Facebook Parse APII: An Introduction

Facebook's acquisition of @parseit gives the social giant a big mobile boost by making it easier for developers to create apps for the Facebook platform. In a three-part series, we take a deep dive into Parse.

 

What Is Parse?

Parse markets itself as the solution that securely and conveniently stores data in a managed cloud data store, without having to worry about server architecture, capacity and load. Aimed at cross-platform mobile developers, Parse lets developers focus on their core competencies while delegating the complexities of the back end to a proven scalable solution. However, Parse is evolving to provide more than just the handling of back-end servers, with the introduction of numerous goodies that aid mobile developers in creating a more robust app:

  • Parse Push delegates all the difficulties of setting up push notifications to Parse, simplifying the process of creating engaging notifications through a Web console.It also allows for sophisticated segmenting of push notifications based on various conditions.
  • Parse Analytics allows developers to track data points in apps in real time by monitoring stack traces in each distribution iteration, as well as through real-time API monitoring and analytics when Parse APIs are called and certain classes are accessed. Parse Analytics also lets developers analyze push campaigns to determine the effectiveness of segmentations, including open rate, and offers an overview of active users and retention data.

Why Choose Parse?

There are certainly other competing solutions out there, including Apple’s CloudKit Storage, which is free, and Orchestrate.io.

Orchestrate.io is quite a robust solution, as we noted in our review, but Parse provides for an all-in-one solution — from data storage to analytics to push notifications.

It comes down to price versus convenience, and when you are working on your minimum viable product (MVP), you usually want the quickest way to demonstrate your solution before you start to scale and acquire new series of funding. By not distracting yourself with the back-end infrastructure, you save time and cost by focusing on mobile app developers without the need (at least initially) to hire any database or server administrators.

 

For my complete article, you can read it exclusively on ProgrammableWeb.