With more than 21 million software developers around the world, this will come around as a shocker but there is still a shortage of tech experts in organizations worldwide. With or without tech experts, businesses need technology to streamline, simplify and digitize various processes. This is where the role of software tools comes in. Software development tools enable both tech experts and the internal team of your organization to develop applications with minimal technical complexities.
According to Gartner, companies worldwide are estimated to spend nearly $600 billion on enterprise software in 2022. If you are looking for a software development tool to suit the needs of your organization perfectly, there are some important factors that you have to consider. In this blog, we list some of the best software development tools that will help you understand and compare different features of these tools and take you closer to a conclusive decision.
What are software development tools?
A software development tool is a combination of computer programs used by developers to develop, maintain, debug or support other applications or programs.
A software development tool enables developers to create the tool of their vision and could be in the form of language libraries, code editors, debuggers, designers, etc. It is also known as a programming tool and they are generally software themselves. With the right kinds of software development tools, a developer can build an application that complements the needs of their organization in a streamlined fashion.
While creating applications using software development tools, there are multiple factors that come into play –
- Technical expertise of the developer
- Learning curve
- Integrations available
- Appropriate business environment
Why Do Software Development Tools Matter?
All the important functions of professionals are aided by tools. A photographer needs a camera to record, and an artist needs canvas and colors to paint. Similarly, a developer needs software tools to accomplish their assignments and visions. Without a software tool, developers are merely living with an idea without an outlet to process it.
Software development tools help developers bring their thoughts and ideas into reality by providing them with a platform for application development. These tools are used by organizations worldwide to build both external and internal applications. Once you decide what kind of software you want to build, your developers can start working right away. Software tools help in the digitization of various business processes simplifying complicated work.
Software development tools enable users to create applications using high-code, low-code, and no-code functionalities. That means both experts and beginners can easily use these tools to create custom software applications. This also helps in saving costs that otherwise you would have to spend on outsourcing tech support.
Apart from giving developers a platform, it simplifies the job of tech experts and enables enthusiasts to work on their dream applications. Most of the software development tools feature inbuilt templates, drag and drop functionality, and more to support you in the process.
Types of software development tools
There are multiple software development tools available in the market. Before deciding on any of them, you must be aware of the different kinds of software development tools and choose the one that aligns with your vision in the best way. We have compiled a list of them.
IDE or Integrated Development Environment combines common developer tools into a single graphical user interface. It generally consists of a source code editor that assists in writing software code, local build automation that repeats tasks, and a debugger that displays the location of a bug in the original code.
Cloud-based software development tools enable developers for the creation and deployment of cloud apps. These tools offer different development services to build applications quickly. Cloud apps are one of the most used applications worldwide by businesses and individuals either directly or indirectly.
DevOps tools help in the automation of the various stages of the software development cycle. Its focus area is on communication and collaboration between software development, project management, and operations teams.
Software frameworks simplify the job of the developer by enabling them to take care of all or most of the software development process from a single platform. It lets you focus on the high-level functionalities of the application by providing an interactive platform.
A framework is a popular programming tool that provides customized solutions and ready-made components to speed up the process of development. A framework may also include a library.
Data Science tools
Data science tools are generally used by data scientists to understand, process, and extract the value of data and build and deliver data products. These tools can be helpful in providing in-depth analytics to support your apps. SAS, Tableau, TensorFlow, Excel, and Knime are examples of data science tools.
Where are software development tools found?
Software development tools can be found in numerous configurations and in different places. For example, IDE or Integrated Development Environment helps users to create programs, test, and deploy them in the same environment by providing multiple toolbars for programmers. API tools help developers in achieving specific types of goals, like programming language libraries. Similarly, SDKs comprise a wide range of programming tools that enable programmers to create software for specific platforms and systems.
Uses of software development tools
There are multiple uses of software tools. Let us have a look at some of them below-
- Software tools help in the digitization and optimization of various business processes by simplifying complicated business processes and manual tasks.
- Software development tools aid in the accelerated and productive outcome of projects while maintaining the workflow of the project.
- Software development tools enable programmers to find bugs in the programs and avoid new bugs. It also helps them to bring their vision to life by aiding tools to support their vision.
- Software tools translate human language into computer language. We need a different set of languages to communicate with the computer that can be easily read and processed. Development tools support you in the process of computer programming and communication.
Best software development tools
With multiple software development tools available in the market, it is easy to get lost and confused while choosing the right software for your organization. That is why we have categorized and compiled a list of the best software development tools in the market.
DronaHQ is a modern toolset used by developers across Fortune 500s and top high-growth companies to build internal apps and digital tools at 10Xspeed. This platform enables developers to build a varied range of applications using minimal coding. It simplifies the work of tech experts and empowers enthusiasts to build the application of their dreams. With key features including over 100+ built-in UI controls, reusable templates, and a flexible frontend logic builder, DronaHQ is the number one platform for creating internal business applications.
- Drag and drop functionality to create visually appealing apps using pre-built UI controls
- Facilitates connection to multiple data sources including databases, custom APIs, and third-party applications, in-built DB sheets.
- After building your application, you can publish, manage, update, roll back, and embed with the device all from a single place. It lets you publish across mobile apps, web apps, public links, and embed code.
- Offers different types of screens to define user navigation, and configure pixel-perfect responsive layouts.
- Configure frontend events using actionflow builder (like onclick, onhover, on value change events)
Zoho Creator is a platform hosting 4m+ users globally. It enables developers to rapidly deliver web and mobile applications at accelerated speeds. Its key features include multi-language support, top-notch integrations, cloud functions, and offline mobile access.
- Build simple applications with less effort and at accelerated speeds using drag and drop.
- Easy collaboration and connections are offered across teams.
- Build fully functional mobile applications in minutes and gain instant access.
- Get insightful reports
- Data retention and backup happen in a fully secure environment.
- It uses a non-blocking and event-driven I/O model which is the reason for it being lightweight and efficient.
- Its applications run on Windows, Linux, Unix, Mac os, etc.
- Has the largest ecosystem of open source libraries.
- It offers modules that provide rapid and well-organized solutions for developing back-end structures while integrating them with front-end platforms.
- Offers easy customization according to the project’s needs and requirements.
- Features a responsive grid system, plugins, and pre-built components to allow users to build their applications.
- Provides many built-in templates that allow you to drag and drop components to assemble your application at high speed.
- Guarantees consistency among all the developers working on the project.
- It is a front-end web framework that helps in the quick modeling and building of web applications.
JIRA is one of the most popular software development tools that support development teams in the process of planning, tracking, and launching software applications successfully.
- It allows users to generate reports, accomplish their work, and clear backlogs at high speeds.
- It allows developers to easily customize their applications with the help of various pre-built templates and drag and drop features.
- It features scrum boards, Kanban boards, Code integration, GitHub integration, disaster recovery, portfolio management, project management, etc.
- It supports applications for Windows, Linux, and Solar operating systems.
Embold is an analytics platform that simplifies the developer’s work by fixing bugs before deployment saving a lot of time and energy. It enables users to analyze source code and identify issues that are responsible for affecting the application’s performance.
- It offers plugins that allow users to pick up code smells and vulnerabilities before making commits.
- Features unique anti-pattern detection that prevents the compounding of unmaintainable code.
- Features standard code editors in over 10 languages.
- Allows seamless integration with Azure, GitHub, Bitbucket, Git, and plugins available for Eclipse and Intellij IDEA.
Source Control Tools
GitHub is a popular collaboration and software development tool used by developers for reviewing and managing code. With the help of this tool, users can build applications and software, host and review code, manage projects, etc.
- Allows users to coordinate, align and manage their tasks easily.
- Allows developers to easily host and review the code from the repositories.
- Has strong security features that let users control the access among team members, integrations with other tools, etc.
- It runs on Windows and Mac Os allowing users to host programs on servers and cloud platforms.
- It is an open-source platform that is free for public use, while developers have to pay a monthly subscription fee for use.
- It is a fully expandable system that works well and easily with other libraries. Users can edit or replace each feature as per their requirements.
- It boasts of advanced features like localization, reusable components, form validation, directives, deep linking, data binding, etc.
- It connects well with data-driven applications if the site is regularly updated.
- It is a 100% client site that allows you to create highly responsive web and mobile applications and works on browsers like Safari, IOS, Firefox, Chrome, etc.
- Has built-in protection that confirms strong security that protects the application from HTML injection attacks, cross-site scripting, etc.
Ultra Edit is a software development tool that is flexible, customizable, and secure. It features an all-access package that gives you access to multiple tools like an integrated FTP client, file finder, Git integration solution, etc.
- Allows users to find, replace, and compare files at high speed.
- Enables users to load and handle large files with powerful performance startup and file load.
- Allows OS integrations such as command lines and shell extensions.
- Enables developers to spot visual differences between code with fully integrated file compare.
- Developers can access servers and open files directly from the FTP/SFTP browser or SSH/telnet console in UltraEdit.
- Features built-in hex edit mode and column editing mode offering more flexibility in file data editing.
Integrated Development Environment (IDE)
Atom is another major open-source software development tool offering various built-in features. It is also a source code editor that is friendly and up-to-date.
- It is a highly customizable tool that let users create visually attractive applications.
- Offers cross-platform editing and is compatible with multiple operating systems like Windows, Linux, OS X, etc.
- Offers various built-in tools, smart autocomplete, multiple panes, find and replace feature, file system browser, etc.
- It uses a framework called ‘electron’ to build cross-platform applications and web technologies.
Factors to consider while choosing the software development tools
Sometimes even the software tool with the most advanced features may not be suitable for your organization. It all depends on the compatibility. Here are some factors you must consider before finalizing your decision.
Application- environment fit
Not all software development tools will be fit for your business environment. There are some software tools that will not complement, meet security standards, or support your vision the way you want. Therefore, it is crucial for you to test and select only those tools that fit the needs and requirements of your business environment perfectly.
Integrations are an essential feature that software development tools must provide. The software tool’s integration abilities simplify and support the work of users across platforms. It is very important that you evaluate this criterion well while choosing a software development tool.
Development tools must offer flexibility so that it supports developers as well as internal users to build applications as per their requirements. It should offer easy customization facilities that make the job of developers easy and fast.
We have tried to provide you with a comprehensive overview of all the popular and efficient software development tools available. Now it is your time to choose.
Before jumping to a final conclusion, ensure to test the compatibility of the tool with your business environment. Using a free trial version would be the perfect way to go. DronaHQ is just a click away if you want to get started. Sign up to get a trial and use all the resources for free.