By John Houghton on February 16, 2016
When my team was writing a particular data-driven app last year, we had a number of options for setting up our back-end. A lot of companies use backend-as-a-service (BAAS) providers to simplify back-end development, for example, hosting the server, database, and writing the APIs. There was a lot of pressure for us to go with Parse, a BAAS company bought by Facebook in 2013. Running a BAAS company can be a thankless task and I noticed that they frequently go out of business as StackMob did in 2014.
It’s important for a BAAS to have great backing and Facebook is a top brand, so Parse was in great shape there. The ease of use in developing with Parse was the main attraction, but I had noticed on other apps that we worked on which used Parse, the back end wasn’t that reliable and went down a lot. That was one reason for not going forward with Parse, but the main reason was we wanted to control our own destiny, rather than be subject to the whims of a large company.
I was shocked to learn last week that Parse is shutting down. Unless app stakeholders take action, their apps will no longer work at this time next year. What a bummer for anyone who trusted Parse! Thousands of lines of code need to be rewritten for this app.
In the end we went with a PHP/mysql back end that used bootstrap for the web-based management console. The front end for the user is native iOS. I’m so glad we made the choice to write our own back-end!
Posted in Mobile Strategy