Open Source Parse As A Backend For Mobile Apps

With the recent announcement that Parse will be retired on January 28th 2017, a lot of developers have been left either scrambling to migrate their existing apps onto the open-sourced version of Parse OR facing the decision to find an alternative provider. Although the Parse team have been extremely helpful in helping developers with this, it raises many concerns around security, stability and continuity with future technologies becoming available. We’ve assembled a list of the Pros, Cons and useful links below for you:

Pro’s of continuing with Parse

  • No data conversion issues – Parse will recognise your existing data format in its new open source platform and will allow you to migrate easily to the new server.
  • No development time needs to be spent on creating a new database – The cost of creating a new database, in terms of time, can be huge – As developers, we all know the struggle of linking all our objects and creating unique pointers….and that doesn’t even scratch the surface of all the headaches we go through.
  • Free and scalable -The open source version allows you to have unlimited resources, unlimited calls, unlimited memory, etc. You no longer need to pay Parse fees for large-scale applications.
  • Open Source – This is a huge positive for most. It means that the community can create custom distros of the Parse-Server and Parse-Dashboard. It will continuously be updated on GitHub to conform to and meet new standards by the community.
  • API’s – With access to API’s for every programming language available, the possibilities are endless. Every platform can interact with your Parse Database natively which is an awesome feat from the Parse team.

Con’s of continuing with Parse

  • Finding a provider – Generally speaking, cloud computing is the way forward. So that means finding a cloud host that supports mongoDB to run Parse with. Thankfully DigitalOcean is just one of many providers who support mongoDB and running Parse-Server and Parse-Dashboard on their servers.
  • Hosting costs – Parse’s costs were minimal compared to what we’d need to pay a hosting company to host all our data securely, and provide insanely low latency and ping times. Now that developers need to host their own installations of Parse, they will need to pay hosting costs.
  • Currently still in development – Parse Open Source is still in development and will be until January 28th 2017. This means that are still some bugs and there is still some missing functionality that is yet to be added.

Useful Links

In summary, Parse Open Source provides an extremely useful and promising future. We are currently deploying our mobile apps using the Open Source version of Parse and are yet to run into any major hurdles. If you’d like a setup guide from start to finish, leave your comments below and we’ll get onto it.

Join the discussion 2 Comments

  • George Batschinski says:

    Facebook’s decision to close Parse.com will affect more than 1 million applications worldwide. Developers need to migrate their applications to another vendor before Jan, 2017 and find a platform to host their apps. I’d love to see you guys write a tutorial on how to setup open-source parse to run apps.

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