Evolving to a Microservice Architecture for your Mobile and Cloud Applications
Over the past few years, microservices have become a popular option when developing applications in the cloud. Tech giants like Amazon, Google, and Netflix have successfully used microservices in their organization to streamline their processes. Many companies consider the microservice approach to be the most efficient method for business growth.
What are Microservices?
Microservices are the state-of-the-art software development technique that structures the backend of an application into loosely coupled services that can be reused by other applications. Each service is self-contained and will implement a single business capability.
Mobile and cloud applications typically start with two repositories in source control. One repository makes use of the front-end and another repository for the backend. By splitting your application into two repositories, you enable two different sets of engineers to work on the UI and backend simultaneously.
Drawbacks to a Monolithic Backend
Unfortunately, there are some significant drawbacks to having a monolithic backend that encompasses your business logic and data access layer including:
- The sole responsibility of the backend is to serve data to the front end.
- The components within the monolithic backend are interconnected and interdependent.
- For developers to make changes to the backend, they have to build and deploy the entire stack at once.
- If the developers want to address scalability issues, the entire system must scale together.
- In the case that the developers want to adopt a new technology stack, you may have to rewrite the entire solution.
Benefits of a Microservice Architecture
By splitting our monolithic backend into business-specific services, we can address a number of the shortcomings of the monolithic backend. A prime example of a self-contained microservice is authentication. Every application requires the user to signup, sign in, reset the password, perform email validation, etc.
By building an Authentication microservice that is solely responsible for handling the user’s authenticity, we’re able to solve many of the issues we face with the monolithic backend including:
- Multiple applications can make use of the authentication microservice.
- The authentication microservice can make use of a REST API.
- If the developer wants to make changes to the backend of the authentication microservice, devs can make changes without modifying the rest of the application.
- When addressing scalability issues with the authentication service, application outside of the authentication doesn’t have to change.
- To adopt a new technology stack for the authentication microservice, you only have to rewrite the single authentication service.
In subsequent blog posts, we will explore the role that Kubernetes plays with microservices and the different types of microservices that will exist in a cloud SaaS application.