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Retool enhances its low-code platform to enable the creation of both internal and external apps

external apps, internal apps, low-code platform, Retool



Retool has established itself as a leading low-code tool for building internal line-of-business applications since its launch in 2017. The well-funded startup has already attracted numerous high-profile clients, including Amazon, OpenAI, and Pinterest, just to name a few. However, Retool is now expanding its horizons by introducing a new service called “Retool for External Apps,” which is designed to enable businesses to build secure and high-performing apps for a wider audience. This new service has already been widely adopted and experienced success during its preview phase.

Retool for External Apps aims to simplify and streamline the process of building apps for both internal and external business users. While other low-code platforms may focus on consumer applications, Retool specifically targets business apps. The core concept behind Retool is that all internal tools share similar building blocks, such as buttons, forms, and tables. Remarkably, this also holds true for external business software, especially operational software. By leveraging this insight, Retool allows developers to build external apps more efficiently and effectively.

Most software built for business users, whether internal or external, are essentially basic apps that read and write data to a database. Despite differences in data presentation, the underlying functionality remains largely the same across apps. Surprisingly, the majority of developers build these apps from scratch using tools like React. Retool recognizes this as a primitive and inefficient approach to development. By providing a more advanced and intuitive low-code platform, Retool aims to revolutionize the way software is built for both internal and external users.

When building external apps, factors like branding, performance, and user experience become more crucial. Businesses must ensure that these apps are visually appealing and highly performant to meet user expectations. At the same time, security is an absolute priority when building for an external audience. Retool incorporates necessary building blocks to provide robust authentication and authorization features. Additionally, developers tend to rely more on APIs than databases when building external apps, as this gives them greater control over data access.

Retool also offers the capability to embed new Retool apps into existing applications using React and its recently launched JavaScript SDKs. It has also introduced features to facilitate invite and onboarding flows, including the ability to send custom emails from a user’s preferred email provider. These user-facing features are crucial when building software for external users, as they contribute to a seamless and intuitive user experience.

Retool’s mission has evolved over time. Initially, its goal was to change the way software is built. However, it later shifted its focus to bringing “good software to everyone.” To achieve this, Retool defined what constitutes good software, including factors like performance, reliability, and security. The company aims to surpass the performance of tools like React, as it is able to concentrate on a smaller set of use cases.

In conclusion, Retool for External Apps is a game-changing service that allows businesses to efficiently build secure and high-performing apps for external users. By leveraging its low-code platform, Retool simplifies the development process and enables developers to create apps that meet the expectations of today’s business users. With its focus on performance, reliability, and security, Retool is well-positioned to revolutionize the way software is built for both internal and external audiences.



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