Tech analyst Gartner estimates that spending on low-code development technologies will grow 19.6% year-over-year to $26.9 billion in 2023. citizens’ even less coded grow faster than the rest of the low-code market.
Gartner sees organizations using low-code technologies — which require less development skills and knowledge of programming languages — being used to accelerate application delivery and create custom automation workflows.
The analyst expects strong growth across the broad spectrum of low-code technologies, with the largest category being low-code application platforms (LCAPs). It forecasts LCAP market revenue to grow 25% in 2023 to $9.9 billion.
Also: Low-code is not yet a cure for overburdened IT departments
Among Gartner’s list LCAP providers are OutSystems, Appian, Microsoft Power Platform, Salesforce Platform, Oracle Express, Mendix, Soho, Pega, ServiceNow and others.
Other Gartner categories are: Business Process Automation (BPA), Multi-Experiment Development Platforms (MDXP), Robotic Process Automation (RPA), Integration Platform as service (iPaaS), automation and citizen development platforms (CADP), and other low-code development (LCD) technology platforms.
“Equipping both professional IT developers and non-IT people – business technologists – with various low-code tools enables organizations to achieve the level of digital proficiency and speed of delivery required for the modern agile environment. “, said Varsha Mehta, senior market researcher at Gartner.
Gartner estimates that 80% of people using low-code development tools will not be part of formal IT departments by 2026. That’s up from 60% in 2021.
The CADP category for “citizen developers” – i.e. non-professional developers – will generate around $732 million in 2022, but it is the fastest growing and is expected to grow by 30.2% in 2023 to reach $953 million. According to Gartner, use cases include automating workflows, creating web forms, reconciling data and content between multiple software-as-a-service applications, and creating reports and data visualizations.
The analyst sees low-code as part of the mix of software technologies enabling hyperautomation, which he predicts will reach $720 billion in 2023.
Also: Low-code and no-code improve the work of developers in two ways
Low-code development technologies provide organizations with the ability to compose modular components and Packaged Business Features (PBC) to create adaptive custom applications.
Gartner notes that it defines “no-code” application platforms as an LCAP that only requires text entry for simple formulas or expressions. It includes no-code platforms in LCAP. However, he notes that “no code” is not suitable for citizen development because many complex tool configuration tasks are codeless but still require specialized skills.
Jon Collins, vice president of research at analyst GigaOm, recently told ZDNET that low-code technology doesn’t entirely eliminate the need for full-stack developers. The spectrum of low-code ranges from simple drag-and-drop interfaces on various tools to complex technical platforms with a low-code way of working.
“Low code can’t do much to hide the underlying complexity, which makes it great for simpler environments, integrating multiple sources, or getting started with a new application, but sooner or later you’ll need more in-depth engineering skills,” he said.
So is this really the end for developers? Unlikely: a recent investigation by software company Capterra found that IT professionals are the main users of low-code/no-code platforms, even though they are often positioned as a tool for citizen developers.