FileMaker today announced a new version of its development platform that speeds creation of custom solutions that run on iPad, iPhone, Windows, Mac and the web. FileMaker 14 brings point-and-click simplicity to automating business processes, delivering desktop-style application functionality to mobile web browsers and providing productive, engaging experiences on desktops, iOS devices and mobile web browsers.
The announcement coincides with the 30th anniversary of FileMaker software. FileMaker was the brainchild of a bootstrapped startup founded in Massachusetts by four entrepreneurs intent on creating easy-to-use database software.
“FileMaker 14 is the culmination of 30 years of helping customers exploit the latest platforms – from Mac and Windows then through iOS devices and mobile web browsers today – meeting users’ rising expectations for data accessibility, simplicity and mobility,” said Ryan Rosenberg, vice president of marketing and services for FileMaker, Inc. “With FileMaker 14, creating compelling cross-platform solutions and designing for the times is simpler than ever – even if you’ve never developed any solution before.”
New features in FileMaker 14
FileMaker 14 provides a complete experience for developers, enabling them to unleash their creativity and ingenuity.
- A Script Workspace speeds automation of common business processes, such as assigning a new task to the employee with the most availability, reordering inventory when stock is low or creating an invoice during a customer meeting. The Script Workspace consolidates the creation, editing and viewing of scripts and calculations, all in one streamlined workspace. Auto-complete, favorites, in-line editing, shortcuts, script step descriptions with in-line Help, automated command-lookup and other features speed development. Even non-programmers can use scripting to create custom solutions, with FileMaker’s point-and-click simplicity and contextual guidance.
- A redesigned FileMaker WebDirect makes it easy to deliver desktop-style interactivity to mobile browsers on tablets. FileMaker WebDirect now supports FileMaker solutions running on the latest tablets. Business users can deliver a next-generation mobile browser experience. The redesigned toolbar automatically adapts to the screen size of users’ browsers on desktops or tablets, with larger tap targets, slide-in menus that dynamically optimize screen real estate, and menus that collapse and expand into logical groups as the screen size changes or the user rotates the device.
- A Launch Center brings an app-like interface with big, bold icons (no more dialog boxes and pull-down menus) that allow users to visually organize all solutions at a glance. Users can choose from 29 pre-built icons or design custom icons to give solutions a personalized look. The Launch Center works across the entire FileMaker 14 Platform, providing a consistent experience on Windows and Mac with FileMaker Pro, on iPad and iPhone with FileMaker Go, and in a browser with FileMaker WebDirect.
- An enhanced iOS experience for users, via new scripts that provide more control over how solutions look and run on iPad and iPhone. A newly redesigned iOS 8-style interface in FileMaker Go 14 (a free business app available on the App Store) provides a clean look and consistent user experience. Developers can easily make solutions full screen by using scripts or swiping to hide the user interface. They can lock in portrait or landscape views using the new set-screen orientation, display helpful information when capturing signatures, enable touch keyboards, enable richer text formatting, and use new video and audio playback controls to create self-paced training applications and other innovative solutions.
- Many new features for FileMaker developers, power users and administrators. FileMaker WebDirect is now up to 25 percent faster when opening most web-optimized layouts. It also has doubled the number of supported concurrent connections (from 50 to 100). Automatic reconnect from FileMaker Pro 14 solutions to FileMaker Server 14 helps users recover quickly from a lost or unreliable network connection. Security enhancements for FileMaker Server Admin Console protect data and solutions through stronger password controls. The new standby server option in FileMaker Server 14 gives experienced administrators higher availability of business data.
FileMaker at 30
FileMaker has shipped more than 20 million copies of FileMaker Platform products, and the FileMaker Go for iPad and iPhone app just surpassed 1.5 million downloads from the App Store. FileMaker software is available in 15 languages and is used worldwide and in virtually every private and public market sector.
FileMaker is backed by a global ecosystem that includes the FileMaker Community, a free online resource with more than 60,000 members; the FileMaker Business Alliance, with more than 1,200 firms, many whose primary business is to offer FileMaker products and consulting services; and the Made for FileMaker site, offering hundreds of third-party commercial products built for the FileMaker software.
Rave reviews from developers and customers
“As a FileMaker trainer, I know a great number of people who want to deploy solutions to iPhones, iPads and the web. Thanks to the Chrome browser support, FileMaker really delivered the goods with version 14. FileMaker WebDirect delivers FileMaker solutions to all these platforms, plus it’s fast and really simple to deploy.”
- Richard Carlton, president, Richard Carlton Consulting, a FileMaker Business Alliance Platinum member
“WebDirect is freaking awesome now. FileMaker 14 makes our lives easier and gives us the tools we need to dazzle our customers.”
- Joe Scarpetta, CEO and co-owner of The Scarpetta Group, a FileMaker Business Alliance Platinum member
"FileMaker links every part of our business here at Metropolis Studios. A great example of this is the way FileMaker Pro 14 allows us to interact with our audio/visual equipment across the studio. Additionally, the way FileMaker can now be used across all major platforms will be incredibly useful, as we don't have control over the devices and operating systems our customers use. FileMaker essentially allows us to have more time to concentrate on our clients and that is invaluable.”
- Oli Sussat, Director of Marketing, Communications and Technology, Metropolis Studios (Europe’s largest independently owned recording complex based in London)
“Some of my favorite features in FileMaker 14 may seem like small improvements, but they save time on things I do so frequently that the time really adds up. Those features include the ability to insert placeholder text into empty fields and add icons and buttons using either the built-in icons in FileMaker 14 or adding my own. These help my solutions act and feel more like the kinds of applications our employees are used to working with online.”
- Michael Perley, CFO, Prodigy Promotions
“With auto-complete, favorites, shortcuts and more, the Script Workspace gives us quicker, smoother development. Developing in FileMaker isn’t my main job, so it’s important that I can evolve our solution quickly. With FileMaker 14, I can make fast changes on the fly and get on with my main job.”
- Carson Lind, vice president and production engineer, Annex Medical, Inc.