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Demand for low-code/no-code driving strong momentum for Oracle APEX in Asia

Users now include the likes of Telstra, Triple A Super, CWT Globelink and Accton Technology Corporation, a world-renowned provider of network communication equipment in Taiwan.

An increasing number of businesses in Asia are turning to Oracle to gain the benefits of using its new low-code service for developing and deploying data-driven, enterprise applications quickly and easily, Oracle Application Express (APEX). Users now include the likes of Telstra, Triple A Super, CWT Globelink and Accton Technology Corporation, a world-renowned provider of network communication equipment in Taiwan.

Garrett Ilg, Executive Vice President and Head of Oracle Japan and Asia Pacific, said, “We are seeing a spike in demand for low-code and no-code tools as companies seek to rapidly digitize and automate processes to manage the ongoing need to work from home, and interact and delight customers from a distance. This change isn’t happening at an isolated point in time, it is ongoing and accelerating. The need to innovate and adapt in real-time is critical to success. Our customer momentum is proof that Oracle APEX is one of our best-kept secrets. With it they are able to implement new processes more quickly, without requiring additional resources, and at a lower cost. And because the development is being done by those who live and breathe it, enabling apps to be designed by the user for the user, end user feedback is highly positive.”

Traditional application development approaches can take weeks or months to yield results, and require an organization to hire specialized developers, which in Asia are a scarcity and typically high-cost resource. The low-code and no-code approach offers an alternative and enables businesses to put their data and data-driven initiatives into motion, empower department-specific initiatives and deliver value to customers through digital solutions using the team they already have.

“Organizations everywhere now face an urgent imperative to innovate through software,” said Gina Smith, PhD, lead DevOps analyst for IDC in Asia. “But delivering software-based digital innovation is harder than it looks, especially in light of 2020 events and skill shortages here in Asia. It can also be expensive. Low-code development platforms level the playing field, giving all organizations the agility to deliver software innovation at the speed of software.”

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Oracle APEX

Oracle APEX Application Development is a fully managed, low-code application development platform for building and deploying modern data-driven and secure applications in Oracle Cloud. Using APEX, developers can quickly develop and deploy compelling apps that solve real problems and provide immediate value. Users don’t need to be an expert in a vast array of technologies to deliver sophisticated solutions, although as APEX offers different layers of low code/no code development, it has been welcomed both by citizen developers and cloud native developers alike making it a catch-all solution for digital transformation. 

In addition, APEX is a fully supported no-cost feature of Oracle Database – the most complete, integrated, and secure data platform for any scale deployment – including Oracle Autonomous Database. This solid foundation enables apps built using APEX to natively access and interact with all of the capabilities of Oracle Database. It also incorporates native web services integration.

Customer adoption

Companies from across Asia Pacific of all sizes and from all industries have been taking advantage…. 

Telstra, Australia’s largest international telecommunications and media company, has been using Oracle APEX since the early 2000s. Since then, the company has turned 3,000 Microsoft Access databases into a two-instance Oracle APEX deployment — providing significant savings off Telstra’s data centre costs. Now employees can easily create and spin up their own internal APEX apps for such things as Telstra’s 5G rollout, customer satisfaction and data, pay phone orders, and IT environment provisioning.

As Tony Kirn, Team Engineer Senior Lead, Telstra, said, “We’re able to offer our customers a single pane of glass to do all their app development without provisioning a single virtual machine or database. We give them a managed environment where they can create and deploy applications quickly—and we have saved millions doing it. If it weren’t for Oracle APEX, it would have taken $1 to $2 million to recreate this using another solution.”

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Triple A Super is a specialist, self-managed superfund (SMSF) provider that operates out of the UK and Australia, the third largest financial services market in the world by the value of investments is this space and where the company is one of the largest independent providers in the market. Operating in a highly fragmented market the company is using technology to differentiate itself and to be selected as a provider of choice by its customers – accountants and financial advisors. As part of this, Triple A Super is developing a wealth management ecosystem to satisfy their need for greater information. 

Brian Pedretti, Managing Director, Triple A Super said, “We wanted to weave together a tapestry of multiple software platforms synchronized with our own internally developed portals to create customized, hierarchical, permission-based dashboards using both predictive and prescriptive analytics that institutions, dealer groups and advisers can also integrate with their own systems.

They can then share these with individual clients, enabling them see their investments and rich data analytics details such as how compliant they are, impending issues or opportunities that enhance greater client engagement and growth opportunities. Using a mix of Oracle Autonomous Data Warehouse and APEX, we now have a single environment allowing us to do this, and from which we can continue to surface new developments and continue to improve and revitalize the portals we had previously developed. It’s certainly increased our development capability.”

Singapore-based CWT Globelink provides cargo consolidation and door-to-door/port-to-port sea freight forwarding services from more than 100 offices in 31 countries across primarily Asia, as well as Europe and the Middle East. The business of consolidating cargo is complex. It includes supporting smaller suppliers who can’t fill a whole container on their own, ones that ship dangerous goods, suppliers that want to get to smaller ports, and even big providers that want to get a bulk load to a hub location and then split the shipment out to go to smaller destinations. This all means a lot of hand offs, requirements for supporting paperwork and complexity around shipping rates and regulations as they vary from country to country.  

Daniel Tok, Group CEO of CWT Globelink said, “We saw lots of opportunities to digitize and are a firm believer of technologies. As such we have been deploying it in as many areas as possible. From internal focus to customer focus initiatives, we seek to transform the way we work and engage customers. With Oracle Autonomous Transaction Processing and APEX, we were able to quickly and easily build three key applications to support our core business: Freight Management, Request for Quote (RFQ) and custom CRM. Because APEX offers a business-focus approach it helped us to concentrate on solving the problem and the user experience. We’ve seen a performance improvement of 20 to 100 percent compared to other cloud and on-premise solutions. Plus, as APEX is an integral part of Oracle Database, it gives us the capability and confidence to manage large amounts of data and extract value from it; and it saved us tremendous effort setting up APEX and managing the infrastructure. We’re now also using APEX for a range of other things such as monitoring server status, providing IT dashboards and collecting reports.”

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JB Corporation supplies gas to the central region of Korea, as well as the administrative capital of Korea, Sejong City. It also operates a number of renewable energy-related businesses including bioenergy, co-generation and solar energy. A long-term user of Oracle E-Business Suite financial and supply chain management (SCM) modules, the company’s HR management and billing systems had been developed in-house. As such, adding new features or linking new services was proving costly and required a high level of maintenance. The company turned to Oracle APEX to help it modernize these applications and to develop a new performance management and performance appraisal system.

Jang Se-guk, head of the Digital Transformation Team at JB Corporation, said, “As APEX is a declarative low-code development tool, it’s helped us reduce development time and costs, gain 5 times higher development productivity, and save 5 times in terms of maintenance costs over our other development tools. As the tool supports various web-based, UI templates we can now quickly and easily build out reports and forms, and know that the applications meet the latest web standards in terms of security and accessibility. This is all without the need to introduce a new package as we are already an Oracle Database user. For our employees, they can now manage their HR affairs on their desktop or mobile device. Whether it is a new project, or migrating or a complex business system, APEX has been a great choice.”

GoodusData is Korea’s leading IT solution provider delivering technical expertise for outsourcing services. With increased customer demands for its in-house developed network management solution, GoodusData’s legacy environment—using Microsoft .NET framework and SQL server—offered limited solution licenses, making it difficult and time-consuming for developers to enable different testing scenarios. The company needed a flexible cloud solution to improve application development efficiency, reduce costs, and support growth.

Sang-Hyun Jeon,  President, GoodusData, said, “We selected Oracle Cloud Infrastructure over Microsoft because it offers on-demand access to various functions of Oracle Database Cloud Service and enables us to rapidly develop and test applications in real-time, and at a lower cost. It’s enabled us to respond faster to customers needs and support global growth opportunities. And being an Oracle Certified Solution Partner and Oracle Certified Education Partner, we can expand the business opportunities to global markets by adding our solutions to Oracle Cloud Marketplace.”

AS ONE Corporation is a general trading company offering medical and scientific instruments in Japan. It has a service philosophy of “delivering what you need, when you need it, in the amount you need”, with a goal of same day dispatch even for single item orders. To help it continue to meet this goal, the company updated the infrastructure underpinning its best-in-class logistics and delivery systems that connect users, resellers and manufacturers, allowing more than 200,000 of these inventory items to be checked in real time 24 hours a day. It selected Oracle Autonomous Transaction Processing and used Oracle APEX to enable data to be read to the system directly with REST API and JSON, and data to be linked without setting up an application server. This means that users can check inventory counts, check if immediate delivery is possible, and accept checks for resellers systems in real time. Its use helped shorten the time to production which was done in less than a month.

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Outsourcing Business Service, the business process outsourcing unit of Tokyo-based Outsourcing Inc., specializes in services for IT, manufacturing and engineering companies. Its mission is to create an optimal work environment for employees with disabilities, who make up more than 90 percent of its workforce. Needing to consolidate its people’s health and related information from across 30 business divisions, the company selected Oracle ADW to free up and centralize their data, and Oracle APEX so that staff can easily create a UI to import health data into the data warehouse. Adding to the desire to enable employees to do more with data, Oracle Analytics and Oracle Data Visualization additionally enable people with little data analytics knowledge or experience to implement low-code analytics quickly and easily.

Given the fact that it has a small IT workforce, the company needed a solution that is easy to set up, use and develop, and one that automates maintenance and operations management. “Oracle was the only choice,” says CEO, Kinji Manabe. 

Hitotsubashi University has built a powerful, cloud-based system capable of undertaking real time, complex analysis of official, public microdata, to help advance the use of public statistics and academic research in the country by universities and academic research institutions. It also has a particular focus on supporting young researchers and driving the advancement of statistical education in elementary, junior high and high schools. The system utilizes Oracle ADW – the only system the University found able to provide the performance to handle the complex calculations involved to ensure the delivery of anonymized data and growing data volumes. To help provide quick, easy and secure access, a web-based data search environment was built using Oracle APEX. 

Kiyomi Shirakawa, a researcher, Institute of Economic Research, Hitotsubashi University said, “When building a database that can be used for statistical education in elementary, middle and high schools, we conceived and built a database that covered the largest amount of basic statistics and search patterns that we estimated. However, since we had to search for 151 billion cases of numerical data, which was much more than we had expected, the system development remained a challenge and hadn’t been possible to get results until now. Oracle proposed an Autonomous Data Warehouse to solve this problem, and thanks to the efforts of the development team using Oracle APEX, we could finally build a stress-free search system. Building such a system to fulfil our requirements had been an issue in our research over the last few years, and I am very grateful that with the cloud we finally solved it.”

Oracle APEX has been available since 2004 and is used by tens of millions of users worldwide, including 500,000 developers, 50,000 customers and more than 150 partners. It has been used to build millions of applications, including 6,000 new applications every day. Developers can start building low-code applications for free using APEX, included with Oracle Cloud Free Tier, today. Applications built and deployed using APEX Service benefit from high security, scalability, availability and performance provided by Oracle Autonomous Database and Oracle Exadata on Oracle Cloud Infrastructure (OCI).

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