Azure Backend-as-a-Service

Enterprises across the globe are transmuting to bleeding-edge cloud-based models for decreasing operational costs, encouraging a mobile workforce, and augmenting productivity. Azure Backend-as-a-Service (BaaS) is a cloud-based model clearing the path for organizations to fulfill their web, mobile, or API needs. 

What is a Backend-as-a-Service?

BaaS (Backend-as-a-Service) is a cloud computing service model. It serves as the middleware that offers developers ways to connect their mobile and web apps to cloud services through API (application programming interfaces) and SDK (software developers’ kits).

BaaS is relatively new compared to other service models in the cloud computing environment, and therefore, the number of available providers is limited. The features of BaaS include push notifications, cloud storage, user management, location users, and other backend services. Since these services have their APIs, they can be integrated into apps easily. 

What is Azure?

Azure is a cloud computing service developed by Microsoft for testing, building, deploying, and also managing apps and services, via Microsoft-managed data centers.

It provides SaaS (software as a service), PaaS (platform as a service), and IaaS (infrastructure as a service), and supports various tools, programming languages, and frameworks, including third-party and Microsoft-specific systems and software. 

In October 2008, Azure was announced at Microsoft’s PDC (Professional Developers Conference) and it went by “Project Red Dog”, which was the internal project codename. Azure was released formally as Windows Azure in February 2010 and then it was renamed on 25th March 2014 to Microsoft Azure. 

Does Azure have a Backend-as-a-Service?

Yes, Azure has a BaaS and the name of the service is Azure Mobile Apps Service. 

Azure Mobile Apps Services is one of the leading MBaas systems that power enterprise mobile solutions. Azure MBaas consolidates single sign-in, enterprise active directory, push notifications, integration with databases, social media integration, and also offline sync features that are all in the ready-to-use stage.

It even adds necessary security layers to apps and makes it possible for apps to connect to on-premises and enterprise systems resources. Its functionality makes it a scalable cloud backend to mobile and web apps.  

The compelling features of Azure Mobile Apps Services are given below. 

  • Personalized push notifications – Azure Notification Hubs is a scalable mobile-push notification engine. It can instantly send push notifications to Windows, Android, iOS or even Nokia X. Notification Hubs can be hooked to the backend of any existing app, regardless of whether the backend is hosted on Azure or on-premises. 
  • Fast app development – The Mobile Apps feature allows rapid development of native and cross-platform apps in the cloud or on-premises. 
  • Secure data access – VPN and Azure Hybrid Connections ensure that accessing data is fast and secure from on-premises data centers across the globe. 
  • Responsive apps using offline data sync – Robust apps can be created that remain useful when there are network issues. App responsiveness can be improved by caching server data locally. 

Alternatives to Azure Mobile Apps Services

Back4app

Use Back4app to run cloud functions, build your database, connect to the backend using REST or GraphQL, and deliver real-time updates. This is a flexible, open-source, and scalable backend service that provides storage options on the cloud. 

AWS Amplify

Powered by AWS, AWS Amplify is a range of services and tools that can be used on their own or together to help front-end mobile and web developers in building scalable full-stack apps. With Amplify, configuring app backends and connecting apps takes a few minutes. 

Firebase

Firebase is a cloud service designed by Google to power collaborative, real-time web or mobile applications. Using this service, enterprises can develop data faster while reducing the cost of the overall app development process. 

Conclusion

Microsoft’s Azure Mobile Apps Services is an easy-to-use native and cross-platform apps service for Android, iOS, and Windows.

FAQ

Does Azure offer a backend as a service?

Yes, Azure does provide a BaaS platform. The name of the service is Azure Mobile Apps.

What are the core features of Azure Mobile Apps?

– Notifications
– Faster app development
– Offline sync

What are the alternatives to Azure Mobile Apps?

– Back4app
– Firebase
– AWS Amplify


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