The android operating system continues to be the most famous and dominant OS in the World. As it is growing largely to support different platforms and updated technologies, data computation is becoming the most important part of App development. Therefore, Databases are the foundation for building an Android App and updating an existing one. Choosing the right database for Android is the most challenging part of android app development.
Basic qualities of the database for android:
- It must be Lightweight as storage is limited on mobile devices.
- It should be fast and reliable.
- It requires the quality of Better performance.
- It should take minimum memory.
- Power consumption must be low.
- It must have an option for using it as private as well as shared with other applications if needed.
Which Database is used in Android?
There are many databases for Android app development in the market. But, not all databases have the above-mentioned qualities. The Android App Development Company use four popular databases based on their fundamental qualities. Those four databases are SQLite, Realm DB, Firebase, and Couchbase Lite. Here, we’ll discuss the key features and limitations of those five most demanding databases.
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- SQLite version 1.0 was released in August 2000.
- It is a lighter version of SQL and this light-weighted database for android is specifically designed for mobile Apps.
- It is an open-source relational database. Here, you can manage data easily and smoothly.
- It is a standalone database. To access this database, the developers don’t need to build any kind of connection with the client’s server like JDBC, ODBC, etc…
- SQLite is the Pre-defined database in Android OS. Better performance: Reading and writing operations are very fast.
- No need to install and zero configuration. Thus, implementation is very easy.
- Reliable:It updates your content continuously so, little or no work is lost in a case of power failure or crash. It is fewer bugs prone rather than custom-written file I/O codes.
- SQLite is portable across all 32-bit and 64-bit operating systems and big- and little-endian architectures.
- It is compatible with all programming languages.
- Recoverable database content in case of loss or crush.
- It is very cost-effectiveas the short SQL queries can access and update content easily rather than long and error-prone procedural codes.
- It has less complexityas the Future release of SQLite can be expanded by simply including new tables and/or columns. Moreover, it also maintains backward compatibility.
- It has large community support.
- The Mobile App Development Companies face challenges in using SQLite in case of developing large and complex Android Apps
- SQLite is used to handle low to medium traffic HTTP requests.
- Database size is restricted to 2GB in most cases.
- It has some security issues.
- It doesn’t have multi-user capabilities.
Firestore and Firebase’s Realtime Database:
Google’s Firebase database for android enables developers to create high-quality apps swiftly and expand their business. It was released in 2014.
- Easy Authentication process of Firebase includes drop-in support for common authentication methods like Google and Facebook, as well as email and password login, anonymous login, and more. So, Starting without spending any money is a good option for users.
- Realtime Database Security Rules allow authorize access for each user.
- Firebase offers multiple ready-to-use services like data storage, authentication, notifications, analytics, and more that help Front-end developers to manage all the data.
- Most Android App Development Companies choose this database option as I have two database options Firestore and Firebase’s Realtime database. Firebase allows serverless application developmentthrough Integrated Cloud Functions that aid developers to perform effortlessly with Cloud media storage.
- It is very cost effective for the Mobile App Development Company as it reduces the cost of backend development and standardizes the environment in single and easy-to-learn technology. Therefore, front-end developers can manage all the activities.
- Firebase offers Machine learning as it comes with an ML kit with readily API that provides features like text identification; face detection, image labelling, barcode scanning, and more.
- This database for android comes with a seamless way to link with Google analytics. It generates insightful information by acquiring user behavioral data.
- The regular backup system of Firebase provides optimal data security and data availability. It also protects against any possibility of data loss during the automatic backup process.
- It has good community support.
- It’s not Open-source.
- Limited query abilities due to Firebase’s data stream model
- It’s a bit costly and pricing is difficult to predict.
- This only runs on Google Cloud.
- The light-weighted Realm version 1.0 was released in June 2016.
- Realm database for android is a perfect alternative to SQLite databases as the code is much shorter and concise. Even using SQL, developers can use object and object trees.
- This database for android performs CRUD operations very fast as it has no complex algorithm and no deserialization.
- The documentation is very clear and it has large community support.
- Encrypted databases provide high data security.
- Zero-copy feature of this database prevents repetitions. Therefore, the object in the Realm is a live object that updates automatically to reflect data changes
- Realm along with RXJava makes Reactive Programming simple and develops Reactive mobile Apps in less time.
- Realm has a build-in Adapter class for the Android UI components.
- Realm doesn’t support auto-incrimination and composite keys.
- This database has no support for nested transactions.
- Needs to add Third party library.
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Many Android App Development companies prefer Couchbase lite as the database for android app development because of the following features.
- This is an Open-source multi-model database for android.
- Couchbase has a full Stack NoSQL database that helps in Offline syncing.
- This database supports CRUD application and query capabilities.
- Couchbase Lite uses JSON documents to store data.
- Couchbase is designed to provide a scalable document that can be accessed with low latency. It is optimized for interactive applications.
- This high-performance and flexible database can sync the data centre in any Cloud platform like AWS, Azure, etc…
- Need faster indexing.
- Query processing should be improved.
Mobile Apps are highly dynamic and need to update with new resources to maintain their capabilities with the same efficiency. So, every Mobile App Development Company wants to use a robust and perfect fit database for android App development. Now the question is which database is used in android? Based on the qualities and limitations of the databases, the Android App Development Company chooses the right database for android. This article depicts the comparative study of the most popular databases used in android app development.