Bj Kandel

iOS Engineer & Mobile Lead at Zalando

Bj is an Engineering Manager at Zalando SE leading the AppCraftMobile team. He and his colleagues started work on AppCraft (Backend Driven Mobile UI framework used within Zalando) 3 years back. The team looked into various approaches (ReactNative & Flutter) but began experimenting with homegrown technology that fits the domain. AppCraft now is used in the most prevalent app within Zalando; the home screen with ever-changing content. It’s powering various spin-off landing pages, brand homepages, and high-profile partner screens.

While not working on AppCraft, Bj is coding SwiftUI, React JS and wishes to get time to work a bit on Haskell.


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AppCraft: Lessons Learned building successful Backend Driven Mobile UI

8 October 2021, Friday
05:25 pm - 06:10 pm
about the talk

AppCraft is Zalando’s internal technology that enables backend-driven mobile UI. It was in work for around 3 years and it went through radical iterations and stack changes but the core remained intact. Currently, it powers the most prevalent screen within the Zalando app; the home screen and myriads of landing pages, dynamic pages, brand partner pages, and influencer pages. AppCraft technology is used and loved by teams shipping experiences within Zalando as changes are deployed in real-time.

In this talk I want to explore the fundamentals of backend driven UI, what is the core at AppCraft that powers flexibility on UI, design, and behavior, and walk you through the most important radical iterations. The key takeaway revolves around the architectural choice taken, what worked and what changed and what I/You would do if you were to start all over again.

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