In this article, we shall be introducing the benefits and features of Mobile Backend as a Service to newcomers and also review the top 10 MBaaS providers in 2022.
For starters, Mobile Backend as a Service (MBaaS) is an innovative cloud computing platform specialized in developing mobile apps quickly. Large and small companies use MBBS for their development projects because of its cost-efficiency, faster development, and many other benefits.
Since many companies are offering excellent MBaaS services, it’s tricky singling out one company as the best among the rest. Therefore, this guide shall streamline the top service providers by considering the pricing structure and the core feature of each provider.
Mobile Backend as a Service can be referred to as a modern replacement for middlewares. This technology uses application programming interfaces (APIs) and software development kits (SDKs) to connect backend functions to apps. MBaaS allows developers to access cloud-based resources like databases, storage, server apps, and much more.
The Mobile Backend as a Service industry has grown exponentially over the last few years. A forecast by MarketsAndMarkets predicts that by 2025, the market will cross the 5.9 billion USD benchmark.
It is interesting to note that this industry was valued at 2 billion USD in 2020. This fast-paced growth indicates the massive adoption of MBaaS technology because of its many beneficial features.
In this article, we shall be making a quick overview of the Back4app, Backendless, Kinvey, AWS Amplify, 8Base, Firebase, Parse, NHost, and Apache Usergrid.
Advantages of MBaaS
Mobile Backend as a Service offers several benefits to developers, but we shall be mentioning the top ones in this article.
- Expedites the time to market
MBaaS makes app development easier and quicker, resulting in a faster time to the market. For one, app owners don’t need to mess with backend operations to bring their app idea to reality. Since the development procedure is simplified, developers and businesses spend less time managing mobile app development assignments.
- Minimal Backend Hassles
The tasks of managing server backends can be hectic, Tasks such as system administration, software updates, backups, scaling services are tedious and time-consuming. However, you don’t have to bother about backend hassles when using an MBaaS vendor for development. Users can focus on building their frontend features while the vendor handles the backend administration.
MBaaS development is less expensive compared to custom mobile development because most vendors use a pay-as-you-go pricing model. This approach only charges users based on the server resources used over a billing period. So, the cost of hosting and server maintenance are not applicable.
- Scales Seamlessly
It’s quite easy to scale when using an MBaaS development technique. Startups and enterprise companies can start app development with a base plan and upgrade to higher plans when growth demands more server resources.
It is also possible to downgrade a plan when the need arises. Read the Advantages of MBaaS to learn more about the benefits of MBaaS.
Top 10 MBaaS Providers
Now, let’s make a brief review of the top MBaaS providers in 2022.
Back4App is a reliable MBaaS provider that has been providing reliable low-code backend services for clients since 2015. The platform is easy to use and supports app development for web and mobile platforms.
Developers can select between REST and GraphQL APIs for their development assignments. Besides, Back4app also provides several other useful resources like SDKs that allow developers to use multiple cloud services, frameworks, and programming languages on its platform.
Features of Back4pp
Easy-to-Use: Back4app offers a user-friendly interface that simplified development tasks for newcomers and experts alike. For instance, the dashboard consists of an interface that allows users to perform various editing tasks with minimal coding. The user can populate a database from a CSV, refresh browsers without hassle, and lots more.
Notification: Developers can send notifications through multiple channels, including email and push notifications for Android and iOS devices.
Live Query: Powered by the Parse Server, Back4apps allows users to make real-time queries. This feature is accessible through the Live Query and Server URL interface.
Relational Database: Users can define connections between data in the database. In essence, the platform offers a relational database structure for your app backend.
SDK: With Back4app’s support for the cross-platform Parse SDK, developers can use multiple programming languages and frameworks on Back4app. A few supported technologies include React Native, JS, Flutter, .Net, Node.Js, Unity, and lots more.
Back4app offers three plans described below:
Free Plan: Back4app offers a free plan for starters and startups. This plan is packed with 25k requests/month and 1GB storage. You don’t have to input a credit card to use this plan.
Shared Plan: This shared hosting plan starts at 25/month and is packed with features like daily backup, and autoscaling. The Basic plan of the shared hosting is excellent for launching your MVP.
Dedicated Plan: at $250/month, users of this plan can access Virtual machines and advanced security features. In a scenario where your app project needs unique features unavailable with this plan, you can opt for the Enterprise Plan by contacting the sales team with your requirements.
Since Facebook launched Parse in 2013, it has grown to become of the most reliable backend platforms for app development projects. Developers love this platform because it provides all features required in mobile development and can also handle full-stack development projects.
Features of Parse
Parse Server: It provides support for REST, and several other modules and adapters.
Community Support: Pass has a massive community of users and developers. Online platforms like the official Parse website, GitHub, and several other community forums offer many development resources and helpful development tips.
Easy Integration: It is straightforward to connect Parse with third-party online platforms like Twilio, Google Cloud, Stripe, Auth0, And many others
Pricing of Parse
Parse is free for developers and businesses. However, some costs may be necessary to integrate it with other backend development tools.
The fact that Firebase integrates seamlessly with Google Cloud products makes it a powerful backend service platform. This platform offers developers a simple way to develop and host powerful apps with amazing server-side features. The functions of Firebase are classified into Build, Release, and “Monitor and Engage.”
In essence, Firebase offers all the tools required to build, launch and manage your app. Its cross-platform development support makes it an excellent choice for starters, startups, and small businesses. Its predominant visual interface allows you to start app development with a few clicks.
Features of Firebase
Database: Firebase offers its users the options of Realtime database and Firestore. Both databases are NoSQL and can sync data in real-time. Both databases work excellently for iOS, Web, and Android app development.
Cloud Messaging: This free notifications and messaging function commonly called Firebase Cloud Messaging (FCM) works with Android, iOS, Unity, and C++ applications. It does not support Web app integration.
Cloud Storage: Enables the creation of app functions that store and retrieve data like text, video, pictures, and lots more.
Authentication: The authentication feature makes it possible to sign-up/sign-in using social media accounts like Google, Facebook, Twitter, among many others.
Pricing of Firebase
Firebase has two price plans:
Spark: This is a free plan packed with resources like 1GB database storage, 5GB cloud storage, and 10 tests daily. It is an excellent plan for evaluating the Firebase platform.
Blaze Plan: A pay-as-you-go plan that charges based on the server resources used within a billing period. You can use the Blaze Calculator tool on the Firebase website to estimate monthly billing.
With its integrated visual app builder, Backendless has carved a niche for itself among other Backend as a Service companies. This no-code platform was developed by Mark Piller in 2012. It’s a viable option for full-stack development.
Features of Backendless
Database: This platform combines SQL and NoSQL databases to manage its user’s data flow. Users can make use of a GUI browser to manage the integrated databases. You can also manage the database in real-time on the Console of Cloud Code.
Security: Backendless offers top-notch file security and hierarchical user privileges. Additional features like user policies, API, and messaging security make it a secure platform for enterprise development.
Pricing of Backendless
Here are the two pricing categories of Backendless.
Individual and Small Business: The plans here are designed for startups and SMEs. The monthly costs are $25 and $99 respectively.
Medium and Large Enterprises: Options for larger companies include Backendless Pro and Managed Backendless. These plans offer custom functions, therefore, the costs are quoted on request.
5. AWS Amplify
AWS Amplify has a suite of features that allows developers to build and deploy mobile apps quickly. Amplify integrates seamlessly with Amazon Web Services, allowing you to build backend functions for your mobile app. This MBaaS platform is a great choice for developing full-stack apps that scale.
Features of AWS Amplify
DataStore: Apps on AWS store and sync data fast with the powerful GraphQL. AWS supports Android, iOS, and React Native for app development.
Authentication: Allows developers to build apps that support social logins with platforms like Facebook, Google, Amazon, and many more.
Analytics: An integration with platforms like Amazon Kinesis and Amazon Pinpoint allows access to backend mobile analytics.
Amplify Studio: Amplify Studio presents a visual interface that simplifies data modeling and authorization. Moreover, it integrates app templates with Amplify CLI seamlessly.
Pricing of Amplify
The two price models of Amplify are:
Free Plan: This plan is packed with 1K development minutes per month and 5GB storage.
Pay-as-you-go: Users are charged $0.01 per build minute once they exceed the Free plan. Other resources are billed based on usage within the billing period.
Kinvey is one of the most reliable enterprise-level MBaaS platforms. That is why it is commonly used by companies with mission-critical apps in the manufacturing, finance, healthcare, and insurance industries.
Features of Kinvey
Fast Development: Provides captivating and east-to-use app development UI for developing apps faster.
Security: Kinvey users enjoy enterprise-level security and cloud architecture for building reliable apps.
Simplicity: Provides a suite of SDK and REST API for integrating backend features to apps without hassles.
Pricing of Kinvey
The starter plan of Kinvey charges $2500 per year.
Features of 8Base
Serverless: This MBaaS provider allows the users to regulate the level of serverless function that they want. It supports Webhooks, GraphQL API, and database triggers.
User Management: 8Base offers multiple authentication methods like email and password, OpenID, and inbuilt user accounts.
Frontend Support Techs: Multiple frontend technologies like 8Base App Builder, Angular, Ionic, React, and Vue work with the 8Base backend.
Pricing of 8Base
The four pricing options of 8Base are:
Free: The free plan offers 500MB storage, 1K database rows, and 5-clients users per app.
Developer: Offers unlimited users and 50GB storage at $25 per month.
Professional: At $150 per month, users of this plan can access 250Gb storage and 5 million database rows.
Custom Plan: This plan offers unlimited resources along with unique user requirements., The price is quoted on request.
Kumulos is a simplified MBaaS that has acquired a global client base across 19 nations. With multi-tenancy MBaaS features, developers can use the platform to build messaging and mobile apps quickly.
Features of Kumulos
Multiple Integration: This platform supports multiple frameworks for app development. A few frameworks that integrate seamlessly with Kumulos include Cordova, Android, Swift, Ionic, Xamarin, Unity, and React Native.
Server-Side Code: With the integrated Kscript, developers can build custom codes and APIs for app development.
SDK Support: Developers can access multiple Kumulos SDKs on GitHub.
Pricing of Kumulos
Kumulos only offers an annual pricing model for its plans. Fill out the form on the pricing page of Kumulos website to receive a quote for the service you need.
NHost is an MBaaS provider that serves developers and businesses of all sizes. NHost is growing fast with over 1.7k stars on GitHub. Its quick setup and serverless features make the platform attractive to developers.
Features of NHost
Image Transformation: Development projects that need to manipulate pictures will benefit from the image transformation tool of this platform. Developers can quickly resize and optimize images for their app projects.
Open Platform. While NHost offers features parallel to Firebase, it is an open platform. In essence, users are not locked-in to the platform like Firebase.
Security: The platform defines user roles and permission and also implements other strict security measures that safeguard user data.
Pricing of NHost
NHost offers three main price tiers.
Starter: This is a free plan packed with a 1GB real-time database, 5GB file storage, and 10GB data transfer.
Pro: This paid plan offers 35GB storage, a 10Gb real-time database, and 50GB data transfer.
Enterprise: Users of this plan enjoy 500GB data storage, and 1TB data transfer. Get in touch with the company’s sales department for a quote.
10. Apache Usergrid
Apache Usergrid is another Backend company we cannot ignore in this article. With over 435 forks on GitHub and more than 1K stars, Apache Usergrid is popular among developers because of its valuable app development tools. The platform takes care of server management so users can focus on their development assignments.
With backend codes and server management chores out of the way, developers can build and update apps faster than before.
Features of Apache Usergrid
SDK Suite: The platform provides a suite of SDK that supports Node.js. iOS. Ruby, Java, .Net, and Android.
Reliable: This platform is tested and trusted with thousands of developers using it worldwide.
Pricing Of Apache Usergrid
The pricing structure of Apache Usergrid is not published on its site. You can get in touch with the sales team and inquire about costs on the platform’s website.
Features like simplicity and server-side functions of Mobile Backend as a Service platforms make them popular among developers. Though choosing a single MBaaS provider from the huge list online is challenging, this article streamlines the best mobile BaaS providers based on each platform’s features and pricing structure.