AX out of the box and modify Mobile Sales using Mobile device SDK. You can also create your own apps that easily integrate with Dynamics NAV and Dynamics AX.

Mobile Orchestration

Mobile apps built with Mobile Device SDK entail tasklets – one or more different .NET types. Each tasklet has a specific task to perform in the application.  A UserRole.xml file and orchestration piece the tasklets together. The work of orchestration is to control the flow of tasklets and interaction among them, determining how mobile users navigate through the application.
Since the orchestration manages the input to and output from tasklets, you don’t need any additional tasklet coding to use in different mobile apps, enabling you to reuse these tasklets in other flows existing within a similar application, or across applications.

A set of instance configuration data can be stored in the UserRole.xml by individual tasklets, so that its actual behavior can change based on the setup.

Microsoft Dynamics Mobile Development Tools Overview

Framework Components

This enables you to develop modularized mobile business apps that can be tailored to specific roles in your business. Using these tools in Visual Studio 2005, quickly develop mobile apps for tasklets (reusable components). Tasklets may be used together in flexible ways based on the various needs of different users.

Creating Mobile App Solutions and Tasklets

Mobile Development Tools – Framework Components enables you to build modularized mobile business applications that you can tailor to specific roles in your company. When you use the framework components in Visual Studio 2005, you can create mobile applications from reusable components, which are called tasklets. Tasklets can be combined in flexible ways with orchestrations to fit the needs of different users.

For you to build a conventional mobile business app, you need to build a separate Windows app for each role. Then deploy the apps to a mobile device.

You can use it to divide a mobile business app into tasklets, and then develop each of the tasklets as a completely separate .NET type. XML can then be used to effectively piece tasklets together into separate configurations called orchestrations. Tasklets can then be reused in other flows either within the same application or even across applications, enabling you to build customized, role-based apps that can be installed on a per-role or per-device basis.

Designing Main Menus & Context Menus

A mobile application’s user interface has soft keys and menus to make it easy to navigate through the application. The menu and soft key items are populated (automatically) using the actions that have been defined on a tasklet / orchestration. Actions are typically elements defining the flow between the tasklets of the application and orchestrations.

The user interface make actions appear as soft keys and menu items users can tap to easily navigate through the application. The locations of the actions can be changed, new menu items added, and the look of the menu items changed. If you must add menu items to a particular tasklet page that contains business logic (for instance), you must do this from the tasklet code.

Mobile Sales Overview

Microsoft Dynamics Mobile (Mobile Sales) – Device Components offers users a mobile work place with the flexibility to access and even send data, especially when away from the office.

It extends the capability of Dynamics NAV and Dynamics AX to mobile users. Now that you have easy access to data, as well as an app that contains your daily tasks only, you can respond to the needs of the customer faster and even work more efficiently to accomplish tasks.

Working with Mobile Sales

As a mobile app, Mobile Sales is closely connected to particular roles and tasks especially for mobile users in the sales and marketing department.

For instance, a salesperson can easily generate and send orders, manage daily meeting schedule, and monitor customer accounts. This enables the salesperson to work more efficiently, as he or she can retrieve the most current information from corporate database and send orders even before he or she leaves the customer.

When you open Mobile Sales in a mobile device, the home page displays the main tasks icon. These are business activities, such as generating a new order. A mobile user can navigate easily through the activities involving actions sent to the corporate system. As a mobile user, you may also want to view the latest price list to provide the customer with accurate information, creating the need to synchronize with corporate database.

Mobile Sales – Behind the Scenes

A system admin or super user mostly maintains and customizes mobile apps. Apparently, you don’t need programming skills to customize or modify mobile apps, but you should have some knowledge of XML to perform any customization.

Conclusion

A mobile app consists of various tasklets, which represent one or more steps in a bigger procedure. A mobile app can be tailored to a specific role by modifying the orchestration in the UserRole.xml file, which is done by the system admin or super user admin. In Microsoft Dynamics Mobile, orchestration is typically an expression for arranging tasklets in specific flows and sequences to give a true reflection of business activities.

Michael Taylor
Michael is the Lead Author & Editor of DynaMe. DynaMe is a blog focused on cloud based Microsoft Dynamics.
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