Definition

mobile Backend as a Service (mobile BaaS)

Mobile Backend as a Service, also known simply as Backend as a Service (BaaS), is a computing architecture that connects mobile applications to cloud computing services.

An alternative to mobile middleware, a BaaS approach uses unified application programming interfaces (APIs) and software developer's kits (SDKs) to connect mobile apps to back-end cloud storage. Traditional mobile middleware integrates back-end services to the app with an on-premises, physical server. BaaS, on the other hand, integrates back-end services with a hosted environment in the cloud.

BaaS can also be used to federate backend services and provide common backend features such as push notifications, social networking integration and location services. This is a departure from typical mobile application development, which requires developers to incorporate the APIs of each back-end service individually.

In software development, the term backend describes the the servers, applications and databases that support an app's user-facing front end. Because mobile devices depend on the ability to access data and documents in the cloud, storage services are an essential part of BaaS. 

Contributor(s): Colin Steele, Stephanie Mann
This was last updated in December 2013
Posted by: Margaret Rouse

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