Mobile Backend as a service (MBaaS), also known as "backend as a service" (BaaS), is a model for providing web and mobile app developers with a way to link their applications to backend cloud storage and APIs exposed by back end applications while also providing features such as user management, push notifications, and integration with social networking services. These services are provided via the use of custom software development kits (SDKs) and application programming interfaces (APIs). Backend as a Service also refered as “turn-on infrastructure” for mobile and web apps.
BaaS providers tend to fall into one of two categories: consumer BaaS or enterprise BaaS. The former focuses largely on “lighter-weight” brand apps (and games), whereas the latter centers on mobilizing sensitive, business-critical data from enterprise systems. As a whole, BaaS providers are disrupting the on-premise “Mobile Enterprise Application Platform,” or MEAP, category, while providing a lot more turn-key functionality for your mobile strategy than traditional API management and Platform as a Service vendors.
Web and mobile apps require a similar set of features on the backend, including push notifications, integration with social networks, and cloud storage. Each of these services has its own API that must be individually incorporated into an app, a process that can be time-consuming and complicated for app developers. BaaS providers form a bridge between the frontend of an application and various cloud-based backends via a unified API and SDK.
Providing a consistent way to manage backend data means that developers do not need to redevelop their own backend for each of the services that their apps need to access, potentially saving both time and money.
Although similar to other cloud-computing developer tools, such as software as a service (SaaS), infrastructure as a service (IaaS), and platform as a service (PaaS), BaaS is distinct from these other services in that it specifically addresses the cloud-computing needs of web and mobile app developers by providing a unified means of connecting their apps to cloud services.