Appcelerator acquires Cocoafish. Rolling your own mobile app is getting easier and easier!

Last week Appcelerator , provider of a mobile application development platform, announced that it acquired Cocoafish

Last week Appcelerator, provider of a mobile application development platform, announced that it acquired Cocoafish, a mobile backend-as-a-service company that I wrote about a few weeks ago.

Basically, Cocoafish provides the backend infrastructure and a set of APIs to support common cloud-based application functions (like ratings and reviews, social network integration, "friends," status updates... pretty much all the "app-y" things), leaving more sensitive data and proprietary features up to developers. Removing this overhead lowers the bar for companies that want to create internal mobile applications for their employees; the ability to keep sensitive data on-premise (or wherever it was before) is attractive, as well.

Appcelerator will be combining these features into its mobile application development platform, Titanium. According to Appcelerator, most Titanium developers already incorporate cloud services into their applications, usually by building them manually. Having Cocoafish as a part of Titanium will simplify this part of mobile app development. As well, by being incorporated into a more established product, Cocoafish makes gains in trustworthiness and scalability.

The biggest hurdle is that it’s still up to organisations themselves to decide if developing mobile applications for their employees is necessary (cue comments from curmudgeons that think tablets have no place in the enterprise). For those that decide that mobile applications are indeed valuable, companies like Appcelerator—especially now with the addition of cloud services from Cocoafish—are making it easier to provide them.

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Just wanted to let you know about my struggles with choosing a backend service for my apps. The main problem I’ve encountered was probably the most obvious one, it is the lack of flexibility, which results in longer implementation times of the non-standard features. You save time for most features, but you have to invest extra efforts in some minor features, I started with Built.io, but it simply lacks sufficient tutorials or sample code for what I needed to do. This makes it difficult to implement some more advanced features without the proper direction. Then, I switched to Appcelerator. It has so many issues with the UI that I couldn’t even start, so I also tried Appery, since I thought I can probably do most things as it uses JavaScript and APIs, but it was not like that, I had to code pretty much everything, since there were a lot of limitations involved I found this frustrating. My last try was Backendless, even though it’s a complex system, the docs are pretty straightforward and I asked support for some help and they are fast to respond, I started with a free account to try and it’s not bad at all compared to others solutions I tried. Will stick to it as of right now, I think.
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