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Pivotal Integrates Mobile Development Services with Cloud Platform

Pivotal Software Inc. is continuing to expand its product and service offerings, most recently jumping into the enterprise mobile app development arena with the announcement of Pivotal CF Mobile Services.

Known mostly as a private cloud Platform as a Service (PaaS) provider with Big Data expertise, the company will add the Mobile Application Development Platform (MADP) and Mobile Backend as a Service (MBaaS) acronyms to its portfolio.

With technology stemming from its acquisition last fall of mobile development firm Xtreme Labs, the new services will provide "instant-on, production-ready, mobile back-end services" including push notifications, an API gateway and data synchronization. In doing so, it's joining the ranks of Microsoft -- which has had Azure Mobile Services out for two years -- and more recent entrants such as Google Inc., Amazon Web Services Inc. and others.

The three services, coming sometime this year, were described as:
  • Push Notifications: Directly integrated with enterprise services behind the firewall, these are built to scale and provide control of data and comprehensive logging and tracking.
  • API Gateway: This helps to transform legacy back-end APIs into mobile device-optimized APIs to boost app performance and UX.
  • Data Sync: This provides a mobile-optimized API to access different types of data storage to help developers incorporate enterprise data into their apps.

The "CF" in Pivotal CF Mobile Services stands for the open source Cloud Foundry technology, upon which the company's flagship PaaS service -- Pivotal CF -- is based. The company pointed to the integration of the two products as a selling point, noting that most MADP and MBaaS tools don't sport such integration with a PaaS that runs back-end middleware such as app servers, databases, Hadoop and so on.

"In contrast, Pivotal CF Mobile Services runs on, and is fully integrated with, Pivotal CF and thus inherits all of its capabilities," said company exec Sundeep Madra in a blog post last week. "These include nearly instant scalability, support for multiple programing languages, high availability, auto-healing, microservices support, application performance management, log aggregation and much more. Pivotal CF Mobile Services can be installed via Pivotal CF Ops Manager, making it easy for operations teams to offer mobile capabilities for their developers to use."

The new mobile services will work in conjunction with several data services the company announced in June. More recently, it announced a lightweight Java Web stack.

Pivotal quoted 451 Research analyst Michael Coté as speaking to the usefulness of mobile services such as Pivotal CF Mobile Services. "The desire to build mobile applications that integrate more tightly with corporate back-ends is rising," Coté said. "Both consumer and business users obviously want to start shifting much of their IT use over to mobile and tablet form factors: We consistently see companies satisfied with the business value achieved with mobile projects. As mobile apps spread more and more into the mainstream, these companies will be looking for extended back-end support like Pivotal CF Mobile Services."

No pricing information for the new services was provided by Pivotal.

About the Author

David Ramel is an editor and writer for 1105 Media.

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