The evolution of enterprise mobile applications has exploded over the last few years; mobility and cloud computing is also transforming the way of working with bring your own device (BYOD). Most mobile applications need to connect with a backend systems to provide employees with the most up-to-date information anytime from anywhere. When you connect with these backend systems it requires sensitive and confidential data to be transferred between mobile app and multiple backend systems for different operations such as user authentication and integration with ERP system. Keeping this in mind enterprises need to consider mobile solutions with complete management capabilities such as analytics, uniform integration platform for various cross-platform products, user management, and push notifications ensuring all security compliance.
Oracle Mobile Cloud Service (MCS) is a cloud based MBaaS platform that can provide these capabilities with easy to adopt SDKs and utility classes. They can easily be integrated with any mobile client which support RESTful APIs. It comes with several built in APIs such as Push Notifications, Data Offline / Sync, Mobile User Management, Analytics, Mobile Storage, and Device Management. To integrate with backend systems, it comes with connector API which can connect with any backend systems using SOAP/REST APIs.
Sofbang has used Oracle MCS services with our recent mobile applications developed on Oracle Mobile Application Framework (MAF). With Oracle MCS we are able integrate with Oracle E-Business Suite (EBS) using REST connectors for creating and managing service request and work orders. With Oracle MAF we have used Java utility classes to connect with the Mobile Backend that we have created with MCS. Personally, I like the Mobile Backends concept because:
- We can configure and manage the API that will be used by the mobile applications, and can define what API should be used by which mobile backend and which mobile application.
- We can easily monitor and diagnose API calls and other activities within a single console. Sending and monitoring notifications is one of the great features of the mobile backend.
- Deploying to production and staging is very easy, we can create different version of backend for development.
- We can define user management for that mobile backend etc.
- Utilize built-in security features such as Basic Auth, SAML 2.0, and UserName Token profiles.