Firebase and Google Cloud Storage Introduction

Brief :

Firebase a back-end-as-a-service (BaaS) founded about three years ago. Firebase developed their services platform independent as those services can be used for android, IOS and web. Before one and half year ago Google acquired Firebase. With the help of firebase developers will be easily able to sync mobile devices and web without writing complex code for synchronization. Existing firebase services will be available as it is, in addition google services can be easily ported to use with firebase platform. Acquisition helped Google as well as Firebase and indirectly it become a gift for users and developers. Google got 1,10,000 developers who are using Firebase services and Firebase developers and users will get benefit of google's cloud technology and talent.

Need :

With the help of Google promotion firebase services are unified in mobile and web development.

Firebase provides many services like analytics, cloud messaging, authentication, realtime database, storage, hosting, remote app config, crash reporting, advertisement. Its not over here, google is planning to add more features in stack of firebase. Already some of the new features are announced by the google. Google's existing customers are supposed to move towards Firebase as google one by one embedding their core logic in firebase services.

Features :

1) Firebase Analytics :

Firebase analytics reports let us track user behavior and event fired after users action. Developers can do further analysis for improvements based on this reports. Firebase provide around 500 distinct events to be tracked. This feature is total free for unlimited usage.

2) Firebase Cloud Messaging (FCM):

Firebase provides cross platform messaging solution at no cost. We can notify to app user with notifications as per our need. Up to 4KB of payload can be sent via FCM to client app. Developers who are already using Google Cloud Messaging (GCM) can easily shift to FCM. Lots of boiler plate code is removed with no more permissions in manifest file for android.

For more information please refer: How to add firebase cloud messaging in Android App.

3) Authentication :

Firebase provide authentication services for Google Sign-In, Facebook Login, Twitter and GitHub. If you want your own login module, then firebasae provide easily configurable and ready to use login module. This service also include notifying user actions like updating email, password. Updating actions are notified to users by emails to the user. One time password, email verification are part of authentication.

For more information please refer: How to add authentication in firebase.

4) Firebase Realtime Database (FRD) :

Now there is no need to worry about writing complex database queries, storing and syncing of data with server for your applications. FRD does this all for you on the go with NoSQL database working behind the scene. FRD is cloud hosted database. Data will be available offline and synced across all users once you are online. Millions of users can see the updated data within a second without compromising responsiveness. This is free upto certain extent after that price is quoted.

For more information please refer: How to add firebase real time database in Android App.

5) File storage :

Firebase storage provides secure file uploads and downloads. All kind of user generated content like images, audio, video and documents can be stored with the help of Firebase Storage. This data is stored with firebase authentication protocols. So you do not need to worry about the security. This storage is scale able at run-time. If your app is gaining popularity rapidly then you can scale storage as per packages available.

6) Hosting :

Firebase Hosting is fast and secure static hosting mechanism for web apps. Contents always delivered securely with Zero-configuration SSL build in mechanism. Contents are stored on Global content-delivery network (CDN) on SSD's. So your contents are delivered rapidly to users no matters what is the location of your user. Rapid deployment with single line commands in seconds. Rollbacks and versioning supported to undo any mistakes.

7) App Indexing :

App indexing promotes your app in results on play store and on web search. It also shows your app in instant results on search engines. Android and IOS supports web site association with help of this they interlinked in web results. We can check association preview in IDE to know whether we are redirecting to correct website.

8) Crash Reporting :

It is one of the useful feature desired by the developers. Firebase Crash Reporting system captures all the manual conditions for failures, crashes and exceptions on firebase console. It will helps a lot to improve performance and make your app bug free without asking users to report a crash. Detailed stack trace of crash helps to quick fixing of bugs.

9) Dynamic Links :

Dynamic links are very useful when you want to do promotion of your applications or website. This links redirect user to your application or website from any where on clicking of that link.If your application is not installed then user is promoted to install it, after installation user can open your application from link.

10) Firebase Invites :

Firebase Invites lets your app your send invite to their friends from SMS or e-mails. We can use invitation mechanism to promote our app or to send referral codes. So our app users become advertiser for our app.

11) AdWords :

When we integrate AdWords with Firebase we can focus on audience belonging to particular domain or region. We can gain lots of public focus from marketing campaigns from AdWords.

12) AdMob :

Google AdMob which is used for in app advertisement and make some money can be integrated with Firebase. We do not need to do any changes in existing AdMob configuration. Firebase lets you introduce extra analysis capabilities and user app data. AdMob house ads is free tool that can be used to promote your app in all your user base.

Note: Many more features are in queue, this blog will be updated with new feature releases.


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