The popularity of 'no-code,' which allows you to develop programs without the knowledge of coding, is spreading not only to small and medium-sized enterprises and developers, but also to small business owners, self-employed people, and the general public. People without information technology (IT) expertise use no-code to develop services to overcome the COVID-19 crisis and to improve living convenience.
On the 28th, according to a no-code solution developer Smart Power, the number of users continues to increase since the expanded supply of the no-code solution 'Smart Maker' to the personal market (B2C) in the second half of 2017. The increase has been steep since the COVID-19 outbreak.
The number of users, which was less than 30,000 in 2018, exceeded 70,000 in 2019. Following the increase to 120,000 users last year, about 350,000 people are using it as of the first half of this year. Smart Power explained that more than 70% of its users are non-IT experts.
After the COVID-19 crisis, there are many small business owners, self-employed people and freelancers who use Smart Maker as a non-face-to-face service development tool. It can be developed by simple clicks with the mouse and anyone can use it with simple education, so the entry barrier is low.
Although the number of non-face-to-face responses increased, a real estate company that was worried about the high fees of a large real estate platform responded by directly creating an app called 'Bokdeokbang' with Smart Maker.
A freelancer who makes profit through talent trading created a talent trade market called 'Wingk' when his livelihood was threatened by COVID-19. Wink is a no-fee direct talent marketplace, offering new opportunities for freelancers.
In addition, private educational institutions provide academic management apps or websites, and publishers make and provide digital books. They are active in sharing no-code-related information such as the production process and reviews, through the digital community service platform called “cafe.”
Ordinary individuals make services that can help improve their lives, such as sleep check apps, pedometers, and English vocabulary. They have a strong will to satisfy their desire to develop programs. There was a separate course for elders since many people in their 70s and 80s showed interest.
An official from Smart Maker said, “Among small and medium-sized business owners, it is difficult to create an app that can replace non-face-to-face applications, so there are many cases where their business is seriously damaged and in danger of closing. On the other hand, no-code program allows these individuals the ability to prepare for non-face-to-face era, and to help the nation's digital transformation.”
No-code can reduce costs by reducing the period of professional programming language learning that takes more than a year. It is considered as an alternative to overcome the lack of developers. It is expected that the spread will accelerate as it is used not only by developers but also by the general public.
Smart Power is increasing the number of Smart Maker supply cases in the corporate market (B2B) such as the Korea Expressway Corporation. In the B2B market, LG CNS contributed to the spread of the no-code platform 'DevOn NCD' by free public release earlier this year. DevOn NCD, which can be used for large-scale projects worth 10 billion won or more, has been downloaded 3,000 times within 4 months of its free release.
Gartner predicts that the no-code and low-code market will grow 9.1% annually, and will form about 24 trillion won next year. Global companies such as Google, Microsoft, and Amazon Web Services are also entering the no-code market one after another.
An industry expert said, “No-code is a new development method rather than replacing the existing language, and the options have been expanded to the general public. The number of users will increase faster if development is made possible in a wider range beyond the resources provided by the developer.”
Reporter Ho-cheon An