Mobile Backend: Choosing the Right Tech Stack for Your App

Having a cool software development idea is great, but figuring out how to bring it to life is not an easy task. In this piece, we provide guidelines about how not to go wrong with the choice of the backend stack for your software project.

Making decisions about the backend nuances can be quite confusing but, as a business owner and investor, you need to have at least a general understanding of different backend tools. For those, who are at the planning stage now, we’ve created a guide that will help you to gain greater insight into the topic and speak the same language with your development team.

Factors Affecting the Backend Stack Choice

The technology stack defines the present and future of your product success. To make the process of choosing clearer, we’ve listed the main aspects you should focus on when selecting utilities for the backend development:

  • Functionality

Needless to say that the more complex functionality set you plan, the more sophisticated the backend technology stack is required.

software development processSource: Digital Trends.

To develop comprehensive functionality, you may consider such trusted cloud providers like Google Cloud Platform (GCP) and AWS Services for both, iOS and Android platforms. These services provide a broad set of tools for backend creation and third-party integrations.

Speaking of the third-party services, they are a win-win option to use to expand your in-app functionality without time and money losses. For example, you want your app to have such features as online maps to check geolocation, so it will be much more efficient to set integrations with already available third-party platforms like Google Maps and Mapbox than to develop and design your own map with your in-house API yourself.

  • Scalability Prospects

Expectedly, most business owners plan to develop and expand their products in the future by adding new functionality or adjusting them to new platforms. If you are pursuing the same goals, your backend infrastructure should be scalable in order to handle the traffic growth and heavy loads.

As such, you need to be quite selective in choosing the right database for your project. For high-load systems with a large insert rate, it is better to use NoSQL databases like MongoDB or DynamoDB because they are easy to scale as they can be stored at multiple servers on the cloud.

Another condition for easy scaling is the implementation of the REST architecture with stateless API which doesn’t store sessions, but data is stored on the server as long as you like, and it can be scaled by increasing the number of instances.

  • Security Matters

If talking about something that you should never skimp on, neither money nor resources, it is your product security. Mobile apps often demonstrate vulnerabilities to authentication issues due to the wrong choice of security mechanisms or the wrong use.

oauth security

To avoid such a problem, we recommend selecting modern security protocols like OAuth 2.0, helping to ensure that the data between a server and browsers remain private, especially when it comes to fintech & banking apps.

Another common security issue regards HTTP, as it may either not exist or have expired certificates. As the certificates are issued for a certain period of time, users may simply forget to renew them. This issue is solved by automatic certificate renewal which is usually covered up by Load Balancers from the chosen cloud provider as they automatically renew the certificates.

  • Budget Expectations

Luckily, some backend utilities can be open-source and have free plans, but it’s a common case when you need a paid subscription to access some advanced utilities.

For instance, a paid amount for subscription in such services like Firebase usually depends on the amount of data stored and transferred, memory provisioned, tests run, etc. As such, have in mind some extra expenses and always specify your budget limits for the team. 

  • Industry Type

Your business size and industry type can also affect the choice. If the application is defined for some kind of enterprise and involves the use of highly secured data (e.g. in fintech & banking industries), you need to choose statically typed languages like Java. It is much easier to maintain than dynamic languages and it has a large ecosystem with good libraries, documentation, and security protocols.

Note: Apart from the factors mentioned above, the choice of backend development technologies may also depend on the expected timeframes, competition on the market, development team proficiency, etc.

Summing up

In fact, opting for the right backend technology stack is half-way to the success of your mobile product so we highly recommend thoroughly consider all the factors and weigh the pros and cons of different backend solutions to avoid pitfalls and ensure bug-free application as an outcome.

No matter at what development stage you are now or whether you are just starting to think about your own product -  if you have questions, Touchlane experts will help you find the best solution, advise you on either the mobile app development stack or the full cycle of development. Just drop us a line!

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