Application Development

Choosing the right platform for real-time chat application development – XMPP vs Firebase

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Broadly speaking, it is tricky to judge any specific technology being better or worse than another. Each of them has its own pros and cons. It essentially depends upon your requirements to identify which one fits the best for you.

Technically, you require a server to develop chat applications for making conversions happen as there is no native protocol. With a variety of chat application frameworks available in the market, we’ve shortlisted two most advanced and high performing protocols – Firebase and XMPP.

After having a close encounter with both the platforms in terms of iOS Chat App Development and Android chat application development, we have realized that it is a totally different scenario to create apps using XMPP and Google Firebase.

Firebase and XMPP Both are distinctive and it is really hard to compare them as they have their own unique features and functionalities.

 

Firebase

  • Developer : Google

  • Hosting by Google, free up to 100 real-time connections

  • No custom code

  • Easy and quick set-up

  • Recommended for time applications

  • In-built database

  • JSON storage data

  • Backup data upload option to Amazon S3 bucket or Google cloud storage

XMPP

  • Developer: Jabber open-source community

  • Cloud based server, unlimited

  • Full customization available

  • Difficult set-up

  • Recommended for real-time applications

  • Open-source database

  • XML storage data

  • Backup data upload option to Amazon S3 bucket or Google cloud storage


Firebase

Firebase is a cloud-based application development framework developed by Google to create high performing mobile apps. It is a real-time database and it uses Websockets and MongoDB.

It allows developers a platform and application structure to build functions such as messaging, notifications, analytics and crash reporting. Being the framework of Google, it is the preferred choice of mobile developers due to its scalability and ability to seamlessly integrate with other consoles.


Benefits and Drawbacks of Firebase

Performance

With Websockets and MongoDB, it facilitates high performance and considerable of simultaneous connections. Real-time database management becomes easy as they both are powerful and offer the full database control.

You can also integrate a wide range of applications from Google suit to monitor the performance of your app.

Flexibility

Data structures can be customized as you need. For instance, you want to add a new message type called “Survey Message”, you can add and test it as well before rolling it out live.

Similar to WhatsApp and Facebook Messenger, you can update and make sure the new feature is bug-free without disturbing the existing functionalities or hampering user experience. Moreover, Firebase allows you to integrate additional features as per the requirement.

Set-up

Google Firebase is convenient, easy and quick to set up. It requires nominal efforts to make the app up and running.

Protocol

Having no defined set of protocols, developers can set up their own database structure and customize it the way they want. It is one of the USPs of Google Firebase. You have the freedom to choose what they need and what not.

Security

Google Firebase is encrypted and comes with SSL certification. Even with Security, it offers a great deal of customization. You can set the certain set of protocols to avoid data manipulation in the NoSQL database.


XMPP

It stands for Extensive Messaging and Presence Protocol. XMPP server is a communication protocol specifically designed for messaging which enables the application development. It runs on the open XML technology to build robust chat applications. Apart from the chat apps, it is widely used for creating customer service and support apps as well.

XMPP’s security and privacy features are powerful. It has been constantly improved by the thriving community of developers, over the years.

XMPP is used by Skype, Facebook Messenger, WhatsApp and Google Hangover. It is evident in the fact that some of biggest companies are using XMPP. Needless to say, it is an absolute choice for developers.


Benefits and Drawbacks of XMPP

Performance

You can develop high-end applications. XMPP is rapidly scalable known for its ability to scale up from few users to millions of users. That is the USP of this amazing framework. Moreover, there is no limit to real-time messaging and information (file) sharing to it.

Set-up

XMPP set-up is a bit time consuming primarily because of exclusive capabilities. Even as an open-source framework, it is difficult to set up and maintain.

Flexibility

There are multiple custom functionalities, you can create on XMPP. It is very much flexible in terms of features. It offers not just messaging, but other critical functionalities such as chat rooms, games, file and geo-location sharing etc.

Protocol

XMPP has a well-defined protocol. XMPP app can work with any XMPP server. It simplifies and speeds up the communication among the users.  The network security ensures the encryption of the message using DSL.

Security

You can imagine XMPP as a separate company intranet. This is one of the basic reasons why XMPP is the first choice of enterprises. It can be secured by the additional security parameters like TLS and SASL to check data interception.


Final Word

It is not fair to conclude one of them as a better option. Even if you do, it sounds like a good idea theory. Both have their own matchless strength and weakness. One size doesn’t fit all. It is all up to you to scrutinize all the requirements and go for the one which allows you to build it in a more customized and easy manner.

Google Firebase and XMPP offer strong, stable and sustainable real-time chat applications. Unlike Firebase, XMPP supports all the multimedia formats. Even though, Google Firebase does not have all the comprehensive features same as XMPP. It is still an ideal choice to build an app that makes real-time information exchange easier.

Do note that XMPP and Google Firebase require hard extensive coding. There is some meticulous exercise; you must do before making the final call.

Get in touch with Techcronus experts to turn your idea into reality. Our Mobile app development team is competent, reliable and having expertise on both the frameworks. Contact us now!

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Techcronus

Techcronus is a global provider of Business Solutions and Custom Software Development services since 2010. We take complete responsibility of our customer’s software requirements, ensuring top quality results at all times. Our value proposition is our strength that distinguishes us in terms of industry specific services, emerging technology expertise, strategic alliances with professional consultants and business experts, and long-term partnership commitments.