The use of mobile applications is increasing worldwide, not only in volume of users, but also in daily time spent on the applications. TechCrunch recently reported that mobile users are now spending between four and five hours — about a third of waking hours — on smartphone apps daily. And when it comes to the apps they use, there’s no shortage of choices. Business of Apps said Google Play currently offers about 2.8 million apps and games, and Apple’s App Store offers about 4.5 million.
But this huge volume of apps — and the increasingly long time users are spending on them — means users can be extremely selective with which apps they choose to engage with. In fact, according to research by mobile marketing analytics provider AppsFlyer, nearly one in two apps are uninstalled within 30 days, and research by Andrew Chen found that losing 80% of mobile users is ” normal” for all but the most. popular apps.
One of the main reasons for the high app abandonment rate is the bad experience, especially slowness and unreliability. A report by Think Storage Now found that 70% of mobile app users will abandon an app that takes too long to load. And an older but still oft-cited Compuware study found that 84% of app users will abandon an app if it fails just twice.
These facts help underline that there is little margin for error when it comes to keeping users happy and engaged. Providing a fast and reliable experience is key to the success of your mobile application, and using the right database, designed for mobile applications, is essential to achieve this.
Database options for mobile apps
You may be wondering what we mean by “mobile database”. A database is a database, right?
Not exactly. When it comes to developing a mobile application, whether native, web-based, or hybrid, you need to choose a database that can deliver the speed and reliability your users demand. Let’s look at the options.
Relational vs. NoSQL
A relational database stores data in highly organized tables maintained by a rigid and fixed schema designed for consistency. But relational rigidity comes at a price: application developers must conform their code to the schema, and any required data changes result in time-consuming schema updates, making application updates difficult.
In contrast, a NoSQL database stores data as JSON documents, eliminating the need for a schema and allowing developers to modify the database on demand as application requirements change. Additionally, NoSQL databases are distributed, which means they can be deployed across multiple nodes, providing superior performance and reliability for applications.
In general, due to their distributed nature and flexible data model, NoSQL databases are well suited for mobile applications due to their speed and reliability.
In a cloud database model, mobile and IoT applications use a database that runs in the cloud.
The cloud database model offers a rapid transition to a standardized, distributed infrastructure that provides scalability, elasticity, and flexibility for mobile applications.
The problem is that the model depends on the internet, which is inherently unreliable. If the internet slows down, so do the apps that depend on it. And if the internet goes down, apps stop working altogether, frustrating users and costing the business downtime.
Due to internet dependencies, the cloud database model presents challenges in meeting the expectations of mobile application users. When they travel to areas with poor network connectivity, such as a subway station, airplane, or tunnel, their apps become unreliable at best and useless at worst.
To ensure a fast and reliable mobile app experience, you need to eliminate internet dependencies.
Embedded database technology such as SQLite is another option for mobile app development. This is where the database runs in the app installed on the mobile device. By integrating the database into the application itself, you completely remove the need for a network connection while getting the best guarantees of speed and availability.
Using an embedded database can be ideal for applications that are self-contained in nature and whose data rarely changes, but their lack of connectivity presents challenges for multi-user applications, where data changes frequently and needs to be shared. with other users. With an embedded database, developers either have to build data sharing features into their embedded applications or go without.
The mobile database model is an amalgamation of the cloud and embedded database models, combining the best aspects of each into an architecture that first powers offline applications unaffected by Internet slowness and outages.
The model consists of a central cloud database and an embedded database running on mobile clients that share data through automatic synchronization – the embedded databases synchronize data between the cloud database and other integrated devices as they are captured or modified. When a network connection is not available, data is stored and processed locally, and when the connection is restored, synchronization resumes automatically.
Mobile databases also offer peer-to-peer functionality, allowing multiple nearby embedded devices to synchronize data using private networks such as Bluetooth, thus enabling collaboration in a disconnected environment.
The mobile database model is capable of meeting the expectations of mobile application users by delivering the fast and reliable experience they demand. Built-in local data processing ensures real-time responsiveness and high availability regardless of internet connectivity, and cloud-to-edge synchronization ensures the user experience is always up-to-date and consistent.
The Couchbase mobile database
Couchbase provides a mobile database that brings the power and flexibility of a cloud-based NoSQL database to the edge.
The Couchbase mobile stack includes:
- Couchbase Capella — A fully managed, cloud-based NoSQL database as a service (DBaaS) with support for SQL, search, analytics, and events.
- Capella App Services — Fully managed services for two-way synchronization, authentication, and access control for mobile and device apps.
- Couchbase Lite — An integrated mobile database with broad mobile platform support.
A Fortune 500 member and one of the world’s largest oilfield service companies, Halliburton uses Couchbase’s mobile database technology to automate various processes and workflows to create new business opportunities and improve customer service. efficiency at well sites and drilling operations. With our unique mobile and data sync capabilities, Halliburton can sync data between devices with limited or no internet connectivity, increasing field worker efficiency by preventing both data duplication and redundancy. some efforts.
Test Couchbase Capella and App Services for free.