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Q&A: Overcoming the challenges of mobile app development

Enterprises and developers building mobile applications struggle because there are so few out of the box solutions for mobile application infrastructure. Couchbase Mobile, used by over 100,000 developers and customers from Ryanair, GE Electric to CrowdComfort build always available, always fast apps that deliver just that - out of the box synchronisation, security, administration and performance features help enterprises quickly deliver mobile applications that make them more competitive in the digital economy.

  1. What’s going on in the world of mobile app development?

With the rise of the digital economy, more time and resource is being spent on mobile app development. So much so that Gartner predicts that by the end of 2017, market demand for mobile app development services will grow at least five times faster than internal IT organisations capacity to deliver them. To make it easier for professional developers to build and deploy mobile applications, Couchbase is building the most advanced full-stack database. This includes an embedded database for mobile, a database server, and enterprise synchronisation, security and administration, delivering a complete database solution for every tier in the application stack.

  1. What pressures does this put on app developers?

The increased demand from app developers is driven directly from customer and market demand for application features. The development service market’s inability to keep up with this demand requires app developers to look for solutions that accelerate their ability to deliver those services on their own. And without a ‘buy’ option, developers’ only choice is to build. Couchbase is one of these solutions, saving developers valuable time and resources with its out-of-the-box features and enabling development teams to build feature-rich apps that deliver on those demands.

  1. How can technology overcome these challenges?

To enable this acceleration, solution providers need to resolve the fundamental concerns of mobile development. These concerns include storage, access, transport, and security.

With solution providers addressing these concerns, mobile developers can then focus on delivering application features at a rate that more closely matches market demand. So, you need storage on the device and in the cloud, you need a transport mechanism between those two storage locations, and you need it to be secure. And, as a mobile developer, you don’t want to be managing three or more technologies to achieve this. Couchbase consolidates these layers, allowing app developers to resolve these concerns with a single database technology.

  1. How will this change the game for developers when it comes to building apps?

Instead of having to focus on building and piecing together technologies that address these fundamental development concerns, mobile developers can instead focus on what matters: building applications that users and customers are demanding and delivering on features.

  1. Are there any security issues to be aware of?

The proliferation of mobile usage has created a need for technology providers and enterprises to rapidly invest and innovate in security. There are five primary security concerns surrounding mobile data synchronisation and decentralised storage of data on a mobile device:

  1. User authentication
  2. Data read/write access
  3. Data transport on the wire
  4. Data storage on device
  5. Data storage in the cloud

Couchbase Mobile has always addressed each of these areas and with our new release, Couchbase has further increased security on the device by encrypting data at rest on the device using enterprise level 256-bit AES full database encryption.

  1. When looking at the end game, what are the benefits for businesses and end users?

Businesses and end users get the full attention of app developers from a UX standpoint. Whereas before app developers had to worry about backend concerns, with Couchbase developers can be quick-to-market and focused on their end users and customers.

Wayne Carter, chief architect of mobile at Couchbase

Image Credit: Shutterstock/Lenka Horavova