Honeycode Beta closing down

I received an email today from Amazon Honeycode saying they will be shuting down the service in Feb 2024.
I initially was very keen on trying out the product and did 10 YouTube videos about it that have garnered over 6000 views to date.

I started using it in July 2020 and was excited in the low/no code platform from the perspective that it could connect into the AWS (Amazon Web Service) infrastructure, I was particularly interested in linking into databases for storing information.

Double Open to access an app

There was a big negative to the platform that I disliked from the beginning, you first had to log into the Honeycode app itself before you could access any o the apps you wanted to use. So having to do a double open to access what you wanted to do. I can see the sense from a security point of view, but you could also just have a login interface on the app itself, like other no/low code apps.

Also all the fun stuff was behind a paywall, so you needed to have a paid account before you could play with them. That was a bit of a shame, as there were not many videos about the product at the time, so I think that’s why my videos got a lot of views. So if they had allowed for limited access to those products on the free accounts there may have been more uptake.

Product issues

It was focused on their corporate clients, but it came late to the party against Microsofts Power App and Google bought out AppSheets , both more mature services in the no/low code area.

Power App could connect to Microsofts infrastructure and services such as its Outlook mail and other Azure services, whereas AppSheets just had Google sheets as a back end, but that has GAS (Google App Scripts) which is pretty powerful JS coding and its quite versatile.

There were also a lot of other no/low code apps like Glide, Bubble? and a few others that it had to compete with.

Personal experience

I had done quite a few apps with Glide, and decided to mimic a few of them on Honeycode platform. Overall I found Glide easier to use and pointed this out in the videos I did.

I also approached Amazon Honeycode to ask them to allow me to play with some of their paid services and ?I would promote their product in videos , but was told No thank you. I did have the track record of the Glide videos I’d done, but that was not in their interest apparently.

So as I was limited to the free stuff, I found it was pretty limited and not as intuitive as Glide, although the Honeycode was for Tablet as well as phone, whilst at that time Glide was only mobile phone setup (Web page configuration came later).

So in the end I did a Test Drive with Honeycode but as I didn’t have access to the interesting features that the product had over its competitors in the Free account I found it a more clunky experience than other no/low app tools I was using, so after the initial foray, I stopped using it and never found a reason to go back to using it. I think the last video I did was November 2020. So did a lot of activity in July 2020 and then the last video in November.

That really say’s it all. It wasn’t a tool I’d go to, as others had better ease of use and more value in their free accounts.

End comment

It’s a shame that its closing down, as no/low code stuff is handy for getting more people to generate their ideas.

On the other hand, they came to the game later, with massive resource backing from the AWS platform, so they should have made something better. The double step required to get into the app, in my opinion, was a really dumb move. It pushed them to the back rather than the front of products that people would choose to use.

Still , its been out there for 3 years, hopefully they do a rethink and come back into the game with a better product. With AI stuff suddenly influencing everything I do not see them investing in this space in the future.