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Top backend solutions for mobile applications

The mobile app development field has seen continuous growth over the years and according to reports, mobile app users globally had crossed 7 billion by 2021. With many apps coming up each day, the focus is on how reliable, easy to use and efficient they are. Developers make sure they use the best frameworks to build their apps to ensure that the users are satisfied with the app’s performance.

Backend technologies are very crucial when it comes to developing a mobile app. Backend technology that is well-chosen can ensure scalability, performance, and fast response to client demands and needs. Server-side programming languages, frameworks, and other tools are used to create business logic and ensure the overall functionality of a project. A backend framework usually aims to automate the experience with the software development functions. When you use the backend for your app, you should know how it benefits your app. The following are some benefits:

  • Security
  • Time-Saving
  • Integrations
  • Uniqueness
  • Scalability

There is often a dilemma for startups and their development team regarding what backend framework to use for their app as it is a very important component that ensures better functioning of the app, further leading to user satisfaction.

The following is a list of top backend frameworks which you should know to make the correct choice for your app

1. Django

Django is an open-source and one of the best Python-based web frameworks. It is an efficient solution which assists in developing database-driven complex applications.

Features Of Django

Some of the characteristics of Django which make it widely used are,

  • Excellent Documentation
    Django has a lot of documentation.
  • High Scalability
    By looking at the wide range of types of applications that have been scaled using Django, it gives a strong indication that it has the tools required to scale most types of applications.
  • Admin interface
    Django-admin interface is a modern responsive flat admin interface customizable by the admin itself.
  • High Security
    Django has built-in protection against most types of CSRF attacks, provided you have enabled and used it where appropriate. Using Django templates protects you against the majority of XSS attacks Versatility
  • Versatility
    Django can be (and has been) used to build almost any type of app.

Where can you use Django?

The popular apps created using Django are Spotify, Indeed, Udemy, Firefox and Pinterest. Django has benefits such as URL routing and from building, its open source capacity helped Pinterest to modify the framework for its needs, it can handle traffic effectively and API hits in a more efficient manner which helped Firefox. These are some benefits which define what kind of apps can be built with Django.

2. Ruby on Rails

Ruby on rail is an open-source web development framework which has been written in the Ruby programming language.

Advantages of using Ruby on Rails

  • Easier to code and make changes
    It saves you time by adhering to the “write less code” principle. Not only does this enable you to get more done with less code, but it also makes it easier to troubleshoot problems and decreases the chance of making an error.
  • Secure
    It has adequate features for authentication, encryption etc. which makes it secure to use.
  • Rapid processing
    Ruby on rails follows the Agile method for building projects. This is one of the main reasons that ease the process of building an application for developers.
  • Open-source and flexible
  • Consistency
    The principle of convention over configuration governs the entire development process, which ensures that every developer who works on the project knows what is going on.

Ruby on Rails is suited for Stock-Exchange platforms, social networking apps, information portals, Saas solutions etc. Popular companies that use Ruby on Rails are Airbnb, Twitter, Shopify, Slideshare and GitHub.

3. ExpressJS

ExpressJS is another popularly used Backend framework, and it is one of the types of Node.js which offers to build features and functionalities for the apps without hindering the Node.JS features. It is very easy to use and learn, which boosts its preferability to develop scalable web development solutions.

Express aligns with high-speed input/output operations and the single-threaded nature of Node making it a default requirement for apps built with the Node.js platform. It has a great Application User Interface(API) which implies a more streamlined form of client-to-server requests and visible user interactions.

Principles of software engineering can be executed in a better way using this framework. Seamless communication between client and server provides a thoroughly enjoyable experience to a web or mobile user. Some examples of companies using ExpressJS as backend technology are Uber, Twitter, IBM, Accenture and PayPal.

Backend as a Service (BaaS)

Sometimes we need to look at Backend-as-a-service (Baas) because of some specific advantages it offers over Software-as-a-service. BaaS is a solution that facilitates building web and mobile applications by enabling developers to link their digital product to a cloud-stored backend via application programming interfaces (APIs) and software development kits (SDKs). As such, the backend as a service can be considered a go-to solution for the two types of projects:

  • MVPs, whereby the priority is to shorten the time to market, cut the development costs, and gather the first user feedback as soon as possible;
  • apps that won’t require notable upscaling soon

Backend-as-a-Service (BaaS) is a model for providing web app and mobile app developers with a way to link their applications to backend cloud storage and APIs exposed by back-end applications while also providing features such as user management, push notifications, and integration with social networking services. These services are provided via the use of custom software development kits (SDKs) and application programming interfaces (APIs).

BaaS is helpful for developers to focus on writing the front-end application code. Via APIs (how a program requests another) and SDKs (software building kits) offered by the BaaS vendor, they can integrate all the backend functionality they need, without the need to build the backend themselves.

This eliminates the need to manage servers, virtual machines, or containers to keep the application running. This helps them to build and launch mobile applications and web applications (including single-page applications) more quickly.

Top BaaS solutions for mobile development are,

  1. Firebase is basically a set of hosting services for any type of application (Android, iOS, Javascript, Node.js, Java, Unity, PHP, C++ etc). It offers NoSQL and real-time hosting of databases, content, social authentication (Google, Facebook, Twitter and GitHub), and notifications, or services, such as a real-time communication server. It offers tools for tracking analytics, reporting and fixing app crashes. The services are hosted in the cloud and scale with little to no effort on the part of the developer.

    Read our blog about the Advantages of Firebase as a backend to learn more about Firebase.
  2. Supabase is an open-source firebase alternative, but instead of being built around a document-based datastore, Supabase offers a relational database management system called PostgreSQL.

Backend is a very important aspect of mobile app development, and focussing on it gives an edge to your startup app above other competitors. There are various frameworks for Backend development like Django, Ruby on Rails and ExpressJS which can be used to build the backend of your app. Backend-as-a-service is a model used to link apps to backend cloud storage and APIs exposed by backend applications. BaaS is helpful for developers to focus on writing the front-end application code.