Internal incubator program supports breakthrough ideas focused on blockchain, augmented and virtual reality, and microapps
Progress (NASDAQ: PRGS), the leading provider of application development and deployment technologies, today announced three new projects under development in Progress Labs, the internal technology incubator in which teams create, test, and turn innovative ideas into reality. First launched in 2017, Progress Labs is designed to identify and nurture the best ideas from Progress employees and bring them to market as new technologies designed to enable Progress customers to innovate in their own businesses.
“Technology is moving faster than ever before, and organizations need to innovate to survive,” said Dmitri Tcherevik, Chief Technology Officer, Progress. “Amid a wave of hype around emerging technologies, we’ve chosen to explore three specific areas — blockchain, AR/VR and microapps – that will have a high impact on the way businesses operate in the next three to five years. Within Progress Labs, we are dedicated to evaluating and delivering on these technologies, bringing real solutions to market that will benefit our customers.”
Blockchain and distributed ledger technology are revolutionizing how organizations exchange information by allowing data to remain trustworthy while being securely distributed. According to Gartner, “By 2025, the business value added by blockchain will grow to slightly over $176 billion, then surge to more than $3.1 trillion by 2030.”
Progress Labs teams are creating new tools to help organizations easily build and deliver the next generation of blockchain-based apps. The Progress blockchain platform will make it very easy to set up a blockchain network that brings together disparate processes and information systems into a secure, permissioned and distributed ledger that all network participants rely on. Developers will quickly deliver new solutions that address even the most challenging of collaboration scenarios with trust built into the network by design.
Augmented and Virtual Reality
In its Tech Vision 2018 survey, Accenture notes that “immersive experiences delivered through VR and AR will take us much further in the digital future, eliminating distance altogether and extending our definition of reality.”
Through augmented and virtual reality advancements, Progress Labs intends to create solutions that connect employees to vital information, sensor data and physical equipment in a natural way that blends the physical and virtual worlds. The goal is to deliver augmented experiences that adapt to the environment and job at hand to increase worker productivity across head-mounted displays (smart glass) and desktops. This can promote better training, optimized employee workflow and democratized access to expert knowledge for the entire workforce.
While most organizations realize that mobility drives employee productivity and customer engagement, IT executives still struggle to leverage innovations such as microservices and cloud-native architectures for integrating business systems, automating workflows and delivering engaging user experiences. The need for maintenance, security and compliance further inhibits new IT initiatives. Micromoments, or microapps, are a new paradigm in application architecture and user experience that delivers on the promise of mobility with new levels of flexibility to increase user productivity and optimize operations, without comprising security or increasing costs.
The microapps platform in development at Progress Labs will provide a set of development and administration tools that make it easy to improve employee productivity. This is achieved by delivering business workflows through a set of microservices and microapps that are readily available to users, without the need to install, authenticate and struggle with multiple mobile apps and web portals.
Every year a new cohort of extraordinary teams join Progress Labs while others graduate the program. Teams generally spend one to a maximum of two years testing their ideas by implementing a sequence of experiments carefully designed to prove their economic and customer value. Successful projects become part of the Progress portfolio upon their graduation from the Labs. The Progress Labs pilot program in 2017 resulted in the release of Progress® NativeChat™, the artificial intelligence-driven platform for creating and deploying chatbots.
For more information about Progress Labs and to track the progress of the current cohort, please click here.